One of the bible stories I wanted my mum to read to me over and over was the story of Abigail. You may have read Abigail’s story, but let me give you highlights of the story and how it affects me personally.
See, Abigail is described as a beautiful and sensible woman (two qualities I would really love to claim. LOL) but she was said to be married to a good for nothing man. Nabal’s stupidity was legendary. Even his servants knew it, there was no need trying to convince Nabal even when he was wrong. He just would not listen. You can just imagine the emotional and maybe even physical abuse that Abigail suffered in the hands of this man. Imagine waking up each day not knowing what new madness your husband would end up performing; wondering what mess you would have to clean up!
So how did this sensible woman end up married to a good-for-nothing drunken brute?
Remember, that back in the days of the Jews they often practised betrothal. Aside from that, parents often decided for their children who to marry and sometimes, their decisions were based on reasons that the children would probably not have approved of. Nabal was a very rich man, he owned 3,000 sheep and was said to have feasts fit for a king. So, here was the sensible Abigail trapped in a marriage to a rich stupid man. Interesting, the name Nabal means ‘stupid’. Not even his riches could buy him brains. (reminds me of some people alive today *sigh)
So, it turns out that David, the anointed of God and his servants, had been performing a service for Nabal and his flock and at this time when it was customary to give and share, David sent and requested that Nabal return a favour. Nabal obviously owes David and his men as they have protected his flock from marauding bands and not one went missing. A man of honour wouldn’t have thought twice about giving food to David and his men. But Nabal was far from a man of honour. He was rude to David.
Of course, David got so angry that he decided to cut off from the household of Nabal every man urinating against the wall. this was not a wise move by David. Who comes to the rescue but the sensible Abigail. She loads up provisions and presents herself before David, pleading for the life of her family. David listens and disaster is averted.
Now imagine, Abigail could have seen David act of revenge as an opportunity for her to escape a bad marriage. After all, if David cuts off Nabal she would be free. But no, she did the sensible thing and protected even a man she ordinarily should not have.
Eventually, God solved the problem with Nabal. First he must be been struck by a stroke and ten days later he died. Abigail was free to remarry and she found respect and love in David himself!
These days, there are many women who have found themselves in bad marriages. Sometimes, it is because they misplaced priorities. Maybe they put marrying a rich man ahead of a spiritual man. Or it could be that they ignored vital signs they should have noted. For some, it could be that their parents made the decision for them and there is nothing they could do about it. Whatever the case, bad marriages happen and some may never be able to walk away from one, all such women can be assured that God knows what they are going through and he will act on their behalf if they trust in him. Like God acted on behalf of Abigail, he will act on behalf of women who suffer oppression from Good-for-nothing-men.
I love the story of Abigail mainly because its a beautiful love story…well, if you really think of it. Maybe not a classic Cinderella story but a love story all the same (if you cant see it, get glasses *rme). I want to be more like Abigail everyday and that is why I have decided to take bible study seriously. Is there a bible character you would love to be like?
For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. – Romans !5:4 NIV