The story of Abigail in the Bible is one that all women (and men, for that matter) can learn a great deal from when it comes to how to navigate their own relationships.
For those of you who are not familiar with Abigail or her story, refer to 1 Samuel 25:2-42.
If you do not have time to read her story, here it is in a nutshell:
- Abigail was the wife of an extremely wealthy man named Nabal, who was also very foolish in his ways.
- David had taken refuge with his men from Saul near the home of Abigail and Nabal. David sent some of his men to ask for food, and Nabal, not realizing who he was insulting, basically spit at the ground and said no.
- One of their servants ran to Abigail and told her what happened, so she hurried and loaded up a caravan to food and gifts for the king without telling her husband. When she arrived where David was, she apologized for her husband’s disrespect and asked David to find fault with him, not her. She also asked for forgiveness and reminded him that the Lord would take care of anyone who went against him, thus winning favor with David.
- Afterwards, Abigail went to Carmel, where Nabal and his men had been shearing sheep. She discovered him hosting a banquet, drunk as all get out. Another foolish moment for her husband.
- The next morning, Abigail told Nabal what happened with David, causing his heart to fail. He died 10 days later.
- When David found out about Nabal’s death, he asked Abigail to marry him.
Now that you know the story, here is what women can take from the story:
Abigail was a prime example of Proverbs 18:22:
He who finds a wife finds what is good and receives favor from the LORD.(NIV)
However, it was also obvious that their marriage was an example of 2 Corinthians 6:14:
Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness? (NIV)
The scripture does not indicate how long Abigail and Nabal were married, but it does not deny that Nabal had been EXTREMELY careless throughout the entire marriage. If it were not for Abigail having his back all that time, Nabal probably would have been dead and gone a long time before. Why? Because Abigail, despite her husband’s foolishness, was still being the “good thing” that God called her to be as a wife, which is what made David want to marry her.
There is no argument as to why they are an example of 2 Corinthians 6:14 – their actions speak volumes about that. But think about how Abigail felt. She may have woke up everyday thinking, “Why did my life have to turn out this way? I’m married to a man who isn’t trying to cover me the way I’m trying to cover him. He values his money, food and drink over me, and almost had me, our servants, and everyone around us killed!” That’s not a way to live; however, Abigail did her best in the situation that she was in.
That is what a lot of women are guilty of doing – doing the best they can with what we have. A lot of women are like Abigail – married to/living with/sleeping with(let’s just be honest) a modern-day version of Nabal, yet they continue to push through it in hopes that the last incident won’t happen again, or he will learn their true value one day, or just come to his senses and do what he has to do. And sometimes that does happen….
But most times, it does not. Even Abigail had eventually to lift her hands and say, “Lord, thy will be done. I can’t do this all by myself anymore.” As a result, God gave her a second chance at life AND at love.
For those of you who aren’t married to Nabal, be glad! If he’s not trying to step up and be the man you need him to be, leave him to his own devices and find a man who will.
For those who are married to him, ask God for guidance. If you know you are being his “good thing” and doing the best you can, talk to God and ask him what your next move should be. You may wind up having to make an Abigail move, you never know. God is not an advocate for divorce, but He would not want one of His children to suffer in a dead-end relationship with a man who could potentially be her ruin.
He wants to see your succeed! He wants to see you thrive! He wants you to find the husband He created specifically for you!