"And Abigail hastened and arose and rode on a donkey, with five of her maids who followed her, and she went after the messengers of David and became his wife."
I Samuel 25: 42, Amplified Bible
"A Wise Woman With a Wounded Heart" Part II
"Success in marriage is more than finding the right person, it is a matter of being the right person."
Rabbi B. R. Brickner
Did I ever get into a new relationship when I was still hurting from a previous situation?
How hard was it for me to overcome the pain of the past while I was trying to build a new future?
Are there qualities I possess which make it difficult for me to build strong relationships with others in my life?
"A successful marriage demands a divorce; a divorce from your own self-love."
"A successful marriage is an edifice that must be rebuilt every day."
When I first read our text for today in I Samuel 25: 42, I thought it sounded as though it should be paraphrased this way: "The wealthy widow, Abigail, hopped on her donkey, along with her five maids, and took off after her husband David…and they lived happily ever after!"
If we had not studied so much about Abigail, this is the conclusion you could come to. For certain, Abigail was not poor. While the Bible doesn't tell us whether she and Nabal had children, it is obvious that with 5 maids accompanying her, Abigail was bringing something to the table when she married David. In fact, it is quite possible David was the beneficiary of Nabal's flocks.
What the story of Nabal, Abigail and David doesn't tell us, on the surface, is that Abigail was a wounded woman - wounded by an abusive husband whose unkindness left scars. And scars don't heal easily. It takes time to undo the damage.
But as we see Abigail hurried off and before you know it, she married again. And here's where we need to give pause for a moment. Who knows what expectations Abigail had regarding her future relationship with David. I may be wrong but I believe she was expecting things to be different from her life in Carmel with Nabal. However, what Abigail may not have taken into consideration was that David lived a vagabond life. For all we know, David may have told her he was anointed to be the future king of Israel. However, if Abigail thought her fairy-tale included being a queen some day, she was sadly mistaken.
As we look closer at the relationship between David and Abigail, just like all couples, there's always baggage which comes along with any person. I might add, this doesn't just happen in marriages, it happens in friendships, also.
When I met my Jim, I had baggage and so did he. There was the bag labeled "Family." Every person on earth has a bag with this label on it for even those who are estranged from family members, still carry what was implanted at birth and afterward. While my father was orphaned, he still carried many characteristics that came from his "family bag." When he finally met his brothers and sisters, it amazed everyone how closely they were all alike. But my dad also carried in the "family bag" the scars from a tough childhood. Both Abigail and David carried "family bags." You and I do, too. This isn't all. David and Abigail also carried "relationship baggage." Let's not forget, David was already married to Michal, King Saul's daughter. However, King Saul, we are told in I Samuel 25: 44, gave his daughter to another man, probably an act of retaliation against David. Feeling abandoned and rejected, David was most likely thrilled for the comforting kindness of a woman like Abigail. He saw someone who could fill the void in his lonely life. But Abigail also carried a "relationship bag." Having survived the struggle and heartache of an abusive marriage she needed healing, too. What woman wouldn't want a gentle love after living with Nabal. And so, these two hurting people came together, expecting the other to heal their hurting, when in reality it's tough to be the balm in another's life when you so desperately need the balm in your own.
This brings me to the beautiful quote by Rabbi Brickner who encourages each of us to "be the right person" before we seek as our solution "the right person."
It's easy to look around and think we have spotted Mr. Right, only to find out that hurting hearts can misinterpret flirtish attention for love, when in fact, there may be hidden motives which propel one to behave in a way to try and get what they want - the object of their desire.
This is why we need to focus, in our own lives, on being God's person first, long before we try and "hasten" after another whom we hope will fill us up and take away our pain.
If Abigail were hoping for the "happily ever after," it didn't take but a few days to find out she had settled for something much less. Especially when she was told she was sharing her husband with another woman. I love the prayer by Susan Copland, who penned these words: "Dear Lord, I open my heart to Your coming. Come close to me, Lord, and let me yield my whole being to You. Teach me to know myself and to fill my empty being with the radiant life of Your love." It is only when we are filled by our heavenly Father that we can truly give the fullest and best of ourselves to others in our lives.
"Successful marriage is always a triangle: a man, a woman, and God."
A Prayer For All Our Relationships
"Lord, we come to You about all our relationships. Help us to, with Your help, put things right. In the quietness show us how to stop thinking of the other's faults and failures and to recognize our own.
Check our negative responses and give us a vision of the relationship we can create with Your help. Where we do not feel love, give us good intents and wishes for each other's well-being that will bring us closer. Reawaken, the love we once felt and make us tenderhearted and forgiving."
Dorothy Valcárcel, Author
When A Woman Meets Jesus
P.S. My book, When A Woman Meets Jesus is now available wherever books are sold and on the internet at www.amazon.com. Christianbook.com, or by calling toll-free, 1-800-Christian. You can also go to www.whenawomanmeetsjesus.com and purchase the book through Paypal for $8.00. Or by calling Transformation Garden at 1-888-397-4348.
For more from Dorothy, please visit transformationgarden.com.