When i was a girl, i used to be told, “to be a woman, you should behave like a woman. Close your legs while you are sitting down.”
When i was a high school teenager, i used to be told, “to be a woman, you should be brave and fun, do everything you like and never let anyone decide what you have to do.”
When i was at college, i used to be told, “to be a woman means that you have to got a style.”
So, what does it really take to be a woman?
I learned a lot of great values from one great woman, Her name was Abigail (1 Samuel 25). You can straightly spot her name on the headline of this passage.
The word Intelligent nowadays often means a smart woman who doesn’t need a man, who could walk freely when a man can not afford the woman’s expectations. A woman who has a high standard of living that sometimes would be seen as superior. Many women fail to respect her spouse in the name of intelligent. But let see what the intelligent and beautiful really means according to the bible :
The Spirit of Loyalty
A certain man in Maon, who had property there at Carmel, was very wealthy.He had a thousand goats and three thousand sheep, which he was shearing in Carmel. His name was Nabal and his wife’s name was Abigail. She was an intelligent and beautiful woman, but her husband was surly and mean in his dealings—he was a Calebite.” (1 Samuel 25:2-3)
The story of Abigail started when one day King David was on the run way and asked for Nabal’s kindness to gave his army the leftover from Nabal’s foods to his shearers. But as you can see how hard Nabal’s heart is, he refused the request even when King David has protected his lands from danger. Could you imagine how Abigail had to deal with her surly and mean husband everyday? Yet she stays. This is the first value we could learn, Loyalty. Maybe you could say that she stays for the wealthy of her husband, but what she has done on the verses below are far more than money could offer her to do.
How many women nowadays abandon her husband, children and family? God never bless a run away bride. She was an intelligent and beautiful woman who have made a wrong choice of a man but that didn’t make her leave. This world would tell Abigail how fool she was, how idiot that she still chose to stay with her husband who’s always drunk and didn’t even love her properly. But you’ll see what blessings that Abigail got just because she kept her God’s command and what the world missed.
The Spirit of Wisdom
So when King David decided to take His sword and throw a war to kill Nabal. One of Nabal’s servant come to Abigail and said, “David sent messengers from the wilderness to give our master his greetings, but he hurled insults at them. Yet these men were very good to us. They did not mistreat us, and the whole time we were out in the fields near them nothing was missing. Night and day they were a wall around us the whole time we were herding our sheep near them. Now think it over and see what you can do, because disaster is hanging over our master and his whole household. He is such a wicked man that no one can talk to him.” (2 Sam 25: 14-17)
The more i read the verses, the more i adore this woman. I can see that Abigail is the one who’s in charge of the house, covering for her husband. Even the servants knew that she is the only one who could save their household from death. The servant trusted her, he believed Abigail would have come up with something. She must be full of wisdom to be able to have all the men respect her as a woman. As we know, women at that time weren’t respected as nowadays, they have no rights to do anything other than household duties, more over to decide something. The second values i got is Wisdom, she is the lighthouse. Don’t offer your body to gain men’s respect, offer them your wisdom !
The Spirit of Courage
“Abigail acted quickly. She took two hundred loaves of bread, two skins of wine, five dressed sheep, five seahs of roasted grain, a hundred cakes of raisins and two hundred cakes of pressed figs, and loaded them on donkeys. Then she told her servants, “Go on ahead; I’ll follow you.” But she did not tell her husband Nabal.” (1 Sam 25 : 18-19)
This woman must have a great relationship with the Holy Spirit, so she could do such a breakthrough with her decision. She knows precisely the right thing to do. It’s like i could feel a power on her tone, a power of courage to protect her family whatever it takes. You know, she could just let King David kills her husband, he’s nothing good to her after all. But Abigail chose more than just loyalty, she chose the hardest part, love. A family always stays as a family. She took the risk and got everything she needed to free her family from a disaster. And she did not tell her husband, it is not because of dishonest. At the end, she told her husband in such a royal way. But she knew, she should take this decision alone right now to save her husband and her household. And that needs courage.
The Spirit of Humble
“As she came riding her donkey into a mountain ravine, there were David and his men descending toward her, and she met them ” ; “When Abigail saw David, she quickly got off her donkey and bowed down before David with her face to the ground” (1 Sam 25 : 20 ; 23)
She was a wealthy or you can say a royal lady, Nabal’s was a wealthy man. I bet she’s wearing a royal dress at the time. But she humbled her self, riding a donkey ( a donkey is a symbol of a humble heart, just like Jesus went to Jerusalem riding a donkey) with a royal dress and bowed down with her face to the ground. How many wealthy woman you knew that would bow down her head to the ground? I knew Abigail could only do this to man, because she has done it over and over to her God. She humbled her self to God so she was able to humble her self to man.
The Spirit of Strength
She fell at his feet and said: “Pardon your servant, my lord, and let me speak to you; hear what your servant has to say. Please pay no attention, my lord, to that wicked man Nabal. He is just like his name—his name means Fool, and folly goes with him. And as for me, your servant, I did not see the men my lord sent. And now, my lord, as surely as the Lord your God lives and as you live, since the Lord has kept you from bloodshed and from avenging yourself with your own hands, may your enemies and all who are intent on harming my lord be like Nabal. And let this gift, which your servant has brought to my lord, be given to the men who follow you. (1 Sam 25 : 24-27)
As i imagined Abigail said this on my mind, i noticed that she was not crying at all! What a strong heart this woman has! If we were put on her shoes, well we probably would cry to persuade King David. But here i learn one new thing : A woman’s power does not laid on her tears ! I could sense the Spirit of strength in everything she said. There is a bold heart behind all this. She risked her life to protect her family, she could be killed only by her appearance. Even in this situation, she didn’t mock his husband, all she said was telling the truth by the meaning of Nabal’s name and that folly goes with him (she claimed the folly that goes with him and not the other side). I truly adore this woman. She is the real protector.
The Spirit of Righteousness
“Please forgive your servant’s presumption. The Lord your God will certainly make a lasting dynasty for my lord, because you fight the Lord’s battles, and no wrongdoing will be found in you as long as you live. Even though someone is pursuing you to take your life, the life of my lord will be bound securely in the bundle of the living by the Lord your God, but the lives of your enemies he will hurl away as from the pocket of a sling. When the Lord has fulfilled for my lord every good thing he promised concerning him and has appointed him ruler over Israel, my lord will not have on his conscience the staggering burden of needless bloodshed or of having avenged himself. And when the Lord your God has brought my lord success, remember your servant.” (1 Sam 25:28-31)
A woman who stands for righteousness is a keeper! Abigail kept King David from doing something that is no need to be done. She was keeping his throne from needless bloodshed. As a woman, we should always keep our people from doing something wrong, be a reminder for our brothers and sisters, for our husband, for our children, or our parents. A reminder to God’s promises, a reminder to God’s will for other people so that they could again find God’s path. Not a woman who are cheering for something evil to be done. Exp. A reminder to not gossiping and not to be one, a reminder for our husband from their wrong ways and bring them back to the righteousness.
There is so much power, strength and courage for not doing what you can actually do, for the name of righteousness. Can’t you sense it?
The Spirit of Honesty
When Abigail went to Nabal, he was in the house holding a banquet like that of a king. He was in high spirits and very drunk. So she told him nothing at all until daybreak. Then in the morning, when Nabal was sober, his wife told him all these things, and his heart failed him and he became like a stone. About ten days later, the Lord struck Nabal and he died. (1 Sam 35 : 37-38)
A drunk man is the easiest man to manipulate, don’t you think? After what Abigail did, that she has just brought up all the goods to King David without Nabal’s knowledge which i’m sure would trigger his anger, i think this is the perfect moment to tell Nabal. He probably wouldn’t even notice everything that Abigail would say. But Abigail with The Spirit of Honesty waited until morning to came clean to her husband. I think she did more that just being honest, telling Nabal when he was drunk would be said as honesty too i’ll say, but she did more. She didn’t want to manipulate honesty.
The second thing is, do you realize what Abigail had just done? She saved Nabal’s life ! If she didn’t run after King David and stopped him, Nabal probably wouldn’t live the night. This was a proud thing to be boast about. If we were her, we would rush to tell everybody what we just did. How we just saved Nabal’s life. But she waited until the morning. Because i bet, she didn’t do it for man’s commend. She did it with a pure heart. And even after Nabal’s heart has failed or we could say in coma, she didn’t run with his wealth and leave him hanging. She stays until Nabal’s died.
When David heard that Nabal was dead, he said, “Praise be to the Lord, who has upheld my cause against Nabal for treating me with contempt. He has kept his servant from doing wrong and has brought Nabal’s wrongdoing down on his own head.” Then David sent word to Abigail, asking her to become his wife. His servants went to Carmel and said to Abigail, “David has sent us to you to take you to become his wife.” (1 Sam 25 : 39-40)
Luke 16:10 said that “Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much.” When you can be trusted with your small household today, you will be trusted with nation ! Abigail became King David’s wife, which means she became one of the biggest woman alive at that time. She didn’t drown in his husband’s wealth and went crazy with all the money, but she kept her values and see how God lifted her up with much.
Abigail was not a queen when King David married her. She was a queen far before she knew King David, she was a queen from the beginning because she’s been acting like one for her entire life.