Monday, April 7, 2008

About Abigail

Marriages were often arranged in Abigail’s era, and I wonder if this was true of hers. On paper Nabal seemed like a “catch” … he was wealthy, a good provider, and he liked to have fun and throw parties. But behind the scenes his character was seriously lacking and those closest to him suffered for it.

Here is what we know about Abigail’s husband, Nabal:

*His parents gave him a name that means “fool.” (vs. 25) Things that make you go hum ...
*He is wealthy – that’s partly due to David’s protection of his flocks. (vs. 2,8)
*He is crude and mean in all his dealings. (vs. 3)
*He sneers at his guests who come in peace, and then he questions their character. (vs. 10-11)
*He screams insults. (vs .14)
*He is so tempermental that everyone avoids or dreads talking to him. (vs. 17)
*He is not attuned enough with his wife to notice she has left home. (vs. 19)
*He is stingy and does not return favors or repay kindnesses showed him. (vs. 16, 21)
*He arrogantly thinks more highly of himself than he ought. (vs. 36)
*He drinks too much. (vs. 36-37)

Basically, Nabal was a self-centered, ill-mannered guy who didn’t recognize God’s plans, provision or blessings in his life. He was foolish enough to insult the most powerful man around (David) and to provoke him to want to kill him. More importantly, he was foolish enough to insult the one, true God who let him face the consequences of his sin (vs. 38-39).

Stop and imagine yourself paired up in marriage to such a foolish, arrogant, verbally abusive man as this. (I hope that you have to imagine and have not lived this.)

How would you react towards him? What do you think living with him might do to your personality, or your character? Would you grow depressed? Would you become withdrawn or timid? Would you nag him to do better? Would you grow bitter and become argumentative back? Would you just “let yourself go” and decide not to care about anything?


Now let’s look at what we know about Abigail, wife of Nabel:

*She is smart and sensible. (vs. 3)
*She is beautiful. (vs. 3)
*People look to her for wisdom and leadership in times of trouble. (vs. 14, 17)
*She is decisive and wastes no time worrying, pitying her situation, or fussing at those who cause her trouble – instead she takes action to improve the situation. (vs. 18, 23)
*She is a generous giver. (vs. 18, 27)
*She puts her own life on the line to save others. (vs. 22, 24)
*She is humble. (vs. 24, 41)
*She is quick to ask forgiveness. (vs. 28)
*She speaks eloquently and tactfully, with a knowledge of God, as she gives one of the longest speeches by a woman recorded in the Bible. (vs. 24-31)
*She looks out for others … she cares for both Nabal’s reputation (vs. 25) and David’s (vs. 31) more than her own.
*She knows when to wait patiently for the right timing .(vs. 36-38)
*She won the appreciation, admiration and love of the future king, David.

Abigail has always been one of my favorites. She has it all – wisdom, character, courage, faith, eloquence, graciousness. She possesses both inner and outer beauty. But her life with this man Nabal was no picnic, and that’s why I really admire her.

How many times did Nabal get drunk and say or do demeaning things to her? Yet she did not let her spirit die. How many times did she wish for revenge, though not seek it? How many times did he berate her with insults… yet she was not paralyzed by it. How many times did his foolishness cost her greatly, or those she cared about? Yet she didn’t count the costs to herself when she put her life on the line to spare his and the other men’s. Abigail’s praiseworthy character ran deep and through and through, which tells me so did her reverence of God.

After Nabal’s death, she married David and they had a son. David will have seven other wives in his lifetime, but only Abigail earns his complete respect and is a positive influence on him.

Abigail challenges me to be humble, wise and courageous. Her example lets me know that I can’t allow my situation to dictate my character. In fact, her life shows me that being humble and wise makes room for God to be glorified and to improve my situation.

Finally, Abigail's (and Nabal's) life shows me the truth found in these proverbs:

Haughtiness goes before destruction; humility precedes honor. (Proverbs 18:22)

She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue. (Proverbs 31:26)

Fear of the Lord teaches wisdom; humility precedes honor. (Proverbs 15:33)

Tell us what you gleaned from reading about Abigail.

79 comments:

  1. My husband is very much like Nabal. He told me just last night that he finds no purpose in life and hates everyone and everything except me. He did say that he did not hate God, he just can't pray to him. He is full of anger and hatred. He is not abusive to me except verbally. We have been married 29 years next month. He is basically a good moral man, he works hard, but that is all he lives for. Work hard for more things, like Nabal his possessions are extremely important to him. I admire Abagail's strength, because I have done it all from beg, withdrawl in a shell and scream inside, of course none do any good. This Bible study has helped me sooo much to stay in the word and take a stand for God. I went to church on my own yesterday for the first time except for times when he is working on Sunday. I feel so torn between my husband and God. I've tried to love my husband and encourage him at the same time, leaving God out. I know that is not the way. Thankfully, I have realized lately through the word and prayer, that God does love me and my husband too. I want to have the nerve that Abagail did and stand up daily for what I believe. Thank you all for your comments and Rachael for leading this study.

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  2. Let us all have the courage to stand up like Abagail...and serve God first over husband, family, friends, anything that might be the Nabal in our lives.....Let us pray for each other as as we put God first....It is with comfort that we know that if we do God will take care of the rest....

    JoAnn/La

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  3. Debbie in Goose Creek,SCApril 07, 2008

    Rachel, I really like Abigail and wish I had read about her in the early days of my own marriage. :o)

    You summed up what I learned here in one sentence,"I can't let my situation affect my character".

    My husband has never been at all abusive and is a Christian, but is a procrastinator, prideful and stubborn. In the early years,I was happy when all went well, but avoided conflict by withdrawing or feeling sorry for myself when my husband was unmovable. I often 'walked on eggshells' or avoided him and went my own way in silence to try to solve an explosive problem. The children were CERTAINLY affected by my 'changes in character' according to the situation of the day. I've grown in the Lord, tried to see my husband like God sees him and love him like God loves him. I can't change him,the junk cars are still in the yard,the roof still leaks and projects are undone but God is working on both of us. :o)

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  4. I am going anonymous today:
    this one definitely hit home, i personally believe the last person I was with was a Nabal in print. I always remained humble and knew I would get out of the situation. This month would make it exactly three yrs since the separation. when i look back its noted now where i have grown leaps and bounds; will be graduating this month with my BA in Business Management, settled into a good job, have my own house and car and this all because i kept faith that God was going to open doors depsite when I left it felt as though it was the end but i was determined to turn it around. When i look at him he is exactly right where i left him with no obvious growth. However i have forgiven him and due to the passage of time we are now able to have a civil conversations. He has humbled himself and can't stop appologising for all the wrong he has done in my life.
    This bible study has helped me so much and jst like the first person commenting I was able to attend church after quite a while which was very refreshing to the soul.

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  5. I posted my comments (like many ladies did) under the "Reading Abigail" blog. There are good insights there.

    Rachel, I love how you said "I can't allow my situation to dictate my character." That is a reminder that can be put into action anytime/anywhere (even the long line at Wal-mart!)

    Thank you for sharing your words of wisdom!

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  6. I think twice about choosing a husband now! I thank God that I have a choice and that I wasnt forced into a simular cicumstance.ce Abigail had all the attributes of a true servant,and one in particular that I would like - long suffering. She could have allowed her husband to be killed and thus be free of him, but instead she sacrifid for one so un deserving. But she was greatly rewarded in the end. Being humble and waiting on the Lord paid off!!

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  7. Abigail was probably used to covering for her husband, unfortunately. How wonderful that she had God's love and wisdom with her so that she was able to do this.

    A close relationship with God is always to our benefit; therefore I need to spend more time cultivating mine. I know God wants me to do this daily.

    Thank you, Rachel and everyone participating in this study for your wisdom and guidance.

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  8. Rachel,
    Simply amazing at the women that have all been effected by similiar situations. I think this once again makes me realize that on Sunday mornng when I sit in church and look around at so many women many of there smiles are not genuine, but hiding the pain of a life not quite as perfect as they want others to think.
    I too have been there. Mine began with verbal abuse and grew into physical abuse. I did not marry him, was only engaged, but because of fear could not get away until I finally put all my faith and hope in God to take care of me. I packed and moved in one day! Yes, you definitly got it right when you listed the things that happen, withdrawel being one of the main things. I missed so much of life because of this. It was actually a bit of Ruths story that gave me strength to leave and begin in a different place. I do compare myself to Abigal in the way that she finally allowed God to help her do the right thing, He and he alone gave her the strength to be courageous and do the right thing. I too, like Abigal was a blessed with a man that loves me and has helped me grow into a much stronger person.
    Didn't mean to share my life story (actually trust me I didnt)!thanks for the discussion on Abigal I really after reading this didn't compare myself to her until I read what you had to say. God can use us and our stories in such amazing ways! Blessings, M.S.

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  9. Hello Ladies,
    I really enjoyed this story about Abigail, one of my seven granddaughters is named for her. I love the way she was right on top of things, she kept a well stocked pantry in preparation for unexpected guest, who knows when a soon to be King will come calling? The way she stepped up to the plate, trusting God most of all, to save her people, knowing at any moment her husband could have killed her. God saw all of this I can hear Him saying "no Knight in shining armor, riding a white horse, for this one , she must have a King". God is always in control of each situation all we must do is surrender to Him.
    As I've said my husband had a stroke eleven years ago, along with this comes Vascular dementia (it will eventually be as Alzheimers disease) the blood vessels in his brain have blockages they cannot fix and with each mini-stroke it worsens. My husband was a kind and gentle man before all of this but there are days now I don't even know who he is with all the irrational behavior, swearing at me, throwing things, I just want to run...I've learned to run to the arms of the Lord Jesus Christ. I know they say don't take this treatment personally, but it is very hard not to. "God is my refuge and strength, my very present help in times of trouble".
    Be blessed today sisters. I feel I must tell our Abigail to prepare her pantry for the King God has for her.."it'll take along time to bake all those cakes and dress all those sheep".hehehe

    God Bless, Josie
    If I haven't said it before Rachel, thank you for your God given insight into these women's lives.

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  10. Wow what a story huh! the first anonymous person, I must say I am living just like you--ohhh wait I was living just like you, not anymore, I learned something veryy big, I CHANGED myself, and then he changed himself. I was one to that he would hurt, make me cry, make me feel depressed cause he would try to make me feel that way, he would me Hurt so bad with his MOUTH, he would make me feel worthless to anyone including making me feel that God may not want me. I have been with him now almost 10 years, and one day I woke up and said NOOOO more, God said I am worthy. So ended up in a very deep discussion, I did not cry anymore, and told him he will not hurt me noooo more with his mouth, and I decided if he wouldn't change then I would change more and go away from that.
    BUT I also had to change me in order for this to work, I had to humble myself, have more patience, so much and now our life and our marriage is wonderful. As I changed so did he. As we grow more with God in our life, Life has become so much easier. Respect for one another is the key! Just like we have for our Lord, we must have for ourselves.
    I have received her courage, am walking in her faith, I won the appreciation, admiration and love of the future king, Brad. :)
    Don't lose your faith, come out of the shell, pray for him for change, also asked the Lord to help you, change you that will be better for him, better for you both. I too will pray for peace for you both, and keep striving forward. God blesssss you!
    Thanking You again Rachel, for all you are doing, this study is truly lifting me up, and the teaching i am getting is just sooo awesome.
    Sharon/florida

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  11. Reading all the ladies comments and encouragements, and those who are struggling I thank you so much.
    To see God working through the lives of women, and their husbands is so encourageing. I know I need to change, and I need to grow closer to Lord in order for me to fully live out his will. And am so willing and wanting to right now. It isn't always this easy, when I would rather live with-out faith because it makes things easier, I soon relize that's not true! I'm so fully of joy (even while I struggle with health, and love, and money) when I know I'm seeking HIS will. Abigail is such an encouragement that she put her husband (of whom she does not seem to up hold the same opinons) and David's (just a man she doesn't know) above her self. What sacrifice, and I admire that.

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  12. Anonymous, I have also been in a very similiar situation for many years.
    It is extremely difficult to maintain any form of dignity when you are constantly being verbally abused, and when it is not directed at you, you are subjected to listening to the verbal lashings of others. The continuous negativity, bitterness, and
    hatred that surrounds us has a way of exploding and penetrating the wall of protection that we attempt to arm ourselves with. We cannot help becoming infected by the invisible disease that so eagerly attacks us. We very often go into a depressive state
    where we become dormant to everything and everyone around us. However, thank the Lord that we have the Holy Spirit to help us to stand strong and give us the determination to win this battle.

    People who have never been in our situation do not understand why nor how we put up with it. We, however, can respect each other's positions and pray for each other's stength and faith in our Lord to bring us through these trying times.

    Having gone through this for so many years, I can
    really appreciate Abigail's
    quandary and the brilliant
    manner in which she handled the dilemma. Obviously, the food and offerings that she took were already on hand in preparation for the upcoming celebration. This being the case, she was able to gather everything she needed quite rapidly and progress with her inpromptu plan to intervene with David.
    She sent the servants ahead of her so that she could make sure that Nabal was none the wiser. I am sure that he was either busy with the shearing of the sheep or perhaps even consuming libations in a precelebratory manner. Either way, not noticing her departure nor that of the servants.

    The scripture does not state how long Abigail & Nabal had been married, but because of her spontaneous actions I presume it had been for a significant amount of time.
    Also, the fact that the servants went to her without hesitation shows that they knew she would be able to handle the situation.

    She was such a wise and prudent woman, audacious and ingenious in her quest to right any wrongs that had been committed by her husband. She was determined to protect her household and everyone affiliated with it, and her tenacity did just that.

    I have noticed that since I started writing some other woman who are in the same predictament that we are have also posted. Gals,
    we can all learn a lot from Abigail's heroic measures. In fact, it looks like one of us has already taken major steps in rectifying her situation. Congratulations and my prayers are with you for a continuing peaceful and joyful life.

    Now, back to Abigail~~ She
    took her circumstances and without even realizing, had
    turned the outcome of her own life around. God was watching over her and knew that she was a righteous woman and had carried out her act in love and faith in HIM.

    Let her stand as a shining emulation for us. We must turn to God in fervent prayer for hearts to be changed, gentleness and love to surface, peace that passes understanding, and a new dawning in each of our lifes.

    God bless you all. My prayers are with each and everyone of you.

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  13. This makes me realize just how wonderful my husband really is. I am seeing how much I take him for granted, nag him, and get frustrated with him when he doesn't do things my way or right away. What is wrong with me? I need to be grateful for the truly great man God has placed in my life.

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  14. I'm so proud of so many women sharing their lives with us. I think it helps so much to be able to speak it and recognize it for what it is. I myself kept it hid and covered up for so long and didn't realize how badly it effected me and those around me. I'm grateful everyday that my faith in God carried me through it and I now have a life that is filled with serenity. God is good!

    I wish I'd read this story about 6 yrs ago and it could've helped me so much more...but I do believe that everything happens at the right time and for the right reason. It has encouraged me to continue to work on myself and trust in God and have patience that I will know when I need to do something and when to wait on the Lord!

    JT - Southern IL

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  15. I'm going to remain anonymous on this one, too. It's shameful for me to admit that my husband is a jerk that I don't like, and haven't liked for some time. He is much like Nabal, though he doesn't drink, nor does he throw parties--he's anti-social. He has no respect for anyone, especially me, and it has trickled down into our children. Everyday is a constant battle to get our children to obey us, even in the little things. Some days I wish I could just run away, and never look back.

    I know I have failed in not praying for my husband--I did the total opposite of Abigail. I became bitter and angry, and was constantly asking God why he allowed me to marry someone who made me miserable. I have had a change of heart recently, and have been praying for my husband, even on the days that he's borderline mental, and is abusive with his acid tongue, telling us that he wants to go live by himself.

    I don't know what the Lord has in store, but I am praying, praying, praying, holding on to the fact that He has a plan and hope for my future.

    This study on Abigail has drawn other women in the same situation to bear their hearts. You, my sisters, are all in my prayers. I love you all.

    ♥♥

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  16. I've always enjoyed this story about Abigail. It makes me so thankful I have such an amazing and Godly husband. It has also taught me over the years that our character or identity should not be based on anyone or anything other than Christ. We should never for go our relationship with Christ for anyone!

    Blessings,
    Michelle - Italy

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  17. This has been a great study. One thing we all have to remember is that no marriage is perfect and what we know about King David's parenting skills means that he, too, wasn't perfect either. I'm sure Abigail continued to rely on God for strength throughout her life. It helped that David loved God, too.

    What I am learning is that my marriage depends on my staying connected with God. When I am 'in the spirit', I start looking at my own faults and not my husband's faults. It makes me more loving toward him and less critical. In the past, I tended to blame him for everything that wasn't perfect - but I'm realizing that I was the biggest part of the problem.

    I am grateful to you, Rachel, for doing this study, and to God for not giving up on me!

    I am praying for all of my new friends. Thanks for your honesty and sharing!

    From Richmond, Texas

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  18. Rachel, What you and Abigail have done for so many of us is amazing. We have come out of the proverbial closet and found that there are many others in this study that have the same affliction. Sharing with each other is proving to be a very healing process. Thank you so much for your tremendous insight to start this study and reach the hearts of so many.

    We are able to gain strength in adversity,and through this opportunity we are learning some valuable lessons from our sisters in Christ.

    Thank you one and all!
    God bless & keep you.

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  19. WOW! Never stopped to give Nabal so much thought. You definately hit a nerve with this one Rachel.

    Unfortunately, I to was married to a Nabal (expect for the wealthy part). He failed to see what he had, to treat it well, or look to God for direction. Mine didn't get better and ended in divorce, (Thank God for marriages like Sharon's that show that God can work it out) where he exhibited the same "Nabal" characteristics. But God was faithful and protected and provided for me and the kids.

    After reading this I can only hope and pray that I have some of the attributes of Abigail.

    Blessings to all. To those still in this situation, you're in my prayers. Roxie

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  20. I've read Rachel's discussion and was also blessed by seeing the characters of both Nabal and Abigail listed. Wow...to be like Abigail...to have and maintain the character of God under such terrible circumstances. By far, she is my favorite woman of the Bible. What a very humble, giving, loving, faithful woman who stood her ground and maintained her inner beauty under dire relationship.

    I've read all of your comments and I'm honored that so many have come forward with sharing their heart ache and pain.

    Unfortunately, I am--or rather WAS--on the other side of the fence. I was the one who did wrong to my husband in not showing respect, submission, and kindness to him. At times, I was a pressure cooker that would blow and unfortunately on him. I was down right rotten but I have since been wiped clean, have a change of heart, and fully committed to living each moment out for God's glory. I am very conscientious about what my actions do to another but most importantly to God.

    I can attest to the power of God. I have been a Christian for 13 years but during my marriage, I encountered so much stress and heart ache from his family that I allowed my character to change. This is primarily because I let go of my grip on God when He answered my prayers and dreams of a "knight in shining armor". BIG mistake but Satan was right there to swoop in and deceive me even further.

    Unfortunately, as many of you know, my husband obviously didn't have the character of Abigail nor the character of MANY of the women right here on this blog. He did not have the endurance and stamina to stand firm and stay true to his vow to God in our marriage covenant. Instead, he took his pain and ran, ran hard and fast.

    I admire each of you ladies who have stood beside your husband even in the worse of times. GOD WILL HONOR YOUR COMMITTMENT TO HIM AND YOUR HUSBAND!!!! I believe that with all my heart.

    Sharon is a testimony of what God can/will do. There is much power in what she said. I think as wives, we must focus on OURSELVES, drawing close to God, changing what we can in ourselves, and then allowing our testimony of change to affect our husbands. I speak this not just to all of you but also to myself. Regardless that the legal system says I am divorced, I pray and hope that one day God will allow Chris to see the changes in me. I believe God's glory will shine as He reveals to Chris the powerful change He has done in me. That is more of a statement than anything we could ever do to try to change our husbands character, mind, or behavior.

    Stand firm and true to God. Concentrate on developing your relationship with Him. The closer you draw to Him the more able you will be able to draw strength to endure your situation. And with that endurance, you will see fruits and surely you will see fruits in your husbands also. The very best way to win your husband to Christ (or closer to following His ways and character) is by showing as an example...allowing him to see the power of God in YOU. How can an angry man constantly strike at a such a loving, calm, patient woman without one day asking/wondering why you are able to stay so true to the character of God...of Abigail.

    James is my very favorite book of God's Word. It is so rounded covering many of the basic subjects we need as Christians. I would suggest anyone new to the Bible or someone just really struggling with any issue to meditate on James. It is a very short and sweet book of just five chapters.

    James 1:12 Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.

    James 1:2-3 Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.

    I think this is a good scripture below that makes me think of Abigail...she perservered, had character, and that's where she received the hope to sustain...

    Romans 3:3-5 Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.

    Be blessed in Him!
    PP

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  21. I must be Abigail, I had Nabal and now I have David.
    My 1st husband was mostly verbally abusive (there were a couple physical battles) fowl language, demeaning insults daily to my character. He yelled at me other people, my family... He used drugs daily and put me down for not indulging with him. Sometimes I would take some too just to shut him up and make the peace. And in case you haven't picked up on it I was severly insecure that's what got me into this marriage to begin with. He cheated on me all the time and was not too secretive about it either. When I would really make fuss He would tell me how he wanted his own life, and then we would seperate. He was the king of manipulation. One minute he was in a rage and if that didn't work then He wanted you to feel sorry for him. He alienated me away from my family and my friends so I (felt I had no where to turn.) Then he would talk me into taking him back. I wasn't strong in the Lord at the time so I didn't feel worthy of anything better. I felt somehow I deserved this rotten life.
    He did not die, I finally got the courage to divorce him, I didn't want this life style to corrupt our children. (Unfortunately it did have an affect - a later story)
    But I left that relationship and went into another. I ended up supporting aother guy that manipulated me. That's when I started back to church. I wasn't seeking the Lord very strong but it did give me the courage to get rid of this one too.
    So along comes Mr. Right (strong Christian man) and things are going good, but as the relationship progressed and he learned more of my past, the more the devil worked on my insecurities. I din't think it could ever work because I just wasn't good enough for this type of man. I sunk into a battle between defensivness over my past and feeling unworthy.

    But God had a plan... Thank you thank you thank you, and we became best of friends and got married.
    Now it took a few years to iron out some wrinkles of the damage the past had created in me, my family, and children, but I am living heaven on earth now.
    Every moment of every day is not harmonious, but close to it.

    God truly gave me beauty for my ashes... I just had to trust him with my rubbish so he could burn it up and get rid of it.

    I have stayed anonymous today, not because of myself, but because of some in my life that may be reading this.

    I hope somehow this can encourage someone that has baggage to lay it down, give it to Jesus, and seek the glorious life he died to give you. It does take some work and sacrifices but it is worth it.

    God Bless,
    I'm signing as A.H.

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  22. My heart bleeds for the many women who went anonymous because of their situations. God bless you all for sharing your life story. You are brave and yet respectful of your husband for going anonymous. I pray you will find peace in the Lord.

    What I notice about Abigail is that she made a request for David to remember her when he became successful. At the end of her powerful speech, she made one simple request: "remember your servant."

    I can't help but think that if we just ask our Father what it is that we want, and totally surrender (something I'm still working on), He will give us the desire of our hearts.

    Be encouraged! God has heard your cry for mercy. In His time of favor, your king will arrive soon enough. He will not be one second late.

    Many blessings!

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  23. I am posting part of the Girlfriends in God devotional. The author, Sharyn James, wrote a devo "Prayer Can Change a Marriage". At the bottom she has this prayer:

    Dear Heavenly Father, I pray for my marriage today. I pray that you will make me into the woman that You intended all along. Help me to see my husband through your eyes today --as a chosen, dearly loved, child of God.

    Today, I'm giving you a list of Bible verses to pray for your husband, from head to toe. This is your assignment for today...for always.

    Lord, I pray for my husband, from head to toe:

    His Head --That he will look to You as Lord of his life. (1 Cor. 11:13)
    His Mind - That he will have the mind of Christ and think as the Holy Spirit would lead him and not the flesh. (1 Cor. 2:16)
    His Eyes --That You will keep his eyes from temptation and that he will turn his eyes from sin. (Matt. 6:13, Mark 9:47 )
    His Ears - That he will hear Your still small voice instructing him. (1 Ki 19:12, Ps 32:8)
    His Mouth -- That his words will be pleasing to You. (Prov. 19:14)
    His Neck --That he will humble himself before You and be strong, courageous, and careful to do everything written in Your Word so that he will be prosperous and successful. (Ja. 4:10, Josh. 1:8-9)
    His Heart-That he will love and trust You with his whole heart. (Deut. 6;5, Prov. 3:5)
    His Arms-That You will be his strength. (Ps. 73:26)
    His Hands-That he will enjoy the work of his hands and see it as a gift from You. (Ecc. 3:13 , 5:19 )
    His feet -- That You will order his steps and that he will walk in Your truth. (Prov. 4:25, Ps. 26:3)
    www.girlfriendsingod.com

    I pray this prayer not only for my husband but for myself.

    Another great website that was just given to me is: www.rejoiceministries.org.
    I plan to leave a prayer request on there today.

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  24. I just want to add, it's ok to be anonymous, You are still sharing from your heart.
    But I can tell ya today MY Wonderful, Godlyyyyy Hubby, he has changed unbelievable, when he has preached or been out there evangelizing, he tells other men what we have been through and how to get those things changed and out of there life. And I know I felt better about myself when I learned and changed me! So yessss see we all can change if we want too, believe in your Lord and ask for his guidance. It's not easy, It will not happen over night, We just gotta remember to relax god is in control. One day at a time! Thank You Jesus!
    :)

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  25. Sweetpea I love that thanks :)

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  26. I am so proud of all you courageous women who are sharing your hearts, with all of us. Please know that I will keep every one of you in my prayers, as I pray also that I would become more like Abigail. I am so impressed with her character and courage. I am really glad I re-read this story it has really affected me.

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  27. I think that Abigail was courageous and submissive to her husband. She could have allowed David and his men to carry out the plan to kill but instead she stopped them. They had a way out for her but she didn't choose the ungodly way.

    For those of you who have shared your stories - thank you for your courage.

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  28. As always Rachel, your bible study is a blessing.
    I needed this. I'm seeing Nabal as my boss and the way he responds to his employees. I try to stay positive and upbeat, but there are days I have a hard time counting my blessings at my job. But this bible study has helped these past few weeks. Spending more time in bible study and being with my postive friends at church truly helps me.
    I'm very blessed to be able to go home to a wonderful husband and to be able to call friends up to pray for me and my situation at work.
    So thank you again for your time and your thoughts that you share with all of us.

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  29. I've never been married (Praise God he released me from shacking), but my former fiancee was a Nabal. He was abusive, however he justified it by saying that "I made him do it" by "acting like a man". He was stubborn, yet others did seem to see his true colors except for me... The bible says you are overcome by your testimony so I hope this helps other sisters who are reading... When I started going back to church and becoming serious about being a saved woman, all hell broke loose and my Nabal showed his true colors.. He didn't die like the Nabal in I Samuel,but he left me... left my son... left our home.. that we purchased together even if it only had my name on it. One hour ago, my house was auctioned off and I am officially "homeless" yet I thank God for delivering me out of that situation and despite the overwhelming debt.... not to mention, we having to move all of our things out by myself... I know that God is still with me.... I know the Holy Spirit wanted you to reveal that to me about Abigail's character and Rachel, I thank you. I know I can't allow my present situation to dictate my character and I won't... I thank God for his mercy and grace and I pray that my other sisters around the world who chose to be anonymous today will receive their breakthrough today as Abigail reveals to us... just remember God is greater... Sorry I got a little teary-eyed, but I feel better for releasing this... something I couldn't do with some of my church sisters... Be Blessed..

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  30. I'm with you tefferk. I'm reminded often how blessed I am to have a good man. He wasn't always so kind and considerate, but God has changed us both through the years and we both tell each other often how thankful we are that God brought us through tough times. But I also have a friend who is an Abigail who is married to a Nabal. I pray for her often. We need to remember to pray for our other sisters here who struggle.
    Jo Beth

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  31. TamTam,
    You are in my prayers. Please remember that God is in control. Keep your eyes focused on Him.

    God Bless you with His Amazing Grace!

    Plant Lady

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  32. Rachel, I did read this and I hope you will have time to answer this question or email me directly which I understand your schedule is really full.
    lamb000013@yahoo.com

    Anyway how have you gained such insight to the word? When I read (well I must admit I don't aways ask God for understanding) but I don't see what you see. I have trouble looking at the big picture. Like noticing Abigail's qualities, wisdom, forgiviness, giving, etc. I read and feel like oh that's a nice story but it doesn't seem to go any deeper than that. HELP! It is my biggest struggle in reading the word, getting the meaning of it and how it relates to me.

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  33. Hi Girls, I have been praying about what I wrote earlier and God laid it on my heart to add..He is preparing ALL of US for OUR KING...Jesus is His name....we will all rule and reign with Him throughout eternity. Jesus now sits at the right hand of the Father to ever intercede for each one of us, when God looks at us He sees Jesus, He doesn't see our sins Hebrews 7:23-28. Through the Holy Spirit we are all able to live by the fruits of the Spirit in Galatians 5:22...love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, faithfulnes, and self-control.

    Abigail's story shows God's faithfulness and plan of redemption for ALL of US! God loves each one of us, and He has proven we are all worthy of a King.

    God Bless, Josie

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  34. dear anonymous (with the 2 hearts signature). I hadn't read your note before I posted a comment so I hope you don't mind, but I'd like to add this.
    There was a time that I hated my husband so much that when he walked in a room, I walked out. I couldn't stand to look at him let alone be with him. He never said, but I think he felt the same way. One time when I walked out of the room, I remember passing through the doorway, God spoke to me and told me, this was not right - things had to change. I didn't know how - it had gone so far into the ditch - I didn't even really know if I wanted a change. I decided to ask God to show me the way, help me to pray and asked for God to deliver us. With time, inch by inch we changed. Whenever I look back it has never ceased to amaze me that something so torn became a total miracle. I still can't believe God did this for me. He can do this for you too. You are in my prayers.
    Jo Beth

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  35. praise2himApril 07, 2008

    I am truly thankful to the Lord for giving me a godly and patient husband. My heart and prayers goes out to all of you, especially for those that have had or have a "Nabal" in your life. Thank you for sharing.

    Rachel O., thank you so much for insights and your obedience to the Lord. God bless you.

    Myra - NYC

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  36. I have to admit when I read about the success stories such as Jo Beth and Sharron, I am so envious thinking you are so fortunate the bond was not broken and both of the spouses in the marriage stuck it out. I guess that's a pity party for myself...being envious of two people staying miserable but yet staying true to their covenant. It's very honorable to stay through the horrible times. I see that so clearly now more than ever. Just as I thought that, I heard in my head (not sure if me or God), "that doesn't mean you won't be blessed also with a healed and restored marriage. There's still hope to have a glorious testimony of reconciliation as these women." I'm still trying to figure out what God wants me to think, feel, and believe. I tell ya I've learned a lot about what some call "standers"...those standing in the gap and believing in their marriages to be healed even PAST divorce. It can be found on the website I gave above (rejoiceministries.org).

    Rachel, I concur with "ic". I read about Abigail Saturday but as I read your discussion I didn't remember getting those characteristics so detailed out of the word. If you can answer "ic" to all of us, I'm sure many could benefit from your answer/insight.
    Thanks,

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  37. For my anonymous friends and Sisters, you are loved by God and by us your Sisters in Christ. Stand strong, Lean God and us we are here for you.
    I've had Nabals in my life, but now I am so blessed with a wonderful husband that is always working to be a better Godly man and husband. God is so good.

    Sharron
    I'm so glad it worked for you.

    Sweet Pea
    Hang in there and trust the Lord. But also I must say you need to lean on Him fully, not to give you what you want but to make your life beautiful whatever that may mean. Don't miss a blessing because it wasn't exactly what you thought it should be. Thank you for the prayers head to toe. I have some family members that I am praying for and I think the specific prayer will work great.

    Rachel O.
    I agree with IC and the other ladies you have a wonderful gift of insight from the Lord of bringing these stories to life.
    Thanks,

    To all my friends and Sisters, God Bless have a wonderful day, if I can help you in anyway let me know either here or on my blog.
    Lynn - OR

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  38. PS
    Emily R are you still out there hope all is ok. You're still in my prayers.
    Lynn

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  39. Thanks Rachel for your insightful comments. I am getting so much out of your bible study. I like what you said about not letting our situation dictate our character. I think Abigail was very wise and courageous. She truly was a Proverbs 31 woman.

    Thanks to all the ladies who are sharing some very painful personal stories. I am praying for all of you.

    Deb - Ohio

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  40. Sometimes the Nabal in our lives is not a spouse but a co-worker, or even a church choir director! My sin in dealing with these "Nabals" has been to fight back. This study on Abigail is helping me realize that I don't need to fight back. Just pray for guidance and strength.

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  41. This passage enriched me in a way that I didn't even realize. After reading the passage last night, I found myself during my time of prayer, praying for humility and a humble heart. I didn't even know why I was praying for that at first, but the more I thought about it....I realized that I could use a more humble heart and spirit. I am so grateful for this bible
    study, it has definitely
    brought me closer to God.
    ~Mimi, Florida

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  42. Abigail's thats what GOD is wanting from us women. GOD comes before each and everyone. It may be hard at times and sometimes I know I would like to scream what do I do. But the answer is to trust in GOD he is the right way the only way. God has our back we just need to turn to him in the time of our needs even if its a need that will cause us to stand up for what or who is right going against the grain. It will pay off in the long run....

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  43. Nabal I was married to a Nabal and at one point I had lost all my identity Thank God he allowed me to get out. Now I know GOD is the head and he will lead and guide each and everyone of us we just have to listen and stay in a place where GOD can speak to us. God is able to show us what to do and how to react to things. My husband lead me to believe he was a Christian he was hateful and mean and was very disrespectful and unfaithful but we were young and now things are different even though we are not together...I wish I had study this years ago maybe I could have stuck it out. But I think God does things for us to learn and I have learned alot in these years. Put God first.

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  44. At Rachel's earlier request, I put my observations on the first post so I won't repeat that part.

    My husband's mother is verbally abusive, and her sons have suffered the effects of growing up in that environment. Unfortunately, it creeps into our marriage from time to time. The difference is, my husband is a Christian and the Holy Spirit convicts him of his attitude. He makes the effort to make amends - and I'm sure, many times, he has "caught" himself before he speaks.

    When we first married, he couldn't understand how I could be so pleasant around his mother. I told him, "I can love her through Christ, for there's no other way." He realized he had never tried to see her through Jesus' eyes, and started praying for her daily. Let me tell you... my mother-in-law still has a negative, critical spirit, but what a change in my husband! His words towards her became as honey instead of vinegar - is it making a difference? Last month, she actually allowed my husband to talk about Jesus and the Bible - without any sarcastic comments. There is still hope yet!

    This story has affirmed how powerful an "Abigail" spirit is when we feel like we are in a hopeless situation. Like Anonymous said, we don't need to fight back... if God is for us, who can be against us?

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  45. What an awesome insight into this wonderful woman of GOD, Abigail. I thank GOD that he has his hand upon my life. I, also, have a Nabal in my life. Actually, there are 2. My husband and my boss. My husband gave his life to GOD on Easter Sunday, but he still displays the "Nabal" attitude except he doesn't drink and he is not rich. He is also, verbally abusive at times. My boss is a micro-manager. She is very sneak and domineering. I know I serve a Mighty GOD and HE comes before any of them. I Thank GOD for taking me through this because surely there must be GOOD that is coming out of this. Surely, I must come out as pure gold after going through this fire...
    I am definately getting stronger, wiser and learning how to hold my peace. Yes, I need work too. Daily I ask My Father to work on me and mold me into the Woman of God, He intends for me to be. I have often thought about leaving my husband, but I am trying to hang in there. I have decided to put my marriage into GOD's hands and let HIM guide and lead me. In the meantime, I am determined to keep my commitment to my husband and love Him as GOD loves me, unconditionally. (Whew! It's hard. LOL) I too am going to remain anonymous out of respect for my children and family. Thank you Rachel sooooo much for this!!!! You don't know how your obedience has affected so many lives and their walk with GOD. God Bless you!

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  46. I can relate to you tefferk. I take for granted my husband daily. I love him and thank God everyday for him. But sometimes I do nag and complain to myself about him. My problem is when I get around a certain group of people who are negative about their husbands, I begin to think along those lines. But he is not like that. He is a wonderful man and he tries his best just like I do. I am not perfect either. That is what we need to remember.

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  47. Hello all my Sisters in Christ...I posted on "Reading Abigail" but I would like to give a word of thanks to all of the courageous women who said they are dealing with their own Nabal's. We're all praying for you and know you will press through all circumstances. Keep your eye on God and His Word. As always, Rachel O. your insight was right on target. I lift all of you up in prayer and know you are never alone. I've had my share of Nabal's and God has watched over me and continues to . Be Blessed........

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  48. I didn't realize that someone who already had an established account could go Anonymous without creating another account. Therefore I made a couple of previous posts exposing myself. Now that I know the simplicity of the change, I will use it for further posts on this page.

    Sweetpea, thank you so very much for the website information for the Rejoice
    Marriage Ministries. The Stander's Affirmation is a
    wonderful resource for either men or women, and really covers a multitude of areas where marriages need extra prayer and draws attention to "the little niches" that often get overlooked or underestimated. I believe that it would help all marriages immensely if couples were to apply this affirmation to their daily devotions.

    Thank you, Sweetpea, for sharing. God be with you.

    RV

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  49. My heart goes out to those of you who shared your hearts about the "Nabal" in your lives. I will say a prayer for you all.

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  50. If you haven't heard this before, you will be blessed. If you have heard it before, you will be blessed again!
    Malachai 3:3 says: 'He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver...'
    This verse puzzled some women in a Bible study and they wondered what this statement meant about the character and nature of God.
    One of the women offered to find out the process of refining silver and get back to the group at their next Bible Study.
    That week, the woman called a silversmith and made an appointment to watch him at work. She didn't mention anything about the reason for her interest beyond her curiosity about the process of refining Silver.
    As she watched the silversmith, he held a piece of silver over the fire and let it heat up. He explained that in refining silver, one needed to hold the silver in the middle of the fire where the flames were hottest as to burn away all the impurities.
    The woman thought about God holding us in such a hot spot; then she thought again about the verse that says: 'He sits as a refiner and purifier of silver.'
    She asked the silversmith if it was true that he had to sit there in front of the fire the whole time.
    The man answered that yes, he not only had to sit there holding the silver, but he had to keep his eyes on the silver the entire time it was in the fire. If the silver was left a moment too long in the flames, it would be destroyed.
    The woman was silent for a moment. Then she asked the silversmith, 'How do you know when the silver is fully refined?'
    He smiled at her and answered, 'Oh, that's easy -- when I see my image in it.'
    If today you are feeling the heat of the fire , remember that God has his eye on you and will keep watching you until He sees His image in you. God is watching over you.
    And, whatever you are going through, you will be a better person in the end.
    'Life is a coin. You can spend it anyway you wish, but you can only spend it once.'

    Those of you going through tough times keep your eyes on God and not on your circumstances. Your reward may not be on earth but you will receive one in heaven if you stay true to God.

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  51. First I want to say a couple of things to Lynn. I agree with what you said to everyone. We have spoken to each other on my blog and your advice is fabulous. Sweatpea, you and I have spoken also on this and my blog and you truly, like Lynn said, you have to, have to lean on the Father. I know you want so much for your marriage to be reconciled, we've spoken so much about it, but if thats not God's plan, we can't change it. I've told everyone how many times I have "opened doors" too many times and it has been disasterous, with my ex-husband and other things.

    If there are new people that don't know my history..here is a brief view. My ex-husband was an abusive, alcoholic man, that got pleasure, like Nabal, in making me feel like a piece of crap. He went to prison in 1987 when I was 8 months pregnant and with a 4 and a 2 year old. I never thought God would do something like that to ME..why, why. It took a couple of months for me to realize that God was changing me when he went away. It wasn't for him, because he didn't change. When he was released I was a changed, responsible single mom, who waited on the Lord for everything. He thought that we would get back together, except when he came out he attacked me again, I found out he cheated on me 27 times when we were married, and I knew it was time for a divorce. I had to let him and go and give him over.

    Giving a person over to the Lord is a hard thing to do, but when you do it you will be free to grow in the Lord in so many ways. This is really for everyone. The Lord has been changing me in so many ways now, especially in my blog. A lot of you have been on it and I thank you for that. I know that all of you have your own stories and I know we have suffered in all different ways but the peace that Jesus gives us when we release it to Him is wonderful!!

    As far as Abigail was..she reminded me of me. She was accustomed to trying to calm the chaos that Nabal created and redeem the harm he inflicted. Knowing that King David had determined to kill Nabal, Abigail found herself trying to persuade him to spare Nabal's life more for his own benefit than for his. She was determined to bless him and to right the wrong her husband had committed. Her generous act of hospitality and humbleness earned her David's respect and gratitude.

    As woman of God, we need to be like Abigail and care deeply when people offend Jesus. Lets follow her model by loving Jesus enough to drop everything and run after Him on someone else's behalf.

    I love you all, please visit my blog who hasn't before. I haven't written since Friday but I will late tonight or tomorrow. It is so hard when you work, but when the Lord has something special for me to say I do get to a computer, pronto!!!

    Donna

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  52. To all the ladies who are living with or dealing with a Nabal in their lives. I am praying for each and everyone of you, that God will light your path.I know it had to be hard to tell about your private lives. One thing I've tried to tell both of my children is to look at the person they are with and ask the question, "Is this the best that God has for me" Because God only wants the best for us.
    Tamtam, I will lift you up in prayer. Thank you so much Rachel for bringing all us ladies together

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  53. Thanks Donna,
    I check your blog daily just don't always comment. Keep growing my friend.
    Lynn

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  54. Abigail, what a beautiful name for such a beautiful woman. I am so blessed to have a husband much more like David than Nabal. I cannot even imagine living a life like what the Word described. I praise the Lord God for His loving mercy.

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  55. To all of you Ladies that shared today, please know you are and your husbands and ex-husbands are on my prayers.
    ~ Christi ~ TX

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  56. I already posted on reading Abigail but wanted to say to all the women that shared your experiences with your Nabals I think you are AWESOME! I pray God will continue to bless you as you continue to change and grow in Him. To Jean thank you for the information on refining silver- May God one day see His image in me.

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  57. Both Deborah & Abigail share a confidence that can only be found in knowing the Lord. Confidence to be obedient.. confidence to know they are protected when facing adversity... it seems they shared a level of confidence that would surround them allowing God to be God. Deborah by saving a nation and Abigail by saving David from a horrible sin.
    We should all be so inclined to posess that amazing characteristic!!!!

    Carol - Missouri

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  58. Thank you so much Jean for sharing your silversmith story with us. I have heard it before and had actually forgotten about him waiting to see his image in the silver. That was so very thoughtful of you to bring this to our attention and to remind us that the Lord wants to see HIS image in us and that HE will be with us throughout the refining process.

    Donna, thank you also for your input, you are a very courageous woman. Congratulations on starting a new life away from your abusive relationship with your previous husband. And, thank you for your words of inspiration. I have briefly visited your blog and am looking forward to going back when I am not so tired that I can't absorb all that you have for us there. I loved your dog!


    There are so many of us who can gain encouragement & strength from all of you wonderful ladies and your kind words of wisdom & experience. Thank you. Even if you just help one person get through a dire situation, or change the direction of one life for the better, it is all worth it.

    Rachel, you are truly a blessing to all of us. I hope that you will continue with another Bible study after we are finished with this one. I believe that the general consensus from the ladies would be that we don't want to break up our group
    and that we are anxious to continue to grow in the Lord's word with your guidance.

    Blessings to all of you,

    <*////><

    Karyl ~ Bonners Ferry, ID USA

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  59. Yesterday in my post I made a mistake by accusing Abigail of a later indiscretion. I checked it out last night in my Bible, and found that it was actually one of King David’s other wives Michal who behaved badly towards her husband and thus was disciplined by the Lord. Sorry, Abigail!
    Abigail exemplified a courteous, brave wife who acted with wisdom, intelligence, and integrity—that’s what struck me about this story. In spite of her husband’s wrongdoing and bad behaviour she never took him to task in public, but acted to take the blame upon herself and then at a later opportune time, she informed him of her actions—nothing surreptitious or arrogant about her. She paid him all godly due respect, and God proved to her “vengeance is mine, says the Lord.”

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  60. I tried to comment yesterday morning but the drunken husband kept shouting and asking what I wanted to read that rubbish for. I want to read it because it helps me be strong in the face of your abuse unfortunately drew more "you're just rubbish" and similar put downs.
    I closed the computer down and went and cried elsewhere. Today I am stronger -- I'm at my daughter's house and can think dispassionately that I married the aclohol situation and stayed with it for nearly thirty years. It comes and goes but I don't have Abigail's strength.
    I was so moved by the first comment from anonymous "he is not abusive to me except verbally" -- verbal abuse IS abuse. My body will heal -- the fact that my husband can say, and sometimes do, such hurtful things does not heal except through the grace of God. And when my loving, kind, gentle husband is taken over by this demon called alcoholism then the grace of God is very necessary -- but I can't always find it.
    Thank you for listening (reading). It's SO much easier somehow to get some of this out to a group of supportive virtual friends rather than real ones!

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  61. Hazel, You are so right. Verbal abuse is terribly damaging and much more readily acceptable in public as most people don't even realize it is going on. Being a victim, myself, when I see other people in a car I often wonder if they are being verbally abused, probably because it is usually being done to me at the time. It is unending and such a horribly sad situation. Mine doesn't stem from alcohol, just a tremendous bitterness and hatred of life. I have suggested "anger management" to him and that only makes things worse. My family doesn't even come around anymore. It leads to a very lonely life. I sympathize with you totally. However, it does sound like your husband is good some of the time. I wish I had that to fall back on. Some relief is better than none, however, it doesn't lessen the pain of the moment when it is occurring. It may even be harder for you since you do know what a good man he can be when he is not under the influence. Mine is always that way. I just can't imagine anyone living with that much self-hate, or any self-hate for that matter. It makes you feel completely helpless, as I imagine you feel, along with tremendous fear, when you see him reach for a drink.

    Hopefully, our sisters here will pray for us and we will find some peace.

    My prayers are with you Hazel. Please be strong and know that you are not alone in your battle.

    God bless you.

    RV

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  62. Ladies...

    I wanted to let you all know I am praying for you in the midst of your "storms". I encourage you to keep your eyes on Christ and He will direct your path. Claim promises from the Bible like never before and cling to the HOPE they offer. God has a plan for each of us and He will finish the good work He's started in us!

    Prayers and Hugs to you all!

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  63. To all of you who are in or have been in an abusive situation, my heart and prayers go out to you. However healing comes when we voice to others our situations and ask for help. I married a man who was not a Christian (which the Bible speaks to "be ye not unequally yoked togethe" or something similar to that. My husband was raised by two God-fearing parents who prayed for their children. I just continued to pray for my husband's salvation and about two years after we married he gave his heart to the Lord. We have had problems like most people but I always went to my Heavenly Father and poured out my problems to Him and he always answered my prayers. So, ladies, don't give up. As one song says "Jesus never will be late, He is always right on time." Our ways and our thoughts are not always His, but He always answers our prayers. We just have to be deligent and not give up. I'm not saying I was a perfect Christian but I knew where my strengthen came from. I, to am going to remain anonymouse.

    Rachel, you are to be commended for following God's plan as so many people who have responded to this study truly needed it and are receiving healing that they so desparately needed. Sometimes it is easier for a person to write down their feelings than it is to voice it to someone in person. To God be all the glory for what this Bible study, your insight and wisdom has brought about. Isn't God good? He desires our praise and worship and we should be doing that for all that has been accomplished.

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  64. To all of you in difficult marriages I would like to recommend a couple of books to read. "The Power Of A Praying Wife" by Stormie Omartian. It is full of prayers to pray for our husbands and it also has scripture references.

    The second book I have started reading and was highly recommended to me by a couple of Sisters in the Lord. "Created To Be His Help Meet" by Debi Pearl. You can check out the website at: www.NoGreaterJoy.org.

    One of my favorite authors is Elizabeth George. Check out her books at your local Christian Book Store.

    No matter how difficult it is we need to live Christ before hour husbands as when we do we open doors for God to work in them.

    1 Peter 2:12a having your conduct honorable among the Gentiles. The footnote in my bible says: Conduct honorable. The Gr. word for "honorable" is rich in meaning and implies the purest, highest, noblest kind of goodness. It means "lovely", "winsome", "gracious", "noble", and excellent." Having been disciplined in the inward and private side, the Christian must outwardly live among non-Christians in a way which reflects inward discipline.

    Luke 1:37 says that Nothing is impossible with God. As you read and hear His promises turn them into prayers. Praying scripture is very powerful.

    With God's help let His light shine in and through you.

    You are all in my prayers.

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  65. To December Rose, I completely understand where you are coming from. I am married and have a family now, but as a young teenager, I suffered some pretty inexcusable actions at the hand of my dad. I have over the course of 5 years, prayed for healing and God has allowed me to distance myself from the situation to ensure that my kids are protected forever. I still love him and forgive him, because who am I to judge. I am hoping someday that my dad will see that and it will lead him to my saviour :-)I am constantly looking through God's son glasses :-) Thanks for sharing. In Him, Amy

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  66. I found Abigail to be very inspiring. Even with a husband like Nabal, she had so many wonderful qualities. To see her her live in a daily relationship with this man that had so many negative qualities and yet she was strong and faithful. Wow. I let my previous relationship turn me into someone I was not. His negative ways changed me and it was not until I got my son and myself away did I realize it. He was not ready to be a father and did nothing with our son while we were together. Our son was 1 when I left and he now has little to do with him. He is still doing the things that he was when we were together. It is scary to look back and see what that relationship did to me....what I allowed it to do to me. It took awhile, but I finally am starting to feel like I have returned to myself...but better. I only hope that I am able to raise a Godly son, so that he might be able to make better choices and be a better person than his father.

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  67. Hi Ladies,
    I'm really blesed to have found this study. I look forward to it and try to find time to read everyone's comments. I've been absent for a couple days due to the hospitalization of my mother-in-law, but had time today to catch up.
    I'm sorry to hear of so many hurting marriages, I will be praying for you all. I will just throw this lesson that i learned a couple years ago out there in case someone else can gleen from it. There was a time in my marriage when I was not happy or satisfied with the way things were, didn't feel like I was having my needs met. However, I was never abused. I was lonely, felt ignored, homeschooling without any real support from husband, yet taking care of everyone else. I realized and really had to go to the Lord for my satisfaction. Only he could really fulfill my needs and understand. Once I placed my expectations on God rather than on my husband, things began to change. I also realized this through doing a Beth Moore Study called "Breaking Free" I would highly recommend it.
    Blessings,
    Kim

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  68. i was in a 15 year abusive relationship with the father of my 3 girls, and we were never married. All that Nabal did to Abigail i believe i lived. But even tho i was yet a sinner God rescued me from my situation and help me to love again. He brought me to my now husband who is all that i wanted in a husband. He is not perfect but I love him and he loves and respects me like David did for Abigail.
    I thank God every day for my husband and for bringing me out of the valley to the top of the mountain.

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  69. I've read all your comments and am so touched. I prayed for each one of you that are in this situation.


    I just want to encourage you. God works miracles, and wants to work a miracle in your life! He desires wholeness for you and for your children. GRAB ON TO THE HOPE THAT YOU HAVE IN GOD AND DON'T LET GO! I've lived and experienced the pain, and also the fulfilled hope. I had a Nabal in my life, whom I was not married to, but had a son with. God by His mercy pulled me out. I have shared about that briefly before. I can so relate to the women that are in this situation. The church that I started attending at that time literally was the body of Christ for me. Taking a "Journey to Wholeness" and a "Boundaries" class both helped me see the patterns that I had that were enabling others to take advantage of me. I'm now married to a wonderful man, (not without problems, but I am so blessed)but God did not allow me to meet him until I had gone through a few years of healing and living for Him. Drawing close to God, and maturing in my relationship with Him is what prepared me for my husband.

    Someone once told me that our biggest struggle is often not with sin, but it's in grasping how great of a plan that God has for our lives. We need this hope everyday to go on. We need to ask God daily to open our eyes to see what He wants us to see, so we can walk in the plan that He has for us. He gives us true hope. If we failed plan A, then God has a plan B, if we failed plan B, God has a plan C, etc. Have hope! I'm still learning that God is for me (us), not against me(us). If you think that you deserve the situation that you are in because of something that you did, that is the "accuser" speaking to you. Any thoughts that bring you down are not of God, Satan wants you to think that so that you'll run away from God! God's words are kind and gentle and reassuring. Even in correcting, God's words are loving, and bring life and hope.

    Sharon, you have an awesome testimony, thanks for sharing. I think it's great that your husband is humble about it, and is encouraging others with his story.

    Thank you Rachel O. for being obedient to God in your life, as we're reaping from that! I'll never look at Abigail the same again. At first I just thought that it was a nice love story. Ha!

    Connie- Canada

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  70. To Sharon/Florida, I just wanted to mention that your story reminded me to be more "intentional" in my life. There are things that I need to address, and godly things that I need to push into. Blessings!

    Connie- Canada

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  71. I am official...that is an official blogger with a blogspot. I've been (sinfully) envious of all you wonderful ladies who write so well on your blogs. I love to write and many have told me I write and express myself well. (Maybe not on these postings though because it's always in a rush.)

    Anyone who wants to visit...feel free. I'm going to give it a try unless it just becomes too much to add to my full plate.
    hisways-isaiah558.blogspot.com

    Or just double click on "sweetpea".

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  72. i feel fortunate that i am not in such a relationship and cannot imagine how frustrating and challenging it must be to live with such a person. what i wonder is if she ever wished him dead. with all of the awfulness of this man, it would be easy to lean in that direction. i somehow get the feeling though that she did no such thing. instead, i can imagine her praying for him continually and asking others to pray for him.

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  73. Sweet pea reading your post mentioning rejoice ministies was truly encouraging. I receive Charlene Cares daily and seeing your post is just another reminder of God's calling for me to stand for my husband's return to God and reconcilitaion of our marriage. We have been married 17 1/2 years and separated for 3 years. He decided that he didn't want to be married anymore after we relocated to another state. I can relate to Abigail listening to God to cover a husband who didn't deserve to be covered. He wasn't verbal or physically abusive, but he had the adulterous spirit. The pain of rejection for me and the children and knowledge of his affairs would've overwhelmed me if it wasn't for Jesus! I've held on to words in prophecy that were given way before he left. Also God confirmed my stand by giving me Hosea 2:6-7, 3:1. I have had even sisters in Christ not understand why I hadn't divorced him, but I know because I know God has not released me from my marriage. When you've had a word from God you have to stand on it. God is honoring my commitment to Him and our marriage vows inspite of what my husband has done. It would be far easier to walk away, but it is far better to obey the Lord...

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  74. SO much pain and heartache in these posts about Abigail. Sisters, I am praying for healing for all of you. Miracles happen with God. And thank you for the reminders to pray for our husbands without ceasing. My husband is not abusive at all, but we have had some different issues to deal with. Praying through "Power of a Praying Wife" one day at a time for a whole month brought about amazing changes in me (and him, too)! Ladies, thank you for baring your hearts and souls to us. God honors our commitment to HIM and HIM alone. We must be willing to let everything else be second -- I struggle a lot with that.

    Praying that God creates Abigail's character in all of us as we seek to draw nearer to HIM.

    Rachel O., bless you for this study. I am growing so much through your faithfulness to lead us!

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  75. Queen Esther was a humble and wise woman of God. Unlike the other “candidates” for queen, who took items with them to go and see King Xerxes, she took nothing, except, what eunuch Hegai suggested. To me this exuded a woman, who wanted to be different, and set a standard….that she was naturally and spiritually beautiful, and didn’t need any enhancements. Also, Esther was highly favored among any of the other virgins. Ch 8:2 mentions how Esther was placed under Hegai’s care and she pleased him and “won” his favor. She was given maids and they were placed in the best palace in the harem. Talking about favor.

    Esther also won the favor of the king and was able to save her family as a result of this favor. Haman plotted to destroy the Jews…especially, because of his issue w/Mordecai not kneeling down and paying respect to him. Therefore, Haman plotted to not only destroy Mordecai, but Mordecai’s entire family…the Jews. Little did Haman know that God had Mordecai in the right place at the right time to hear of his plot. As a result, Mordecai tore his clothes and put on sackcloth and ashes and went throughout the city in such dispair. Mordecai’s condition got back to Esther and she sent Hathach, the eunuch, to Mordecai to see what’s troubling him. Mordecai had the eunuch to deliver the reason to Esther and instructed her to let the king know what’s going on. Esther, did something very crucial….when faced with a crisis and needing answers in how to handle such a crisis. She fasted….I b/l, prayer was incorporated as well…although, the bible didn’t clearly state it. She wasn’t alone…but, she gave instructions for ALL (there’s power in numbers) the Jews to come together and fast for 3 (father, son, and Holy Ghost) days….. After the fast, she went to see the king. In CH 5, imagine the “KING” sitting on HIS royal throne in the hall and he sees Esther standing in the court, he was PLEASED with her and held out to her the gold scepter (can you say FAVOR??) THEN, he goes on to say What is your request….even up to ½ of the kingdom, it will be given to you.

    Esther requested for king and Haman’s presence at the banquet. That’s where Esther petitions for her family to be saved and exposed Haman, for the villian he is….and the gallows that Haman had built for Mordecai, he was hanged on. (when you dig one ditch, there’s no need to build two…because only one will be needed….just for you). also, Haman's sons were hanged as well.

    Esther showed humility by bowing b/f King Xerxes, showing respect and honor (similar to Abigail bowing b/f David…and being found favorable in David’s eye’s and placed in esteem honor).

    I think about title of Bishop TD Jakes’ book “Repositioning Yourself” and how God repositioned Esther from a Jew, who's family was frowned upon and treated harshly by other nationalities during that time….to a woman of esteem honor and respect. What an inheritance she rcv’d….Haman’s estate…her family receiving their legal rights assemble and protect themselves. Mordecai rcv’d the signet ring from the King and Esther appointed him over the estate. ….Mordecai went out in style (he left the King’s presence wearing royal garments of blue and white, a large crown of gold and a purple robe of fine linen…Ch 8:15). Other nationalities ended up becoming Jews b/c the fear of the Jews had siezed them…a nationality, once degraded…was “Upgraded” to a nationality of reverence.
    Awesome lesson showing that if God be for us…who can be against us. What the devil meant for evil, God had already turn it around for Esther and Mordecai’s good. If we draw nigh unto Him, He will draw nigh unto us. Those that humble themselves before Him, shall be exalted….. Lastly, ALL things….ALL things work together for the good to them that LOVE the Lord and are called according to His purpose.

    Thanks Rachel again for allowing God to use you in orchestrating this bible study.
    Blessings on you always and for the wonderful and blessed women that share in this study.

    SM, Montgomery AL

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  76. Jo Beth--thank you for your understanding. My Nabal is getting more difficult to live with as time goes on, and the past 3 1/2 years I have thought at least once a day to leave, esp. after he had a brief affair 1 1/2 years ago. He was a preacher. A prophetic preaching method that was nothing but a gift from God--he was used by God to really get people to look at themselves and draw closer to Him. The affair caused him to lose the pulpit and another job. He didn't work for a year--slept on the couch most of the time. I've began to wonder if some manic-depressive is creeping in--he's up for a few days, then down, negative and nasty, causing misery to everyone in the house. He went back to the old job, but quit again last month. I stay home, but that is now looking like an impossibility. I am tired of borrowing money to pay the bills, and worrying about being in the dark, or not having water. My children need clothes for the summer, and I don't even have the money to shop at a thrift store! Every time I suggest some part time work for me, he flies off the handle.

    His behavior, when he stopped 'changing' after becoming a servant of God--I hated it--how could he preach when he was such a crappy person? I got angry and just gave up, and thought about nothing but leaving--then three children came in quick succession, and leaving became impossible. I bought a copy of Power of a Praying Wife, but I ended up storing it away, because I felt God didn't hear me anymore--was done with me, and didn't care. I have since gotten the message that he is NOT done with me, and just needs me to come to him as I am, and let him clean me up. HALLELUJAH! (one thing that amazes me about this revelation and new relationship w/ God is that the painful tension I carried constantly in my shoulders is gone!) I have Power of... on my nightstand, and as soon as I can get back on a regular schedule, I will start it again. Husband's schedule is not with the family's (up all night, sleep all day), and he expects me to sit up to late hours talking after everyone goes to bed. This begins a vicious cycle, because I end up falling asleep, he gets mad because I won't spend time with him, and when I try, I can't keep his hours. Not with two children in school and two at home.

    I printed out the prayer that SweatPea posted here, and have it in my Bible, and I started praying it last night--for both of us.

    I'm sorry this is so long. I don't share our problems with anyone. I was so ashamed and embarassed after his affair, because then everyone knew we had problems--our dirty laundry was hanging on the line! It's also difficult to share, because he's so paranoid, he looks over my shoulder all the time. If he only knew and believed that I was praying desperately for him and our marriage, and I don't want to destroy what little bit of family we have left, maybe his heart would change. I don't know. I want to be more like Abigail, but then again, I begin to wonder...something I'm ashamed to admit. Would my story turn out the way hers did?

    ♥♥

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  77. Hi,
    I'm a few days late in following your study, having discovered it only a week ago. A christian wife and mum of 2 young children, I've struggled lately with self-esteem, being on the receiving end of demeaning comments from a husband dealing with erratic mood swings. After years of praying for him, he accepted the Lord 2 years ago, and I guess I'm trying to hurry God along in changing us both, forgetting that his time is best. What I've discovered is that I'm missing out on meditating on God's word - always to busy to sit down and read my bible. I decided to try to study women in the bible, to help rekindle the desire in my heart for God's word - and here I am! I'm so enjoying this study, and gleaned so much in looking at the character of Abigail, and how she lived so beautifully for God despite her situation. I know that if I seek God first, he'll give me the desires of my heart. I've passed your web address onto other mums in our church bible study group. Really enjoying the study. L. Northern Ireland

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  78. Thank you for this study and for all the comments. It helps to know that I'm not the only woman living with a Nabal. Sometimes I just want to leave. But I know that can not be God's will. I pray every day for strength and guidance. I pray for my 7yo daughter that she does not marry someone like him. I pray the Lord will help me change the things I need to and not blame everything on him. I only want God's will to be done.

    Thank you sisters in Christ,
    Ebbie

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  79. I read this one...and thanked God for my wonderful wise husband. Thanks to you, Rachel for continuing to provide us with this study.

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