If you are married, have been married or even attended a wedding or two, you can more than likely recite the standard wedding vows included in many traditional wedding ceremonies…
“I (insert name) take you (insert name), to be my lawfully wedded (husband/wife), to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, until death do us part.”
These vows have been around for years and have no doubt been repeated hundreds of thousands of times. Sadly, as the years have progressed, these words seem to be used more as rehearsed lines from a script than actual heartfelt promises to one’s soon-to-be spouse. It seems the mentality in today’s society is, “If it doesn’t work out, we’ll get a divorce!” and, unfortunately, statistics seem to support this mindset. However, this certainly isn’t in line with what God’s word says about marriage.
“But God made them male and female from the beginning of creation. This explains why a man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one. Since they are no longer two but one, let no one split apart what God has joined together.” Mark 10:6-9 (NLT)
Considering how common divorce is in society today, isn’t it refreshing when we see older couples who, despite all odds and enduring all hardships along the way, are celebrating 40, 50 even 60+ years together? We wonder, “How is that possible?” I have to believe these precious couples entered into the covenant of marriage with their whole hearts, truly meaning their “until death do us part” vows and putting God first in their lives.
This was certainly true of Abigail who is described in 1 Samuel 25 as a sensible and beautiful woman. Abigail was married to Nabal, who, according to the Word, was “crude and mean in all his dealings.” I think we can all agree these certainly aren’t the qualities a girl jots down on her future husband wish list! Although Nabal was very wealthy, which some scholars surmise was how he managed to snag a treasure such as Abigail, he seemed to have the mentality that his wealth gave him a license to be a jerk. When David, the future king of Israel, sends his men to ask Nabal to share his good fortune with them, not only does Nabal refuse, but he even goes so far as to mock the future king. This sends David over the edge and earns Nabal and his entire household a death sentence handed down by David himself! When Abigail learns of the exchange between David and her husband, she, without hesitation, goes into defense mode, comes up with a plan, and quickly diffuses the situation, which ultimately saves her husband’s life … well at least at the hand of David.
As I read through and pondered Abigail’s story, I couldn’t help but think what an amazingly strong and God-fearing woman she must have been. Considering Nabal’s demeanor as described in the Word, one can only imagine Abigail had endured her share of the “worse” part of these common marriage vows; however, when her husband was in trouble, she was the picture of a Proverbs 31 wife.
“A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies. Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value. She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life.” Proverbs 31:10-12 (NIV)
Despite how Nabal may have treated her, Abigail was loyal to her husband, acting in his best interest! Marriage isn’t always wedded bliss and, unfortunately, the “worse” part leads to many marriages failing. This, however, doesn’t have to be the case in our marriages. While we can’t change our spouses, we CAN seek the Lord’s counsel and wholeheartedly commit to being the best possible wives we can be (as described in Proverbs 31), even when it seems an impossible task!
If we are walking in obedience, God WILL handle the rest!
In reading the remainder of Abigail’s story, we see that God certainly handled her situation … perhaps not in the way she may have imagined, but in the end, God made her a Queen! May we never doubt God’s hand on our lives when we are seeking Him with all our heart!
Amber Edwards is married and has two teenagers. While she works as a Paralegal, her true heart is for others. This passion led her to start a blessing bag ministry for the homeless, which affords her many opportunities to share her faith and love for the Lord. Amber grew up in Birmingham and is an active member at Church of the Highlands where she serves on the Events Team and co-leads small groups.