Have you ever felt like a victim of your circumstances?
Helpless to ever have a normal life because of something in your past? Perhaps you’ve convinced yourself that whatever may have happened to you is destined to write the chapters of your story still to come? Satan will use whatever tiny seed of negativity he can to convince us we’re victims … stained, tainted and unable to ever be wanted, happy, successful or, heaven forbid, used by God!
Many years ago, I had the privilege of teaching fifth and sixth grade girls Sunday school at my church. I absolutely adored each one of those precious girls!
We had a good-sized group of regular attenders and were always doing something fun … pottery outings, spa nights, crafting afternoons, secret pal exchanges, etc. Our class quickly became “the one” all the younger girls anxiously anticipated moving into!
Each week I was challenged to make whatever portion of God’s Word we were studying relevant and exciting in the hope that each girl would grow in her faith and ultimately desire a deep and lasting relationship with the Lord. I would use whatever game, craft or illustration necessary in an attempt to engage each of those preteens while weaving God’s truth into their hearts.
I rejoiced as I witnessed the light-bulb moments when, finally, a portion of the Word that perhaps never made any sense before suddenly was as clear as freshly cleaned glass!
And then came the story of David and Bathsheba … Yikes!
Can we say NOT necessarily a kid-friendly kind of story? To be honest, it reads more like a Harlequin romance novel, yet there it is, right in the midst of the Old Testament! I remember thinking to myself, “Maybe we could skip this week and go off book,” but God prompted me to share the story just as written in His Word.
It was a challenging lesson, but we made it through! As we were wrapping up, allowing a few minutes for comment, I recall one of the girls nonchalantly saying, “She [Bathsheba] was a victim!” We never discussed that thought … thank goodness it was approaching time to go, so we closed in prayer and got the girls to “big church” on time!
If you’re unfamiliar with the story of David and Bathsheba, it is the picture of lust and adultery from the very minute David laid eyes on Bathsheba. He sees her bathing and immediately wants her for his own. So he inquires as to who this bathing beauty is and, although he quickly learns she’s a married woman, that doesn’t stop him. He summons for Bathsheba to be brought to him and has his way with her.
In reading through the story again, well over a decade since teaching it to those precious preteens, I recalled the “victim” statement. What insight at such a young age!
The Word doesn’t tell us whether or not Bathsheba consented to David’s advances, although I have to believe she really didn’t have much choice as her husband was away and David WAS the King of Israel! But, what was supposed to have been a one-night stand quickly turned into “anything but” when Bathsheba realizes she’s pregnant. The story goes on to tell how David takes matters into his own hands and adultery eventually turns into murder.
Oh, what a tangled web of lies and heartbreaking circumstances Bathsheba finds herself the victim of!
It would have been easy, even understood perhaps, for Bathsheba to take on this “victim” mentality. She had, after all, betrayed her husband, which ultimately led to his murder by way of an unwanted pregnancy.
But, Bathsheba did not fall into that trap!
She trusted God and allowed Him to work in her life. As her story concludes, we see that not only does God elevate her to a position of honor as Queen Mother over the nation of Israel, but the Savior of the World ultimately comes from her lineage.
Satan wants us to believe that one mistake can taint us for the rest of our lives, but that’s not what God’s Word says!
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28 (NIV)
No matter the devastation of your past, you don’t have to be a VICTIM of your circumstances!
Like Bathsheba, trust God and allow His perfect plan to make you the VICTOR He always intended you to be!
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.