"And let your handmaid, I pray you, speak in your presence, and hear the words of your handmaid."
I Samuel 25: 24, Amplified Bible
"The Melody of Meekness"
"In meekness and lowliness consisteth the kingdom of heaven."
After seeing how Abigail reacted to David, how would I define her "meek" behavior?
What does it really mean to be "meek"?
"Meekness is love at school, at the school of Christ. It is the disciple learning to know, and fear, and distrust (herself), and learning of Him who is meek and lowly of heart, and so finding rest to (her) soul."
"Meekness is not weakness."
William G. Benham
Kneeling at David's feet and asking for permission to speak! Now if that doesn't sound like "doormat" behavior, I don't know what does. Here was Abigail, who had done absolutely nothing wrong, except maybe for marrying a cad like Nabal, bowing before an angry man.
And yet, with David on the warpath, somebody had to step up to save-the-day. Someone had to dump their pride out the window and lie down like a bridge over troubled water.
If you think that someone would be a man, you'd be wrong for it was none other than one of God's girls who chose to react with a spirit of meekness. It was Abigail who offered to take the blame and who asked to speak on behalf of the lives of the people in her household. As Thomas Brooks points out, it is "a meek and quiet spirit" which is as he calls it, "an incorruptible ornament, much more valuable than gold."
On this particular day, in the desert of Carmel, Abigail's meek spirit was truly worth more than gold, for it saved the lives of her family and her employees.
The beloved author Amy Carmichael said "Learn the blessedness of the unoffended in the face of the unexplainable." This is what Abigail did. She wasn't keeping a tally of whether or not she had been offended, instead, she decided that peace was more important than pride. This is what meekness is all about.
Let us not forget that Jesus was called "meek," to which some attached a symbol of "weakness." However, it was this heavenly Son who arrived on earth as the Prince of Peace, the One who willingly laid His life down to bring peace into a world torn apart by the disruptive qualities of "me-first."
This makes it all the more interesting that in the Sermon on the Mount, it was Jesus who declared there was a special inheritance reserved for the meek. How surprising, for in our world it is not the meek who are usually put on a pedestal and lauded as the "great and wonderful."
However, if we look for a word that is the opposite of "meek," we find that often the word "pride" rears its ugly head. In Greek drama, those individuals who usually fell low did so by becoming prideful or as one author noted, their pride led them to "usurp the prerogatives of the gods."
If we go back to the Garden of Eden, to the serpent's claim that if Adam and Eve ate of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil they would, "Be as gods," we find this was the line that reeled them in. The idea of being a proud god, someone who usurps the place of our heavenly Father in our own lives and in our own eyes, can do to us what it did to Adam and Eve. It will lead us to a place where meekness isn't viable.
Perhaps this is one of the reasons the meek are promised they will inherit the earth, for they are the only ones who can handle such a perfect gift without becoming puffed-up and proud or wanting to usurp God's place.
As we look at the willingness of Abigail to put away any pride she may have had in order to bring peace, it helps us understand the depth of this woman's spiritual life. All Abigail wanted was to bring harmony into her home, but she did much more. She inherited a treasure from her heavenly Father that was more valuable than gold.
Author John Woolman penned this beautiful reminder that recognizes the blessing of the gift of meekness. "Selfish men (and women) may possess the earth; but it is the meek only who inherit (the earth) from the heavenly Father, free from all defilements and perplexities of unrighteousness."
"O Savior, meek and lowly of heart, let not our pride refuse Thy bidding, to become as little children, in joy and simplicity, in trustfulness one toward another, in lowliness of heart; and by this Thine own glory, bring us unto ours; for Thy majesty and Thy mercy's sake."
I would like to become a little child and rest my soul in you.
I'm tired of the loneliness, tired of the struggle,
I want to surrender but I don't know how.
You see, I have this problem of being adult.
I belong to the generation which makes decisions, plans, works,
accepts responsibility, takes pride in being independent.
Adults are supposed to manage their lives.
They are concerned with owning things and
making things happen, and they don't like to look small or foolish.
Dear God, for a long time I've been living at the centre of a world
which has prevented me from entering the Kingdom of Heaven.
Father God . . .
. . . show me how to become your child.
I am aware of the advice that Jesus gives.
He does not say that we should remain in infancy.
He says that we should become as little children.
This tells me that I need to know the futility of independence
before I can let go of it.
It is the letting go which is difficult.
I know you are there, waiting to give yourself to me, but I'm
afraid to commit myself.
Please help me to loosen this grip on my pride
so that I can hold out my arms to you and be enfolded in your love."
Dorothy Valcàrcel, Author
When A Woman Meets Jesus
P.S. My book, When A Woman Meets Jesus, is now available wherever books are sold and on the internet at www.amazon.com, Christianbook.com, or by calling toll-free, 1-800-Christian. You can also go to www.whenawomanmeetsjesus.com and purchase the book through Paypal for $8.00. Or by calling Transformation Garden at 1-888-397-4348.
For more from Dorothy, please visit transformationgarden.com.