Cringy (1 Samuel 25:23-27)

My best friend from high school and college recently visited with our family. We had not seen each other in two years and we celebrated our reunion with a dinner at our home. As we dined, we began to reminisce over our many shared adventures. Two middle-aged men miraculously became two teenaged boys as the conversation swiftly lurched from high school dances, antics in our dorm rooms, and a spring break road trip in college. I always let my guard down when I am with him and my animated voice grew louder and more raucous. Arms flailing and jumping out of my seat, my wife attempted to calm me down, but I ignored her. At the end of the evening, my wife was embarrassed that I displayed such an uninhibited example of behavior in front of her and our children.


The next morning, I received an email from him, thanking me for the evening. “We had a good time, didn’t we?” I wrote. “You probably noticed how my wife tried to get me to stop at one point?”


My friend replied. “The funny thing is that a lot of the wives have those cringy moments where they want the guys to stop.”


Wives do have a thankless job to cover those frequent cringy moments that their husbands emit. The Bible records a particularly cringy moment just before David became King of Israel. Abagail was the wife of Nabal, a wealthy man. When David was passing through Nabal’s land, David and his men respected Nabal’s herds of animals, protecting them from other poachers. All of Nabal’s men knew David was an honorable man and when David sent a message to Nabal asking him to share in some of their food, they were horrified by Nabal’s response. 


“Who is this fellow David?” Nabal sneered to the young men. “Who does this son of Jesse think he is? There are lots of servants these days who run away from their masters. Should I take my bread and my water and my meat that I’ve slaughtered for my shearers and give it to a band of outlaws who come from who knows where?”

1 Samuel 25:10-11 (NLT)


This was definitely a cringy choice of words and unfortunately, ignited David’s anger. David gathered several of his men with the intention to defend his honor and attack Nabal. When Abigail learned of Nabal’s cringy response and David’s intentions, she took matters into her own hands. She quickly gathered enough food for David and his men and personally delivered it to him before they attacked.


When Abigail saw David, she quickly got off her donkey and bowed low before him. She fell at his feet and said, “I accept all blame in this matter, my lord. Please listen to what I have to say. I know Nabal is a wicked and ill-tempered man; please don’t pay any attention to him. He is a fool, just as his name suggests. But I never even saw the young men you sent. “Now, my lord, as surely as the Lord lives and you yourself live, since the Lord has kept you from murdering and taking vengeance into your own hands, let all your enemies and those who try to harm you be as cursed as Nabal is. And here is a present that I, your servant, have brought to you and your young men.”

1 Samuel 25:23-27 (NLT)


Abigail’s swift actions saved her entire family. When she told Nabal what happened and how his foolish actions nearly brought complete destruction upon them, he was overcome with emotion and soon died. David was so impressed by Abigail’s strength of character and wisdom that after Nabal died, he took her for his wife. That is quite an ending for a cringy lapse in behavior. Cringy moments seem to follow many husbands, especially me! Thanks be to God that He has blessed me with a wife who does not curse me but protects me and continues to smooth out the very rough edges of my character.


Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.


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