Haste That is not Wasted

“One of the young men told Abigail, Nabal’s wife, ‘David sent messengers out of the wilderness to greet our master, and he railed at them. Yet the men were very good to us, and we suffered no harm, and we did not miss anything when we were in the fields, as long as we went with them… Now therefore know this and consider what you should do, for harm is determined against our master and against all his house, and he is such a worthless man that one cannot speak to him.’

“Then Abigail made haste and took two hundred loaves and two skins of wine and five sheep already prepared and five seahs of parched grain and a hundred clusters of raisins and two hundred cakes of figs… As she rode on the donkey and came down under cover of the mountain, behold, David and his men came down toward her, and she met them…

“When Abigail saw David, she hurried and got down from the donkey… and bowed to the ground.  She fell at his feet and said, ‘On me alone, my lord, be the guilt… Let not my lord regard this worthless fellow… Nabal is his name, and folly is with him… The Lord has restrained you from bloodguilt and from saving with your own hand… Please forgive the trespass of your servant. For the Lord will certainly make my lord a sure house, because my lord is fighting the battles of the Lord, and evil shall not be found in you so long as you live. If men rise up to pursue you.., the life of my lord shall be bound in the bundle of the living in the care of the Lord your God…  And when the Lord has… appointed you prince over Israel, [you] shall have no cause of grief or pangs of conscience for having shed blood without cause or for working salvation [your]self…’

“And David said to Abigail, ‘Blessed be the Lord, who sent you this day to meet me! Blessed be your discretion, and blessed be you, who have kept me this day from bloodguilt and from working salvation with my own hand! For as surely as the Lord, the God of Israel, lives, who has restrained me from hurting you, unless you had hurried and come to meet me, truly by morning there had not been left to Nabal so much as one male.’” 1 Samuel 25:14-15,17a, 18,20,23-26,28-34

Abigail was a wise woman with a keen sense of timing about when to wait and when to hurry. Driven by a noble righteousness and faith in God’s purposes, she interposed to save David from shame. In the end, she even hastened to accept his marriage proposal. (1 Samuel 25:41-42)

In many situations, haste indeed makes waste. When we act impulsively, or react with unrestrained emotion, we often make waste of effort, intention, and people. But a sense of urgency prompted and led by the Holy Spirit is powerful. Wasting no time and opportunity in vital circumstances brings good to all involved.

What blessings have I missed by dragging my feet? What causes me to procrastinate when I know the right thing to do? Would I haste toward all that is good- reconciliation, getting needed help, interceding for others, putting away harmful habits and temptations? Who can I hasten to help today?

Lord, grant me discernment, a sense of holy urgency, and courage to act at Your pleasure in all situations.

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