Michal’s Love Story



Have you ever indulged a spirit of resentment? Maybe someone truly wrongs you and, when you bring it to their attention, they respond with the equivalent of “Get over it!” They don’t apologize, they don’t try to make things right, they don’t even seem to care that they hurt you. You have the right to be angry then, don’t you? Isn’t it natural?

If you’ve ever felt like this, you might find Michal’s story interesting. Michal was a real, honest-to-goodness princess—the daughter of King Saul. She fell in love with a charismatic hero named David. The charismatic hero apparently loved her too, because he went to war to win the right to marry her.

It all sounds like a fairy tale, doesn’t it? But someone forgot to write “And they lived happily ever after” at the end of this story. The new couple is soon separated, and Saul marries Michal off to someone else. She lives with her new husband, apparently happily, for somewhere between 10 and 20 years.

Then, out of the blue, David reclaims her as his wife. Her current husband is devastated. He follows her, weeping the whole way, until he’s forced to turn back. And Michal’s not happy either. David has a whole harem of wives by this time, so Michal’s no longer a beloved wife; she’s now just a political prize.

Yet her situation cannot be improved. As a princess, she undoubtedly understands her political value and David’s necessity for insisting on claiming her. Still, she doesn’t make the best of her situation. Instead, she harbors resentment.

We know this because of her reaction to one of the happiest days of David’s life. He’s absolutely ecstatic after finally managing to bring the ark to Jerusalem. He’s expressing his joy and his love for God through dancing and singing. And, out of reverence for God, he’s exchanged his royal robes for the simple white ephod that the priests wear.

Once the ark is situated, David consecrates the new tabernacle, blesses the people, and then returns home to bless his family. Now, this blessing tradition was (still is, I’m told) very meaningful to the Hebrew. We see glimpses of its significance in the accounts of Isaac’s and Jacob’s blessings. So David, full of joy after being in God’s presence, bounces into his palace with the intention of bringing the same joy to those he loves most.

Then he runs into Michal. Because of her continued brooding, she’s completely insensible to the blessing God has waiting for her. Instead, she pulls a Joan Rivers and criticizes his fashion sense! The result? She not only misses out on the blessing of that day, but she remains childless for the rest of her life—a really big deal to a Hebrew woman.

We, too, have a choice to make every day. We can fix our eyes on ourselves, looking for reasons to criticize and brood over offenses (even real ones). Or we can fix our eyes on our incredible God and look for ways to praise Him and bless others.

What will today’s choice be?

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