There are many thought-influencers who have labeled Bathsheba as a tempt-stress of some sort. Their assumptions are revealing as they are convincing. Still, no matter how many times, I re-read the account found in 2 Samuel 11, my spirit sees a different type of woman. Not a slightly bad girl of the Bible but a woman whose vulnerability was taken advantage of.
From the opening verses of the chapter, we learn three things of Bathsheba. 1 – She was married to Uriah, one of David’s leading men. 2 – Her husband was away – Uriah as well as the other men in Israels army were away at war. 3 – She was a law-abiding Israelite, translated, a good girl – she purified herself, a practice, outlined in the Israelite laws. 4 – she was beautiful to look at.
And it came to pass in an eveningtide, that David arose from off his bed, and walked upon the roof of the king’s house: and from the roof he saw a woman washing herself; and the woman was very beautiful to look upon. (2 Samuel 11:2 KJV)
We find her on the rooftop of her courtyard, bathing. David spots her while on his own roof-top terrace and is enticed by her beautiful nakedness. Her beauty awakens his lust and he inquires of her identity and requests that she be brought to him.
We know how the rest of the story unfolds – they both became sexually connected in the bed chambers of king David and soon after, Bathsheba becomes pregnant. Through a strategic plot, David kills her husband to cover his sin and makes Bathsheba, one of his many wives.
And David sent and inquired after the woman. And one said, Is not this Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite? And David sent messengers, and took her; and she came in unto him, and he lay with her; for she was purified from her uncleanness: and she returned unto her house. And the woman conceived, and sent and told David, and said, I am with child. (2 Samuel 11:3-5 KJV)
Even before Bathsheba, entered the courts of King David, her nakedness, unknown to her, made her the sole prey of his lust. With her husband gone – her spirit was vulnerable and open. Exposed under the blanket of the heavens – her body was vulnerable and naked. The circumstances exposed her to the lusts of David.
And I can relate to her nakedness. Emotionally, anyway.
Sometimes, my loneliness makes me susceptible to exposing myself to the wrong people. I confide very real and sacred emotions, thoughts and feelings to them. Thoughts, feelings and emotions that are powerful enough to create a strong bond between two pure-hearted spirits or transformed persons through Christ and still powerful enough to be used against me, by the wrong people, sometimes, hurt people, who are not led by the Spirit of God.
I am sure you can relate. Maybe it may be thoughts and emotions, or maybe you may give yourself sexually to another, in search of reciprocity and validation of any kind.
Other times, others take advantage of our open and authentic spirit.
For many of these persons whom we give ourselves without filter to, they are unable to handle our emotional nakedness. For many it is because like David – they are led by a destructive spirit that blinds them to the beauty and purity of vulnerability. For others, it is because they are unable to relate to our vulnerability because they have no idea how to spot it, much less, appreciate and protect it when seen in others. And still, there are many who can’t handle the vulnerability of others because they have not been taught how to respond healthily to the vulnerability seen in others or within themselves.
They cannot see beyond the “naïve” or “weak” brand associated with the virtue.
And because being vulnerable is often embarrassing and creates a feeling of helplessness, and puts our hearts at risk of being advantaged, we run from opportunities where we can learn to embrace it within ourselves, so that we can celebrate it in others.
Lately, I’ve had to ask the Lord to break down the fortress built by my self-protective impulse to guard me from emotional imbalance and keep my personal boundaries unthreatened. I’ve had to ask Him to help me to see my vulnerability not as a threat but an asset. An asset that can strengthen my relationship with others, as well as my relationship with Him. An asset when married with wisdom will bring richness to my spirit and relationships.
Our vulnerabilities are not threats but assets. Assets to be embraced and harnessed.
Yes, they make us more susceptible to hurt and disappointment but they bring us closer into the real of experiencing authentic joy. They somehow connect us to like-spirited hearts, who are just as open and honest and real as we are and help us beyond our fear, to create a community or a support unit that’s accepting and understanding of what it means to be emotionally naked.
You deserve to experience the benefits of being emotionally naked in your relationships and so I dare you to embrace vulnerability. In spite of our primal fears of abandonment and loneliness, embrace vulnerability. If you don’t know how to start – start with God, the one who wouldn’t take advantage of your beautiful nakedness.
Get spiritually “naked” and real with Him. Your encounter with Him then, will conquer the primal fears of being vulnerable with those around you and lead you on a terrifying and adventurous journey of cultivating vulnerability.
(C) 2017, Dentrecia Blanchette