Daily Devotion

February 22, 2016

Discerning those who abuse others

“Since he was stronger than she, he raped her.”

2Sa 13:14 NIV

One of the things that make many women particularly vulnerable to different kinds of abuse and manipulation is their God-given maternal instinct. Women are nurturers, reaching out to needy people to nurture, love, and provide them with inner strength. For example, mothers love to take care of helpless babies. But all too often these healthy desires are taken advantage of by those who want to fulfill their own lusts. Sometimes it seems that the more helpless a man acts, the more maternal some women become. And wicked men capitalize on this in order to have their way with them. That’s why the gift of discernment, “the ability to discern” (1Co 12:10 NLT), is so important. There are many wonderful men out there. But be warned, there are also men who are cut from the same bolt of cloth as David’s son Amnon. Second Samuel chapter thirteen gives us a tragic example of this principle when Amnon took advantage of his stepsister Tamar. Amnon was dangerous, and there are other men just like him. Violence in relationships and marriages is growing at an alarming rate. The abuse includes physical assault, rape, molestation, psychological threats, stalking, and financial coercion. At the heart of abuse lies a desire to gain and maintain control over another person. And as a woman it’s particularly important never to allow loneliness or your nurturing instinct to coerce you into a position of vulnerability with another Amnon. If you find yourself in that kind of situation, “blow the whistle” immediately, expose the offender, and seek help.