Have you ever found yourself feeling overwhelmed, hurt, and/or stuck after experiencing the unexpected in life?
Life’s unexpected comes in many forms like job loss, death, sickness, wayward children, broken relationships, and accidents. Like us, Bathsheba was a woman acquainted with life’s unexpected.
She’s quite possibly one of the most misunderstood women in the Bible. In The Bathsheba Battle (Abingdon Press), Natalie Chambers Snapp helps women find healing and hope when things haven’t gone as they had planned. Despite an unexpected turn in Bathsheba’s life, which resulted in tragic circumstances beyond her control, there are glimmers of hope in her story. By studying her life, readers will find healing from their own painful pasts and hope for living the free and full lives God intends.
Today we’re joined by Natalie Chambers Snapp to share more about her latest book and what we can learn from Bathsheba.
Q: You describe Bathsheba as one of the most misunderstood women in the Bible. How is she typically misrepresented?
Bathsheba is often portrayed as the adulteress—as though she was a vixen with the intent to tempt David and hopefully, take her on as his wife. However, the fact remains that she was a victim of David’s own desires and paid a very dear price for his sin. Sadly, victims can sometimes be blamed and in the case of Bathsheba, that’s exactly what happened.
Q: What makes Bathsheba’s story relatable to us today?
I think so many people can relate to Bathsheba’s story because 1) suffering happens to all of us and 2) sometimes, our suffering is the result of someone else’s actions and choices. In no way should we remain victims, but I think Bathsheba’s story is God’s way of telling us that He sees us, understands our pain, and is the Ultimate Justifier.
Q: Can you share about a hardship or disappointment in your own life that provided the inspiration to write The Bathsheba Battle?
Absolutely! When I was in my late twenties, I was married to a man with a drug problem, but I did not know it. As many who have loved addicts understand, there are often behaviors corresponding with addiction that are not healthy for a young marriage and therefore, we divorced. Two months after I filed for divorce, my father, who was in and out of my life due to his own addiction issues, passed away unexpectedly.
Life had definitely taken a very unexpected turn and was not at all going the way I had planned. It was a dark season, and yet also the very season in which I became a follower of Jesus. My deconstruction led to my reconstruction. I have been remarried for fifteen years and have three beautiful children; however, periods of suffering have also been peppered throughout those years as well. Suffering is often cyclical and that has been true of my life!
Q: Do we always have the ability to choose how we respond to our situation? Why is this such a significant choice, especially when we must endure a consequence of someone else’s sin?
Yes, I believe we do. We can’t always control what happens to us, but we can always control how we will respond. Living life as a victim will ultimately make you feel powerless, depressed, and distrustful of people. It will lead to a life of bitterness, resentment, and anger. On the other hand, when we respond to our trauma with a humble heart and a willingness to be molded by our suffering, we feel empowered, strong, and able to help others when their time of suffering emerges. When we choose to live as victims, we give others power over our lives. When we choose to live as survivors, we understand that we possess the power ourselves.
Q: How does your study on Bathsheba shift from part one of the book to part two?
In Part One, we discuss the byproducts of our suffering: fear, shame, anger, and comparison. In Part Two, we look at how to overcome these negative emotions and live empowered and with hope.
Q: What does Bathsheba’s story teach us about forgiveness?
We don’t really know about Bathsheba’s forgiveness process because it’s not discussed in the Bible. However, we do see her stand before David in 1 Kings 1 with an empowered and confident voice that exhibits love and respect towards her husband. Perhaps somewhere during the course of their marriage, Bathsheba made peace with her circumstances—she chose her response and not to live as a victim.
Not living as a victim involves forgiveness and yet, this does not mean she might not have felt like a victim for a while. It doesn’t mean that she didn’t feel shameful. And it doesn’t mean that she didn’t grieve the loss of the life she thought she might have. It does, however, indicate that she chose to keep moving forward without allowing her grief and shame to negatively impact who she ultimately became. A woman who is victorious over suffering is the most beautiful and inspiring to us all.
About the Author
Natalie Chambers Snapp is an author, blogger, and speaker known for her refreshing authenticity and practical approach to life and God’s Word. Not choosing to follow Jesus until the age of twenty-seven, she is passionate about sharing the grace, mercy, and truth of God’s love with others “regardless of your track record.” Her transparency and humor endear her to women of all ages.
Get the Book
Pick up your copy of The Bathsheba Battle via Amazon. Available in paperback and Kindle.