Friday, February 9, 2024

February 9, 2024

Oh, how sweet the next book of the Bible is, but it didn’t start that way. Poor and desperate Naomi loses hope after first her husband dies, then ten years later, her two sons. Elimelech had taken his family, left Bethlehem, and ventured to Moab because of famine in the land, never to return. Why did he leave? The rest of Israel seemed to manage through the famine. Elimelech had mortgaged his land before he left, leaving his family destitute if they ever needed to return. It was with bitterness that Naomi had to leave Moab, but much like with Naomi, God will sometimes direct our path by hardships, causing us to make the decisions he wants us to make and put us back on the path he desires us to go. Naomi was heartbroken. She had no family in Moab except her two daughters-in-law, who loved her dearly but felt she needed to return to her people who believed in the one true God and maybe find help in her desperation. She expected both daughters-in-law to return to their people, but Ruth insisted that she go with her, never wanting to leave her side. 

I would love to tell this entire story in one day and rush to the romantic ending, but because it is four chapters, I will take my time and examine the details that led Ruth and Naomi down this path and compare it to the struggles and happiness we experience from time to time. Stay with me; this is a good one! 

I went out full, and the LORD hath brought me home again empty: why then call ye me Naomi, seeing the LORD hath testified against me, and the Almighty hath afflicted me? So Naomi returned, and Ruth the Moabitess, her daughter in law, with her, which returned out of the country of Moab: and they came to Bethlehem in the beginning of barley harvest. Ruth 1:21-22

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