2013-10-28 - What Would Naomi Say?
When Naomi realized that Ruth was determined to go with her, she stopped urging her. (Ruth 1:18 NIV)
I had a wonderful husband and two sons. When a famine hit our homeland Bethlehem, we went to Moab to escape. Without warning my husband died. Ten years later, both sons, Mahlon and Kilion died. Daughters-in-law Orpah and Ruth were all the family I had in Moab.
It was wrong to put my needs ahead of theirs and felt the two women should stay in Moab with their families, while I returned to Bethlehem. Orpah and Ruth were young enough to have a new start at a family. What could I offer them? Orpah stayed put, while Ruth wanted to go wherever I did. Nothing I could say would change Ruths mind. I did not want Ruth to give up her life, but in all sincerity, I was grateful and relieved to have her company.
Word traveled fast regarding my return to Bethlehem. People were waiting to catch a glimpse of Ruth and myself. I was not coming back home the same woman; lifes hardships had changed me, so I did not want to be called the same name. I did not want to be referred to as Naomi, meaning pleasant, anymore. I wanted to be called Mara, meaning bitter. At the time, I did not see the second chance in front of me. I still had a family, just a smaller one. I had made up my mind that life was going to be miserable. That changed when Ruth met Boaz.
In fact, I had a hand in getting Ruth and wealthy landowner Boaz together. Boaz had proven himself to be caring, trusting, and a good provider. Once the two of them were married, I had a predominant role in raising my grandson. I gained respect from my peers as well.
Lord, When I think of all the times You brought me out of a difficult experience, I find You more beautiful. God, You did not abandon me, even though at times, it felt like You did. You knew best and did not forget me. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.