In our study of Ruth we did not really touch on the life of Naomi and the impact Ruth’s commitment had on her.
Through Ruth’s commitment, and God’s blessing Naomi is restored to God. Praise the Lord! Naomi which means pleasantness, changes her name to Mara, which means bitter.
Can you imagine today, if we practiced this and changed our names to make significant statements about ourselves? Think about it, what would you change your name to, and what would it mean, or say about you? My name is Sarah, which means God’s princess. I have always loved that my name meant that. Sometimes when I feel like God might not be happy with me for something, I am reminded that I am God’s princess. I can almost hear someone saying, “awe”.
Anyways, back to Naomi. Her life is an example to us of how God can turn our famines (dry spells) into bountiful harvest (overflowing). Another, praise the Lord!
Her story starts out with her husband and their family setting out with great excitement for the future. They were moving to this new place where they were going to make it big. But what an aweful reality set in, her husband dies. And then a few years later, both her sons die. I personally have never experienced that kind of loss but can only image how aweful that would be. But Naomi is able to carry on. Not very successfully because she decides to head back to Bethlehem to try start over. Have you ever felt so dry and alone that you just wish you could start over? Like everything in your world has crumbled. No hope of restoration. This is where Naomi is at the beginning of Ruth and to top off, she blames God.
Sometimes we can not see Gods provision, love or His own because we can’t see past our own pain and misery. Naomi did not recognize she wasn’t alone with Ruth staying with her and commiting her life and love to her.
Through Ruth and Naomi’s return to Bethlehem, God was going to restore Naomi’s faith and not let her be destroyed. That restoration started with Ruth but ended with Boaz.
Through Boaz and Ruth, Naomi’s faith in her God and life was restored and her name was carried one though them as well.
God did not leave Naomi empty like she thought her life was going to end that way. And God used her to bless the world. Through her life came the lineage of King David then that line continues to the birth of Jesus.
God had a plan that give Naomi “beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness”. (Isa. 61:3)
Don’t give up. God has a plan for you too. And use your life to save someone’s world!