Learning from example

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It hit me today.

A truth I’ve not noticed before.

Wait.

I’m jumping ahead of myself.

While listening to the teaching in Bible class the story of Ruth came up.

The teaching was about the amazing things which all have occurred in a little town called Bethlehem.

(It was excellent!  I’ll try to get it and post it for you.)

One of the people who lived in Bethlehem was named Naomi.

She was a blessed woman.

She was married to a man from the family of Judah and they had two sons.

Yet a huge bump comes into their lives.

There is a famine.

Bethlehem means “house of bread” so a famine seems almost impossible.

Yet if one flips back into history just a bit, the nation of Israel was in the time of the judges.

The nation would flourish as long as there was a godly leader.

The moment it would be lacking this the nation would turn away from the Lord and then famine or enemies would begin to cause the people to call on God again.

Although the Bible never states why Bethlehem experienced a famine we can deduce, there was something lacking in the people’s walk with God.

So Naomi’s husband makes a decision: move to another country.

It might not seem like such a bad deal when the nation of America was founded by people who left their countries in search of a better life and a chance for freedom.

That wasn’t the case here.

God had specifically given every family a piece of land and told them if they would follow Him they would never be without, they wouldn’t be sick, and they wouldn’t even be barren.

Yet here Naomi finds herself being taken out of the Promised Land and into a country where idols were god.

I  doubt she was thrilled at the change.

Yet the Bible remains silent as to her emotions at this juncture.

Moving to Moab doesn’t bring prosperity.

Both their sons get married, but no children are born.

Instead Naomi is left brokenhearted as her husband and then both sons die in Moab.

If the story stopped there it would be very depressing.

However, we get to read on and find out what God would do through this tragedy.

But Naomi lived this.

When she was mourning the loss of her sons and husband she had no idea what God would do.

I’m certain she must have spent plenty of time along the way asking God what He was doing, if He had forgotten her,  if this was all there would be.

When we are in the middle of a trial we can’t possibly understand what God is doing.

Instead we can humble ourselves and seek Him for His plan, His comfort, His will.

I’m sure Naomi could tell us it isn’t easy.

Maybe that’s one of the reasons we have the Bible, to encourage and remind us of God’s unfailing love.

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