“…she set out from the place where she was with her two daughters-in-law, and they went on the way to return to the land of Judah. 8 But Naomi said to her two daughters-in-law, “Go, return each of you to her mother's house. May the Lord deal kindly with you, as you have dealt with the dead and with me. 9 The Lord grant that you may find rest, each of you in the house of her husband!” Then she kissed them, and they lifted up their voices and wept.” –Ruth 1:7-9 ESV
In the book of Ruth we meet Naomi, whose husband & two sons have died, her sons leaving behind two foreign (Moabite) wives, Orpah & Ruth.
Naomi is a wonderful mother and mother-in-law. When Naomi had heard of God blessing His people with food in Judah, during the famine, she began to travel there with her two daughter-in-laws. However, Naomi shows how unselfish she was, telling them to return to their mother’s house, even though it would mean she’d be utterly alone & no one would continue on her dead husband & son’s name, as was crucial to the Jews.
Orpah decided to leave, but Ruth would not, so they traveled together to Bethlehem.
Once there, Naomi discovered a kinsman of her husband’s there named Boaz. This Boaz could be the very answer to her prayers! He could continue on her husband & son’s name & Ruth would have a husband again.
Like Jochebed, Naomi was clever & resourceful & came up with a plan for Ruth to end up marrying Boaz. Ruth must have really loved, respected & trusted Naomi to do everything she said to the letter, without questioning her.
Naomi’s plan was successful & so her husband’s & son’s name would live on & Ruth would have a husband & bless her with grandchildren.
What we can learn from Naomi is that the Lord blesses the unselfish. God turned around the bad for her to good. Naomi was loyal to her husband & sons beyond the grave. Though they were gone, it still mattered to her that their name would not die with them.
Naomi loved her daughter-in-laws like her own flesh, & again she must have been an amazing lady for them to love and trust her so implicitly.
Naomi’s resourcefulness paid off as well, as her plan brought about happiness for them all.
May we pray for & grow in love & selflessness & may we be resourceful & clever (work with what God gave us!). May we earn respect & love by our godly actions & may our children know that they can trust us without having to question us on anything.