Reading: Ruth 1: 7-18
Verse 16: “Where you go, I will go… Your people will be my people and your God my God.”
In our passage for today Naomi decides to return home to Judah. She has lost her husband and her two sons. Going back home is the logical step. Just as the journey is beginning she tells her two daughters-in-law, “Go back, each of you…” They are young and may be able to find husbands in their homeland of Moab. That would be better than three widows all going to Judah.
Initially Orpah and Ruth decide to stick with Naomi. Again she urges her daughters-in-law to stay in Moab, to be where their people are. Orpah sees the logic and kisses Naomi goodbye. Ruth is again urged to do as her sister-in-law has done: “Go back with her.” It makes sense for a widow to stay with her family, to remain where people love and will care for her. To go to a foreign land, as a complete stranger, as a widow – it doesn’t make much sense.
We, like Orpah, prefer the comfortable, the safe, the known. We like our routines and we tend to like to preserve the status quo. For most of us change is unsettling and disconcerting. When faced with a hard decision, like Orpah and Ruth were, we usually choose the easier way, the path of least resistance. What led Ruth to decide as she did? Ruth states, “Where you go, I will go… Your people will be my people and your God my God.”
Out of a deep sense of love Ruth commits to journey with Naomi. Even though the future is uncertain, she commits to Naomi. And she commits to God. Being around Naomi for at least ten years, Ruth has observed Naomi’s faith. At this points Ruth commits to Naomi and to God. Ruth trusts in God as they begin their journey. In those difficult moments in our lives, may we do the same.
Prayer: Lord God, you call me to trust in you, to walk in faith. In those moments, when it feels uncomfortable or unsure, speak clearly into my heart so I may know the way to go. Amen.