Ruth Verse three introduces us to the death of a husband and to the two daughters in law and to the death of the sons all in the same breath. It can mean we only see the tragedy and not the beauty. Ten years on from Elimilech dying , we get introduced to 2 more ladies…Ruth and Orpah.
We feel a tension of joy and sadness that this is how we meet them…we know nothing of the meeting and the romance of Ruth’s first love and how she gets to know her mother in law and build such a strong connection. We know even less of Orpah.
We do know two things about these women.
They were married for some time. They loved Naomi and they were barren.
Moab was meant to be the place of prosperity but proved to be a place of famine and barrenness and emptiness…so often where I think I will find what I want..I am left barren and empty because it was never God’s intention for me to find favour outside of his provision.
Once again we have a theme of emptiness. Empty tummies, empty wombs, empty arms. barrenness, famine and loss. This is meant to be a love story and the author has helped us feel the tension before we get to the good stuff. The author helps us feel what we should..emptiness and barrenness is never meant to be the en DFO the story but hard times often precede the miracle.
Full…empty; plenty… Nothing…; have … Have not
Naomi has no reason to stay in Moab..she is empty…empty arms..no husband, empty soul…
Naomi can teach me what to do when I feel empty, I have nothing….go back to the house of bread….
this is a story of what to do in the midst of emptiness and grief…..go back to the house of bread.