The book of Ruth tells the story of a mother and daughter-in-law whose husbands have died. Loss and uncertainty color the beginning of the book. The lives of Ruth and Naomi have been shattered. Naomi is so distraught that she tells the ladies of the town:
“Do not call me Naomi; call me Mara, for the Almighty has dealt very bitterly with me.” (Ruth 1:20b)
The name “Naomi” means “pleasant,” but that was the last thing her life was to her at that moment. As the rest of the story unfolds, God’s blessings are seen and appreciated. Ruth finds a lawful and noble husband in Boaz who cares both for her and Naomi, and by the end of the book, the women of the city bless the Lord for all His blessings on Naomi (Ruth 4:14–15).
How does your life feel today? Are you in a place of pleasantry, where every turn seems to bring greater and greater blessings? Are you amid bitterness, where every breath is labored, and your suffering appears to have no end? Maybe you find yourself in a place between the two extremes. Whatever you feel today, remember the lesson Naomi and Ruth teach us: Loyalty to the Lord assures blessing in the end. Even if the rest of your life is filled with troubles, loyalty to the Lord assures an eternity with Him, an eternity which causes all your current troubles to pale and fall away against its glory. Walk with the Lord all your days and find the true blessing in eternity with Him and all the saved.
“For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us.” (Romans 8:18)