The women said to Naomi, "Praise the LORD! He has given you a grandson today to take care of you. May the boy become famous in Israel! Your daughter-in-law loves you, and has done more for you than seven sons. And now she has given you a grandson, who will bring new life to you and give you security in your old age." Naomi took the child, held him close, and took care of him. The women of the neighborhood named the boy Obed. They told everyone, "A son has been born to Naomi!" Obed became the father of Jesse, who was the father of David. Ruth 4:14-17; (GNB)
Naomiís story at the beginning was a very pathetic one: within the space of ten years during which she, her husband Elimelech and their two grown up sons, Mahlon and Chilion lived in the country of Moab in search of greener pasture, the story of her life became extremely bitter. Her entire family - husband and two sons died in quick succession under mysterious circumstances. She came to the land of Moab full, but she was completely empty at the time she eventually returned to her native land of Bethlehem after a decade of bitter experience. Naomiís experience in Moab was so sour that she became a shadow of her old self. Friends and family members who came to welcome her back were all shocked at her hopeless and appalling state; her anguish was so much that she concluded her life would never be sweet anymore till the day of her death.
In this very state of hopelessness that Naomi found herself, it is interesting to know that God still had a plan to make her life beautiful again. When the Almighty God is at work, there are no dead ends at all! Under Godís divine arrangement and supervision, Ruth, the loyal daughter-in law of Naomi, found a new love in Boaz, and from this new relationship, a glorious son emerged. God of restoration did not only give Ruth a wonderful home after the sudden death of her late husband, but also preserved the name of Naomi and her late husband - Elimelechís linage in Judah. The birth of Obed by Ruth in fact provided double answers, total restoration of hope! At a time when Naomi had completely written herself off and lost all hope of ever having any child to survive her, the Almighty God suddenly changed her story and gave her a new song!
It is true that the sun of Naomi had set in the midst of her days, but that was not the whole story! Itís equally undeniable that her life became so bitter that it appeared she would never know joy again, but that also was just half of her lifeís story. At a time when everyone had concluded that Naomiís sun had set, never to rise again, God of heaven brought back sunshine to her life! The day Obed was born indeed marked a brand new beginning for Naomi; the birth of Obed caused instant resurrection of her hope and joy. Every cell and organ within her came alive and leaped for great joy as she embraced and cuddled her newly born grandson! The joy of Naomi knew no bounds as friends, neighbours and all family members who had mourned with her before gathered to celebrate the birth of her grandson who would later become the grandfather of David, and of course, the Messiahís grandfather! What a glorious way to end a story that first began as a tragedy!
Itís obvious the Spirit of God was speaking through the women which came around to rejoice with Naomi at the birth of Obed. Their words were clearly beyond ordinary, a sort of prophetic utterances which vividly described the greatness and glory which awaited the baby. Everything Naomi was looking for, for the remaining part of her life was all provided in Obed: he was a restorer of hope, a nourisher of her old age, and beyond all, a star in Israel, through whom the word of prophecy that had gone forth generations before concerning Judah would be fulfilled. Obed was one grandson that was worth more than ten sons! The restoration that Naomi experienced was a total one which made her to forget the pains and agonies of the past years. God really compensated her for all the wasted years so much that she could hardly remember she ever experienced bitterness and sorrow! Thatís what the God of restoration can do!
Dearly beloved, is the story of your life similar to that of Naomi? Has the sun of your life set in the midday, that you had equally concluded life would never be exciting anymore? Here is good news for you. There is a God who can bring sunshine into the darkness of your life and brighten your days again! God is still in the business of restoring hope where thereís no hope; He will cause your sun to shine again! Even if it is your fault that you have had very bitter experiences in life, still, God is able to bring you back on your feet and offer you another chance to experience sunshine again. Go and announce to everyone who has seen you fall to wait for your rising; go declare to everyone who has watched you weep to wait for your celebrations; go proclaim to everyone who has witnessed your shame to wait for your glory, because your sun will shine again! Never contemplate suicide or conclude that itís over with your life, thereís hope for you as long as you are alive. Cheer up, the sun will shine again!
(c) October 2011
Thank you for your favorable critique of my "Break the Curse" article to do with the principle of Tithing. It does seem to be a topic that Christians are divided on. I simply believe it keeps my focus on the Father as my provider. You critique also led me to your articles of encouragment and wisdom. This article is right on time. "And the Sun will arise with healing in his wings..." "Rejoice not oh mine enemy when I fall, I shall arise." God Bless You Ezekiel.