I came across this picture the other day. It brought back a flood of memories. Even though I’m not in the picture, I was there. I was the one taking it….And I remember some of the emotions I was feeling at that time. It might have looked picture perfect, and for my mom and my kids, it probably was. But for me, it wasn’t. I was actually going through a rough season.
But seeing this picture made me grateful. It reminded me that even during difficult seasons, God gives us sweet moments.
The story of Ruth is one of those sweet moments. The book of Ruth begins with, “In the days when judges ruled in Israel….”
Ruth’s beautiful story actually parallels the disturbing book of Judges.
In case you are unfamiliar with the book of Judges, allow me to give you a brief recap. (Get ready)
The days of Judges were the days when “people did what was right in their own eyes.” Needless to say, that didn’t go so well. For with each judge, we experience a roller coaster ride of sin.
Israel sins, Israel is enslaved, Israel cries out to the Lord, God raises a judge, Israel is delivered, Israel serves the Lord.
Add to this cycle disturbing stories which I can almost guarantee you didn’t learn in Sunday School. Judges 19:29 was definitely not part of my memory verse collection. It reads, “When he reached home, he took a knife and cut up his concubine, limb by limb, into twelve parts and sent them to all the areas of Israel.”
So that’s the not so lovely backdrop of the story of Ruth.
Very disturbing times!
But even so, God is able to still move in the hearts of the faithful. Ruth is a refreshing love story on so many levels. I encourage you to take some time and read this simple four chapter book of the Bible. The selfless love between Ruth and her mother in law, after the death of both of their husbands. The kindness, love and loyalty of Boaz towards Ruth. And the underlying love and divine providence of God to orchestrate the little things in the lives of the faithful.
God’s light shines through even in the darkest of days.
Whatever you are going through..and I mean whatever, I pray God open your eyes to see Ruth-like moments in all seasons of your life.
Psalm 112:4 Light shines in the darkness for the godly.