Memory passage for the month of November – Luke 1:26 – 38
Listen to this morning’s Scripture song – Psalm 92:1 – 4
Read a previous post from today’s Bible Reading Passage – “A Family Addicted to the Ministry”
Study of Women in the Bible:
Naomi – A Woman God Used in a Time of Need
“So they two went until they came to Bethlehem. And it came to pass, when they were come to Bethlehem, that all the city was moved about them, and they said, Is this Naomi? And she said unto them, Call me not Naomi, call me Mara: for the Almighty hath dealt very bitterly with me. I went out full, and the LORD hath brought me home again empty: why then call ye me Naomi, seeing the LORD hath testified against me, and the Almighty hath afflicted me?” (Ruth 1:19-21)
Naomi and Elimelech had two sons, Mahlon and Chilion. As a family, they served the Lord and traveled the land together. Because of a famine in Israel, they traveled to Moab. While there, Mahlon and Chilion married Moabite women, Opah and Ruth. Mahlon and Chilion died and left Opah and Ruth childless. With Elimelech dead, Naomai found herself in despair and wanted to change her name to Mara, which means bitter. How could three women make it in a world where women didn’t exactly have career options?
Naomi selflessly decided to send the younger women back to their own homeland, where they were more likely to find new husbands. Orpah took Naomi’s suggestion, but Ruth clung to Naomi and refused to leave. Maybe she had seen something in her husband’s faith that she didn’t want to lose. Maybe Ruth believed in God and felt bound to her mother in law. Whatever the reason, God provided a companion for Naomi and a reason to go on.
Naomi looked to Ruth as her own daughter. In kindness and gratitude to her daughter in law, who conducted herself respectfully, Naomi guided Ruth. Naomi was not selfish and wanted Ruth to marry and raise seed up to those that were gone.
“Then Naomi her mother in law said unto her, My daughter, shall I not seek rest for thee, that it may be well with thee? And now is not Boaz of our kindred, with whose maidens thou wast? Behold, he winnoweth barley to night in the threshingfloor. Wash thyself therefore, and anoint thee, and put thy raiment upon thee, and get thee down to the floor: but make not thyself known unto the man, until he shall have done eating and drinking. And it shall be, when he lieth down, that thou shalt mark the place where he shall lie, and thou shalt go in, and uncover his feet, and lay thee down; and he will tell thee what thou shalt do. And she said unto her, All that thou sayest unto me I will do.” (Ruth 3:1-5)
“So Boaz took Ruth, and she was his wife: and when he went in unto her, the LORD gave her conception, and she bare a son. And the women said unto Naomi, Blessed be the LORD, which hath not left thee this day without a kinsman, that his name may be famous in Israel. And he shall be unto thee a restorer of thy life, and a nourisher of thine old age: for thy daughter in law, which loveth thee, which is better to thee than seven sons, hath born him. And Naomi took the child, and laid it in her bosom, and became nurse unto it. And the women her neighbours gave it a name, saying, There is a son born to Naomi; and they called his name Obed: he is the father of Jesse, the father of David.” (Ruth 4:13-17)
Naomi was blessed by God for being faithful to His work. Even in her bitter state, and unable to preserve her own seed, she continued on.
There may come a time in your life, when you are unable to continue with a work God has given you. You may have to move over for the next generation to take your place. This doesn’t mean that God can’t use you, it just means He will give you something else. God can use anyone who has a willing heart. You can encourage others and pray for them. As you teach them in an area, you can help. Just pray and ask God to show you. God will never put you on a shelf if you are willing to serve. Just ask. Are you willing? In the end, God blessed Naomi and if your faithful to Him, He will bless you too!
There is much work to be done. There is plenty for all to do. We must band together and labor for the Lord. Time is getting short. No matter what situation your in, God has a blessing waiting for you. Will you be like Naomi and carry on?
A Good story-> A well-known speaker started off his seminar holding up a $20.00 bill. In the room of 200, he asked, “Who would like this $20 bill?” Hands started going up. He said, “I am going to give this $20 to one of you but first, let me do this.” He proceeded to crumple up the $20 dollar bill. He then asked, “Who still wants it…?” Still the hands were up in the air. “Well,” he replied, “What if I do this?” And he dropped it on the ground and started to grind it into the floor with his shoe. He picked it up, now crumpled and dirty. “Now, who still wants it?” Still the hands went into the air. “My friends, we have all learned a very valuable lesson. No matter what I did to the money, you still wanted it because it did not decrease in value. It was still worth $20. Many times in our lives, we are dropped, crumpled, and ground into the dirt by the decisions we make and the circumstances that come our way. We may feel as though we are worthless. But no matter what has happened or what will happen, you will never lose your value. Dirty or clean, crumpled or finely creased, you are still priceless to God. (Unknown Author)
1 John 5:13
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