I was struggling again last night. Three reports down, I needed to shake it off. 2300 hours is too late to have a cup of coffee so I decided to drank a Coke Zero…(much influence from George’s daily intake). I stopped by a Speedway in the area where I had an extra patrol. When I located the group. I opened the cooler door to find, “Alum, Team, Coach,” etc. and Naomi. I’m not personally connected to a “Naomi.” It would be silly to get Naomi. Get Naomi. Team would be more suitable since there was a ballgame today and as officers we need to work together as a team. Get Naomi. So, I did.
I cruised back to the area of extra patrol, got dispatched to a call that required an over the phone report. And I continued to work. As I lifted “Naomi” to try and combat the tired, weary feeling.
Biblically in the past readings, I mostly focused on Ruth. But I knew Ruth and Naomi went together like peanut butter and jelly. So I ran a search on Naomi and selected the writing and had Siri read it to me on the way back to ending.
Naomi was a pleasant woman. Very sweet. This changed over ten years.
I was reminded of how they moved to an idolatrous place to escape famine despite God's promise to them that He would never let them be without. How they went to a city, her sons marrying forbidden women, her husband dying, her two sons dying all in the span of ten years.
Naomi returned to her old community bitter, sour and desolate. Some may say she suffered because of their disobedience and not trusting in God’s promise. She blamed God for what she suffered. You have to consider; would her struggles have happened had she been obedient? Noami returned to her land whether to be obedient or not she returned and doing so brought her back to the mindset of relying on God. Her dear daughter-in-law stuck with her and eventually birthed Obed….and his line brought forth the Messiah himself.
I was reminded how no matter the change we make in plans, God controls the outcome. He can bring good out of our bad. He can use sorrow and troubles to bring us closer to him. I was reminded how as humans we tend to look at our circumstances as if we are victims and see no connection to the role we played to bring it into our lives. And I was reminded of a Bible study I did years ago, when I read the Bible more, when I thirsted for it’s truths…The study guide by Fran Sciacca is titled To Yield With All Your Soul. And chapter eight is: Naomi and Ruth—the unexpected sorrow of life. I returned to it this morning…and found the author had written “We are not random people revolving aimlessly in a circumstantial world. We are children of a heavenly Father who is able to use the effects of sin to serve His eternal purpose. And His desire is always to glorify Himself by conforming us to Christ. To misunderstand this vital truth will inevitably lead us onto the low road of resentment rather than the high road of sanctification.”
The author asks "To encourage a struggling believer I would..." hum...share a Coke zero...or at least the story of it.
And so Naomi…dear visit from the past…thanks for keeping me awake and alert…thanks for quenching my thirst…thanks for your life story.