Is This Naomi?

Naomi went out full but returned empty. She had bitterly experienced the other side of life. It all happened in just a decade, and those who have known her before couldn’t recognize her again. Her ten years’ afflictions had negatively ‘transformed’ her outlook that people were surprise at her appearance.

Those ten years lived in the city of Moab brought tears to Naomi’s noble cheeks, sorrows to her lively spirit {Heart} and weariness to her able body. Just in ten years, Naomi lost her beloved spouse and their two sons to death. Just in ten years, the once prosperous Naomi moved from plenty to become a pauper. Just in ten years, she lost her joys, her fullness, her glories. It was  such a noticeable tragedy that her townmates felt sorry for her.

Had Mara caught up with Naomi and became her new name? She said so by her own mouth: “And she said unto them, call me no Naomi, call me Mara: for the Almighty has dealt bitterly with me”. So it is a reality of life that when a man falls from utopia  to valley, all things about him change to the negative – his outlook, name, emotion and personality, among others. Life turned against Naomi, in its hostility and dragged her down the dark valley where she came to know the pains, the bitterness, and the oppression of the downtrodden.

Then with her decade of bitter sorrowing and aging came the unfriendly wrinkles on her brow and choking weariness on her body. She seemed to have backslidden from grace to grass as she laid bitter complaint and accusation against the LORD GOD for all her troubles.  Yes, she must have fallen so low to boldly accused God for her horrible predicament, even right in the public.

But could it be that her backslidden heart had made her blind to the truth? The truth that in spite all of her troubles the Lord was still with her; that in spite her decade of sorrowing the Lord had been good to her; the truth that even in her emptiness and bitterness, the Lord has not left her; and that the good God brought her back home, with Ruth by her side, at the beginning of barley harvest to open a new and glorious chapter in her life.

My dear reader, are you also a Naomi? Has life also cast at you the burning stones it thrown at Naomi? Come on, God is still with you to give you the new beginning. It’s the beginning of barley harvest in your life. Cheer up! Better days are here for you. Cheer up and sing aloud His praise.

John B. Joseph