“Then she arose with her daughters in law, that she might return from the country of Moab: for she had heard in the country of Moab how that the LORD had visited his people in giving them bread.” Ruth 1:6

Naomi received news that the famine was over and there was bread in her own country again. How she longed to return, to see her friends and taste the water from the well of Bethlehem. Packing up their belongings the three of them began walking until they reached the point where they could catch a last glimpse of Moab.

There, Naomi urged her daughters to return to Moab to their families. She thanked them for their kindness and care for her and kissed them. She reminded them they were still young and that she was too old to provide other sons for them to wed. Together they wept as they thought back over the grief and sorrow, they had experienced. Beneath Naomi’s words was the feeling that she was to blame for what they had gone through. Verse 13: “for it grieveth me much for your sakes that the hand of the LORD is gone out against me.”

The three of them stood at the crossroads, and Ruth and Orpah were facing a decision that would affect not only their life but the lives of their future families. The path they chose that day had a profound impact on the future.

In Ruth 4:17 we read of the son born to Ruth: “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.”

I found the following information on Orpah and although it is not from Scripture, it sounds like it could be true: ‘The Midrash identified Orpah as the mother of Goliath, and also described her as the mother of other three Philistine giants. Midrash as Harafah, who because of the tears she shed for her mother-in-law at the departure, was rewarded with four giants who perished at the hand of David.”

Naomi gave the girls a choice. She did not try to pressure or force them to go with her. She knew it was going to be a long, difficult journey and wanted them to make their decision. She was going home, whether anyone went with her or not.

Every one of us comes to a place of decision. The message of salvation is given to all, but we must decide if we are to follow the Lord or walk in our way. Nobody else can make that decision for us. The decisions we make will affect our future and others as well.

If you find yourself at the crossroads today, feeling the call of the Lord, and yet not quite ready to give yourself completely to Him, consider it carefully. The road ahead may seem difficult but Jesus has promised strength for the journey. He has a plan and a purpose for you and will lead you step by step. It may mean forsaking family and friends, but it will be worth it all in the end.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, every day we face decisions in our lives, to dedicate completely to you or to go our way. Grant us wisdom and direction to make the right decisions.

Devotion by Anne Johnst




    • Anne Johnston

      God bless you, Fern. I am glad you are enjoying them.