When God Seems Out To Get You2
8 Then Naomi said to her two daughters-in-law, “Go back, each of you, to your mother’s home. May the Lord show you kindness, as you have shown kindness to your dead husbands and to me…
Then she kissed them goodbye and they wept aloud 10 and said to her, “We will go back with you to your people.”
11 But Naomi said, “Return home, my daughters. Why would you come with me?...No, my daughters. It is more bitter for me than for you, because the Lord’s hand has turned against me!”
As Naomi is traveling back home to Bethlehem from Moab, blesses her widowed daughters-in-law to follow her no further. Remember, both of these women are from Moab, the land Naomi and her family had fled to ten years earlier in search of bread.
Naomi is going back home to Bethlehem, but for her daughters-in-law this trip would be wrenching them out of their homes and away from their families. Perhaps worth it if their husbands were still alive, but given that all three of them are widowed there’s no reason for Orpah and Ruth to follow her.
Naomi summarizes her station very somberly: the Lord’s hand has turned against me. In the decade since she and her family fled the famine in Bethlehem, Naomi had only suffered loss after loss after loss. God, it seems is out to get her.
Naomi’s life has been truly miserable. But what we’re going to see over these next few chapters is that God hasn’t turned against her.
In our lives, there will always be heartache that we don’t understand. Fortunately, God is strong enough to take our many and sometimes violent complaints that he’s out to get us. But sometimes we place the blame on God or think that God has abandoned us when, in fact, nothing of the sort has happened.
We don’t get an explanation for all the evil in the world or all the evil that befalls us. We will not fully understand all our episodes of heartache or disappointments or hurts. The Scriptures don’t tell us where evil comes from.
What the Scriptures do tell us is that God has taken care of it, once and for all, at great cost to himself. Jesus Christ on the cross is God’s promise to us that he has not and will not abandon us. No, not ever. Even when it feels like it.
Take a minute to thank God for solving the problem of evil in the death and resurrection of Jesus. Pray for a heart that can trust that God is for you, even in the midst of difficulties. Pray for your heart to remain soft and not grow bitter or numb when you’re in pain.