And yes, I smiled when I sent my brother back to start.
Growing up, I think “Sorry” was one of my favorite board games. After all, what other game allowed me to be both polite and competitively mean at the same time?
In seriousness, though, doesn’t life sometimes play a “Sorry” card on us? We get sent back to home base, square one, and have to start over again. It’s uncomfortable at best and terrifying at worst.
Somewhere between those two emotions is how I imagine Ruth must have felt as she buried the husband of her youth. Ten years of marriage ended with a freshly dug grave (Ruth 1:4). There would be no growing old together. Now, she was a widow with an uncertain future ahead of her.
Her mother-in-law told her to return to her family. Family? But wasn’t Naomi family? Ruth had left behind her childhood home when she married. Going back wouldn’t be the same.
Her mother-in-law said to find a new husband back in Moab. Of course, that was the expectation of the day for young widows.
Although Ruth was a Moabitess by blood, she wasn’t by heart. She had accepted the God of her new family. And so, she determined to stay with her mother-in-law and go with her to a land completely foreign to her.
For wherever you go, I will go;
And wherever you lodge, I will lodge;
Your people shall be my people,
And your God, my God. (Ruth 1:15b NKJV)
Ruth was starting over.
Plot Twists in God’s Plan
There’s a meme from Pinterest that makes light of the upsets in our lives.
As a writer, I can laugh and appreciate this word play. As a Christian, though, I know a larger hand is orchestrating the events of my life. There are no plot twists in God’s book. Nothing takes Him by surprise.
Next week, we’re going to look at Ruth’s story some more and see three ways to approach circumstances that send us “back to start.”
For today, if you’re facing life events you wish you could discard but can’t, I encourage you to bathe your week in the prayer of Psalm 31:3.
For You are my rock and my fortress;
Therefore, for Your name’s sake,
Lead me and guide me. (NKJV)
Learn from the Psalmist. Instead of focusing on the situation, focus on the Solid Rock that never moves. Nothing can shake or startle our Maker.