All across the world, people’s lives are being heavily impacted due to the Covid virus wreaking havoc, causing illness, loss of jobs, and death. Likely you know many, possibly even yourself, that have been affected by this in one form or another. You’ve lost your income, you were sick, or perhaps even lost a loved one. The far-reaching, long-term consequences of this virus is beyond what any of us could imagine. Covid has caused calamity worldwide, but certainly within each of our lives to varying degrees.
When we are faced with such extreme situations, especially when it involves a major loss, it can deceive us into believing that either God has chosen to punish us or is simply ignoring us. The question of “Why, God?” is quickly asked from a place of grief. We think that nothing good can come from it, therefore there is no hope. Our heart begins to sink, and deeper into the abyss of sadness and hopelessness we continue. When a parent or a child dies, the loss is almost more than one can take, and there appears to be no good reason for it.
A woman named Naomi felt this same intensity overwhelming hopelessness. She, her husband and their 2 sons had to move due to a famine in their area. Within 10 years in a foreign land, her husband and both of her sons died. For what reason?? No doubt Naomi sank into a low place with such devastation and loss in her life. Her two sons had married, but didn’t have children yet, so she didn’t even have grandchildren to bring her comfort! Reeling from the calamity of their deaths, she told her daughters-in-law to go back to their home so she could return to her homeland alone and in shame. Naomi didn’t see any reason for them to go with her since there was no hope of any husband for either of them in their future with her.
For Naomi, when she returned to Bethlehem, she said,
“Do not call me Naomi; call me Mara, for the Almighty has dealt very bitterly with me. I went away full, and the Lord has brought me back empty. Why call me Naomi, when the Lord has testified against me and the Almighty has brought calamity upon me?”
One of those young women did make the choice to stay with Naomi and accept her new life, no matter what that would be, and the Lord God as her own god. Ruth could have gone back to her former life, worshipping her gods and marry again, but unknown to either of these two women, their choices were known to God, and He had a plan to use this situation for His glory, for their good, and for our hope.
You see, because of the famine, Naomi moved to Moab and her son Mahlon married Ruth. Since all 3 men died, Naomi and Ruth moved back to Bethlehem in Judah. This is where Ruth met Boaz, a kinsmen of Naomi’s husband, and they got married. Here comes the most exciting part: their baby, Obed, was the grandfather of King David! King David, who was from Bethlehem, was an ancestor of Jesus! If none of this had happened to Naomi, then Jesus’ family tree would not be the same, and Scripture would not be fulfilled!
After the birth of Obed, the women in Bethlehem said to Naomi,
“Blessed be the Lord, who has not left you this day without a redeemer, and may his name be renowned in Israel! He shall be to you a restorer of life and a nourisher of your old age, for your daughter-in-law who loves you, who is more to you than seven sons, has given birth to him.”
Right now, as you are in the middle of a crisis in your life, as there doesn’t appear to be any hope or light at the end of this long dark tunnel, know that in spite of what it looks like, your Lord has a plan. God can use your circumstances for good! You may not see those fruits right now, or maybe not even in your lifetime, but as long as you trust in the Lord having a purpose for your life and those trials that accompany it, then good will be the end result. There is hope when God is in the middle of it. If you are a believer in Jesus, then yes, you have this confident hope that all things can work together for good!
“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.”
Thank you Lord God for giving us your WORD where we can glean your truths from.
Food for thought: The word ‘calamity’ is first mentioned in Deuteronomy 32:35. The Lord had Moses write it as a song to Israel as a warning of what would come since his children had no faith.
Fun facts: “I don’t know what the future holds, but I know that God holds tomorrow, so it is exciting. Even when I have hard things happen, He loves me so big, so much. I come through it and I grow from it, because He has got me.”
– Barbara Mandrell
Photo by: Kari Wiseman – Nail in the fire