July 9 - Ruth 1:16-18

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

“Do not urge me to leave you or to return from following you. For where you go I will go, and where you lodge I will lodge. Your people shall be my people, and your God my God. Where you die I will die, and there will I be buried. May the Lord do so to me and more also if anything but death parts me from you. And when Naomi saw that she was determined to go with her, she said no more.”

This is one of those beautiful passages that means different things to different people.  While it’s been used over and over in wedding ceremonies to affirm a couple’s commitment; the original story revolves around a young woman who chose to stay with her mother-in-law, a foreigner, rather than return to her homeland.

Ruth returned to Bethlehem with Naomi and after she became the wife of Boaz, she gave birth to a son named Obed.  Obed was the grandfather of King David and Ruth’s name went down in history as part of the lineage of Jesus Christ.  A woman in a patriarchal world; a foreigner among the Jewish nation and this young woman’s understanding that home is more than a place, but the people with whom she lived, was part of God’s great plan.

Home isn't about where we live, but with whom we live.

I remember the first dog I ever had who was my own.  She wasn't a family pet; little Isolde came into my life as my first dog.  I had the strangest sensation when I held her in my arms that evening.  I recognized that no matter where I lived, she would be with me through the transitions of my life. I’m certain that many parents feel the same way at the birth of their children.  Couples feel this way when the meet their spouses and friends recognize a relationship that will last forever when they meet.

Ruth’s words remind us that while we live in places, our home is much more than that while we are on earth. Our home is found within the people in our lives.