“I went away full, but the LORD has brought me back empty... The Lord has afflicted me; the Almighty has brought misfortune upon me.”Ruth 1:21
When Naomi and her husband fled from Israel to Moab, they expected to avoid the anguish a famine would bring. Instead Naomi experienced more heartache than she could have imagined. Both her sons married foreigners, her husband died, and then her sons died also. In her state of insufferable pain, she told the people around her that the Lord had made her life bitter (v. 12-13). If the story had ended there, it would appear to be true. But God did not leave Naomi in her despair.
As she returned to Bethlehem, the Lord graciously worked to show His care for her. He was the matchmaker for her daughter-in-law, Ruth, who gave birth to King David’s grandfather. This child placed Naomi in an honorable position — in the genealogy of the coming Messiah! Now her friends were exclaiming, “Praise be to the LORD, who this day has not left you” (4:14).
Is your life marked by emptiness and bitterness?? Do you feel, as Naomi did, that God is to blame? The Lord brought Naomi from sorrow to joy. He is more than able to provide for you as well.
When the Lord empties our ways in sorrow, it is to fill us in His way of joy.