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. 9 May the Lord grant that each of you will find rest in the home of another husband.”
As the three girls - Naomi and her daughters-in-law - are preparing to leave, Naomi has second thoughts. Though she probably is scared to go alone and will miss the only family she has left, she urges her daughters-in-law to stay. This is their home and she knows all too well how hard it is to be away from home with no family and no husband.
How unselfish of Naomi to suggest they go back to their families. She prays the Lord show them kindness and even mentions how kind they have been to her and her sons. She wants them to get remarried and move on. She doesn’t want their story to end like she fears hers will…alone in a foreign land.
She kisses them goodbye and they weep aloud. Put yourself in their story. These are real people dealing with real loss and an uncertain future. What a heartbreaking goodbye. It must feel like being in a hole that you see no way out of. Utter devastation.
This passage ends with the girls saying that instead of staying they will go back with Naomi and her people. After all these years as a family, they must deeply love and care for one another. Each is willing to sacrifice what would make them most comfortable for the one they love.
Where in your life have you been willing to trade your comfort for the comfort of someone else?
Have you ever had to say a tearful goodbye to someone you love?
Have you ever been faced with going somewhere all alone, uncertain what will be on the other side?