Devotion: Ruth 1:6-7There are times when we must make decisions to change. After the tragedy of death visited Naomi for her husband and both of her sons she sits at the place of decision. Her choice is to continue to live in Moab as a widow without family support and with two, presumably, young daughter-in-laws who will now depend on her as the matriarch of their now greatly diminished family.
"Then [Naomi] arose with her daughters-in-law to return from the country of Moab, for she had heard in the fields of Moab that the LORD had visited his people and given them food. So she set out from the place where she was with her two daughters-in-law, and they went on the way to return to the land of Judah." -Ruth 1:6-7 ESVThe Lord had caused the famine in the land, though the reason for doing so is not given. Yet, the mercy of the Lord always bends him back to His people. The famine is lifted and there is bread once more in Bethlehem, the 'house of bread.' When Naomi hears this, she makes the decision to head for home. There she will have the family support she will need to continue to live, though she will be living with the pain of loss.
The turn for home will mean a certain defeat for Naomi. She must abandon her new identity as a refugee in Moab and return to what she once was. Repentance is like this for the Christian--the one who trusts in the saving grace of Jesus Christ already. We wander away from our home with God and become a refugee in the foreign land of the world. Eventually, sin and death batter us around long enough that we make a turn for home. The Parable of the Prodigals contains this same idea (and interesting enough, it is a famine that finally convinces the younger son to return to the father). We abandon our home in the grace of Christ and the call to faithful obedience to God's revealed will and wander away and make our home in the land of sin. We tell ourselves that we are happier, better, smarter in this new home. We tell ourselves that we should have done this a long time ago. Yet, as so often happens, the new home in sin turns on us. Things are actually miserable, worse and silly. And then we wonder if we can go home.
Naomi hears their is bread again at home and this tells her, in God's gracious, providential way, that she can make a change and turn for home. The announcement of the Gospel to the wayward Christian is much the same. Come home and find that God has been waiting for you.
News for You:
CPC at the Okanogan County Fair, September 7 – Sept 10
This year CPC will have a booth at the Okanogan County Fair. This is an opportunity for our church family to be a sign of God’s Love, a source of Joy and a beacon of Hope to those who do not yet know Jesus. We will have a brief training for volunteers following worship on September 3.
Adam's Road Ministry Event, September 14, 7 p.m.
The musical group Adam's Road will be at CPC soon. This group will be sharing the gospel in both testimony and music and should not be missed. Again, come out and bring some friends. The event is free (though a love offering will be taken) and everyone attending gets a free CD.
Small Groups to Launch the week of September 17
Our Fall Small Groups will be concentrating on, "Your Church Experiencing God Together," the follow-up to last Fall's "Experiencing God." Sign ups will begin shortly, do not miss out!