Then Naomi heard in Moab that the Lord had blessed his people in Judah by giving them good crops again. So Naomi and her daughters-in-law got ready to leave Moab to return to her homeland. 7 With her two daughters-in-law she set out from the place where she had been living, and they took the road that would lead them back to Judah. Ruth 1:6-7
As I write this, the day after Thanksgiving, I'm thinking about how much "home" will be in the thoughts of so many over the next 30 plus days. Thanksgiving and Christmas bring so many memories to all of us during these seasons. Whether we can make the journey or not, so much of our thinking is centered on what has been, or what we hoped had been "our home." There's great emotional and human value in this, but in our thinking, we most often miss the truth of where and in who our home really is and is found. In His Word, the Father say to His people continually, "I Am your home." Have you and I ever truly found that to be so? Have we ever really taken the "road" that leads to Him?
Naomi and her husbands and sons had left Judah during a time of famine, and went to live in Moab, though surely it had been the Father's will that they would never do so. In Moab, her sons married local women, of whom Ruth was one. Over time, Naomi's husband and both of her sons died, leaving she and her daughters-in-law destitute. At that point, Naomi realized that if there was any hope at all, it would be found back home in Judah, the land of His promise. So they took the road that led back home. Though the three began, only Naomi and Ruth continued. If you know the rest of the story, in Judah, living by faith, God eventually restored them not only materially, but Naomi's hope and joy as well. And Ruth became part of the family line that led to the coming of Christ. It all began with taking the road that led back to their home. And in the journey, I believe they found that their home was never really "here" at all. It was in Him.
I think the greatest problem and snare for a believer is to fall into the trap of believing that it is this realm that is our home. It is far too often where we not only invest all our resources, but tragically, most, if not all of our heart. We are so at home here, that we can't believe we could ever be at home anywhere else. The Father gave the Israelites a rich land of promise, but He never intended it to be their real home. That was to be Him. It took 1500 years for them to realize that was so. How long will it take us? How long will our hearts go on being tied to all that goes on in this world, so focused, so obsessed with it that we are blind to the world we were made for. C.S. Lewis said that if we find in our hearts a yearning for something more than this world, than perhaps we should realize we were not made for this world at all.....We were made for His. But we've become so deadened to the reality of His Kingdom world by our total investment in this one, that the yearnings can be, are, faint indeed.
There's one more element to all of this. This world we physically live in is composed of many road choices. All of them wrong but the One, Jesus Christ, that leads to Him. Like Naomi and her family, we easily choose the wrong road, and end up being very far from His heart...our home. The prodigal son that Jesus spoke of ended up there. The people of Israel, through their sin and rebellion ended up there in their captivity. You and I, and on too many occasions, can end up there through the same. Maybe you're there right now. In another land....far from His heart...and from your home. It is never too late to take the road that leads back home. You are never so far from Him that He cannot bring you home to Himself. Whatever the reason is that you have ended up in "Moab," the road that leads back to Him lies before you. Take that road...the road that leads home....and come back to His heart. It will lead you into a life that lasts for more than a season. It is a life filled with His eternity. And it's forever.