Tuesday, 15 April 2008


One of the problems with the Bible is that it tells things like they are. Far from being a pie-in-the-sky hopeful-monsters account of the world (past, present future) we get a warts and all picture of what we dear humans look like.

Today's bombings when another 70 Iraqis died underlines this horrible trend. Nothing new if you look through the savagery of men described in the book of Judges. At the same time, the continued blood letting cries out for some kind of change. Surely this cannot go on?

It was into a time of anarchy that we see the defeated widow Naomi returning to an uncertain future in her long-before-abandoned town of Bethlehem. All she had with her were her bitter memories of the past - the shame of the present - the uncertainty of the future - and her Moabite daughter-in-law: Ruth.

In a time of terrible sexual violence - we see Ruth going out to the fields to try and glean grain. She finds shelter in the field of Boaz - a righteous and godly man. Against all odds - Ruth not only thrives - but is united in marriage to Boaz, and completes the cycle by having a child Obed. This Obed make his mark as the grand-father of King David.

We see so many desperately sad situations. It seems often that God has left the picture. Not so. Ruth and Naomi point to a God ever willing to intervene. Do we believe? Really? Around us we see women abandonned as their husbands die of HIV disease. Every path seems blocked. Just like it was for Ruth and Naomi so long ago. The same God is still around. A God who personally looked out for Ruth - and brought her into a family. We know that there are no easy answers - no push button solutions in sight. But His own presence is there - even in the darkest times - and we are His hands and feet!

You are the often the answer to the prayer you are praying.

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