Yesterday, the message in church was about Ruth and Naomi (from Ruth Chapter 1). Naomi was returning home after her husband died, and then her two sons. She told her two daughters-in-law (Orpah and Ruth) to return to their families. Orpah decided to do that, but Ruth said, "Wherever you go I will go, and where you stay, I will stay. Your people will be my people, and your God, my God."
Naomi returned home (with Ruth) and blamed God for all of the bad things that had happened in her life. She said she was left with nothing (even though Ruth was with her.) She only saw the bad and gave God no credit for the good. Her focus was on SELF.
Ruth had lost her husband, yet she wanted to stay with Naomi and help her. She told Naomi that she would be with her until death separated them. Ruth is in grief, but still has empathy and compassion for Naomi. Her focus was on OTHERS.
Who are you more like? Do you thank God in the bad times, for the blessings he has brought? Or do you only blame God for the bad, and give no credit for the good?
I think it would be very hard to find the good in a situation where a close loved one passed away, especially if his or her life seemed short. But, this message does make me think about all of the blessings that I have been given. When we complain about taxes, chapped lips, hangnails, and being sick of Turkey after Thanksgiving, our complaints are selfish. There are many out there that are so much less fortunate.
Lord, help us to thank you even through the bad times. Help us to remember each and every blessing you have given us. Help us to focus on OTHERS rather than on OURSELVES.
Have a blessed week!