In first chapter of Ruth there are several insights into this beautiful story of Ruth and Naomi. Consider these.....
~ There was a famine in the land of Judah. Due to famine, Naomi and her husband Elimelech are forced to leave their home and go to another country to find food. Can you imagine going to the grocery store and finding it empty? And then learning that all the grocery stores were empty?
~ A man (Elimelech) from Bethlehem in Judah went to live as a resident foreigner. How desperate would we have to be to go to another country to find food?
~ Elimelech's two sons were Mahlon and Kilion. The name Mahlon means unhealthy and the name Kilion means puny or weakly.
~ Sometime later Naomi's husband Elimelech died.
~ Naomi's sons married Moabite women. Her sons married outside their faith.
~ They continued to live in Judah for about ten more years.
~ Nami's two sons, Mahlon and Kilion, also died. Can you even imagine losing your spouse and your children? And, then, being plunged into poverty?
At the time that the book of Ruth begins, Naomi's life is at a point of desperation. I would imagine Naomi felt as if her life had ended. She had no reason to believe there was so much good ahead for her. Or, that she had such a friend in her daughter-in-law, Ruth.
This is truly a story of hope. A story of friendship. A story showing that God NEVER abandons us. A story that shows how circumstances that appear to be the end of the story are really just the beginnings.