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Ruth 1:19-21, Naomi and Ruth

Friday, July 27

Call Me Mara -- Bitter

Narrative Lectionary Daily Devotions written by Kace Leetch from Clergy Stuff.

call me mara

Naomi and Ruth were on their way back to Bethlehem in Judah, where Naomi was from. They returned there together because their husbands had died and they had no other family in Moab. You might think Naomi would be thrilled to be reunited with loved ones. But Naomi was still bitter at God, at life, at everyone for her losses. She was so bitter, in fact, she told all the women who greeted her to call her "Mara," which means "bitter." I wonder what the women thought when they saw their old friend and were greeted with such a bitter attitude. One day, maybe, Naomi would be happy again. But for now, bitterness will continue to eat at her soul.

Narrative Lectionary Text: Ruth 1:19-21

So the two of them went on until they came to Bethlehem. When they came to Bethlehem, the whole town was stirred because of them; and the women said, “Is this Naomi?” She said to them, “Call me no longer Naomi, call me Mara, for the Almighty has dealt bitterly with me. I went away full, but the Lord has brought me back empty; why call me Naomi when the Lord has dealt harshly with me, and the Almighty has brought calamity upon me?”

Earlier Event: July 26
Ruth 1:15-18, Naomi and Ruth
Later Event: July 28
Ruth 1:22, Naomi and Ruth