December 8, 2016

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Thursday,  December 8, 2016
Psalm 146:5-10; Ruth 1:6-18; 2 Peter 3:1-10
By Deb Shold

“Hope Springs Eternal”

The first time I read my assigned texts, three words jumped out at me: hope, prediction and promise. As I pondered what they had in common, it seems they all have something to do with hope. However, “prediction” is uncertain hope…..maybe it will happen, maybe it won’t, but “promise” is for sure. We can count on a promise, especially when we know the promise-maker is a promise-keeper.

The Psalm passage speaks of the God of Jacob as our hope. He is also our provider, protector, defender and healer. Though he is God, he somehow doesn’t seem personal.

In the story of Naomi and Ruth, Naomi has been widowed and also lost both of her sons. In her day, a woman had no value of her own, only through her offspring. Now that she had no husband to give her more sons and no sons to give her grandsons, she had no hope. Ruth, her foreign-born daughter-in-law, chose to accompany her back to her homeland, Judah. In some ways, it was as if Ruth was the ‘wind beneath Naomi’s clipped wings’ and chose to stay ‘grounded’ with her, sharing her own hope with Naomi so they both may benefit.

Peter writes “The Lord is not slow to fulfill His promise….but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance. But the day of the Lord will come…”

So, let’s tie this all together. God is our Hope. Ruth carried Naomi’s hope for her, both figuratively and literally when she bore a son with her kinsman-redeemer husband, Boaz, who was part of the lineage of Jesus Christ. Jesus is the fulfilled promise. He is God with us. Hope is a person….his name is Jesus Christ.