Today’s Text and Thought of Encouragement:
“And may he be to you (Naomi) a nourisher.”
Ruth 4: 15
“Nourish” – To provide what is necessary, be it food and nutrients, for life and growth. To promote creativity and hope. To keep alive and maintained.
Is there someone in my life who “nourishes” me?
How has my heavenly Father nourished my life by promoting hope within me?
“The excitement of learning separates youth from old age. As long as you’re learning you’re not old.”
Rosalyn S. Yalow
“Whoever will humble (herself) therefore and become like this little child, (trusting, lowly, loving, forgiving), is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.”
Matthew 18: 4
As the women of Bethlehem gathered around their dear friend Naomi, we are told they “Blessed God” who, after the death and drought of life in Moab, brought showers of blessings to the home of Naomi in Bethlehem.
Of all the joyous events that flooded Naomi’s life, we find the birth of her grandson Obed, the child of Ruth and Boaz, one of the greatest events.
As noted yesterday, this precious child brought “new life” to Naomi’s world. But her friends also asked God to let this child bring “nourishment” into Naomi’s life.
Perhaps it was just my lack of information, however, I thought the word “nourishment” had to do with food. I was partially correct. It does have to do with getting the proper nutrients which food can provide. However, there’s a broader and deeper meaning to the word “nourishment” than just relating to meat and potatoes.
Our hearts, souls, and bodies are nourished by much more than just the food we eat each day. I like to think of certain enriching activities in my life as “nourishers,” too. I love to read – and for me, reading provides mental nourishment. I read about new things or I find I’ll study about old ideas and learn to look at them in new ways, and for me, this is nourishing. The same can be said for certain creative activities. During the last few months, I began to make mosaic pictures and I even covered outdoor flower pots with a wide-variety of mosaic tiles. While some of my friends thought this activity tedious and uninteresting, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed it. In fact, it relaxes me. It takes my mind to another place where I may focus on a beautiful design and how I’m going to apply each tile to the object I’m trying to make.
Nourishment also comes to me from the wonderful friends God has brought into my life. This past Saturday night, I got together with three other women for a late evening dinner. We hadn’t seen each other for quite a while and I have to tell you, I wasn’t nourished half as much by the food I ate as by the joy of companionship. My heart was refreshed.
It appears to me Naomi had some very wonderful friends who understood that nourishment to our hearts and souls is just as necessary and effective in providing us with nutrients for growth as food is to the body.
Maybe this is why Jesus, when He ministered here on earth, was so taken with the vitality that radiated from children and He loved to have them around. I don’t believe the young ones playfulness was all that attracted Jesus, though. I think He watched as children were so willing to learn; so trusting in others; and so open and kind. These qualities made them “nourishing” to be around. I also believe it’s why Jesus encourages you and me to become more like children. Humble in the way we are open to learning new lessons. Trusting in God’s mercy toward us. And loving, even to those who don’t treat us the same in return.
Not only did Naomi receive the shower of new life in her home, but along with this new life, came the nourishing qualities of trust, humility and love. What a flood of grace to fill all the dry streams in Naomi’s life. And we are promised the same nourishment in our lives, as well! No wonder it was “Celebration-Time” for Naomi, and for you and me, as well.
“Nourish your own self on the truths of the faith and of the good instruction which you have closely followed.”
Paul to Timothy
In 1 Timothy 4: 6
“Learning to Live
“To bear new life or learn to live is an exacting joy;
The whole self must waken; you cannot predict the way
It will happen, or master the responses beforehand.
For any birth makes an inconvenient demand;
Like all holy things
It is frequently a nuisance, and its needs never end;
Strange freedom it brings; we should welcome release
From its long merciless rehearsal of peace.
So Christ comes
At the iron senseless time, comes
To force the glory into frozen veins:
His warmth wakes
Green life glazed in the pool, wakes
All calm and crystal trance with living pains.”
Dorothy Valcárcel, Author
When A Woman Meets Jesus
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