Has your life ever taken an unexpected turn, either for good or for bad? Have you had your life mapped out, convinced you knew what was ahead, only to have God lead you in an unexpected direction? Have you ever felt like your life was a roller coaster full of ups and downs and twists and turns?

In today’s episode of All God’s Women we look at Naomi, a woman who lived a roller coaster life. At one point she even thought God had abandoned her and left her with nothing to look forward to, But God, in His infinite mercy, brought her a surprise plot twist at the end that was better than anything she could have expected.

We all have unexpected twists and turns in our life, which can cause us to grow bitter like Naomi, but not knowing what’s happening next can be a good thing. When we get discouraged thinking our best days are behind us, God can throw us an unexpected treat. 

When famine hit the promised land, Elimelech picked up and moved his family to a pagan country. He tried to escape misery, but it didn’t work out the way he expected. The family may have escaped famine, but they couldn’t escape death. 

Like Elimelech we may do everything in our power to avoid difficult times. But the Bible doesn’t promise us a problem-free life. We’re going to have trials. We need to face them by turning to God, not fleeing in fear. 

In these days and times, it’s easy to get discouraged, to feel at times that God has forsaken us. We may feel the need to run and hide and hope that we can escape trials. But God doesn’t work that way. He takes us through difficult times so that He can grow us and show us His true love and mercy. 

We can trust Him to take care of us even when we’re angry and bitter. He still loves us. And just as He took care of Naomi throughout her life, He’ll take care of us as well.

The Bible doesn’t tell us God won’t give us more than we can handle. No, He will give us far more than we can handle. But He’ll be there, right by our side, showing us that we don’t have to handle it alone. He’s there to see us through on the other side and show us amazing mercies and miracles along the way. 

Naomi - A Woman Granted a Late Life Surprise

Bible Study

Scripture Background

Ruth 1-4

Bible Study Review

  1. Why was Naomi living in Moab?
  2. What were the names of her two daughters-in-law?
  3. What was the reaction of the townspeople when Naomi returned to Bethlehem?
  4. What name did Naomi give herself when she returned to Bethlehem?

Thoughts to Ponder

  1. The Bible is filled with Israelites who fled the Promised Land during times of famine. In many cases, they got caught up in the pagan world. Do you think this was the case with Naomi?
  2. Why do you think Ruth chose to go with Naomi to Bethlehem?
  3. Why do you think the book of the Bible is named after Ruth, but it begins and ends with Naomi?

Personal Reflection

  1. If those around you based their opinion of God on what they knew from you, would they be willing to follow Him?
  2. What kind of relationship do you have with your children and their spouses? Are you setting an example for them to follow?
  3. Think about a time when you felt like you had nothing to look forward to and God gave you an unexpected blessing.

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About the Author Sharon Wilharm

Christian women’s speaker, Sharon Wilharm, is a ministry leader, podcast host, and female filmmaker whose stories have impacted audiences around the globe. An accomplished storyteller, Sharon draws the audience in with humor, engages them with stories, then ties everything together to bring to light spiritual truths. Her heart’s desire is to encourage women in their walk with the Lord, showing them how to find God’s will for their life through prayer and scripture. “God is the Master Storyteller,” says Sharon. “I love helping women see how God is always at work behind the scenes laying the foundation for the glorious future He has in store for us.” Sharon is a firm believer in the power of prayer and has many stories to share of God working in miraculous ways in her own life as well as those around her. She’s passionate about teaching women how to pray and loves engaging with women in personal prayer. Wherever she goes, she finds herself surrounded by women in need of prayer, and she considers it an honor to pray with women whether they’re friends, family, or complete strangers. Sharon has enjoyed a lifelong fascination with women of the Bible and loves applying the biblical stories to modern situations. She teaches a Women Through the Bible study at her church, applying the S.O.A.P. method of scripture study. She especially enjoys delving into lesser known women and discovering encouraging truths for women of today. She recently launched a new podcast where she works her way through the Bible sharing the stories of All God’s Women.

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