And again they wept together, and Orpah kissed her mother-in-law good-bye. But Ruth clung tightly to Naomi.
This is one of my favorite verses in the book of Ruth. It shows how different Orpah and Ruth were. Orpah gave in and kissed Naomi. Ruth clung to her.
In my new eBook, I described it this way:
I feel bad for Orpah. She chose what would be tempting to us all: security, family, familiarity.
This is the end of Orpah’s story. That’s it. She went back home, probably found a husband, and had a good earthly life. But the people of
didn’t worship God and unless
she kept the faith she learned from her years with Naomi, she died a sinner. Moab
Orpah made the ‘easy’ choice.
Ruth made the hard one: choosing the unfamiliar, the far from home, the scary, the unknown, the way that took faith.
One woman had a good life. One had a book named after her. (Which lady would you rather be?)
I underlined clung in that verse because Ruth clung to Naomi. Have you ever had a kid cling to your leg? There is no way under the sun that you can get out of that death grip. You can be a 300 pound wrestler and if a 30 pound tike gets his/her arms and legs wrapped around you, you’re done for-- tapped out, unable to move, kid wins.
Ruth clung to Naomi to let her know that there was no way she would be able to move without her. Wherever Naomi walked, Ruth would walk to (since she was attached and all). Naomi had no choice but to relent.
There are so many things to learn about and be inspired by in the book of Ruth. I wrote a 5 part Bible Study on it for the church's women's group, and I thought I'd publish it online for anyone who wanted to read it. It's free, and you can share it if you want (if you decide it might be a good fit for one of your own Bible Studies).