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21st Century Worship Resources for Pentecost 24B

Reading: Naomi's People

(From the Book of Ruth, requires two readers.)

Reader One:
In the days when the Judges ruled, there was a famine in the land, and a certain man of Bethlehem in Judah went to live in the country of Moab, he and his wife and two sons. The name of the man was Elimelech and the name of his wife Naomi, and the names of his two sons were Mahlon and Chilion. But Elimelech, the husband of Naomi, died, and she was left with her two sons. (Ruth 1:1-3)


Reader Two:
He was her man.
They hooked up early in life.
They moved to another land.
They made a home.
They raised the boys.

Then, he was gone.

Reader One:
Elimelech, the husband of Naomi, died, and she was left with her two sons. These took Moabite wives; the name of the one was Orpah; and the name of the other, Ruth. When they had lived there about ten years, both Mahlon and Chilion also died, so that the woman was left without her two sons and her husband. (Ruth 1:3-5)

Reader Two:
They were her heart;
God's gift, her reward.
She bore them.
She raised them.
She taught them.
She loved them.
Then, she lost them.

Reader One:
But Naomi said to her two daughters-in-law, "Go back each of you to your mother's house. May the Lord deal kindly with you, as you have dealt with the dead and with me." But Ruth said, "Do not press me to leave you or to turn back from following you! Where you go, I will go; where you lodge, I will lodge; your people shall be my people, and your God my God. Where you die, I will die -- there will I be buried. (Ruth 1:8-9, 16-17)

Reader Two:
She became her Baby Girl.
Not born to her --
But chosen.
Daughter-in-law, daughter-in-love
She claimed the girl.
The girl claimed her God,
Followed her and followed her God

Reader One:
Boaz took Ruth and she became his wife. When they came together, the Lord made her conceive, and she bore a son. Then the women said to Naomi, "Blessed be the Lord, who has not left you this day without next-of-kin; and may his name be renowned in Israel! He shall be to you a restorer of life and a nourisher of your old age; for your daughter-in-law who loves you, who is more to you than seven sons, has borne him." Then Naomi took the child and laid him in her bosom, and became his nurse. The women of the neighborhood gave him a name, saying, "A son has been born to Naomi." (Ruth 4:13-17)

Reader Two:
He was her heart,
Born of the new daughter
But claimed as her own.
Loved, nursed and nurtured
And he became a joy a hope
God's gift, her reward.

Prayer for our families

(Inspired by Psalm 127:3 and by the story of Naomi in the Book of Ruth)

Lord we thank you for our mamas,
those who nurtured us
laughed with us and cried with us
taught us and corrected.
They love us
whether or not they birthed us.


Lord we thank you for our fathers,
those who raised us up
taught us and corrected us
laughed with us cried with us.
They love us
whether or not they gave us blood.

Lord we thank you for our children
who challenge and inspire us
who obey and disobey
who have brought us joy and heartache
who teach us and raise us up
who laugh with us and cry with us.
They love us
whether or not we birthed them.

Lord we thank you for our families
who have supported us
walked with us
sung for us
listened to us
eaten and drunk with us
prayed for us
prayed with us
strengthen us.
uth They love us
whether or not we share blood.

Thank you Lord for our fathers, our mamas, our children, our families.
In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost.

Amen.


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