Hope for the Hard Journey

Author: Chara Donahue


There is this running theme found in every work of creation – literature, poetry, and movies: the life you see before you is all there is.  Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “Life is a journey, not a destination.” While a beautiful thought with a thread of truth worth contemplating, there IS a destination. For those who see their need for Jesus – to heal their hurts, to wash their stains, and assuage the pain they have inflicted on others – this destination is heaven. A place of beauty, perfection, and eternal life beyond anything we can imagine, and filled with the glory of God.

Yes, we can learn as we live our individual journeys. We should always be praying that we remain teachable, see the beauty breaking forth from each day, and have eyes to see what God is revealing here and now. Yes, we should enjoy the journey on the way to where we are going. But for the Christian, the journey is always pointing toward and longing for the destination: home.

I love the hope found in the story of Ruth. It’s the story of  a woman that many can relate to, because her journey was hard. A dead husband, no children, a bitter mother-in-law, and  she is moving to a culture foreign to all she has known. Yet, she faithfully places her life into the hands of the God of the Israelites, and continues to walk even when her knees are buckling from the weight of the world. It is on this labored trek of endurance that she meets her redeemer (Boaz) a foreshadow of our own (Jesus <3).  This poem was inspired by my interaction with God as I processed Ruth’s story.

Ruth: I know

You invite me on a journey immersed in chesed*.

A woman burdened by bitterness, longing, and dread.

You called me away from the place I thought home

And you beckoned me from the dessert I roamed.

Seems too good to be true, but I draw in a breath.

I weep forward, my clothes of mourning find death.

Here you cleanse me, and draw me to your table of grace.

I am willing to be willing, please show me your face.

My redeemer, true comfort, I find under your wing.

Where you go I go, and your redemption you bring.

A great love story you offer, and here I will stay.

The birth of hope makes up my eternal bouquet.

A veil of legacy flows as you transform my life

That has been rescued from hell, rescued from strife.

I began almost drowning in the tears that I cried

But the conclusion is perfect when you’re Jesus’ bride.

YES, this journey is hard and it is good… but the destination… oh ladies, the destination is better.

IT IS BETTER, no question.

Heaven awaits, but let us live our lives so that when we get there we hear our Jesus say, “Well done, good and faithful servant.” Let’s live well women, let’s live for our Jesus. Let’s risk loving, risk stepping out in faith, risk having the courage to hope, and may the source of our hope be anchored.

*Chesed : To show kindness or chesed is to act in a loyal, loving way to a person. This is true of kindness in human relationships and of the kindness God shows us.

For further study on the book of Ruth check out Kelly Minter’s study: http://www.lifeway.com/Product/RUTH-LOSS-LOVE-LEGACY-MEMBER-BOOK-P005189427


For a little dreaming about what her story may have looked like in a different time and place, check out Here Burns My Candle by Liz Curtis Higgs.


Verses used to inspire this poem: Ruth 1:8, Ruth 1:16, Ruth 1:14, Ruth 2:14, Revelation 19:6-10, Ruth 2:20, Job 19:25, Isaiah 54:8, Ruth 3:9; Psalm 17:8, Ruth 4:14, Ruth 2:21-22, Hebrews 2:14-15, 7:25, Revelation 19:6-8

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