by Joel Osteen
Friday, February 15, 2019
In the Scripture, a lady named Naomi and her family had left Bethlehem because of a famine and moved to Moab. Life was good, but then her husband unexpectedly died. She never dreamed she would be a widow. Ten years later, both of her married sons died. She was so heartbroken that she decided to move back to Bethlehem. She told her daughters-in-law, Ruth and Orpah, to go back to their homes and start new lives. Ruth refused to leave Naomi, but Orpah took her advice and went home.
After all Naomi had been through, she could have thought, "Orpah, how can you leave me at my lowest moment? How am I going to make it at my age?" She could have felt betrayed and angry, but that would have kept her from the new things God had in store. Instead the Scripture says she "kissed Orpah goodbye" (Ruth 1:9). Orpah represented the hurts, the disappointments, the broken dreams, and the things Naomi didn't understand. She was saying by her actions, "Life hasn't been fair, but I know that what was meant for my harm, God can turn to my advantage," which is exactly what happened. She and Ruth moved back to Bethlehem where Ruth married a wealthy man named Boaz. They had a baby whom Naomi took care of as though it were her own son. After all the hurt and loss, Naomi said, "I never dreamed I would be this happy and fulfilled." Her latter days were better than her former days. This would have never happened if she had not kissed Orpah goodbye.
When life doesn't turn out the way you thought, remind yourself that God is still in control. If you're going to reach your destiny, you have to learn to kiss negative things goodbye. People may walk away. Life may not turn out the way you had planned. It's tempting to get bitter, hold a grudge, lose your passion. You have to kiss the bitterness goodbye, kiss the person that left you goodbye, kiss the dream that didn't work out goodbye.
Sometimes God closes the door. He'll move people out of your life. There are people and opportunities that were assigned to your past that are not assigned to your future. They were right for a season, but that season may come to an end. The key is how you handle the closed door, how you handle the disappointment, how you handle the person who did you wrong. You can't embrace the new things God has in store as long as you're holding on to the old. Accept it as God's plan, kiss it goodbye, and move on. God knows how to bring you out better than you were before.