A few months ago, I was asked to play the role of Ruth in a church drama. I was unsure about accepting the part, having a heavy academic load as I tried to finish my last year at Bethel University. But the more I thought about it, the more I was drawn to the character of Ruth and her life. And finally I accepted.
In the days and weeks that followed, I found ways that Ruth’s voice and experience paralleled many of my own thoughts as I graduate and move out into the world to find the calling Christ has for me. Since I will be moving away from the Minneapolis area, my internship with CBE will end and I have found my heart’s cry to be the same as Ruth’s as she anticipated parting with Naomi, “Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God.” In Naomi’s God, Ruth recognized the calling she had been seeking after. Once she had found this hope, she would not be separated from it. Though I cannot physically stay with CBE, I carry their vision and their spirit with me. The people of CBE have become part of my family of Christ, a family that transcends distance and time. Like Ruth, I have been given a vision of truth, and my life has been irrevocably changed.
I am so thankful for the vision that CBE has imparted to me. CBE has given me a better understanding of my calling as a woman and enabled me to make my voice heard in the world. I came to CBE hungry to learn and I now feel a new hunger to see the ministry of CBE fulfilled. The months I have spent with CBE have awoken in me the desire to use my life to further the equality of both men and women in Christ’s kingdom. I am again reminded of Ruth—destitute, unsure about her future, and without hope. Through the presence of one individual, she was connected to Christ and was used by God in mighty ways to bring about the Kingdom of Christ.
Will you be someone’s Naomi? As the students you know graduate this May, will you consider sharing CBE’s vision with them and help them to become a part of the CBE family? A membership with CBE provides individuals with resources on what the Bible says about gender and justice. This includes a yearly subscription to our publications Priscilla Papers and Mutuality. Membership also includes bookstore and conference discounts. It is a gift that will be remembered and will continue blessing those in your life. The women and men of my generation are eager to find their calling and place in the Kingdom of Christ. Our minds and hearts are open. And we are hungry.