In the drops of water that splash on the clay.
In the grooves carved into tree bark.
In the many sounds I hear outside my window.
Some that feel familiar, some that leave me wondering.
I see similar complexities when I reflect on the relationship between Ruth and Naomi.
Ruth’s commitment to align herself with a potential life of pain, loneliness, and instability in order to honor her friend, Naomi, was a heavy choice.
Similarly, we are called to a collective faith which we individually walk out through relationship.
We live alongside humans who are filled with messy layers of thought, emotion, and energy.
Yes, we are uniquely beautiful, but this beauty comes mingled with fear and shame.
And, yet, we are called to love. Like Ruth did.
We love when the receiver may not realize they are still deserving of love.
We follow and we form connections as the Spirit leads, even when this requires unconventionality. Or, silence. Or, bold words.
In this season of murkiness, may God grow you in your ability to love well and to receive love.
In all its nuance.
How are you learning to navigate this murky season? How are you learning to love?
Tiona Cage, MSW, is the Associate Director of Academic Advising & Community Life at Portland Seminary. Tiona is passionate about exploring the intersection of faith and cultural identity. With a background in international education and community development, she works to support members of the church and wider community in increasing self-awareness and in learning how to more fully hear God and honor the image of God in others.