He who learns must suffer, and, even in our sleep, pain that we cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart, and in our own despair, against our will, comes wisdom to us by the awful grace of God. - Aeschylus

Friday, January 27, 2017

Praying with Icons: Holy Foremother Ruth

O Holy Foremother Ruth, of the land Moab,
you married into the House of Israel, there
to remain even when death came to disturb
you by taking a husband and adopted father.

You held fast to Naomi as your true family;
though she, Elimelech, and their sons were
foreigners in your land and grieving Naomi
bid you to return to Moab with your sister.

The Lord granted you to become the King's
ancestor, firstly the ancestor of King David
and secondly of Christ the King who brings
us to be adopted into a heavenly household.

Grandmother of Jesse, pray for us, that we
may be ever faithful to the people of God,
be loving to them as our own dear family,
and welcome those from the foreign land.

Great-grandmother of David, please pray
for us, that we not allow death to separate
us from our adopted family, that one day
we lay at the feet of Christ, fully prostrate.

*     *     *

The Gospel of Matthew includes Ruth in Christ's genealogy.  For this reason, she is called a Holy Foremother of Christ.

Note:  The above is a picture of an icon of Ruth, the Holy Foremother of Christ, which I purchased for my grandmother.  Please get your own at bostonmonks.com and support the Holy Transfiguration Monastery.

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