Inspiration from A Tale of Two Women

Contributed to Hoosier Ink American Christian Fiction Writers-Indiana Chapter

I enjoy reading most genres; history, biographies, mysteries, political thrillers, young adult, and of course romances of any time frame. The Bible has it all—a complete library at your fingertips. And one book in particular is my favorite, the beloved story of Ruth. 

Though named after only one character, it’s a tale of two women, Ruth and Naomi. To Christians, it’s a Biblical narrative of redemption that strongly reflects the deeper parallels of Christ, our Kinsman Redeemer. But aside from its ability to impart wisdom inherent with scripture, it also utilizes a unique sense of storytelling, which is the subject of this blog.

In Ruth, against the landscape of famine, we follow one family; learn how they are affected by marriage, and death. Then our main characters emerge—their plight as widows, one Gentile, and one Jew—a contrast of backgrounds and beliefs—becoming a text rich with challenge, heartache, and hope.

When I reach the end, I’m satisfied, yet I’m left with a longing to return to the beginning—the hope of discovery linked with one more reading. Why is this story so compelling? Though tiny in comparison to the classics, this book delivers complex characters, an unforgettable plot, and a dynamic dialogue in just four short chapters. Beyond that, though written thousands of years ago, it stirs with relevance—the desire to belong.

A good book should inspire. Characters with imaginable challenges that draw us into their world, and make us care about their hopes, their fears. Because on some level we see ourselves in those pages, and resolution for them shines hope on what matters to us.

So if you haven’t read Ruth lately, read from the lens of an author. Maybe it’ll inspire you, too.  Happy writing!

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© 2018 by Penelope Powell 

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