|Source: Biblical Proof|
Her commitment to her mother in law drove Ruth to cling to her and follow her no matter what. This decision then set Ruth on a continuing journey of commitment, trust and faith. At her mother in law’s direction, it took her into the field of a strange and powerful man (Boaz) to gather grain to keep her and Naomi alive. It took her to the threshing floor in the dead of night and lying down next to this powerful man, to a place of vulnerability, trusting that he would not harm her or take advantage of her but would take care of her. All this because she had chosen to stay committed to both Naomi and to her God and choosing to make some very difficult choices, and not to take the easy path. Ruth continued to trust and believe even when things appeared to get complicated and difficult and obstacles appeared to block the way. But the outcome of Ruth`s trust and commitment resulted in her marriage to Boaz and a child (Obed) that would set on course the most earth changing event in History, the birth of the Messiah! Ruth 4:17 ‘The women living there said, ‘Naomi has a son!’ And they named him Obed. He was the father of Jesse, the father of David’. Read the book of Ruth in the bible, it`s only short but such a wonderful story of love, faith trust and commitment.
So, ok, great story, happy ending, but how does that help me in making the choices I have to make every single day? Well, the principles of the story are the same as many of the choices we have to make in our lives:
1. Who am I going to follow? Ruth chose to follow Naomi`s God whatever that meant. It led her to do some very difficult and challenging things and took her right out of her comfort zone and set her on a course of action that was not clear at first. Regardless of this uncertainty and challenges Ruth chose to follow God’s instruction via Naomi`s direction. What is God asking me to do today? Am I going to choose to follow Him, even if it gets uncomfortable and the future is not so clear? Will I abandon my own thoughts and plans and follow His?
2. Who am I going to trust? Ruth trusted Naomi and therefore Naomi`s God. It put her in some vulnerable places among people she did not know, and she had to do things she was not familiar with. Regardless of this she did not flinch, she did exactly what God was telling her to do. What is God telling me to do today that may make me feel vulnerable and put me in a place of unfamiliarity? The question I ask myself is; ‘will I flinch, will I pull back, will I choose to take the more sensible, logical path or will I follow what God is telling me?’
3. How committed am I? Ruth was completely committed to both Naomi and to her God. From the moment she left her old country behind she set her face to her new path and never turned back. I`m sure if I had experienced some of the difficulties Ruth had then I would have sat and thought ‘what if I had stayed at home, what if I had made a different choice, what if I tried doing things my way’? But Ruth was committed and only when she had done all that God had told her to do did the final glorious outcome reveal itself. This did not happen until Ruth had made the right choices, stayed committed, and completed the whole journey. Now this is a massive challenge to me, someone who can`t even keep committed to what outfit I`ve chosen to go out in, let alone to follow the Lord’s direction when the path gets difficult.
I am involved with prison ministry and go into a local young offender’s prison to take part in services on a Sunday. Recently I was talking to a couple of the guys about some of the things they had done recently that had landed them in disciplinary situations. I talked with them about what they had done and asked if it is worth the loss of privileges they had received and then went onto talk about making right choices. It was so obvious to me where they were going wrong and so easy for me to point this out to them however the Lord always likes to challenge me when I choose to speak into people`s lives. He likes to get me to look at my own life and see how well I do at making the right choices.
Frankly this week, like so many other weeks, I’ve not done as well as I would have liked. Some things have been good and I feel I have listened and made some good choices, but sadly at other times in haste, or following my own feelings and desires I have made bad choices. The piece of cake I could have managed without, the words said in haste I wish I could take back, the harsh response when gentleness would have been the Lord’s way instead. Oh, Lord please help me to follow Ruth`s example and choose who I am going to follow and who I am going to trust and help me to be committed to serving you every day and not just my own wants or needs.
Choices! Choices! Choices! My prayer is Lord please help me to make the right choices.
Author: Jan Pearson
May God bless and enrich your life
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