Today’s Reading: Ruth 1:3-16
But Ruth replied: “Do not persuade me to leave you or go back and not follow you. For wherever you go, I will go, and wherever you live, I will live; your people will be my people, and your God will be my God.”
Loving God requires action. It is something that we choose to do. While as Christians we may feel a love for God and for God’s family, our faith is shown by what our love for God causes us to do for Him. Love influences the relationships between Naomi and her two daughters-in-law, Orpah and Ruth. After Naomi’s husband and sons die, Naomi is left widowed alongside Orpah and Ruth in the country of Moab. While Orpah and Ruth are Moabites, Naomi is a widow in a foreign land, unprotected by a husband and without familial support. Wanting what she feels is best for herself and her daughters, she decides to return to her homeland of Judah and encourages her daughters-in-law to return to their own families in Moab. The women weep aloud together. But Orpah and Ruth respond differently to Naomi’s request. While Orpah kisses her mother-in-law goodbye and leaves for her family, Ruth clings to Naomi. Ruth chooses to follow her into a new land where she will be known as a lowly widow and foreigner. Ruth’s actions sacrifice her own well-being for Naomi’s sake. Not only will Ruth follow Naomi into a new country, she also promises to become one with her people and to accept her God.
Ruth’s love for Naomi is expressed in what she does. She will live Naomi’s way, surround herself with Naomi’s people, and even as a foreigner, will take Naomi’s God to be her God too. Ruth’s love for Naomi will bring her to new places, people, and even cause changes to her lifestyle. Her example shows us how our love for God can affect what we do in all areas of our life. How does our love for God affect our actions for Him? How does our relationship with God cause us to be more like Him? Just as Ruth is prompted by love to follow Naomi boldly into new territory, we musts allow our love for God to lead us to new places of faith.
Eternal God, I thank You that Your great Love saves me from sin and for works. Thank You for allowing me to be a part of Your work in the world. Help me to act with confidence in Your love for me, that I would have the courage to show my love for You in all areas of my life. I pray all of these things in Jesus’ Name, AMEN.
Thru the Bible in a year (credit: Biblestudytools.com): Acts 25; Ruth 1-2; Psalm 47