WHAT THE BOOK OF RUTH TAUGHT ME ABOUT RELATIONSHIPS

I’ve been studying the book of Ruth, and want to share with you what I’ve discovered.

Did you know that there are similarities between Ruth and The Virtuous Woman from Proverbs 31?

                                                                          Reference in Ruth             Reference in Proverbs

  • Her family commitment is noted by others.         2:11, 12                         31:11, 12
  • She provided sustenance for her household.      2:14, 18                        31:15
  • She gave attention to her appearance.               3:3, 5                            31:22
  • Her selfless lifestyle drew praise from others.     2:11; 3:10; 4:15            31:28
  • She committed herself to Yahweh as God.         1:16                              31:30

Here are some other key points that really stood out to me today:

Commitment is the foundation for every relationship, whether earthly or heavenly.
Ruth willingly accepted an unsettled future, and bound herself by solemn oath not only to Naomi, but also to the God of Israel. I think of all that Ruth left behind; her family, her home, friendships, her entire life as she knew it. It makes me think of my own life, how God called us to another state, and we obeyed His voice. We didn’t understand His plans at the time, but through our obedience, we have been so blessed by God.
He gave us many new friends, and we found out which of the people in our old state were in our lives for the long haul. It also brought me and my family closer together. Instead of stopping by for just a few minutes on their way home, now my parents come to visit, and we fully cherish every single second we have together. We talk more and take lots of pictures.
When we lived only a mile from them, it’s like we just took our lives together for granted.
Don’t take your precious time together for granted!

Who are your true friends? They are the ones who are committed!

They don’t turn their backs on you, and forget about you when you move away. If you’re feeling down, or you’ve been sick, they check in on you. They make time for you! Sure, everyone is busy, but if someone tells you that they won’t have time for you for a few months, you should probably re-evaluate that relationship. I’ve had to do this recently, and it’s a very painful experience, but what’s even more painful is trying to hold on to a one-sided relationship.

I’m not saying that you don’t continue to reach out to that person and love on them, but make sure you are spending the bulk of your time on the ones who make the time for you.
Naomi

A couple of things stood out to me about Naomi, Ruth’s Mother-in-Law.
  1. Naomi models the way God works through a woman who moves forward, even in the midst of tragedy and trial, actively seizing every opportunity God provides, rather than waiting passively for events to happen.
  2. By focusing on the negative, Naomi became so bitter (Ruth 1:20) that she could not see the good and positive plans God was working on.
MORE HERE ...  How to Handle Changes in Friendships

Of course these two things happened at two different parts of Naomi’s journey. The first one just made me think about what I would do if I lost my husband. I know I would be devastated and I just can’t imagine trying to continue on with life as normal. Naomi made the best of her situation, and returned to God. She was such a role model for Ruth.

In the second example, Naomi just didn’t feel worthy to be called Naomi, which means Pleasant. She felt like her suffering was God’s punishment for her own sins. Do you ever feel like that? I know I sure have! So many times when I begged God for something, and didn’t see it manifest, or when I’ve had to deal with any other kind of suffering or tragedy, I would think God was mad at me, and I deserved whatever happened.

But that’s not who God is! He’s a God of mercy and grace. He loved us before we even knew Him. He doesn’t sit around waiting to punish us. No, He’s our daddy! He wants to give us His best. But first, we have to believe that! Yes, you may reap what you sow, but if you realize that you have done wrong, ask Him for forgiveness. He will cast your sins as far as the east is to the west.

Be blessed my friends!

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