“For wherever you go, I will go, and where you live, I will live; your people will be my people, and your God will be my God.” Ruth 1:16 CSB
God used the book of Ruth in my life to help me understand His love for me. She is my favorite woman in the Bible. The verse above I cross stitched on a beautiful piece of linen, The scene was an old attic with an open trunk, across the trunk lay an antique wedding dress, waiting to be worn by a new bride. I prayed over every stitch for the husband I have today, years before I met him. We’re going to do a whole month in the book of Ruth next year (I think). 2020 is going to be focused on growing through love. As I told Heather, I think Ruth is the greatest love story ever told. My mother used to read her story to me at bedtime as a child, that is how I met her. I’m not going to give too much of her story away today, we’ll delve into it more later. But suffice it to say, she set an example I wanted to follow. Maybe I should say, her mother-in-law did.
Naomi, Ruth’s mother-in-law, was from Bethlehem. She moved with her husband and two sons to Moab when famine struck the land. Ruth marries one of Naomi’s sons, both the father and sons die. This is where we meet these two in today’s verse. Naomi is heading back to Bethlehem, she’s told Ruth to stay and marry someone else. Ruth’s reply is today’s verse. And Ruth lived up to her word, it wasn’t an easy thing to do. I’ve romanticized Ruth in my head. I’ve romanticized spending all day out in the hot sun, picking up leftover wheat to eat. I’ve romanticized not having indoor plumbing. What I haven’t romanticized is the love that is so evident in the book’s chapters. The love that Ruth demonstrates to God, to Naomi and to her future husband are goals to strive for in today’s world. She shows us how to love others, and how to love them well. She is one of the few women in the Bible who is described as “noble” (Ruth 3:11 NIV).
Naomi’s love of God, drew Ruth into a relationship with Him. Ruth’s love of God helped me know and love God. I’ve studied her story for years, her and Naomi both have taught me many things. They continue too, every time I read their story.
Today I am thankful for Ruth. What are you thankful for?