And Ruth said, Intreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God (Ruth 1:16 KJV)
Our decisions in life, which are expressions of our will, are crucial in shaping our lives. More importantly, God responds to our decisions for His Name, especially those that come with risks and sacrifice. The story of Ruth reveals a remarkable display of how our choices can alter our destinies.
Ruth was a woman from Moab who married the son of Noami, an Israelite. As a Moabite, the odds were stacked against her in relating to any Israelite or God. First, the Jews were prohibited from associating with or marrying any gentile. Naomi and her family had already broken the Law of God by allowing their son to marry a Moabite. Second, in addition to the gentile exclusion, God had cursed the Moabites and expressly excluded them from entering the congregation of God’s people( Deut. 23:23).
Despite these spiritual barriers, Ruth altered the course of history by the decisions she made. When her mother-in-law Naomi decided to return to Israel from the land of Moab, Ruth chose to abandon her family, her people, and her nation and to follow Noami to Israel. This decision was full of risks, uncertainties, and sacrifices. However, it broke the barriers of the gentile exclusion and the divine curse on her home nation Moab. Ruth did not only become one with God’s people, but she is the great grandmother of David, the beloved King of Israel, and also of the Lord Jesus.
Decisions alter our destinies and provoke divine responses. God knows the sacrifice you endure when you said “no” to the sexual offer from that boss and lost that job promotion. He knows what you choose to give up to walk in holiness or do what He has called you to do. Those decisions never go in vain—He is not unrighteous to forget your labor of love. Be encouraged and keep moving forward.
Do you also realize that accepting to follow Jesus meant giving up multiple pleasures of sin in the world? That decision in itself is sacrificial!
Apply the Word
Some of you have made decisions for God that are painful to you but pleasing to Him. Others might be in the valley of making a decision that honors God but might offend someone. Know God sees the sacrifices and risks in our decisions for Him. And He will honor them. Keep going forward.
Ask the Lord for the strength to make decisions that honor His Name, whether in minor or major issues.
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