The coming of the New Year always brings with it the potential for change and opportunity. I’m not one to make resolutions, more like intentions; because I know my history of follow through, and it’s not good. But that mindset is likely a part of my problem. I’m always quick to concede that a battle is over rather than seeing it as an opportunity for a new or revised plan. I grow weary in the waiting and the wanting and wonder if it was merely wishful thinking. Wow… that’s a lot of “w” words. But they’re not my points. My point of today’s blog came to me courtesy of the book and story of Ruth, the Moabite. A Gentile gal chosen by God to be in the lineage of Jesus, a woman with purpose because she just kept going.
She lost her husband… and kept going.
Times were bleak… but she kept going.
She didn’t know how or if it would work out… but she kept going.
She didn’t know the people in her future… but she kept going.
I have a Ruth personality, but I often times get a Naomi mindset. Naomi was Ruth’s mother-in-law who had lost her husband and two sons, she was depressed and frustrated and decided to head back home to Bethlehem. She tried to make Ruth stay with her own family, but Ruth had adopted Naomi as new family and she was going where Naomi was going.
The book of Ruth is just four short chapters. I recommend you read it and not take my word for it, but while you’re here with me, let me tell you the impact this story has for me and the coming New Year. I don’t talk a lot about the frustrations of life because I don’t want to be a discourager. But trust me when I say that I have more than a few. When my jobs quit me… I didn’t quit working, God told me to and I didn’t listen, so my jobs quit me. Funny thing about your jobs quitting you… so does the income. Huh… who knew! And living on one income isn’t fun. But God has done amazing things with nothing. He is the only One who can. I have been provided for in amazing ways. And yet… there’s always room for a few woe is me stories. Naomi had a reason to be sad. Her husband had taken her into a land that ended up being a land of famine and then had the nerve to die on her. How rude! Followed by the death of her only other providers, her sons.
So let the rubber meet the road when I say that sometimes things happen because we’re not where we’re supposed to be. Naomi and her family should have been relying and serving God all along, but they’d chosen another path and so did I. When I finally set into the fact that God wasn’t going to allow me to work in the secular world I hit road block after road block and a few stumbling blocks of my own that haven’t allowed me to be “The Jesus Chick” to full extent that I desire. But as I approach 2017, the third year in service to the Lord, I approach it with a new mindset.
Three things happened that changed Ruth’s life when she kept going:
- The plan was a step of faith.
She leapt without the net appearing. That’s what faith is. And I need that faith for 2017 as I live bolder and braver for Christ and believe that God’s plan is going to come to fruition. I need places to speak, I need place to sing… God knows that. I believe He’ll provide. I need to provide an income for my family, not for wants but because a ministry costs money. That’s the reality of it. So the net that I’m counting on appearing is a net worth that will allow me to serve God unencumbered by the woes of the mighty dollar.
- The purpose of Ruth was faith
Ruth’s story is one of great purpose. She didn’t know it then, it was just life. But look at the impact her life has had. We’re still reading of her thousands of years later. She’s a grandma to Jesus! She shouldn’t have been there, she was a Gentile from a heathen nation of idol worshippers. But she stepped into her purpose in faith and God rewarded her.
- Her proposal came because of her action of faith
When Boaz proposed to Ruth, she had taken some pretty bold moves in the place of the threshing floor. She came in the night and laid down at his feet and ask him to cover her. She didn’t want anything that He didn’t want for her. She laid her life down, and Boaz bought her from the kinsman who was entitled to her by the culture she was in.
I’m very much living in a world that would have me for dinner and cast me aside if it had its druthers. A ministry for me is the unknown. It’s just laying myself at the feet of Jesus and saying Lord, if You don’t cover me, the world’s going to bury me. It takes a strength that I don’t personally have to step out and say, I’m the Jesus Chick. I believe that Ruth was saying “I’m Boaz’s chick” if he’ll have me. And he did. And the rest as they say is written in the book.
Are you living in God’s plan and purpose? Has He made a proposal for you, and have you accepted. That proposal starts with salvation… but then it continues with the plan of action. What potential lies before you in 2017?