A Life Changing Decision

6 November 2021

Eddie Rowlands

“But Ruth replied, “Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God. Where you die I will die, and there I will be buried. May the Lord deal with me, be it ever so severely, if even death separates you and me” Ruth 1 v16-17.

In the Book of Ruth, a man named Elimelech, his wife Naomi, and their two sons, left Bethlehem-Judah during a famine and moved to Moab. After a while, disaster hit, Elimelech died leaving Naomi with her two sons. The sons eventually married two Moabite girls named Orpah and Ruth. Ten years later both sons died leaving three grieving widows. When Naomi heard that things were better back in Bethlehem she decided to return.

Orpah and Ruth followed her, but Naomi encouraged them to stay in Moab as the possibility of them finding new husbands in Judah was remote. Orpah turned back, but Ruth stayed with her mother-in-law. Her decision changed her destiny. Not only hers, but the lives and destiny of others.

Yes, praise God! Ruth’s decision had far-reaching effects, and through the ages it has changed lives from emptiness to fullness, from bitterness to sweetness, from loss to gain, from crisis to comfort, and from hopelessness to hopefulness.  How? Because, back at Bethlehem Ruth went to glean corn in the field of a rich farmer, Boaz, who fell in love with her. Ruth and Boaz married and had a son named Obed who became King David’s grandfather, and so Naomi’s faithful daughter-in-law Ruth becomes part of the ancestry of Jesus Christ, our life-changing healing Lord and Saviour – Matthew 1 v5-6.

Life is full of decisions. The most important ones usually come at a time of crisis or change. “Where do I go from here?” “How do I respond to this new challenge?” We have some examples in God’s Word. In a time of challenge, Joshua decided “As for me and my family, we will serve the Lord”. Joshua 24 v15. Paul decided that he would “…forget the past and press on to what was ahead” – Philippians 3 v13. David decided that he would “…praise the Lord at all times, his praise shall continually be in my mouth” – Psalm 34 v1.

Ruth’s loving and loyal decision determined her destiny and her future role in God’s eternal plan of salvation. Together let’s decide to serve the Lord wholeheartedly, to praise the Lord continually, and to press on determinedly. Yes! Let’s sing it “I have decided to follow Jesus, no turning back, no turning back…”.

Be blessed.


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