Ruth: Day 5

Unexpected Kindness

by

Today's Text: Ruth 2:18-23, Deuteronomy 7:7-9, Psalm 41:1-3

Text: Ruth 2:18-23, Deuteronomy 7:7-9, Psalm 41:1-3

To a kindergartener, riding the bus is no small thing. In fact, riding the bus seems to be the bookend horror of my education—terrifying when I was 6 and mortifying when I was 16. (Thanks again, Mom and Dad.)

When I was in kindergarten, the buses weren’t identified by numbers, but by animals. I rode the squirrel bus—not to be confused with the chipmunk bus my best friend rode to her house on the other side of town—and was required to wear a luggage tag flaunting an illustrated picture of the animal on my backpack.

Every day at 3 pm, the school bell would ring and we’d file outside to our animal-specific location, and every day I remember the same tears, wailing, and resistance. One fellow kindergartener, a curly-haired boy with a blue backpack, was not happy with his assigned position in the bus-zone zoo. “I WANT TO RIDE THE MANATEE BUSSSS!,” he’d wail until his face matched the color of his backpack.

Now, I don’t know if the appeal of this particular bus was the swimming sea cow itself (understandable), a cute passenger with pigtails, or a problem with the squirrel bus he’d been assigned to (also understandable). But one thing was clear: the boy was decidedly discontent.

I may have kept my cool about the squirrel bus, but I, too, become decidedly discontent more often than I’d care to admit. This is especially true when it comes to the love story of Ruth and Boaz. I mean, promise me a Boaz and my single-girl self will run, not walk, to the closest field and gather grain just like Ruth did. That probably wouldn’t work for me, but does that mean God is a better provider to Ruth than He is to me?

We must decide a few things here: God is either the ultimate Provider, or not at all. He is either in the business of redemption, or He is off the clock altogether. His hand is either strong, or it is weak. He either chose us, or He rejected us. There is no sliding scale according to our worthiness. In fact, His love for us and devotion to us rests on His faithfulness, not ours (Deuteronomy 7:7-9).

No matter where our feet rest, we are always standing in the field of God’s provision.

I’m reminded of the ways the teachers on bus duty tried to reason with Manatee Boy.  

They’d say, “That bus isn’t going to take you home, but here’s the one that is!”

The same is true for us. God’s provision is a vehicle to His perfect will. Maybe unexpected kindness comes to you in the form of a Boaz, or maybe it looks a little different—a new job, a needed friend, a resolved conflict. Either way, our strong Provider is always present, giving His children what they need.

Either way, we’re all headed home.

SRT-Ruth-Instagram5s

  • An excellent reminder as I wait. I’m trying to focus my time on being a Boaz (blessing others) while I faithfully wait as a Ruth (doing the work and being content with where I am now).

  • emma griffin

    Definitely something i needed! I

  • He is my loving Provider! I must follow and not always try to lead.

  • Bessie Thomas

    Glad to know that no matter what I’m headed home..because he chose me and did not abandon me!!

  • amandaurisa

    I was brought to tears in study and prayer with this devotional tonight as, once again, God’s provision has caught me off guard and come to me in ways that astound me. Truth be known, this time there was a LOT of pain and heartache, but it was worth every second because in my suffering, I leaned on my Lord and Savior more than ever, and He provided as He always does. I was blessed abundantly. My family has been blessed abundantly as well. I have never felt nearer to the cross than I do now, nor less deserving. But that is the beautiful thing about our God. He decides. He knows our own hearts better than we do and His will is ultimate, regardless.

  • Katherine H

    This came right as I needed it. Thank you! I’m a transitional period post-grad it’s easy to feel like god is either making things happen for you or has forsaken you as you return to your parents home after an internship. This is helping me slowly realize that God is always on our side working for us. In ways seen and unseen. Thank you!!

  • Hannah Swanson

    Marie, this is a bit more short and sweet than the other feedback given, which is beautiful and holds so much truth.. but I hope helps on some level. When I doubt myself or God , it’s usually driven by fear. But God is the opposite of fear. Fear and worry , especially fears about your worthiness, are the result of a broken world. Not a broken you. And so many times in the Bible God has told us to not fear and that he will be the solid ground that gets us through. I went looking for verses that say this and came across this one that fits so perfect. He not only says he will be with us through the fear but in Isaiah 43:1, he says “Do not fear for I have redeemed you. I have summoned you by name . You are mine” . I hope you can rest in that promise. Always remember God did not give us a spirit of fear, but of power, of love, and of self control 2 Timothy 1:7. That’s who we are in Him. We don’t need to try so hard to just feel the right way, just pray the right way, just live the right way until we are doubting who we are and drawing even further away. God knows who we are. He just wants to sit along with you for the ride .. just as you are. That kind of love is who Jesus is and if you show it to other people, well then I think the contentment your looking for is right at your fingertips.. Just remember always that you are powerful.. and loved.

  • My single-girl self needed this for sure.

  • Thank you for reminding me that the Lord is always providing for His people and that it isn’t always what we desire but what we need!

  • In two weeks I’m moving back home to Nashville from the Bay Area, CA. I am nervous and excited. Sad and happy. But the moments leading up to the day I head my car back east, have been very anxious minutes, hours, and days. The Ruth study has given me moments of peace when I’ve needed it most, and these words really helped me let down a little bit of my anxiety wall this morning, “No matter where our feet rest, we are always standing in the field of God’s provision.”

  • This really hit home with me this morning, as I can imagine myself as the discontent soul wanting to ride another bus. I’ve recently moved with my fiancé three hours away from all of our families and friends. Although the distance doesn’t seem too far when I write it out, it is just enough to keep my fiancé and I from seeing our loved ones on a regular basis and being secluded from their lives. And besides even the distance, everything here is so different and my heart has grown so discontented. I am alone in this inner struggle as my fiancé loves the location, his job, and the community here. I find myself complaining about EVERYTHING that has to do with my geographical location and the much slower, simple pace of life. It has reached the point where I am miserable, missing my friends and family, and yearning to be back “home”. Not knowing what else to do to help this feeling, I turned to Jesus and the pull that always brings me back to She Reads Truth. Somehow I always stumble upon a series of devotionals that get me through my circumstances.

    Today, I am reminded that “No matter where our feet rest, we are always standing in the field of God’s provision.” What an awesome promise and blessing. Thank you for the reminder that as I battle with discontent and ask God to take away what I want and what I think is best, that my fiancé and I are in the field of HIS provision. We are not here by happenstance. God has a blessing for us here if we allow Him to bless us.

  • His loving kindness has been shown to me all week and I love that this section has brought it to my attention. I see God in my husband, driving and traveling 23 hours straight for our family. In my Mama, cooking a full dinner for my family AND cleaning the kitchen afterwards. In my 6 1/2 month old, caressing my cheek with his tiny hand. God does give us just what we need, I’m just glad you helped me to stop and acknowledge it.

  • I struggle with this of God as the only giver because my feeling is that I need to love myself as God’s creation too. And in the most of my life that is such a strong and beautiful symbiosis: because God made me, I am meant to delight in Him and am also someone with purpose and beauty and value. Am I meant to tell myself I’m worthless and bad and stupid unless God takes pity on me? I don’t think I’m capable of hating myself that way anymore.

    And yet, I do totally feel that He has chosen me and that I’m standing on the field of His redemption, not mine.

  • Holly Brooke

    I love this. Thank you!

  • Elizabeth

    Oh, your animal-bus analogy brightened my day. “Not to be confused with the chipmunk bus.” :) A few reflections I penned:
    +Naomi didn’t say for Ruth to go exactly to Boaz’s field, from what I see – it was God’s doing. He caused her to be in that field at that time. He got the credit.
    + Boaz noticed Ruth. And did it in such a noble way that he was blessed for it!!
    + The Lord did not forsake His kindness.
    + The Redeemer sent a redeemer for Ruth.
    + Ruth listened to Naomi. She didn’t go in another wilder, more adventurous, younger field. And she lived with Naomi even though she kept close with Boaz’s female servants. She was different.
    + The Lord is DEVOTED to you! chose you! loved you! redeemed you! brought you out with a strong hand! what a thought!
    + Happy = care for the poor
    The Lord will save, keep, preserve, bless, heal, sustain him.
    + He is God, the faithful God, keeping His promise for 1000 generations with those who love Him & keep His commands.

  • The Deuteronomy passage, along with other scripture has caused a huge struggle for me the past 10+ years. If God has either chosen or rejected us, how do we ever truly know that we are one of the chosen? I grew up being taught Romans 10:9, that if you confess with your mouth…believe in your heart… You will be saved. But after attending a reformed seminary and church I have not been able to find peace that I am God’s child. I’m not sure how to reconcile all of this. I’m constantly crying out to God to save me but am filled with fear and uncertainty.

    • Tina

      This is exactly where I find myself right now as well to the point where I am gripped with terror sometimes that feels so overwhelming and paralyzing. I wish I had some insight for you but I will be genuinely praying for you in this just as I am praying for myself.

    • Kait

      Marie, once you have confessed your sins and asked Christ to wash you completely clean, you are His FOREVER. He will NEVER leave or forsake you! Deuteronomy 31:6 says; “Be strong and courageous do not be afraid or terrified of them. For The Lord your God goes with you. He will never leave or forsake you.” I just said a prayer that God would give you peace in this.

    • jessiechatchat

      I struggle with the idea of election/predestination as well. After wrestling with it this year one thing I find comfort in is that if it is election, there is nothing I can do (or can forget to do) to alter his gift to me. I believe that God sees your heart, Marie, and that he loves you. I believe that he is a more generous judge that we are with ourselves sometimes. I think it’s important to consider if this worry is either a tool for evil, taking your focus off of God’s true nature, or if it’s your body’s sign that there is a little work to be done (I am no stranger to counseling and an anxiety disorders). Praying for peace for you.

    • Adrienne

      Oh, how I hate the devil for the ways he torments us. A verse I like to go back to when I start doubting God’s goodness and faithfulness is II Peter 3:9. “The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.” (NKJV) Prayers for you!

    • drasch

      At times I struggle with the OT, and I have learned to remember that context is important. Deuteronomy is a compilation of Moses’ final speeches to the Israelites before he passed away. Chapter 7 is a reminder that Israel would soon be moving into the land of Cananaanites and how important it was for them to remain completely separate from them. In verses 7-9, Moses was reminding them that they were God’s chosen people and that God would remain faithful to them because he promised — not because of Israel’s intrinsic goodness. (We see just how ‘good’ they were in the book of Judges). To my mind, verses 7-9 offer a preview of Jesus’ sacrifice; freely given, not out of our potential for ‘being good’ but because He chose to gift us with redemption. For me, one of the most difficult aspects of becoming a Christian was accepting this gift and realizing that I could never ‘earn’ it. Peace to you, Marie, as you deal with your fear and uncertainty. xo

    • Kristin Cook

      Just a bit of encouragement from someone who has been there: the point of predestination and God choosing us is not that He may just leave us when we thought we were His. The point is that if you know Him (believe in Jesus for salvation and call Him Lord), then you already have been choice. He picked you. You don’t need to worry about whether or not you’ve been chosen if you already know Him. I still wrestle with those worries from time-to-time (after YEARS of doing exactly what you’ve been doing and feeling what you’ve been feeling), but I finally see that it isn’t a guessing game with God. If you know Him now, then just keep pressing on. He’s got you!

    • Eena

      Marie,
      What exactly is it that causes you feel as if you are not chosen?

      If you have Jesus as your Lord and Savior, and truly love Him as your God, would not not identify you as His child?

      Perhaps your fear/uncertainty is simply due to holding onto to fear when you no longer need to. In Christ, we are set free from such fears–we no longer need to be enslaved to such fears. If you believe and love Jesus as God, and still feel such terror, perhaps it is as if He has broken your chains and opened the prison gates, but you have not yet stepped outside of those gates and tasted freedom.

      Do you think that may be the case?

    • Brandi

      Kelly Minter has authored an excellent study called “What Love Does” that helped me a lot with those fears and insecurities. It is a study of 1, 2, and 3 John and she uses these ‘love books’ to talk about her own struggles and how Good is proving his faithfulness to her.

    • Emily

      We are talking about Romans 9 in our church study currently, and it touches on the hard hard idea of election. Our pastor ended with, John 3:16 yesterday. “For God SO loved the world, that He gave His ONLY Son, that whosoever believes in Him should NOT perish, but have eternal life.” I hope that’s encouraging to you!

    • Lindsey Syres

      Sweet Marie, I hear you. My thoughts go to the NT. After Christ was rejected by his own chosen people, He extended the grace of the gospel to the nations and the Gentiles, as I believe was His plan from the beginning. And though we continue to reject Him daily, as the Jews did, He continues to extend His grace and mercy toward us. I do believe that we are His children when we believe. But like Deut says, it is not our faithfulness, but His, that saves us. I hope you find rest in His faithfulness to you, and in the promises that lie in Scripture. During my times of doubt and confusion, I can’t shake the evidence of His love for me and those around me that I see daily. That’s where I find my rest and peace. Thanks for sharing your struggles…I believe that when we share and confess, we will be set free and that fear and uncertainty (or whatever personal struggle) will lose it’s grip on us!

    • Katie

      I think rhetoric and heated opinions in the church can sometimes cloud our view when it comes to interpreting scripture. Romans 10 makes Romans 9 no less true. And vice versa. I agree with the below comment that if you believe in Christ as your savior, that means you’re chosen! An old pastor of mine used to explain the difficult doctrine of election this way:
      As an unbeliever, we view the doorway to salvation with John 1:12 written over it: But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.

      When we enter through that doorway (Christ! John 14:6) and turn around, we see written over the doorway on the other side Ephesians 1:4: “chosen before the foundation of the world.”

      It is difficult (if not impossible) to understand while we are being drawn by the holy spirit that it is He who does the drawing. Once we are saved though, we are able to look back and see the grace and power of God orchestrating even the desire of our heart to repent and be saved!

      Praying for you, sweet girl. :)

  • Beautiful reflection!

  • Thank you Jen for the link to the Jason Gray song “Sparrow.” I LOVE it! It spoke volumes to me. I was just sitting in my bedroom with locked door because I’m so depressed and was afraid I would say something I regretted. I feel much better now. This song has many wonderful truths within it. Thank you again for sharing.

  • “His love and devotion to us rests on His faithfulness, no ours” I am just blown away….this message was just the reminder I needed. I haven’t been very grateful of my life lately, in fact I’ve become a little bitter….it’s been hard for me to gladly accept my circumstance. However, at the same time…..I’m glad I am not the one in control. If this is truly God’s will….so be it!!! “Either way, we’re headed home”. What a good read!!

    • Rochelle

      right there with you! great reminder to be grateful, and that God always provides. truly.

  • Hello Sisters!

    First of all! I’d like to say this message was just perfect for me! God is good all the time and his timing and his provisions are perfect!!!!

    I’m going through some changes right now and there has been times where my faith is being tested, but I believe in God’s promises for me,
    The thing about me is, trying to make it happen on my timetable and in my own way,
    So ladies may I ask that you guys pray for me to trust the Lord in my time of waiting and to give me strength waiting for his promises to be fulfilled! Because they will! In his perfect gracious timing!
    Advance thank you!
    Let’s all remember he’s working behind the scenes to make it happen !

    Love you all! And have a blessed day!

    • Whitney

      I don’t think there is a thanks necessary, just the continued prayer for others in return. I definitely needed this reminder to trust that God will provide when it is his plan and when it is really needed.

  • Today I am challenged by the kindness of Boaz. I seek to love others more boldly, and to think of myself less. I often want things my way and sadly do not always put othersome before myself. Just as the Lord is my provider, I want to love and care for those in my life. Jesus, give me the joy and strength today to spread kindness.

    • Laura

      Sarah i’m with you. I pray that I can be sensitive enough to see a need and bold enough to actually do something to bless those around me. Seems an easy idea until you look back at all the times you could have reached out. Thankful for grace and a new day to start fresh.

  • Paige Garrison

    Even when I can’t see where I’m standing or what my next step is, I’m still in the field of God’s provision!!

  • Well, this was a fun heart-punch. I definitely know & see that God is providing, & taking care of me. But, there’s this one thing He hasn’t healed… & it has been difficult to see around it. God is always going to be God, & He’s always going to be sovereign, & it’s something I’ve got to trust. Maybe His plan is not going to heal me in the way I’m hoping, but that doesn’t mean He is not in the business of redemption. Thankful for these words today.

  • Alexandra

    Today’s devotional was very funny to read and it makes a lot of sense in the context of the scripture. God is always guiding us home and this reminder is great to have today.

  • jessiechatchat

    Love this series and these words from Kaitlin! We are all going home! :)

    I got curious about Moab and Moabites and wondered if any of the lovely seminarians or laywomen up in here could help out. Moab was a son of Lot, Abraham’s nephew. A son post-Sodom and Gommorah. Could it be that some of the original Moabites knew God as Lot did (though he wasn’t faithful)? Their history is so interesting to me: sometimes allied to Israel and sometimes not, limped in with them in conquest. I just remember learning in Sunday school that the Moabites were bad bad bad. Insight anyone?

    • Peggy

      Jessica, that’s so interesting! It sounds highly likely to me although I am no seminarian or anything close. Just interested in history. I will ask around. :-)

  • This is beyond perfect for where I am right now. I’m going through a break up and feeling bad about being single. It’s so freeing to know that God always provides and His provision doesn’t have to be in the form of a relationship. This study is just what I need right now.

  • My One Word for the year is MOVE. Move closer to God. Today’s scripture reminds me not to move backwards & slip into regret & the world of what ifs? What if I knew God earlier in life & prayed for a godly partner, raising my children inChrist? Such is not my story…so I am constAntly in prayer for my family & for Boldness to show & share God’s Love to them. I must rest in God’s provision & some days that is a tall order. I am planted here & God has it. I just have to listen. Thank you for the reminder.

  • Caroline harries

    Declaring that he IS the ultimate provider. There is no alternative truth. It is HE!

    http://www.in-due-time.com

  • I wonder if Naomi knew Boaz before? Judging from her response in v.20, I suspect she did. I don’t know if she was too depressed to suggest anything, or the bitterness in her heart kept her from having hope for anything good to happen. I did sense that she decided to step aside and let God unfold his plan. It’s almost like she was waiting for the good news in v.20. I want to be that kind of mother/mother-in-law, who waits patiently for the Lord, even when it comes to the welfare of her children. Sometimes out of our love for our children, I think, mothers want to direct and control. “Go talk to that professor…go talk to your boss… I know someone who can help you…” etc. we say. I am not saying we should never offer wisdom. I want to have the right attitude. I want to give control back to God. I want to wait and watch by the sideline and be ready to applause. “He is our kinsman redeemer!!”

  • Each day, I walk away believing I’ve just read my favorite day of Ruth; today is no exception. I love how today’s devotional weaved together themes of provision and contentment- all held together by God’s good, covenantal love and faithfulness. His faithfulness shows up in a million different ways, sustaining each of our lives in the midst of each of our seasons. We did nothing to deserve this, but by God’s grace we are all headed home.

  • Jennifer W.

    This was a really good one. God’s goodness, provision and redemption have nothing to do with my worthiness. It’s easy to remember that when it comes to salvation, but when it comes to the every day, I can get lost. Especially when I was single, I often would encourage other women that God would provide for them, that they didn’t have to earn His kindness and that all of the circumstances of their lives were working together for a greater redemptive purpose. But in my own life, I saw my singleness, my struggle with weight, my ineffective ministry, my lack of children and my financial needs as evidence that God was not pleased with me and that He might have gotten sick and tired of waiting for me to shape up. I felt like he was faithful and patient and kind- to others. Thankfully, God allowed me to see this self-loathing as a true form of self-idolatry (ouch!) and He helped me see that embracing His love with confidence wasn’t arrogant, but faithful. And he gave me a husband and a child, in my mind, to demonstrate to me that He is the giver of bountiful blessings. I know He has many other purposes in His gifts, and being a wife and mommy is no easy path, but it is a path that has clearly spoken to me that He loves me and I am thankful every single day that this is the story He has given me.

    • Kristin Erickson

      Thank you for sharing Jennifer!!! I feel like I am in your exact same position that you were in. I am single and struggle with body issues, financial issues, career, confidence etc. etc. I feel that all of these circumstances means that God doesn’t love me as much. Thinking his love has to be earned, and I must not be doing enough. I love that you realized self-loathing is really self-idolatry! I am going to have to sit with that, yikes! Thank you for your wisdom, I feel hopeful :)

  • Kaitlin – your words today are full of such truth. Being in a season of singleness while all of my close friends are either married or in relationships that will soon be engagements, I have struggled daily with contentment. Today’s devotion reminded me that God is the ultimate Provider and He will work all things for my good in His timing. “No matter where our feet rest, we are always standing in the field of God’s provision.” Recognizing that this looks a little different for everyone depending on their season in life has been hard for me. I selfishly want what the relationship and happiness others have, but that’s me trying to make my God fit in a box and work on my timetable. And that’s not who He is. He is God, my Provider, who works ALL things in His timing, according to His will, and He is good. I often get so caught up in being single that I forget to embrace all of the good things that can happen in this season. My prayer in the days, weeks, and months to come is to keep my focus on Him and to be full of joy as I walk and grow in Him. I pray for peace and patience in this season, and pray He would continue to mold me into the woman He has created me to be.

    • Linda

      Emily, you are not alone in this struggle. My heart goes out to you, knowing other young women in a similar “single currently” boat. But that boat has other staterooms on the same level, like mine for instance. I’m an empty-nester, recently relocated and starting all over again. Waiting on the Lord without forcing my usual go-tos, my usual time-fillers has been a struggle. I don’t know if that makes sense, but I want to encourage you: keep the faith and trust in the Lord with ALL your heart, as you have been doing. I am proud of you, reading this today.

  • Keri Underwood

    “No matter where our feet rest, we are always standing in the field of God’s provision.” – This is SO profound! I just love it. To think that NO MATTER where I am in life, no matter my circumstances, or trials, if I am seeking after God and following His will and His word then I am EXACTLY where God wants me. This is so comforting!

    http://www.littlelightonahill.com

    • Ana.Staniscia

      That is so true, and so reassuring when I feel I don’t belong. I pray that we have the same nurturing perspective to orhers, specially when we see them as “lost”.

  • This spoke to me today, the topic of God providing what we need just when we need it. Earlier this year my four year relationship ended and I wasn’t sure what I was going to do. God provided me with a plan to pick up the pieces and carry on. I’m starting school that I’m really excited about next month, and He also brought a sweet new friend into my life I didn’t even know I needed, but am very blessed to have. I keep learning and being reassured that His timing is perfect, and that He will provide all I need.❤️

    • Ana.Staniscia

      True altruism don’t expect anything in return.. not even a hope of a change. We should do good because is the right thing to do…

  • There is curious, unexplained joy and happiness by doing random acts of kindness, whether they be done for those who are less fortunate than us or not.

    Most people feel good helping others whether asked or not, although for some it seems they do not get the same feeling. This flip side is the feeling we get when we wonder if the person we are helping is taking advantage of our kindness. And in turn that fear might stop us from helping others altogether.

    Who am I to judge the apparently homeless, alcoholic, drug-addict who is holding up the sign asking for help from strangers? Everyone has seen that one person, who every day apparently continues doing the same thing – looking the part playing their role in order to collect “free” handouts while the rest of us work tirelessly elsewhere.

    Perhaps it is possible that our kindness towards them, in whatever form, might actually plant the seed to help them help themselves. Pause for thought, huh?

    • Ana.Staniscia

      True altruism don’t expect anything in return.. not even a hope of a change. We should do good because is the right thing to do…

  • Carrie Rogers

    This week my feet rest going back and forth from the hotel to the hospital. My ornery daddy is pretty sick and everyone is trying to figure out what is going on. I have decided, God is provider, redeemer, He is strong, He is for us and He loves us!❤️ Thanks for sharing this morning :)

  • I have recently gone through quite a valley that lasted a year or so. I felt that God had abandoned me. Couldn’t feel Him, see Him, hear Him. There would be glimpses of Him here and there, like patches of sunlight in a very, very dark forest. But for the most part, I felt alone. Scared, anxious, depressed. Scariest time in my life. Nothing brought me comfort. Yet through it all, God was there. His promises are true not matter how we feel or what we think we see. I’ve learned that I can’t lean on my emotions – they’ll lead me astray every time. Instead, I have to focus on what I KNOW – which is that God is a healer, deliverer, provider and redeemer. He is FAITHFUL. He says to come to him all who are weary and heavy laden, and he will give us rest.

    I don’t know why He had me walk through that valley. Maybe I’ll never know. But He brought me through it, stronger than I was before! If you’re going through anxiety or depression right now, keep your head up! He is our kinsman redeemer, our Boaz. He sees you and will carry you through, just as He did for me.

    • Hannah

      Thank you for sharing your testimony Erin ❤️

    • Irina

      I’ve learned that I can’t lean on my emotions – they’ll lead me astray Instead, I have to focus on what I KNOW – which is that God is a healer, deliverer, provider and redeemer. He is FAITHFUL. He says to come to him all who are weary and heavy laden, and he will give us rest.
      This is so true!!! Thank you for giving this thought to me.

    • Jena

      Erin – thanks for sharing this. I believe that God can use everything to benefit us. There is someone that needs to hear your testimony, that you can explain to them even when they don’t feel it, God is still there. I’ve been through a similar time and perhaps that’s exactly what I was supposed to learn at that time – that He is there no matter what. Preparing us for greater things ahead. :)

    • Erin

      Thank you for sharing your story! I am going through a similar period in my life and it is so tough! I’m surrounded by people who love me, care about me, and want to let me in; however, I have been too embarrassed to talk about it! I just need to remember what I know to be true (God’s will will be done!) and focus less on my emotions

  • What a great illustration of our attitudes of contentment/discontentment the scholarship bus is. I needed that reminder today, that God provides and is perfect at it.

  • C Gunckel

    Thank you, I needed this today!

  • Christina D.

    “There is no sliding scale according to our worthiness. In fact, His love for us and devotion to us rests on His faithfulness, not ours.” I *always* need this reminder. I often get swept up in trying to show God that I really deserve His grace and love. I want to really earn it. It’s such a narrow perspective and it robs of the freedom of receiving His gifts with the knowledge that it would be impossible for me to ever be good enough BUT He actually wants to give them to me anyway. I’m still daily learning this basic principle of faith. God today I’ll give up my attempts at showing You how worthy I am and exchange them for Your sweet embrace and the comfort of knowing I don’t have to rely on my own weak faith but on Your unrelenting faithfulness.

  • “No matter where our feet rest, we are always standing in the field of God’s provision.”
    Yes! Lately I’ve been struggling with feeling like I’m not in the right place to meet someone. Whether that’s my Boaz or just a community of believers in my life stage. I’m the youngest in my place of work. And I’m pretty much the only one in my life stage at the church I’m at with the exception of the Associate Pastor. My heart has been praying for both my Boaz and a community of believers in my life stage for some time now. And with each passing day without answers to those prayers, my head begins to think I need to go somewhere else, do something different. But I know I’m called to serve there. God gave me a purpose right where I’m at. And I needed this beautiful reminder that no matter where my feet are planted, I’m standing in the field of God’s provisions. Thank you, sisters!

    • Deborah

      Kristi, I have a daughter in your season of life. She wonders these things as well as I do . She did move away. Within months, she knew at hat where she was , was not where God wanted her. She fulfilled her commitment and returned . I will pray for you as I pray for her for God to draw you near to Him as you are waiting upon Him to fulfill your needs!

    • Deborah

      I just read this verse and want to share.
      “Rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him; Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way, because of the man who carries out wicked schemes. “. Psalm 37:7

      • Kristi

        Thank you, Deborah. I needed this sweet reminder today. I appreciate your prayers and am lifting your daughter up in prayer also. Love.

  • Churchmouse

    So good to be reminded that “no matter where our feet rest, we are always standing in the field of God’s provision.” For my dad, his feet rest in hospice care. For our daughter’s boyfriend, his feet rest overseas on an air force base. For our daughter, in her apartment in Florida, praying for his safe return. For our son in law, in a manufacturing plant, working long hours . For our other daughter, in a classroom of eager and energetic fourth graders. For our granddaughter, on the playground with her little friends. For my husband, in the operating room, scalpel in hand. For me, here in my prayer closet. No matter where we are, no matter what we face, we are always standing in the field of God’s provision. He. Is. Right. Wherever. And so… We can rest.

  • Deuteronomy 7:9 “Know therefore that the Lord your God is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love Him and keep His commandments to a thousand generations…” “No matter where our feet rest, we are always standing in the field of God’s provision.” These words really encouraged my heart today. Yesterday I had an interview for my first job in 4 years. And my heart is torn. My heart is sad that I can’t stay at home with my 4 year old and 16 month old. Is this job God’s provision for my family? I really need His direction and His peace. So incredibly thankful that “the One who holds the world holds this moment. Not a field or flower escapes His notice.” (Jason Gray “Sparrows” https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=wRJZQFRyZ6s)

    • Susan

      I pray you find peace in this transition and faith that God’s provision reaches to you and your little ones – because it does!!

    • Robyn

      I can empathize. I’m returning to full-time work for the first time since my daughter was born six years ago. I’m happy about the opportunity and the people I will meet at my new job. But, I feel a little wistful about leaving my 3.5 year old son. I’ve had so much fun one-on-one time with him while his big sister was in preschool and kindergarten. But, I know God will provide for me and my children, both materially and in rich experiences at my children’s respective schools. I pray for peace for you as you re-enter the work world (or discern whether this is truly the path the Lord wants you to take at this time). Blessings.

    • Sian

      I was struck by Deuteronomy 7:9 too!!! He is God and is faithful in his love, devotion and provision for us – we just have to trust him and accept his will and timing ♥️

  • I almost didn’t do this one, since I’ve studied Ruth so many times. But what a sweet week it has been! So thankful for truth that reaches my heart. I have been convicted of discontentment and encouraged in God’s provision and plan for my life. What a blessing.

  • I love reading these verses in Psalms and knowing that King David’s great-grandfather is Boaz. His regard for the weak had an eternal impact that ended up blessing everyone of us.

  • I think sometimes we remember only the Boaz part of the story, but forget all the pain and loss that Ruth suffered first: losing her husband, brother-in-law, and father-in-law (and all the financial and physical safety they provided); then leaving her home country and family. In tough times, we need to remember that God’s timing is not our timing. We need to trust that He has something good planned for us, even if we can’t see it yet in our own messy lives.

    • SusieT

      Yes, Karen, I had the same thought. What must have that time felt like to Ruth? A recent widow without the protection of a husband, brother-in-law or father-in-law…now in a country yet new to her and where her appearance likely made her stand out at least a little. Add to that her new daily routine of day-long, sweaty, back-breaking work as she labored in the fields, hot sun beating down on her, as she gleaned – a task that required stooping over most of the time. She had no idea of the future God had in store for her, yet she evidently chose to count her blessings – apparent when she got home to Naomi and showed her the large amount of grain she’d gathered, as well as her left-overs from lunch: God’s provision.

  • Remember those Choose Your Own Adventure books? The ones where you came to the end and had to make a decision (“To land and explore the surface of the alien planet, go to page 67. To investigate the source of the explosion on the ship, go to page 110.”). I hated those because I always wanted to make the right choice (invariably I never did — the alien always got me) and I would flip back and forth between pages until I was satisfied with my outcome.

    Real life does not give us those options. Trust and faith aren’t a coin flip. And yet I find myself constantly trying to peek around the corner, asking God if this is truly what he wants of me, trying to hedge my bets against turning the page. Ruth is such a good example because, despite her tragic circumstances, she trusted God’s provisions and walked accordingly.

    I have always been struck by Ruth’s faithfulness, to both Naomi and to God. She must have still been grieving from the loss of her beloved husband, but God provided healing from her loss, strength from Naomi’s presence and wisdom from her advice, a champion, friend (and later, a husband) in Boaz, and a place in the lineage of Christ. Ruth couldn’t see around the bend; she didn’t know the plans God had for her, and yet she remained faithful. Her needs were met, and even greater blessings bestowed upon her.

    • Jennifer W.

      I read so many of those! They fed my heart belief that “If I just make the right choices, my life will be OK, or even good. But if I make the wrong ones…I’m in trouble! And God isn’t going to bail me out!” I am SO thankful that God has proved me wrong and showed me that His grace and His plan are far outreaching my feeble efforts. Surely, life has dealt a difficult hand at times (even when I did the “right” thing!) but so many other times, God has lavished undeserved riches and love upon me, the greatest of which, of course, is adopting me as His daughter and blessing me with every spiritual blessing in Jesus.

  • So good

  • Anonymous

    I just wanted to take a moment today to thank everyone who responded to my comment and questions yesterday about God’s purpose and chronic illness. I was truly touched by the kindness shown to me and those comments combined with today’s devotional have refreshed me and reminded me that I do have purpose where I am and God has better things in store for the future. I might not always understand why there’s a manatee on my backpack but I have to trust that I’ll be on the bus that will take me home.

    I think that sometimes I become too focused on what I’m doing or not doing, which only leads to stress. But when I focus on what God has done for me and how beautiful His love is, I’m filled with love and it makes me want to share that feeling with others in whatever way possible. It’s all much easier said than done considering how prone our minds are to wandering…..but I know it’s the only way to feel satisfied.

    Be blessed, sisters, and remember that no matter what you’re going through today, you are seen and heard and you are not alone. You may be struggling today but your joy (or maybe I should say His joy flowing into you?) will return in time.

  • Oh, how sweet it is to know that God has our lives in his hands! After these past two years of abandonment and divorce, that is so apparent to me. I am truly thankful to be one of his children and have him to lean on in every step of my life.

  • This is really inspiring! And it reminds me that sometimes we spend a lot of time begging our heavenly father for something we think we need. Like the example here about Boaz. Sometimes we plead for God to give us a Boaz because we think that is going to make us happy!
    This story reassures us that God is in control, He knows whats best for us and He will provide in His timing which is the best timing!

    The only one who can truly satisfy the human heart, is the one that made it! ❤️

    • Gema Muniz

      Yes…. how is it that we alwyas think we know what is best for us and when is best for us. But, how great is it that when we give all those dreams and hopes to God, God provides us with the ultimate best at the best time. We must aleays remember and find comfort in the idea that we only know part of our story while God knows our full story and knows what is best for us. God bless you sisters.

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