Ruth: Day 11

A Life Restored

by

Today's Text: Ruth 4:13-17, Psalm 127, Proverbs 24:27

Text: Ruth 4:13-17, Psalm 127, Proverbs 24:27

Isn’t it amazing? In just four chapters, we have seen two women move from overwhelming despair to incredible hope. Remember how Naomi interacted with her friends in the first chapter? “‘Don’t call me Naomi. Call me Mara,’ she answered, ‘for the Almighty has made me very bitter. I went away full, but the Lord has brought me back empty’” (Ruth 1:20-21).

Now, in chapter four, her friends are surrounding her, praising God for the birth of Ruth and Boaz’s son, Obed, another potential kinsman-redeemer in her family tree. What was empty in Naomi’s life is now full, and her friends declare, “Blessed be the Lord, who has not left you this day without a redeemer” (Ruth 4:14).

In the midst of trial, I am always tempted to think the opposite of what Naomi’s friends declared—that the Lord has left me, and there will be no redemption to my story. We’ve all been there. You might be there right now.

During these times, when I don’t know what the future holds, I often try and plan it out myself. Grasping for a sense of control, I make lists, imagine scenarios, send emails, do whatever I need to do to feel like I’m making progress, to feel like I’m fixing my problems, to feel like I am getting somewhere. This is what I would have done had I found myself in a Ruth-and-Naomi situation: widowed, childless, desperate, and staring at a shaky, unclear future.

The problem with my go-to method of scrambling and planning is not the plan itself, but rather, the overseer of that plan. Me.

Psalm 127 says that when we are building our own house, our labor is in vain. When we are watching over own city, our watching is in vain. The Lord is the only one who knows the plan and has the power to put it into action. Try as we may, we simply get in the way.

Naomi could not have foreseen the beauty that would come from her story of ashes (Isaiah 61:1-3). What God was building was beyond her predictions and planning. Though she lost her sons and her husband, as her friends reminded her, having Ruth as her daughter-in-law turned out to better than having seven sons (Ruth 4:15).

Just as redemption was in God’s plan for Naomi, so is it in God’s plan for us.

Down the bloodline from Boaz and Ruth and Obed is our Redeemer, Jesus. In Christ, there is no such thing as a story beyond redemption. There is only resurrection, restoration, and rejoicing, even in the most unlikely of circumstances and with the most unlikely of subjects.

If you’re wondering today if the Lord has left you, and the idea redemption at this point feels impossible, hold fast to the promise we see in Ruth and Naomi’s journey. Nothing is too much, too big, or too scary for our Savior. God has not walked away from you. He’s done the opposite. He has drawn near to you through His Son, Jesus.

Today, let’s take a step back today from whatever it is we are trying to control our way out of. Instead of planning and building, let’s sit in the promise of our Redeemer, believing that God is sovereign and His redemption is already ours.

SRT-Ruth-Instagram11s

 

  • I needed to hear God’s awesome and amazing voice concerning my family and the future. God spoke to me in His amazing way as I read this, reminding me of His sovereign control in all things. Thank you for allowing God to use you as a vessel for Him!

  • Isn’t it amazing that the Lord will point you towards His truths and word when you need it the most. He always knows what to say and what your heart needs to hear. Today I needed to hear this. I’m starting my Junior year of college today and while in retrospect that might not be a big deal, it is to me. I let my anxiety fill my mind and I dwell on past hurts and negativity. I’m terrified of the future. Will I succeed, fail, will I have real friends that include me? Am I going to be left out and lonely? What drama is going to occur? Well I’m not God, and I’m putting such a heavy weight on my shoulders worrying and trying to control things that I simple don’t know about and can’t. How much more beautiful it is to rest in Jesus Christ our Redeemer and trust Him. Lay back safely in His arms and allow His plan to unfold as you are safe and loved. I need to remember that. I need to try and live like that which is a lot easier said than done. But as I start my first day I challenge myself that whenever I feel anxiety creeping into my mind through out the day to just give it straight to God. To remind myself I’m not alone and not in control, that all things work for his glory and that I am redeemed through Him.

    • Rachel

      Loved this! I needed to hear this because 3 years ago when I started my junior year, I was in the same boat. And those anxieties still creep in post graduation.

  • Annie May

    So true for me today, as I go through an unexpected time of potential change. Lists are helping me see the options, but i pray God will show me the path, not just the dotpoints i write.

  • “Control freak” it’s always been a moniker of mine. I’ve always been high strung and have always winced when people mutter the words “you’re no fun.” What’s odd is that I’m super goofy and truly joyful about life – but when it’s crunch time I’ve always felt SOMEONE has to take the lead, right? Then I get in the zone and elbow others out of the way to do it “right.” It’s been a lifelong struggle. Now here I am, approaching my late 30’s and finally figuring out that I need to Pause and Pray. My Father has it under control – I still need to do my part but He knows the master plan. This isn’t to say I’m not a raving lunatic when there is a stressful situation but I do try to keep it in perspective. I am cared for. I must trust my Father, He never fails me.

  • He cares for us , He knows our name. Thanks be to God for His loving kindness towards us!

  • emma griffin

    Recently I have been struggling with finding my “purpose” feeling as though i may not have one. College is approaching me soon and I get so anxious about choosing the right place and the right career path and constantly focusing on making my parents proud. (This is especially difficult with an older sister who is so successful and has it all figured out) This devotion was definitely something i needed to hear as i have been trying to organize and plan and manage how my life is going to turn out and try and make everything perfect. This week i’m going to practice letting go of control and letting God show me and basking in his redemption.

    • She Reads Truth

      Praying for you, sweet Emma. Asking the Lord to guide and direct you and give you purpose through His Word. You have big things ahead of you!

      – Stormye

      • jennifer

        Dear Emma 2 months have gone by and my hope and prayer for you is that today you can still let go of satan’s lies. No one is perfect or has it all together, our minds can be such a battlefield. One step at a time and let the Lord who loves you take your hand each step of the way. Career paths change through out our lives, each path is a stepping stone to the next great thing God has for you. Trust Him who has it figured out for us! May He shine upon you!

  • Alexandra

    I have been trying to figure things out on my own…Thinking I know the plans to “build my own house”. Life has been overwhelming for me lately. I am a new mom and have been excited that God has blessed my husband and I with a son. I am joyous of motherhood but afraid of many other things going on in life. Like many other mothers, I want to stay home with my little one. However, we are sadly in debt and I want to contribute financially to help my husband. We distain debt so much and want to be free of it as soon as possible. Finding work that I can do at home has been fustrating. I fall into this cycle of fear of failure and fear of the opinions of people. Ironically, by fearing failure I quit and stop pursuing the idea I had. I have this lingering feeling of discontentment because I know something is missing in my life. I want to find something creative and meaningful to do but I do not know what that is. Upon failing, I assume that idea wasn’t my passion and part of the plan. God knows and he has had the blueprints in his hands this whole time. I just have been ingoring him and trying to construct my building on my own with the wrong motivation. It is scary to see bills piling in, a baby crying, and laundry piling high. I wonder if my family and I will ever get out of the crazy slump of life and finally reach our goals. After reading this, I picture God tapping is finger on my shoulder saying “Don’t worry, I am here and was next to you the whole time. Step aside and relax, I can handle this for you. Just trust me. I have the plans right here and they will be done.” Praise God and I pray I will know that aways.

  • I have been in the midst of a marriage and work situation that I know was not God’s plan for my life. I have taken the reigns from God so many times to try to fix the situation myself and yes, I mess it up. I need to let Him be my Redeemer and have the faithfulness of Naomi and be obedient as Ruth and know that He is working everything according to his plan and purpose. God is sovereign and has already redeemed my story! Amen!

  • Carissa, I prayed for you.

  • Carissa

    I have to admit I’m not in the best place to appreciate this devotion. I’m definitely reading it while experience major trials that have yet to stop. It does feel like God has abandoned me and I hate feeling that way. I just don’t understand and want my redeemer to show himself.

  • Donald Trump was elected president today. While I feared Hillary more, this post was in good timing.

  • I am guilty of always trying to plan my way out of situations and it has left me with nothing but anxiety and disappointment. Our plans can be good, but they can never be great. Because we can’t see everything ahead of us. Or even behind us. God can though. His plans are everything that our plans fail to be. They are made in full knowledge, fully planned and carefully considered.

  • Katie Beth

    So thankful for Gods word this morning. Everyday I wake up trying to wrap my head around my unknown autoimmune disease and my mind never stops trying to think up reasons for how and why.. I’m constantly trying to find answers, trying to get better, constantly upsetting myself and wanting to feel normal. It becomes difficult waiting for 4 years with doctors throwing you in so many different directions, and then the enemy wants you to believe that your stuck like this. Everyday I must remind myself that NOTHING is too much for our Savior. God will not walk away from me. I must sit in His promises and and believe in Gods plan for my life. She reads truth truly touches my daily life by being reminded of our Lords truths.
    Lord may your healing come quickly for us that are hurting.. You are the ultimate healer. May we put our trust in You. Thank you for Your redemption in our lives!!

  • Rachal T.

    This hits my heart on what I find myself doing. I make the lists and plans trying to help orchestrate my life, but it leaves me frustrated. It is my prayer that I submit my obedience and trust to the Lord as many times as it takes to relinquish control. I cannot control anything that the Lord has created, so He is the Provider and Redeemer I need to heal me and lead me. Amen.

  • Megan Lovas

    So needed to hear this today, my son is on a waiting list to be evaluated for ASD and I feel like all I do is research and call and see if the lists have gotten shorter. All the while God knows my boys future and diagnosis and I am not the one in control. It’s hard to let go of your kids and hand them over, but He can always be trusted.

  • Mandy S

    Wow this is so me! I am a control freak and when it feels like my life and situations are getting out of hand and I can’t see the end result I make plans, lists, observations, and try to do whatever I can to get my hands on it and make it go the way I want it to. Having two small children and being married has changed that somewhat but not entirely. I have relinquished some of my control but internally I am still the same. Finances go awry- find whatever I can sell to make a profit, do a yard sale , find things online to make money… House gets wrecked for the 50th time today-get mad and order everyone in site to pick up and create a tornado of cleanup… I wish I could find a way to be like that- let God take over and rest knowing that he is taking care of things… I hate the unknown so much though. It’s terrifying to me…

  • This devotional speaks so clearly to me! I am very much a type A – control freak. But as I spiritually grow, the Lord is vividly revealing to me that my need for control is unfaithfulness . Love, love, love this devotional!

  • Jessica Corley

    It’s been 2 1/2 years of trying to start a family. I know that God has a plan for us, I just want to make sure that we are going down the right path. After losing our baby in April, I will follow whatever will He has. Please pray that He will reveal His path for a healthy child soon.

    • Monica Mckinny

      Jessica, I will definitely pray just that for you family!

    • Jacquie

      Praying for you! Jeremiah 29:11 reminds us that “He knows the plans He has for us;plans to prosper us, and not to harm us. Plans to give us a hope and a future.” Blessings!

  • Thank you for a reminder exactly when I needed it. A very painful season.

  • Carrie Rogers

    Beautiful reminder, as many doctors and our family is desperately trying to find out why my Dad is ill. Oh and the Lord used Psalm 127 to check my heart as we are in the middle of building a house. Thank you❤️

  • Shuana Huggins

    Very timely I am going through a divorce that I did ask for. My husband abandoned me and lives with his mistress. My heart has ached . I didn’t understand how he could make a vow in church before God and do this to me and the kids. The kids are his step kids but he vowed to love them and be father to them as their dad had been deceased for years. He walked away and filed for divorce . Never said goodbye or apologized . I suffered month of emotional and psychological abuse from him. This coming Wednesday I will be going to court for the divorce will start. I am nervous , and hurting. I am thankful that God is my redeemer.

    • Jenna Hof

      I just want to send you a big hug and say that you sound so incredibly courageous. And that God is beside you in this hard time.

    • Monique

      Shauna
      Just know that you’ll be covered on Wednesday. I’ll get up early & pray. That maybe a complete stranger u will likely never meet, is covering you in prayer that you will feel His presence & know that He will fight for you! It’s who He is.

    • Sarah

      Shauna, my heart hurts for you because I have been in a similar situation. I am praying God gives you the same revelation He gave me: You are not forsaken. You are Beloved.

  • There is a beautiful song called, Thy Will, I love it all but there is one line in there that speaks volumes to me and is timely with these words from this morning. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=PAmh3yvmzXs
    “Sometimes I gotta stop Remember that You are God And I am not, so Thy will be done”

    • Caroline

      I love that song! Such a good reminder that God is in control in all circumstances.

  • Such a timely truth bomb for me today! We are trying to sell our house and I’ve been frantically checking to see how many “likes and saves” we have on Zillow. It’s so silly when I say it out loud, and shows the control freak inside of me. My prayer today is that I would take a ste back from what I’m trying to control (even though I have absolutely no control over it), and to sit in the promise of my redeemer, trusting and believing that His plan is greater than my own, even when I don’t understand!

  • Hi ladies,
    Since I love this community so much I was hoping I could share my new christian blog with you:
    http://www.whints.com/ –> I’d love to build a community and get inspired by so many wonderful christian women..
    God bless xx

  • This is such a timely good word. Going through a rough patch with my sister pulling away from the family and ignoring us all, I am so frustrated with not being able to do anything and it is so hard to see God in this. But maybe that’s the point. That I am not in charge and can only cling to Him and His redemption.

  • Praying for you Felicia! That you will feel God’s peace! He’s got you. xo

  • Felicia

    Thank you for this. It seems like you always get a word from God when you need it most. The story of Ruth has shown up several times this week in my life and I am behinning to grasp what God is telling me. There are several similarities between Ruth and I. Back in January I my finance died in a freak accident. I happen to be living with him and his parents at the time (and I still am). And through all the pain and the hurt I’ve been seeking God and trying to help people and do the right thing.

    This reading has been a reminder that God knows, He sees me and He has a plan. He will make something beautiful out of my messy life… there is redemption.

    All of that to say Thank you for this post. It spoke directly to my heart.

    • Halee

      Felicia,
      You are in my prayers today.

    • Kayla

      My heart and prayers go out to you Felicia,
      May the Lord give you Beauty for your ashes, as it is said in his word.

  • Resurrection, restoration and rejoicing..those three words sum it up quite nicely.
    One word that came to me that is not listed here was redemption.
    I love how this story shows us that doing what is right is not always doing what is ~easy.~ Had Boaz done what was easy, he would not have gone to the guardian redeemed first. Ok, I think I am starting to babble, now…
    Jesus, I thank You, that through You, I am made clean. Free of sin. FORGIVEN. I am so overwhelped at the price You paid for my redemption.

  • Needed this today, knowing God has more for me than I could ever have imagined! 1 Peter 5:7 “Casting all your anxieties on Him because he cares for you,” !! Praise The Lord. He’s got me and I’m choosing joy. Confident that God’s got me no matter my circumstance.

  • Lizzieb85

    Anyone else find a bit of humor in that the verse about children being a blessing is right after the verse about God giving those He loves sleep in Psalm 127? As a mom who still has to get up multiple times a night, I chuckled a little bit. (These wakings are not in vain though)

    • Jennifer W.

      Yes, it’s almost like he anticipated a mommy saying, “Well, he must not love me very much then!” He does. And sleep comes again someday! At least for a week or so before another growth spurt, I am learning!

    • Emily

      Agree wholeheartedly!!!

    • Lindsay Prater

      Ha!

  • I have been struggling with my special needs son’s school schedule. I have been trying to figure it all out and thinking I know the schedule he needs. Thank you for these words today and showing me that it is not in my control and God has control over it all.

  • Lindsay Prater

    For the first time, I read Psalm 127 also as a comfort (along with the story of Ruth) in the midst of the hardship of raising 3 very young children. In other words, the Psalmist could say, although this is REALLY hard work right now, don’t forget that these children are YOUR reward and blessing straight from your heavenly Father. That changes everything! What a wonderful thing to pray, to literally see them as such ♡

  • Jennifer W.

    Wow, Psalm 127 ministered to me in a new, powerful way this morning! I was bombarded with guilt trips from others this morning, and right when I was finding a little bit of a groove with balancing my precious family with the unending demands of church ministry. Others want me to do more stuff, but God used this Psalm to quiet my heart and let Him build my house and His church. He is inviting me to participate in His Gospel work, but in this new season, it starts in my home with my little one and my husband, and there’s nothing to feel guilty about if I am a little less of a mover and shaker in the church for a while. Not only does God have grace for busy mommies, he reminds us that our babies are a precious gift from Him and that a life full of shepherding little ones is a happy, meaningful life!

    • Lindsay Prater

      Amen! Our children and families ARE our “ministry”! What more important thing could we contribute to the body of Christ?

    • Rochelle

      love this. and i couldn’t agree more, with both you, Jennifer, and you Lindsay! i’ve certainly been there, feeling like i “should” be doing more, but i’ve also come to understand it’s better to follow my heart and focus on my husband and children first. i feel like i’ve found a good balance and i pray you will too!

  • Thank You, dear Jesus, for reminding me of this truth today. You are my Redeemer and You are sovereign over all of my life. I surrender my attempts to control everything to You. Help me to trust You and to rely on You.

  • God has been working on my heart to stop trying to control things, specifically to lay down my dream to be home with the kids. I am picturing Abraham’s willingness to give God something incredibly dear to him (his son!). Knowing that God could provide a way out, but not knowing if he would provide a way out. I have been clinging so tightly to MY plan. My spirit lifts when it seems obtainable, and I am crushed when things fall apart. I need to to submissively lay my plans at Jesus’ feet, and joyfully take to the “gleaning in the fields” (going to my job). Perhaps God will make my plans his own and give them back to me, or perhaps he will have entirely different plans. But how will I see how good his plans really are if my vision is clouded by how I think life should be?

    • Jennifer W.

      This was helpful to me, thanks! I also dream of staying home with my baby girl, but I need to work part-time right now. I think staying home is a good goal, but if it becomes an idolatrous dream where my happiness lies, I’m getting off track!

  • Cynthia

    Jennifer, living by faith means your taking the next step where God leads and trusting Him for the results. You apply for the job and wait to see what God does with it. You take care of your body with healthy eating and exercise and let God give you His strength in your weakness and heal you in His will. His Word is a light unto my path and a lamp unto my feet. We do what God leads us to do and trust Him for the results. May the Lord bless you as you walk in His light!

  • Sierra St John

    The Lord has a beautiful plan and purpose through singleness and servanthood. He has not left me but is molding me and my circumstances to conform with His perfect and beautiful plan. I’m holding on to the promises today ❤️ Thank you, Jesus for your sweet sweet love, friendship and redemption.

  • Jennifer C HOFF

    May I ask a hard, but very genuine, question.

    This is an area that I struggle with a bit. I can very much relate to trying to wrest back control of my life or solve my problems by making lists, sending emails, creating goals and plans etc. Sometimes it has worked and sometimes not. But… how would it work if I were to trust God with this?

    Does that mean that I am to stop doing all actiivitieis and just wait for God to bring a solution? Along those lines…. should I expect that God would bring someone to my door out of the blue to offer me the perfect job, even if I never contacted that company or let anyone know I wanted a job? Should I expect that a university program would accept me into their program without me taking the steps to apply? I have health issues… should i stop eating healthy and exercising, but trust God that my health will miracuously improve despite me taking physical no steps to do so? Is that realistic? I truly mean this as a genuine question, not to be argumentative at all. I guess what I don’t understand is how to trust God to control my life without me taking steps too.

    Thanks in advance for your answer

    • Catherine

      I think that it may be in the intentions. Like they mentioned earlier, it’s not the planning itself that you’re doing wrong but allowing yourself to be the overseer of all the planning. There’s nothing wrong with taking all those steps but knowing that in the end God is in control of everything and He can open and close doors and lead you where He wants you to go. I don’t see anything wrong with planning and preparing for the worst but what is your intentions behind all that? Is it trying to satisfy yourself by fixing things or is it to satisfy God and look for what He wants you to do? And I think the perfect answer is for a moment, just for today take a step back and sit and embrace the moments God gives you. Maybe go take a prayer walk in a park, maybe meet up with a good community to have a good time of fellowship, etc. I hope that helped. I am also struggling with this currently and this article was perfect for me so i felt convicted to reply :)

    • Haylee

      Hi Jennifer,

      This is something I’ve wrestled with time and again. “But don’t I have to do my part??” Yes. Totally. God (typically!) doesn’t just drop things in our lap. We have the freedom to choose things. I think the thing to remember is that before we start being proactive about things, think about if we’ve prayed over them first. Have we talked to God, sought first His kingdom, read His Word, sought counsel from trusted Christian friends or family, etc before we’ve decided that this is the right choice/avenue? Then once you’ve decided to pursue this thing, are you trusting God with it, holding it loosely with open hands, in case He actually decides he has something better for you, and trusting that He works for your good? Just some things I’ve learned!! Others feel free chime in because I still struggle with this!

    • Michelle

      This is such a great question that I’ve also wrestled with and I don’t think you sound argumentative at all. As I’ve gone through and am going through periods of uncertainty what it’s boiled down to is where I place my trust. It is important to have an active faith, stepping out and doing things such as sending emails, or making lists or sending in an application. But we can’t put our trust in those things. Our peace and rest comes from trusting in the sovereignty of God instead of in the things we do. Surrendering control to God allows us to hear him more clearly about what the next step should be instead of allowing our imaginations to take us down 10 different paths that lead to more to dos and stressors that will never actually happen. So I think we should go and do in the freedom God offers as Lord and not in the fear and uncertainty that comes when we try to control each circumstance. His good and perfect plan may be different than what we imagine, but it is always best and will bring us into a more intimate relationship with Him.

    • Laura

      Wow! Thank you for asking. I can totally relate. I am on this roller coaster of, “Ok, I am going to trust God and wait” and “I am being lazy and cannot expect God to bless this,” then go back to sending emails and making lists etc. As I process this, a couple thoughts come to mind. A) We see examples of both in the Bible. Moses at the Red Sea was a raise up your hands and wait on God moment. But then, even in this story, Ruth is out in the fields working, not at home waiting for someone to come to the door. What I see in both are people doing the next thing that God told them to do. Not seeing their actions as the answer, but seeing their obedience to God as an act of faith that God would take care of them. B) I can tell the difference when I am striving to make things happen. I am expecting my 1 plus 2 to equal 3. But when I am trusting God, I am doing the next thing not because I am expecting a certain result, but because I want to follow what God is calling me to do. The first is usually accompanied by fear and anxiety while the other is full of rest. Would love to hear other thoughts on this too as I continue to process this with the Lord!

      • Jennifer W.

        “The first is usually accompanied by fear and anxiety while the other is full of rest.” SO right on! I ask this question all of the time and had a debate with my husband and brother about it last night. You so hit the nail on the head for me here! :D

    • Lizzieb85

      Some great answers already! I’m just going to add simply; you take steps, but in line with the Holy Spirit. That means seeking Him out in everything. That is what Jesus means by abiding/remaining in Him. ALL we do should be for His glory. If you are spending genuine, regular time with Him, He will guide your decisions. From what to eat, to what jobs to apply for. What’s “bad” is barreling ahead with decisions based on our own selfish desires.

      In the end, what God desires from us is to have such a great relationship with Him that our desires & His desires are the same. It’s win/win all around.

    • Bobbi

      Thank you so much for asking this! In at that same point, yes I want to place everything in the hands of God, but I even doubt myself when I THINK I hear The Lord.
      Do I just go on floating through life? Or do I make decisions… And HOPE I’m hearing The Lord.
      Lately my prayer has been, Lord do not let me make the wrong choice… Now that may not work, but I have been going through a storm and making rash decisions. So I’ve asked the Lord to stand in my way if it isn’t His will.
      I have felt unable to make decisions, clouded prayer time, and doubtful of hearing the Lord, so I simply straight out asked Him, Lord of I’m not supposed to talk to that person don’t let them answer their phone!
      Drastic, but sometimes my control gets to that point where I know I need to listen to God, but still do everyday life!
      Stand in the way of my emails being sent Lord, if I go to make a list that isn’t of you dry up the pen I’m using, make it impossible for me to take control of my own life!
      Yes free will He allows, but I want to follow the Lord so close that if I’m being dumb and making decisions before praying…. Make me think twice Lord and work harder if I want to take things into my own hands!

      I could be totally wrong, but currently that’s honestly where I’m at.

    • mary001

      I think that turning things over to God and trusting His plan is something that we will struggle with all the days of our lives. I have encountered several situations in the past, each situation much more difficult than the previous one, in which I have battled with God on my trust issues. Every time I think I’ve got this whole trusting in God thing down, God presents me with a new challenge in life. At the end of each lesson, I am again reminded that God is sovereign and that not only will I need to trust Him, but I also need to rely on Him even more so to get me through difficult times. Regardless of whether I make good or bad decisions, there is a lesson to be learned on my part. My perspective on hardships, struggles, and difficult times, have changed from a “why is this happening to me?!” to one of humility. If God wants something to happen, it will. If not, don’t stress over it and move on. I think that’s what it means to let go and let God. Or to fully rely on God.

  • Margaret

    As I have shared here, my son is troubled and his Dad and I are waiting on the Lord to speak to us about the next steps. The devotional reminded me of something I read and think about everyday, “It’s not your fight, it has never been your fight. It is God’s fight and it always has been his fight.”

    • shannon

      This reminds me of the verse in Exodus 14:14. Moses is at the Red Sea. The Egyptians are closing in and by all standards, it looks like the Egyptians will overtake them on the banks of the Red Sea. Then Moses says ‘the Lord will fight for you while you keep silent’. Then the Lord spoke to Moses and told him to lift up his staff and stretch out his hand over the sea and divide it.

  • Diane Huntsman

    Today, let’s take a step back today from whatever it is we are trying to control our way out of. Instead of planning and building, let’s sit in the promise of our Redeemer, believing that God is sovereign and His redemption is already ours.

  • Keri Underwood

    I’m such a planner so today’s reading has such a place in my heart. So often I have tried to plan out every aspect of my life, my day, my finances. But God’s plan is always better. And there is such freedom in giving Him control!

    http://www.littlelightonahill.com

  • Caroline

    These are just spot on. So thankful that he is with us through the storm! Resting in His promises today!

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

  • I am guilty of this. I literally sit on my computer and plan out my life in an excel spreadsheet. Part of me just loves to dream about what the future holds but I also know I hold on a little too tightly to certain aspects of those dreams. This morning I’m embracing that God has a plan for me that cannot be condensed into a Microsoft app. He has immeasurably more for me than I could plan or dream. I will set my eyes on Him and let the story unfold.

    • Shelbs

      Susie- thanks for sharing your heart. I am praying right now as I type that the Lord would just give you security and confidence in HIS plan and freedom.

    • Amalia

      Susie I feel just the same! Thank you for sharing. Sometimes I cling so tightly to what it is that I want and I struggle to pray that God would have his will and his way in my life. Sometimes the best I can do is pray that he would change my heart to align with what he wants.

  • Sarah Joy

    God uses so many pieces from these verses and reflections to touch so many people everyday. I’m constantly amazed by the diversity of our stories and how God enters into each so personally and lovingly in ways that get our attention.

    This morning the verses that stood out to me in the midst of my learning were Psalm 127:1,2 — “Unless the Lord builds the house those who build it labor in vain. Unless the Lord watches over the city, the watchman stays awake in vain. It is in vain that you rise up early and go late to rest, eating the bread of anxious toil; for He gives His beloved sleep.”
    I have recently been lacking sleep due to my own choices. I want time to turn off my brain with social media (or the Olympics). Then I wake early with my children or to prove I’m good by going to the gym. My body is worn out by anxious toil. My head is filled with lists and to do’s. Running after perfect kids, perfect relationships, and who knows what else is exhausting and “in vain” because I’m trying to build it alone. These verses convicted me in several ways that I need to be receiving the rest God offers physically and emotionally. HE is building His kingdom through our family, not me.

  • Jessica

    I am endlessly amazed at how the Lord provides what we need when we need it. I am dealing with a difficult relationship right now and woke to thoughts racing in my head. What do I do? What should I say? What is this day going to bring? I got out of bed and went directly to my knees – praying for comfort and peaceful thoughts. Out loud, I prayed “God, give me a message this morning – I need it!”
    Then I read this devotional and tears are just streaming down my face. I needed this reminder so badly: to relax, sit back and let the Lord do his work. He has a plan – I know it in my heart – but sometimes my mind races ahead. This study has come at a perfect time for me and I am so grateful!

    • Cyndi

      This is exactly my day, my life right now and how I feel. So thankful for today’s devotional!!! I am going thru a difficult relationship right now. As I lift up mine I will lift up yours. Praying we stay out of Gods way. Praying that we can Be Still and watch the same God of Naomi and Ruth will move in our situation. Praying that we do not define ourselves but our circumstances but by our God. I refuse to believe He does not hear me and That He is not right here beside me every step of the way!!

      • Kristina

        This is also my day as well!!! Just going through a breakup that may turn back into a relationship and needed this. Praying that God leads us in His direction and for us to rest in the promise that His ways, timing, and direction are PERFECT. Praying also that we know that we are fully known and loved by Him.

  • This was exactly what I needed today. Yesterday my husband and I had a series of unfortunate events happen, right when we thought we were doing alright. It seems like every time we get things in order, and plan things out everything comes crumbling down. It was very discouraging. I went to our prayer service at church last night, and my spirit said to pray, but my flesh kept telling me “there is no time to pray, things are falling apart, you’ve got to start working on a solution.” So instead of praying with my brother and sisters in Christ, I let my mind wander with how “I” was going to fix our problems. Today, I brought my notebooks to work, prepared to map out my plan, and the Holy Spirit said to do my devotion first. I am so glad that I listened. Everything above I am guilty of. Time after time, The Lord finds a way out of every problem I encounter, but I still doubt His power and capability, each time a new problem arises. I continue to rely on my own strength to overcome trials, instead on Gods. The truth is I am in the way, I keep getting in His way. But despite my lack of faith, He still delivers me time after time, and still desires to use me. “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts” (Isaiah 55: 8-9). His never-ending love amazes me. Thank you for this devotion.

    • Christina D.

      I have done this exact thing more times than I care to admit…knowing I should be praying and seeking God but relying on myself anyway. I could have written these words myself. Thank you for sharing this. Praying that the Lord will show you and your husband such unquestionable blessing and direction right now as you trust Him during this time.

  • I’m the woman who told the story of it coming up a year since we lost our first little one to miscarriage. It was August 16, 2015. I was so broken. Now I’m sitting here 32 weeks pregnant with a beautiful little boy. God has restored so much of my broken heart in the last few months. I still get frightened and have hard moments, but I can see My Redeemer restoring me. Satan tries very hard to prey on my weaknesses- and when I’m tired and stressed, I can guarantee he will hit me with something. God is giving me ways out, comforting me with His grace and protection. I was so much like Naomi this time last year, and then suffered more tragedy for months. Then God’s light broke through the dark clouds and picked me up…..This beautiful baby boy is such a promise, so much a gift. I can’t wait to hold him.

    3 Children are a heritage from the Lord,
    offspring a reward from him.
    4 Like arrows in the hands of a warrior
    are children born in one’s youth.
    5 Blessed is the man
    whose quiver is full of them.
    They will not be put to shame
    when they contend with their opponents in court.

    • Jennifer W.

      Sending love to you! We too lost our first little one to miscarriage- our little honeymoon baby that was loved as long as we knew she existed. We got pregnant again and how I struggled with fear in the first weeks of my pregnancy! We had to start to view God as the Giver of Life and trust our baby’s life to Him. He gave us our first baby, but took her home before we ever saw her sweet face. Then He gave us another baby, and this dear sweet beauty is a running, chattering, delightful one year old now! Every day, we commit her life to the Lord, the Giver of Life. We named her Eva, which is a derivative of Eve, which means Life, because we always wanted to remember that God is the Giver of Life and our sweet child is His child first and foremost.

  • Evangeline

    Praying for you Churchmouse, praying that our Redeemer walks with you and touches your dad’s heart.

  • This study has been a beautiful reminder for me, a single woman who is often desperate to start a family, that I truly am already full with Christ. I cannot tell you how emotional that makes me. No dating app can compete with Jesus!

  • Churchmouse

    “In Christ, there is no such thing as a story beyond redemption…” The key here is “In Christ.” I was heartbroken yesterday, sitting at the bedside of my father who is in hospice care, as he told me he believes the Bible is just a collection of stories written by men, that no one has been to heaven and back so no one knows what it is like and he hopes he gets in there. All this from a man who went to church all his life and even watches services on TV. When I tried to speak Truth in response, he shut me down with “I believe what I believe and you can’t tell me any different.” I cried all the way home. Praying today that he somehow will give up his stubbornness and fall into the arms of Christ before it is too late. “There is only Resurrection, restoration and rejoicing, even in the most unlikely of circumstances and with the most unlikely of subjects.” Andrea, your words are so timely for me this day.

    • Britt

      I will be praying fervently for your father and for you.

    • Joanna

      I’m praying for you both.

    • Elizabeth

      Praying right now for your father!

    • Jesus Girl

      I am so broken hearted for you as I know you have tried for years to reach your father. You must remember that Ruth wanted to be called Mara. She was broken hearted too. Christ is still our redeemer and nothing is too difficult for him. Remember he heals the broken hearted and sets the captives free. Know I will be praying without ceasing that your dad will KNOW the Lord!
      Praying God will tender his heart and send a Christian through the care he is receiving. That the joy they show will be something he desperately wants and starts to question his own beliefs. You have planted the seed and now God will bring a harvester. Remember the story is not over yet, God is still in the miracle business!

    • Frieda

      Praying for you and your father Church house. Thankful for this example of God’s love and provision for all of us in each season of life.

    • Margaret

      I am so sorry and will be praying for you to not labor in vain and that you Dad will come to know Christ in all of His glory.

    • Kate

      I am also praying, don’t give up hope, keep speaking truth. it only takes one moment!

    • Christina D.

      Praying for your father and for you right now.

    • Jami

      That is heartbreaking, Churchmouse. Saying a prayer for you both.

    • Amen

      If I read correctly your father hopes he gets in there.
      His hope is not lost, and clearly yours is not either.

      Love. It is all you can do. It is all we are commanded to do.

      Breathe my dear – in His time everything will be as it is supposed to be.
      You will be where you are supposed to be,
      just as he will be where he is supposed to be,
      because it is as He planned it all along.
      Breathe. Pray. Rest in comfort knowing others are praying for you both.

    • Ashley

      Praying

    • Jen

      Praying to Jesus, the Originator and Perfecter of our faith, to reveal what is true to your dad. What a mercy that you’re a safe person for him to share his thoughts about what happens after death. I’ll be praying for you in the days to come, that the Spirit would give you guidance and peace, and that He would breathe life into your dad.

    • Rhonda

      I will continue to pray for your father and for you…God’s courage and peace as you walk the steps before you. My heart hurts for you…sending love through prayers from Kansas.

  • Kara Lee McKinney

    We’ve just lost a significant stream of income and my immediate reaction is to plan and reconfigure and try and scramble. Today reminded me that God will walked with us and redeem us in this situation. Thank you!

    • JulieG

      My husband and I went through same situation years ago and we were not strong yet in our faith walk. Looking back, I see Gods hands all over what rose from those ashes. He absolutely was there for us and redeemed our situation in an incredible way. I’m praying for you Kara and I know that God will do the same for you!!

    • Jen

      We are in a similar place. We did ‘the scramble’ too. It’s easy to forget that God has a plan and a purpose. Right now He has us waiting. He has provided for us so many times in the past. I know he will in this circumstance also. I will be praying that God gives clear direction and peace!!!

    • Jen

      We are in a similar place. We did ‘the scramble’ too. It’s easy to forget that God has a plan and a purpose. Right now He has us waiting. He has provided for us so many times in the past. I know he will in this circumstance also. I will be praying that God gives clear direction and peace!!!
      ‘Sparrows’ byJason Gray has really been an encouragement to me.
      “Lean in and it’s hard to miss
      Everything can change
      When you make it His
      Oh He wants to carry it
      Carefree in the care of God
      When you let it go
      You’ll find that He’s enough
      Oh you never leave His love
      You don’t walk alone
      If He can hold the world He can hold this moment
      Not a field or flower escapes His notice
      Oh even the sparrow
      Knows He holds tomorrow”
      https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=wRJZQFRyZ6s

    • Susie Owen

      I pray that you will rest in His presence and do not let the thief steal your peace… His plans are greater than ours.. He will not leave nor forsake you..remain faithful .. With love from California

  • Incredible, and just what I needed.

    Though I may be a young teenager, I may say this: this devotion, She Reads Truth, has impacted my life endlessly. I have absolutely no idea where I’d be without God using it in my life.

    At the points where I’ve felt, or do feel hopeless, He is sure to speak through me through She Reads Truth. And He’s done it again.

    Well done, Father.
    Well played.
    I’ll give you control, because my labor, indeed, is in vain.

    Amen.

    • Shaunna

      You blessed me today–knowing a young person is devoted to reading this devotional and ultimately to Jesus! So Hope, you were just prayed for by a 30 year old in Mississippi who is rooting for you and your walk with Christ!

    • Christina D.

      I too am encouraged by you Hope. The Lord has given you wisdom and you will do great things. I’m thankful for the support and prayers from this community also as it has carried me through difficult seasons over the past 2-3 years. Thank you for being a part of it!

    • Send Me

      How inspiring to read such words from a young heart. Praying for you. God Bless!

  • Alice Carroll

    I find the Psalm 127 passage difficult because it makes me think that as a childless woman, what have I achieved in my life. And then I start thrashing around trying to justify my existence. And sure, there are probably good things I have done, do do. But in God’s economy, I don’t have to achieve anything- in Jesus’ redemption, He has achieved it all for me.

    Nothing in my hand I bring,
    Simply to Thy cross I cling;
    Naked, come to Thee for dress;
    Helpless, look to Thee for grace;
    Foul, I to the fountain fly;
    Wash me, Savior, or I die.

    • Hope

      And, as He washes, lingers still.

      For, God, You only know Your will.

      Though make sense not, my labor in vain,

      Lord, take control. Take the reigns.

      (Jesus, take the wheel!)

    • Christy

      Back in the day, when it was a bit more of a hand-to-fist economy, I think children were (especially sons -redeemed) a very obvious and physical manifestation of God’s providence. So that has become more obscured in today’s world (at least the western world), and so where do we put our hope? In our own labors and toil and what we can make? Or the fruits and miracles of the Lord? He is the provider, not us and not anything we can make or do. If we look upon what we have (whether the gift of children or other gifts) and see that the goodness is the bounty of Christ, starting first and foremost with our very salvation, then our quiver is full.

    • Lindsay Prater

      Great insight and beautiful words!

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