Ruth’s Loyalty to Naomi

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Ruth 1:6-18, Psalm 136:1-4, Psalm 146:5-10, Ephesians 2:11-13

As the daughter of immigrants from Asia, a previous ex-pat in the Middle East, and a friend of refugees, I’ve seen how significant cross-cultural moves can be. In Ruth 1:6–18, we find two vulnerable, seemingly insignificant widows with bleak social standing starting the trek to a new country. What begins as a story of survival becomes a display of God’s covenant faithfulness to His people. 

Naomi and Ruth’s story resembles Israel’s, as they seek to survive a famine, make an exodus to the promised land, and leave behind Moab and its gods. Ruth leaving Moab pointed back to Abraham, who left his people and gods to follow the one true God (Genesis 12:1–4).

Again and again in today’s reading, the phrases “return” and “go back” amplify God’s clarion call to repent. A hardened Naomi encouraged her daughters-in-law to repent backward, away from God. But humble Ruth repented by turning to a people, place, and God who weren’t her own (Ruth 1:16–18). The story of Ruth teaches us that hardships are opportunities to turn to God in faith.

Most of us haven’t had to uproot our lives for survival like Ruth and Naomi, but we were all born spiritually displaced. Whatever passport you hold, neighborhood you live in, or income bracket you belong to, you were a citizen in the land of the spiritually dead. But God didn’t leave us there. Like Ruth, we’ve received the gracious help of Jacob’s God (Psalm 146:5). 

We were without hope and God in this world, “foreigners to the covenants of promise” until Jesus brought us near (Ephesians 2:12–13). He turns us away from our old ways to cling to him. He gives us a new heart, new citizenship, new people, a new home, and the power to keep turning to Him every day.

God used Ruth’s loyalty to Naomi to fulfill His covenant promises—promises to crush the power of sin and death, bless all nations, provide a perfect Redeemer, and establish the reign of a forever King. Ruth’s simple obedience displays God’s tender heart for widows, the oppressed, the hungry, and the sojourner (Psalm 146:7–9). As His people, we must strive to have the same heart.

Ruth vowed that only death would separate her from Naomi. God’s Word says nothing can separate us from the love of Christ—not affliction, distress, famine, nakedness, danger, and sword (Romans 8:35–37). This should comfort us as God’s exiles who are sojourning through this weary world. May our hearts flood with praise for His good and steadfast love which sent a Redeemer to make the God of Ruth our God as well.

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101 thoughts on "Ruth’s Loyalty to Naomi"

  1. Heather Noble says:

    Ruth was relentless in her caring for her mother in law. She clung, she refused to leave. God, please help me not to take the easy way out of caring for others.

  2. Tami Nelson says:

    God takes hard trying times and uses them to bless us beyond what we can even imagine. I love this reminder.

  3. Talitha Anoniem says:

    We wonen Neede to be like Ruth

  4. Rebecca Delice says:

    Ephesians 2:13 “But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ.” ❤️

  5. Danica Wilbanks says:

    ❤️❤️ “you’re people shall be my people and your Gods shall be my Gods”

  6. iris bird says:

    the Lord wants to be with us and help us during hardships- that is so comforting!

  7. Morgan Tarpley says:

    The power of women sticking together, rooted in faith.

  8. Jessica Droscha says:

    I love the compassion and care God shows for widows and the oppressed! He does care for us and see us in our struggle!

  9. Chelsea Wilson says:

    Hardships are opportunities to turn to God in Faith. Lord, may I take every opportunity to turn to you! When I turn away from you I am no longer being obedient, but when I keep my eyes on you and follow your path, then I know I am acting on my faith in you alone!

  10. Katelyn Derrick says:

    “God’s word says nothing can separate us from the love of Christ” Woah that’s good .

  11. Keri LeeKnapp says:

    Ruth’s love for her mother in law blessed the world with a savior. Christ is from Ruth’s blood line ❤️

  12. Grace Byers says:

    Thank you Lord, that your mercy and Grace are endless. That you see our hearts and know our intentions. Thank you that because of that we all have the ability to be apart of the story you are telling through creation. Lord, I pray that I would have the courage and obedience of Ruth. To leave behind all that is known and comfortable to run to you and to follow you.

  13. Stephanie Kearney says:

    Just found She Reads Truth and am loving ❤️ all of the studies and pod casts.

  14. Natalie Trach says:

    I loved how the Father’s heart for the widow, the oppressed, the fatherless, the hungry, and the displaced was displayed in Ruth’s humble choice to remain with Naomi. And then how we should have that same heart where we are today ♥️

  15. Andraya Bitschy says:

    I love the idea that Naomi tried to get them to relent away from God much like the world does to us. But Ruth said no I’m not returning to that life.

  16. Julie Davidson says:

    I feel this, sister ♥️

  17. Marlyne says:

    This passage really spoke to me. It ministerd to me in such a way its hard to explain. I can relate to Naomi and Ruth. Naomi took great loss and didn’t want to be a burden to her daughter- in – laws. Ruth left every thing behind and everything she knew and made a new family with Naomi and her son but the most important thing was a relationship with God. She could not turn away from God cause she knew that even though Naomi’s faith was shaken due to the distress of loss she still stood by Naomi’s side. There are times in my life where I was bitter from loss and felt like God had left me or cursed me but I have a brother in Christ that would always encourage me that God is still faithful and God can restore and do exceedingly and abundantly more than we could ever hope for or ask for. I was homeless I felt like God had left me but he’s restored me. Nothing can separate us from the love of God. Ruth loyalty is unmatched even in the midst of a storm she stood strong and stayed with Naomi and trusted that God would provide. I thank God for just being God. Thank you for this passage.

  18. Christina Dawes says:

    I pray to have Ruth’s faith, loyalty and goodness. I am in a season of being completely displaced in more ways than one.. I know that the Lord will be with me in my new home and that he will direct my steps in my new city.. I pray that his blessings and provision will find me here. I have also felt like Naomi, where so many bad things have happened to me that I have questioned if the Lord has gone out against me.. but I know the true answer is to draw closer to God! “If we return to him, his hand will go out for us again!” Amen Lord Jesus!

  19. Josette Harris says:

    Enjoying the study thus far!

    I think it is a dangerous assumption to state that Orpah was being instructed by Naomi to “ repent backward, away from God.” I think it bold and full of faith to let Orpah go back to the home of her family, and I don’t think it is explicitly stated enough to make the assumption that she was turning away from God, rather she may not have even known God at all. All we know is that Ruth has heard of God and chose to believe in Him.

  20. Dhana Wimberly says:

    This is so timely to be reading Ruth!
    My husband and I are sojourners, & have been for 7 yrs. I have 1st hand experienced the faithfulness of God towards us! But….I have also experienced the love & care from those of where we’ve lived, Asia & Europe! The question to myself…as stated so clearly in the devotion is, ‘Am I doing the same?’ I want to!

  21. Dhana Wimberly says:

    This is so timely to be reading Ruth!

  22. Joy Hill says:

    @Yvonne… I am so sorry to read of your loss of your son. May God hold you close in these days of processing and grieving. I am imagining that many of the ‘noisy’ tasks and events around you have happened, and it may seem that people are moving in with their lives while yours seems to have ‘stopped’ in that moment of 3 weeks ago. May you be so, so, aware of Jesus’ presence and love in these days, Yvonne. May you find provision in the fields of life as did Naomi. May you be lifted up day after day and know that the love of Jesus just for you never fails, no matter how things look. Along with others here, know that you are being prayed for. Would you let us know how you are doing? Not ‘fine’, but real so that we may pray and stand with you in His love and fellowship.

  23. Susann Williams says:

    I really appreciate your words here. I hadn’t thought of it this way but what you wrote so reminded me of my mom’s reaction to my dad’s death many years ago. She was saddened and even angry with him (for not taking better care of his body) but never with God. She ran to Him and was strengthened by Him.

  24. chantal white says:

    I love the story of Ruth !

  25. Stormi Messmer says:

    ❤️

  26. Hannah Kelley says:

    It’s amazing to read about Naomi and Ruth’s story and how they are both so faithful. This definitely opened my eyes and heart tonight.

  27. Erlin Vega says:

    Here Ruth is leaving her gods and became the first “convert” to Judaism. Js.

  28. Heidi Anders says:

    The commitment to repent is no easy task but it is when our hearts burn with conviction. We must hold tight to that conviction so that we don’t take a step back. Love the story of Ruth and this study with everyone!

  29. L H says:

    I always thought Naomi was bitter and upset with God. BUT, I’ve just read a beautiful bible commentary that talks about Naomi running back TO God, by returning to Judah, where she hears God is doing great things. She runs toward His goodness in these difficult times of grief.

    ” The hand of the LORD has gone out against me: Despite this feeling, Naomi is going back to the land of Israel – and going back to her God. Though she felt that the hand of the LORD has gone out against me, she did not grow bitter against God. She returned to Him in repentance, knowing that the answer is drawing closer to Him, not going further from Him.

    i. Naomi didn’t accuse God of doing something wrong against her. She acknowledged His total control over all circumstances. It was actually an expression of trust in Him.

    ii. If Naomi was bitter or angry against God, she probably would have gone another way – further from the God of Israel, rather than back to Him. Instead, she showed that she trusted the sovereignty of God, and knew that despite her personal calamities, He is a good God who blesses.

    iii. What Naomi could not see is that the hand of the LORD would go out for her shortly! There is never reason for us to despair if we believe the hand of the LORD has gone out against me. If we will return to Him, His hand will go out for us again! Naomi had no idea – not the slightest – of how greatly God was going to bless her in a short time.”

  30. Alicia Lopez says:

    The declaration of commitment is so powerful and can be used in many ways

  31. Ashley Kary says:

    ❤️

  32. Aimee Faronilo says:

    Amen

  33. Janniah Evans says:

    God I commit to seeing you even as a foreigner I’m the land that I’m in. When there are opportunities to serve you whether it be through people or directly I know that you will give me the boldness to do so.

  34. Brittany Dodds says:

    I started coaching (what my church calls volunteering) HS girls at our church’s youth group, and we were talking about how we don’t have to act like every other young person (drink, drugs, parties, sex) just to get the most out of life. That they can choose God in their youth. I shared that growing up I had a hard time thinking my testimony would speak to anyone if I didn’t have a grand adventure story or big life trauma to share. But like this devotional said “we were all born spiritually displaced” and by choosing to follow God we have fought against the evil trying to keep us away, and will continue to until we reach the Kingdom. And that is HUGE.

  35. Terri Baldwin says:

    Such a selfless act for Ruth to stay with Naomi. Thinking of others before ourselves is something we all need in our chaotic world.

  36. Kaity Meade says:

    I’ve been to weddings where vs 16-17 are incorporated in the vows. I love the declaration of commitment and faithfulness displayed. It’s choosing to align yourself with another. God displays His love for us and we respond by this alignment, commitment and faithfulness to Him.

  37. J M says:

    @Yvonne, I am so very sorry for the loss of your son. I know the pain of losing a child. My son 1LT SFM was KIA in Afghanistan almost 12 years ago at the age of 23 years old. I pray that the peace of God which passes all understanding will comfort you today.❤️

  38. Lauren GW says:

    Thank you all, for your prayers for me and my husband.
    He is still not doing great, but not as acute as last week. We’ve been talking with the VA about treatment options, and are hoping the right things play out. He gave his gun to his parents which also helps my anxiety level. The past few days have been calmer – out of crisis mode. Although I know we are not out of the woods, and he needs a lot more treatment, I am thankful to have a few days break from fight or flight mode. Trying to take things day by day and remember that each day, God will provide manna anew

  39. Lauren GW says:

    Thank you all, for your prayers for me and my husband.

  40. Melissa Mcronney says:

    Amen

  41. Portia Strange says:

    I never realized that they were already on the way to Bethlehem in Judah (1:7) when Naomi told them to return to their mother’s house (1:8). I wonder how long had they been on their journey before she spoke up & how much longer did they have before they got to Bethlehem when she finally did speak up? I wonder what made Naomi change her mind. Was she worried about having more mouths to feed? Did she realize that loving them meant she’d have to let them go so that they could have a better life? Did she not want to burden them? Was she afraid they’d end up like her, a bitter widow?

  42. Janelle Heath says:

    Thank you! This was so good!

  43. Mia Faith says:

    Yvonne… I am
    So very sorry for the loss of your son. I lost my oldest son 8 years ago and the pain is devastating. Holding you in prayer!

  44. Mia Faith says:

    Yvonne… I am

  45. Roxane Richardson says:

    I love how God uses Ruth’s loyalty to Naomi to fulfill His covenant promises. Also Ruth’s decision to follow Naomi and telling her “your people will be my people and your God will be my God.”

  46. Samantha Fullerton says:

    @Mercy, thank you for sharing that comparison between Naomi and Job’s responses. It definitely helped shed further light on the passage and got me looking at it differently.

  47. Lehua K. says:

    What a beautiful example of loyalty from Ruth. I love how the podcast mentioned that in some versions of the Hebrew Bible, the book of Ruth is after the book of Proverbs which is right after Proverbs 31, the chapter on a woman of noble character. I’m gleaning more on how to be a Proverbs 31 woman through her example. <3

    Yvonne, I am deeply sorry for your loss. Praying that God will comfort you and remind you of His presence as you grieve.

    Heidi, praying for you and your husband Ryan to be able to hold on ever so tightly in faith to the Lord during this rocky season. I totally believe it will be worth it as you said, and He is for you, not against you. Stand firm in His promises and He will sustain you.

    Congrats Jennifer Anapol on your new bundle of joy!

    JM, praying for your relationship with your DIL. I pray for all those with challenging MIL/DIL relationships, for peace and harmony… As well as those who have lost their MIL and are grieving. I've lived with my MIL for about 14 years now, and it's been quite a journey. While I long for the freedom of our own place, I know God wants us here right now and He has blessed us through it.

    It's been a tough day but I'm thankful I finished my work on the road earlier and am home now, so I can grieve in solitude with God. My parents just put our dog to rest at noon today, about an hour ago, and I didn't want to be on the road or in public when it happened. This study has been so timely in processing grief and I am loving the lessons and reflections God has revealed to me so far. I can't wait to see what else I can learn and apply.

  48. J M says:

    Oops spell check @Michelle Patire

  49. J M says:

    ❤️❤️❤️

  50. Jennifer Loves Jesus says:

    Seeing all the comments about mother in law stories I am lamenting briefly over mine who went to her heavenly home 11 years ago. I considered her my best friend at the time. Oh how she followed God and prayed for her family. We are still anticipating many of the unseen harvests to come. It is an honor to hold a position of such influence. May we all choose well in our own right here and now place. 11 years ahead holds the promise of untold mercy and grace from the hands of our Father. Although Maranatha! Is my heart-cry I speak the name of Jesus over every choice we have to make. Our next choice is always new and holds power when we trust and obey God.

  51. Jennifer Anapol says:

    I’m so glad that God works in the details of our lives and always has a plan❤️

  52. Adrienne says:

    YVONNE… I am so sorry for your loss. And HEIDI… don’t give the enemy a seat at your table, girl! And, I am curious… Our reading says that Naomi and her DILs set out for Judah, but then at some point, Orpah decides to turn back. Why? When? If she didn’t want to go, should she not have set out? Why did she? That’s what I’m thinkin’. I have looked in two of my study Bibles and did some other research. I am coming up empty and was thinking about this all morning. Help, please?

  53. Heidi says:

    YVONNE- oh my word I am so sorry for your loss. I’m a mama too and I can’t imagine… – Know you are loved, held, prayed for, and entitled to grieve. Praying you feel the presence He promises when He says He is near to the broken hearted and crushed in spirit. One day your weeping will turn to rejoicing but as you are in the season of weeping, I pray His great comfort over your heart and mind.

  54. Mercy says:

    Reading today’s scriptures, I stopped at this verse and had a reflection. Naomi was so grieved in her pain of losing both of her beloved sons and the whole situation, that she told her sweet daughter-in-law Ruth this, “for it grieved me much for your sakes that the hand of the Lord is gone out against me” (Ruth 1:13). Hold a minute. Is the Lord’s hand truly out against Naomi? I don’t think so, as Psalm 146:9 clearly affirms, the Lord helps the widow and fatherless, it does not say His hand is against them, implying He makes them widows. But human nature can easily judge God by our undesirable and grievous circumstances. With Job, when he lost his children, he bowed down and worshipped God (Job 1:20), and this is very unusual, but it reveals how intimate Job’s relationship with God is, and how solid Job knew where his children were (with God after death, with God in a safe place called Heaven), that’s why Job bowed down and worshipped. Do you see this? But if we have no knowledge of where they are, we would be incredibly devastated. These are very subtle details that reveal a clearer look at Naomi’s and at Job’s reaction to show their relationship and understanding of God and His principles. In all your getting, get understanding (Proverbs 4:7). Regardless of what might look like on the outside, His mercy endures forever, His hand is on His people, His eyes are watching the righteous, His ears are tuned in to their very cry (1 Peter 3:12). Do not let the circumstances deceive us for once that God’s hand is against us. He is for us. Always has been, and always will be. Be blessed dear sisters!

    @Michelle Patire: thank you so much for sharing your song lyrics. It was beautiful. Way to go Michelle! I went back randomly one day and saw your response lol. How amazing is that! May God continue to build you up and strengthen you in your beautiful talents and your faith to shine His light to nations.

  55. Sara Newsome says:

    Hardships are opportunities to turn to God in faith- what a true and hopeful statement! Our God fights our battles beside us and wants us to lean on him as we face the hardest moments in life.

  56. Cristal Zern says:

    Ruth’s loyalty to Naomi is beautiful ♥️

  57. Yvonne says:

    Thank you for this reading in the book of Ruth.
    The timing is perfect as I received news that my younger son, age 49. has died.
    I am also a widow of four years.
    Your words of wisdom, encouragement and love along with precious Scriptures are very much a comfort and support for me in these days.
    I am holding on to the Lord, and He is so very faithful.
    “Trust in the Lord with all of your heart, and lean not on your own understanding’……….
    Blessings to you.

  58. Yvonne says:

    Thank you for this reading in the book of Ruth.
    The timing is perfect as I received news that my younger son, age 49. has died.
    I am also a widow of four years.
    Your words of wisdom, encouragement and love along with precious Scriptures are very much a comfort and support for me in these days.
    I am holding on to the Lord, and He is so very faithful.
    “Trust in the Lord with all of your heart, and lean not on your own understanding’……….

  59. Dorothy says:

    I’m sorry about another comment but I just have to, I guess I’m one of the lucky ones because I have a wonderful, loving and caring daughter-in-law who thinks highly not only of me but my whole family. She believes in family and supports my son when I ask him to do help out.

  60. Becky Kortman says:

    May I remain loyal to the LORD. May I seek what is best and right, pleasing the Lord who sees me and provides for me.

  61. Dorothy says:

    I forgot something on my comment that I always put;
    be blessed and show grace to someone special today sisters.

  62. Heidi says:

    Thought just popped into my head after thinking about this-

    WHAT IF we all actually believed- fully- that God in His perfect, holy existence is always worth it. Whatever your “it” is- that following Him, being His image-bearers on this planet- was worth it.

    Whatever hardship we face in the name of following and trusting God- regardless of the outcome we get to see while on this earth (don’t have to look any further than Hebrews 11 to see how many followers continued following even though they never got to see the promise fulfilled) is just WORTH it. He let His own child suffer and die- why? I was worth it. You were worth it.
    And I’m going to gripe and complain bc I may be losing the comfy life to which I’ve come to expect.

    What dynamic impact could we make on behalf of God’s Kindom and rule if we would all just say to whatever adversity we face- “I don’t like this- But if God can be glorified, it’s worth it”.

  63. Dorothy says:

    To my sisters who commented yesterday about a famine not lasting 10 years, we need to remember God brought about different punishments on His people for their sins, especially idolatry and famine was one of the major ones. If I remember correctly the famine in Joseph’s time was seven years and I’m reading the Chronological Bible and there are multiple times where God has brought about famine either on Israel or other countries as punishments for ten years or more by making their land dry and desolate. We must remember with God anything is possible.

    Today I’m awed by Ruth’s devotion to Naomi and how though she didn’t have to stay she decided to.

    Father God allow me to have the devotion and love Ruth had for Naomi and You for You, Christ and the Holy Spirit. There have been times I’ve wondered where You were or why You allowed something to happen but I know there are reasons help me to get through those times. Amen.

  64. Heidi says:

    Love this sorry so much and glad to be diving into it as I haven’t read Ruth in quite a while…

    Hardships- they’re a promise to us and one I’d rather just be rid of personally. But God and His provision and love are a promise as well and I’m currently praying He will help myself and my family have very open eyes to the real-life examples of His joy in the midst of our hardships daily.
    A lot of y’all know I started seminary this fall as an act of obedience to a long-time calling. Since I have started my husband and I have been under such increasing attack from the enemy. And just so you’re aware, I do not make that claim lightly. So much of the time we claim the enemy is attacking us when in reality a lot of the hardships that we face are circumstantial to choices that we have made ourselves. And I am typically willing to claim that. However, this time around things 100% outside of our control keep coming against us. From my toddler getting very sick the week I have all day classes and tons of reading and a big paper due, to my husband not receiving incredibly large payments from clients who have used his work and are trying to avoid paying for as long as possible, which directly affects ppl he needs to be able to pay as well as budgeting for our own family. It’s difficult because God has made it clear that this is what he wants me doing, He has even confirmed it with my husband and I individually and together. And now that I’m in it and doing it the attacks are getting heavier and heavier and every single time it makes a stop and question.
    I’ve been intentionally trying to stop asking God what to do and instead I’m asking Him for wisdom and knowledge and circumstances so that I’ll be able to know what to do. I asked him on Sunday for wisdom so I knew if I needed to drop out or get a full-time job to support my family or what, and He clapped back pretty quickly with a question in my spirit “you’re asking Me what’s wise, for what? For your comfort or for My kingdom?“. That one stopped me and my tracks because it’s right. I’ve been asking what’s the wise thing according to the system of this world, my family’s comfort and provision, and what we have in preconceived notions of what our life is supposed to be like in any given circumstance. I was not asking what’s wise in terms of his kingdom and what he’s trying to teach our family in this particular season and direction. While I have no idea what it is, my husband and I both feel strongly that there’s something very intentional and purposeful He is wanting to do with this seminary degree and with the journey we are on and getting it. We are trying to stay focused on obedience and trust, even though that can be hard to do. I love the verses in Psalm 146 today because it just reminded my heart what kind of God we are serving. At the end of the day, whatever He brings us through, I do know it will be an adventurous journey with Him.

    This is gotten too long, I’m sorry… But one more thing:

    I absolutely covet your consistent PRAYERS of wisdom and insight and courage for both Ryan and myself. Courage and wisdom in how we guide our children through this, and in what decisions we make, be it having to give up where we live and move somewhere less expensive, or what. We really just don’t know…

  65. Michelle Patire says:

    @JM– do not grow weary, God hears and cares for every prayer and petition concerning your DIL. He is working in ways you can’t see, yet I pray your eyes would be opened to His movement in this relationship. May He heal both your hearts of the pain you’ve endured in this life. Hold fast to Him and keep praying!

    @Jeni B– I am so glad you have a friend to see the Lord moving in your life through hardship. I pray the Lord continue to show you the subtle ways He is using this story. I pray you continue to trust in Him to work ALL THINGS together for good. (Romans 8:28) God says He can work ALL THINGS!!! together for the good of those who love God who are called according to His purpose. I cling to this! May you cling to this and any other promise God gives to you about His great redemption plan for us! He uses everything, nothing is wasted. God loves you and He sees you, loved one. <3 God bless you and keep you and heal your wounds.
    ——

    I am praying that for deeper and deeper revelation of God's love. I have had the hardest struggle with condemnation. I often kick myself when God allows people to see me fail. God is teaching me to be more gracious with myself. Because it is a ripple effect– and I will be more gracious with others.
    It all starts with the Lord.
    <3

    You are all in my heart Shes <3 thank you for always encouraging me! I would shout you all out but I don't want to leave anyone out and make you feel bad if I forget to write your name! Lol so many have blessed me. Just know I love you :)

  66. Jerri Blackman says:

    “Hardships are opportunities to turn to god in faith”. Definitely experiencing this in my life right now. Love when your studies align with what you are actually walking through.

  67. Allison Bentley says:

    6 When Naomi heard in Moab that the Lord had come to the aid of his people by providing food for them, she and her daughters-in-law prepared to return home from there. 13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ. – Ephesians 2:6,13 because she heard!!!! Am I sharing all that God is doing for me?? Go tell!!!

  68. Traci Gendron says:

    I had a client that was quiet in her faith, but she put off a sense of peace. I remember saying “I want what Judy has.” I worked Saturdays and wasn’t interested in getting up to go to church on Sunday, but God finally got ahold of me. Through a different client I started going to his church and then to BSF. That was almost 30 years ago. I’m sorry to say I had a time of walking away and living life selfishly for myself. May I be a quiet example of living for God and the peace only He can bring. I can only pray that I may be like Ruth.

  69. Susan Lincks says:

    God, You are amazing and I am thankful You love me. Amen

  70. Donna says:

    Sorry, if this doesn’t pertain to today’s reading! I’m behind, so I just did yesterday’s reading and am so excited to continue the ongoing story of God’s love and redemption through Ruth. One of the verses that stood out to me in the study in Psalms was Psalm 73:28, “The nearness of God is my good.” I love how we are zooming in to see that in this story in Ruth. He cares about the details of our lives and has a bigger story that we are a part of. Life has its ups and downs, but no matter what our circumstances are like, God is the goodness in our lives! He is our greatest treasure! Look for Him in each day! Here are two songs I recommend: Goodness in My Life, by Toby Mac, and Wonderful Life by Matthew West!

  71. Molly R says:

    Wow! So good!
    It struck me, as I was reading the accompanying Psalms, that Ruth’s response was very poetic – Ruth 1:16-17. Her grandson would go on to give us many Psalms, poems and songs, that reflect the redemption story over and over. Beautiful, emotional art seems to come from a heart that has been broken, put through the wringer…. but when God is also in that heart, even though it feels trampled, the art that emerges speaks of that redemption that God was working in it, even while it was being crushed. He is in darkness of our circumstances, even now, bringing light and hope. Which gives us an opportunity to share of His unfathomable goodness and blessing, His saving grace, even while we have not yet emerged from the valley!

  72. Jennifer Loves Jesus says:

    The choice of a leader matters. A husband (Elimelech) led his family away from their home to escape a famine. There was no mention of God calling him to do that. From the empty House of Bread (Bethlehem) to a foreign land known for pagan worship. I imagine his choice seemed to be the lesser of two evils since his homeland was reaping the judgement for sins against God. I expect it was supposed to be a temporary move. Turns out it was an unwise choice. The move meant to protect his family left three women as widows with no protection at all. As the scene turns to Naomi’s choice to return home, the weakness of her faith in God seems so evident to me. Her assumed role of leadership as the matriarch of two younger women played out with a stern command to return to their pagan worshiping homes. Another choice of a leader based on feelings rather than turning to God. And then Ruth rises! She is called by God against all odds, and she steps forth in an amazing display of faith. (Love her!) She seeks the Lord over comfort and protection. She trusts God for provision. She is all in. Her faith covers the bitterness in Naomi’s heart. She steps forth in servant leadership. She chose allegiance to God and Naomi’s people even while knowing the declaration that “the hand of Yahweh has turned against me” -Naomi (Ruth 1:13). Ruth’s heart was captivated by the power of God and she vowed to follow Him even if it led to death (v. 17). Beautiful. Poignant. Bitter and sweet. Knowing how this choice laced together the story of the coming Messiah is such a gift. Reading hard things in scripture in light of the revealed truth of Jesus plows the barren ground deep to receive the strongest seeds of faith in my own heart. I pray that my loyalty to God plows and plants more seeds of faith as I choose to follow Jesus. “No turning back. The world behind me, the cross before me…” Sing the songs of loyalty to our Father, Creator, King of kings, and Divine Warrior Who came and sang the final victory over us! All of our choices are made right when we turn to Him as He works them all for our good. “…and I pray that the sharing of your faith may become effective for the full knowledge of every good thing that is in us for the sake of Christ.”(Philemon 1.6). Selah. Maranatha. Amen.

  73. Peggy Pappas says:

    I was born spiritually displaced, a citizen in the land of the spiritually dead. I was a foreigner to the covenant of promises, without hope and without God in the world. But God…! He didn’t leave me there. Praise God for His faithful rescuing love and salvation!

  74. Patricia Stewart says:

    Love that.

  75. Erica Wilson says:

    I like seeing God’s faithful character at work, despite the seeming bleakness of this situation. Naomi has understandably lost herself in despair. Ruth displays astounding strength of character, motivated by- likely- the seeds of faith God is planting in her heart. But, really, no one has any idea of how GOD is at work in all of this! They have no way to imagine how God will use this heartbreak to bring about the salvation of His people. This is such a good reminder to me to trust that “God’s faithful love endures forever,” even when circumstances seem bleak. He IS at work for good, whether I can see it or not.

  76. Amber Guitron says:

    Self preservation seems to be the way to go in desperate situations- but Ruth was desperate to follow Naomi and her God. She was not consumed by her own wants and needs but was drawn to more. May we all have a heart like Ruth-clinging to or one hope. Our redeemer!

  77. Searching says:

    Praying for all of you who are mothers in law or daughters in law – for each of you to have guidance, wisdom and patience from the Lord to navigate these relationships and feelings, especially when it seems impossible. I have been a DIL twice, the first time I was pretty much hated by her (who was a founding member in our church) no matter what I did and the 2nd time, I was much loved from day 1 to the end of her life. These relationships are not always easy but have ripple effects throughout a family, either positive or negative.

    Praying for:
    AYLA NICHOLS
    KRISTINA LOPES
    MARTHA EDWARDS
    THEBESTISYETTOCOME
    MOLLY R
    LEHUA K
    LIZ HUELMAN
    JENNIFER ANAPOL (& congrats on new arrival!)
    MELISSA ESPITIA
    KIMBERLY Z
    J M
    and others I may have forgotten to write down

    KERRY ANNTODD – return to Bethlehem … me too! I’ve read Ruth many times and somehow missed that nugget.

    TRACI GENDRON – welcome back! Praying for healing.

    CASSIE HARVILLE – welcome back

    DOROTHY – loved to hear how kind and helpful your son was to your sister, and to you as well since it is one less thing for you to handle.

    KRISTEN – thank you for sharing the commentary. The one thing that will stick with me is that people will not be drawn to Jesus by our compromise. Wow.

  78. Churchmouse says:

    False gods have no staying power. If they did, then Ruth would have stayed in Moab and worshiped them.

    The one true God draws people to Himself. And once they’ve encountered Him, they go where He leads. And they don’t look back.

    1. Victoria L says:

      Amen!

  79. Aimee D-R says:

    Amen

  80. Angie Mills says:

    Since Ruth’s name means friendship, I decided to look at what a friend does.

    A friend …
    -Clings (remains with and close to) her friends
    -Does not abandon her friends, even when they try to push her away
    -Identifies with her friends
    -Is loyal to her friends
    -Accompanies (stays beside) her friends
    -Reflects God’s faithful love
    -Shows kindness

    Ruth reflected God’s friendship to her Jewish mother-in-law. God is our Faithful Friend.
    He will never leave us or forsake us. He clings to us. He remains with us and close to us. He identifies with us. In the person of Jesus, He came to earth and lived as a human for thirty-three years. Now in Heaven, He intercedes on our behalf because He is able to sympathize with us and identify with us. He knows what we are feeling in the circumstances and situations in which we find ourselves. He is loyal to us. His faithful love endures forever. He accompanies us. He is always with us. He goes before and behind and beside us. He shows us His loving kindness.

    What a beautiful picture of God’s love this pagan girl shows! May I do the same for my friends. May I reflect His friendship to my friends.

  81. Heather Tomberlin says:

    In studying I read Naomi was in despair, Orpah was being pragmatic (which hinges on the logic of self), & Ruth was faithful and clung to Naomi (we only cling to that which we are desperate for). How was Ruth faithful? She found someone worth being faithful to! 2 Tim 2:13 if we are faithless, He remains faithful! Faithfulness is an inspiring characteristic we take on, but a quiet resolve that stems from our identity. I pray we all become more faithful and cling to Jesus. Prov 3:5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart.

  82. Danielle B says:

    @kristen thanks for sharing from your commentary. I had just been thinking, what did Ruth know of Naomi’s God? Did they practice their Jewish faith when they were in Moab? They took Moabite wives and other times in scripture we have seen not following the statutes of the faith. Samson comes to mind. So what was it about Naomi and what did she understand about her God to leave all she knew?

  83. Courtney Kelly says:

    I never noticed Naomi tells Ruth to go away 3 times!1:18 — When Naomi saw that Ruth was determined to go with her, she stopped talking to her. In my notes I wrote, “determined for God.”

    I though about Jesus in the wilderness. He was tempted 3 times. The enemy went away after the third time. Fascinating.

  84. Courtney Kelly says:

    I never noticed Naomi tells Ruth to go away 3 times! What! 1:18 — When Naomi saw that Ruth was determined to go with her, she stopped talking to her. In my notes I wrote, “determined for God.”

  85. J M says:

    I am a MIL and have struggled in my relationship with one of my DIL’s please be gentle and kind with yours. We are not the enemy, yet are often made to feel like it.

  86. J M says:

    I am a MIL and am in constant prayer for my relationship with my DIL. It has not been an easy road and sometimes I just want to throw in the towel. Asking for prayer that my heart will soften towards her.

  87. Kenya Rafferty says:

    I love how all of Ruth’s words to Naomi are a reflection of the covenant truth God is working to bring her into and a foreshadowing of the truth we can all live in now – we repent, choose to turn to God, and in this nothing can separate us from Jesus and his truth.

  88. Sarah Shipley says:

    Thank you for sharing this Niki. I lost my mother in law in July suddenly and I had the same type of relationship you have with your MIL. As much as I butted heads and struggled with our relationship, God was my constant in the relationship I had with her to remind me to give grace. I’m shockingly surprised at how much I miss her and am reminded daily of the good she did for us as well as the crazy! I prayed for her today after I read this morning’s reading and hope she is whole and with God now.
    Keep giving your MIL grace and asking for God’s help. It will be worth it. I pray you find peace with her and continue to build a relationship.

  89. Sarah Shipley says:

    Thank you for sharing this Niki. I lost my mother in law in July suddenly and I had the same type of relationship you have with your MIL. As much as I butted heads and struggled with our relationship, God was my constant in the relationship I had with her to remind of that grace. I’m shockingly surprised at how much I miss her and am reminded daily of the good she did for us as well as the crazy! I prayed for her today after I read this morning’s reading and hope she is whole and with God now.

  90. Alli Barlik says:

    Ashley, my thoughts exactly. God knew what he was doing and His plan was redemption!

  91. Alli Barlik says:

    I never looked at Naomi telling them to go back as reverse repentance. Ruth didn’t! She pointed to Naomi’s God—the one true God and I can imagine how that may have encouraged her.

  92. Ariel Harris says:

    God’s hand was against Israel and Naomi, but he offers them and Ruth rest in him.

  93. Ashley Summy says:

    Even with Naomi’s poor testimony of God in her life (v.13), Ruth still chose to turn to Yahweh! It’s so amazing how God accomplishes His plan to bring forth our Savior, Jesus, even through the faithlessness of His own people. Nothing can stop God from His faithfulness to His promises!

  94. Patricia Lefner says:

    13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. – Ephesians 2:13. Praise God he brought me near.

  95. Kelly (NEO) says:

    The God of Naomi offered so much more than the gods of Moab. So much more that Ruth was willing to forsake all she knew for a life of hardship under His “wings” of mercy. Reminds me of the psalm “better is one day in Your house than 1000 elsewhere”

  96. Niki DeLeon says:

    In a constant power struggle rollercoaster of a relationship with my own MIL, I cannot imagine leaving my everything to move to an entirely new territory of people with her knowing there is no turning back once I arrive. God is continuously softening my heart toward my MIL and reminding me to give grace to her as He does for me. Reading this passage for the who knows how many time, I’m encouraged by the love, selflessness, and faith these women not only have in one another but in God too. It’s so easy to get caught up in the trivial matters of our lives and the world around us, but God is constantly moving mountains even when we can’t see it. He is so, so good.

  97. Kristen says:

    Ladies, I’m coming back on. I just was reading the commentary on Ruth from Enduring Word. I thought I would share!
    b. Wherever you go, I will go; and wherever you lodge, I will lodge; your people shall be my people: This was a noble – even outstanding – friend-to-friend commitment. But Ruth’s commitment to Naomi went even further: And your God, [will be] my God.

    i. This was more than change of address. Ruth was willing to forsake the Moabite gods she grew up with and embrace the God of Israel. She was deciding to follow the LORD. This Gentile woman, once far from God, had drawn near to Him.

    ii. And your God, [will be] my God meant that Naomi’s relationship with God made an impact on Ruth. This is striking, because Naomi did not have an easy life. She had been widowed, had lost both her sons, and believed that she had caused each calamity by her disobedience. Yet she still honored and loved the LORD.

    iii. People should be able to look at your life, just as Ruth looked at Naomi’s, and say “I want your God to be my God.” Your trust in God, and turning towards Him in tough times, will often be the thing that draws others to the LORD.

    c. Your God, my God: Ten years of Naomi’s compromise in Moab never made Ruth confess her allegiance to the God of Israel. Yet as soon as Naomi stood and said, “I’m going back to the God of Israel, I’ll put my fate in His hands” Ruth stood with her. If you think you will persuade your friends or relatives to Jesus by your compromise, you are mistaken. Perhaps you are sincere, but you are mistaken. Only a bold stand for Jesus will really do it.

    i. “Ah! You will never win any soul to the right by a compromise with the wrong. It is decision for Christ and his truth that has the greatest power in the family, and the greatest power in the world, too.” (Spurgeon)

    d. The LORD do so to me, and more also, if anything but death parts you and me: Ruth had little knowledge of the true God, the God of Israel – but she knew He was a God of fairness and justice, so He could be called upon to hold Ruth accountable to this promise.

    There’s a lot to think of here! By God’s grace, May we always lead people to Him and not away. May He please forgive me when I haven’t been a light. Prayers for you all today!

  98. Kristen says:

    Amen, @Jeni B. She sees! Praying for you!

  99. Arina says:

    Naomi easily could have hardened her heart toward God after everything she had to go through. She says it herself: ” The Lord’s hand has turned against me.” (v.13) But instead of turning her back towards the Lord, she returns to His people. She still believes God can do good and wishes His favor on her daughters-in-law. Even more, despite all the suffering, Ruth has seen something in Naomi so that she is willing to leave her own gods behind and accept the Lord as her God. And the rest of the story shows that Naomi was right to keep seeking the Lord. Even though she suffered, she would rejoice again. Through everything the Lord was still faithful!

  100. Jeni B says:

    Been thinking about Orpah and Ruth’s loyalty to Naomi even at her lowest point and facing a very uncertain future returning to a land they did not know where they would not just be widows but also foreigners… there must have been something they saw in Naomi, perhaps even something they understood about her God even on a more subconscious level for Orpah (because Ruth goes on to openly declares her allegiance)…

    It is amazing how God can use trials and hardships, times when logically we would think outside observers would question, to impress himself upon us. Over the last seven years I’ve experienced tragedy after tragedy. I’m honestly quite tired, often questioning where I went wrong to be experiencing the unthinkable in succession. As I relayed the last twist to a friend, she felt my pain, she empathised with me deeply but she ended her message saying that she was so encouraged by me and could see God’s work in my life. I was thinking, “how???? I don’t even think I can see God’s work in my life right now” but I think that is a testament to the way that the Spirit can move at times where we just would not expect it. God is good.