[CF Devotionals] 2008-10-26 - Ruth

Installment 29 ~ Chapter 3, Part 7

Conclusion: Part of wisdom is learning to move responsibly, not recklessly. Too often we hear the call to step out in faith as an impulse to act recklessly. Jackman, speaking of Ruth’s actions here notes:

“Knowing that Boaz is a man of God, Ruth asks from him the characteristics which she had already identified in, and experienced from, Yahweh. In this she provides a pattern for our faith. In all forward spiritual movement there are moments when we have to trust the bare word of God’s promise and venture out in faith. There are many times when we cannot see how it is going to work out, but there is no reason not to trust God, commit our way to him, and act. Some Christians, because they are always requiring God to show them more before they launch out and trust him. It is possible to be so afraid of making mistakes that we do nothing. But, provided our lives are in a right  relationship with God and we honestly want to go his way and not our own, he gives us permission to launch out in faith, to risk for his sake, even to get it wrong and to fail, because “he who never made a mistake never made anything.”

The balance between an adventurous faith and foolhardiness is not always easy to strike, especially when we are young. But Wesley spoke of preferring to have one firebrand working with him, who he might have to cool down to ten unenthusiastic men who had to be warmed up; and all of us involved in ministry can identify with that. Reckless faith may sometimes do things which in the cold light of rationality seem unwise, but God honors the heart that is set on attempting great things for him because it expects great things from him.” 7

And so Ruth calmly waits to see what Boaz, (and behind the scenes God), will do.

“Perhaps the words of a woman can best express Ruth’s confidence. Written nearly one hundred and fifty years ago by Anna L. Waring, a Welsh woman from Glamorgan, before she was thirty, her words are still a powerful expression of the calm assurance of any disciple who knows the love of the Good Shepherd, who lays down his life for his sheep.
Wherever He may guide me,
No want shall turn me back;
My Shepherd is beside me,
And nothing can I lack.
His wisdom ever waketh;
Has sight is never dim.
He knows they way He taketh,
And I will walk with Him. 89

  1. Jackman, p. 346.
  2. From “In Heavenly Love Abiding,” by Anna L. Waring
  3. Jackman, p. 350.

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