The Dream Team: Understanding Ruth
By Kallie Muck
“‘…Blessed be the Lord, who has not left you without a family redeemer today. May his name become well known in Israel’…A son has been born to Naomi, and they named him Obed. He was the father of Jesse, the father of David.” Ruth 4:14;17
Some people love puzzles and some people hate them. During a recent family vacation, my mom and I developed a love-hate relationship for puzzles as we spent hours toiling over them trying to figure out which piece fit where. Although it was difficult and took a lot of time to put the puzzles together, we always had the pictures on the boxes to guide us and give us a perspective of what they should look like.
Unfortunately, our earthly perspective is limited. Sometimes it’s difficult for us to make sense of God’s will and His plan. That’s because we don’t see it from His perspective. When we’re in the midst of something, we usually can’t see the whole picture. All we see is a bunch of random puzzle pieces that don’t look like they fit together.
In athletics, every season brings new challenges and obstacles to overcome – your team not meshing, a season-ending injury, losing your starting spot, or disagreements with teammates or coaches. It can feel messy and uncertain in the midst of a difficult season. Sometimes though, when you look back at the end of the season or over the course of your athletic career, you can see God’s hand at work and how he put all the puzzle pieces together perfectly to tell His story.
In the book of Ruth, the Lord puts all the puzzle pieces together in a way that shows His covenant faithfulness to His undeserving people. Ruth demonstrates how to be obedient and faithful despite not knowing or understanding God’s plan. She was faithful to Naomi in the midst of a very difficult situation, and this decision to stay with Naomi was so all-encompassing because it was a decision to follow the God of Israel. At the time, Ruth didn’t know that God would choose to weave her into His Kingly line and make her an ancestor of David and the Messiah.
The story of Ruth shows us there are no insignificant people in God’s plan. Although life may look messy and meaningless to us, from God’s perspective, He is working intentionally to establish His kingdom. He takes what appears to be loose, broken, and unrelated puzzle pieces and reveals how He was creating something eternally beautiful all along.
- What are some things you’ve dealt with on your team that have been difficult?
- What is something you’re dealing with right now that is difficult?
- Like Ruth, how can you be obedient and faithful through that difficult situation without knowing the outcome?
Jeremiah 29:11; Psalm 37:5; Romans 8:18; Matthew 1:2-6; Ruth 1:16-17
“God, thank You for continuously working on our behalf and in our lives even when we don’t see You. Help me to be patient in the midst of difficult situations and act in obedience and faithfulness. Amen.”