I’m starting to read another of John C Maxwell’s books called Wisdom from Women in the Bible. I always like to read books about women in the Bible, and I like that Maxwell’s chapters are short. They fit my busy lifestyle very well.
The first chapter of the book is about Ruth, and the title of the chapter is, “Follow Your Heart to Find Your Hope.”
He shares how he believes Ruth decided to follow her heart and go with Naomi. We do know that Ruth told Naomi, “And Ruth said, Intreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God: Where thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried: the Lord do so to me, and more also, if ought but death part thee and me.” Ruth 1:16-17
The problem with the advice of “follow your heart” is that the heart can be deceptive. Jeremiah 17:9 says, “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” We don’t even know our own heart at times. Our heart can lead us into areas we should not go if we blindly follow it.
Why was it okay for Ruth to follow her heart?
I believe it was because God was in control of her heart.
She said that Naomi’s God would become her God. When we allow God to lead our heart, then we can follow our heart because He is directing it. What is significant is that she decided that Naomi’s God would be her God when all things looked bad. Her husband had died. Her father-in-law had died. She was leaving all she knew and all she had to follow Him. She wasn’t blindly following a feeling or desire. She was putting her faith and trust in God and His ability to care for her. God will not let us down when (even when it looks like it) if we truly trust Him. If anyone could say, “God is not a good God. I cannot trust Him,” it would be her. To have all three men who are the breadwinners in your family to die, why would you decide to follow Him? But Ruth did, and God blessed her faith.
Ruth not only survived, but she thrived.
God put her in the field where the master would have mercy on her and make sure that she collected enough grain for both her and Naomi to be fed. God gave Naomi a plan so that she could marry Boaz, a God-fearing man. Ruth also was able to be in the lineage of David and eventually Jesus, her Savior. God blesses those who truly give Him their heart.
Here are some lessons John C. Maxwell says we can learn from Ruth:
- “When you are faithful to God, He will bless you. You may not know how He will do it or when He will do it, but you can always be sure that God is faithful.”
- “Do what you know is right, not what looks right to others.” Both Naomi and Orpah thought Ruth should go home to her family when Naomi left to go back to Israel, but Ruth knew she should stay with Naomi. In this section of the book, Maxwell shares a quote from Albert Mohler:
Convictions are not merely beliefs we hold; they are those beliefs that hold us in their grip.
- We are not victims of circumstances. With God’s help, we can choose to have help and overcome our challenges. (This point was from Margaret Maxwell, John C. Maxwell’s wife.)
Here were some posts I enjoyed reading from last week’s party:
- How to Stop Feeling Like a Bible Study Failure from latoya edwards (By the way, how did you do this week on personal Bible reading. I only got in for my personal devotions 3 days — we do nightly family devotions, and of course we go to church on Sunday and Wednesday. I’ll keep working on it!)
- 4 Important Ways to be Prepared for School from Frugal Family Adventures
- Our Top Ten Homeschool Items from Jennifer Lambert
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