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Day One

 "For she had heard in the country of Moab that the Lord had considered his people and given them food”. Ruth 1:6

The big question for me in this verse was how in this particular year God could have been particularly favourable to the people of Moab and had let some pretty unfavourable things happen to Ruth!  In the relative primitive society of the old testament, God is seen as being responsible for everything. Famine, plenty, illness or wellness all are seen as expressions of God’s wrath or pleasure. As society has developed and our knowledge has increased, life has become more complicated. Whether we live in the Atacama desert or the Norwegian scrub, floods and draughts and famine are caused by complex weather systems, pests and disease. It is often easier to take God out of the picture but as Christians, we live in the paradoxes of faith and life. These paradoxes include that God is intimately involved in our lives yet at the same time we live in a world of natural laws, forces and circumstances.


Ruth lived right in the middle of this paradox and must have spent time wondering why god dealt such different hands to different people in her surroundings.   The reassuring thing about Ruth is that in everything, she seemed constantly assured of God’s steadfast love.



Lord, there is so much that we don’t understand. May we follow the example of Ruth who was constantly assured of Gods love and grace, Amen



Day Two

 "Just then Boaz arrived from Bethlehem and greeted the harvesters, “The Lord be with you!”. “The Lord bless you!” they answered." Ruth 2:4

We don’t know a lot about the character of Boaz. He is a wealthy land owner and returns to his employees after being away on a trip.  He greets his workers by saying ‘The Lord be with you!’ and they reply ‘The Lord bless you!’ Maybe this was a standard greeting or that Boaz’s workers were saying this out of respect to their boss, as he was much more powerful than they were and their livelihood depended on his success.  But as we read through the rest of the chapter we discover the true character of Boaz.  He seems to be  respectful, compassionate, generous and wise.

 I recently read an article in the December 2018 national geographic that included reference the “slave bible” given to slaves on the sugar plantations in the west indies and how had any references to freedom of slaves were omitted and section  about  submission and obedience were highlighted.

Boaz by contrast doesn’t use his position of power to oppress those less powerful than himself.  The respect he showed to Ruth,  her mother-in-law and his workers was what made the outcome of the story of Ruth so special.


Lord, when we find ourselves in positions of power over other people, please help us to be respectful, compasionate, generous and wise, Amen.



Day Three

 "And now, my daughter, don’t be afraid. I will do for you all you ask. All the people of my town know that you are a woman of noble character." Ruth 3:11

Just before Christmas the news was full of people being prevented from getting on flights at Gatwick this Christmas. On reports it came ahead of  people having their homes washed away in the Indonesian Tsunami or desparate migrants getting picked up in the English Channel. It is often possible to think of our situation as being the worst.


Ruth had everything going against her.  She was a widow, she had no children to support her, she had moved to a foreign land, and she had bound herself to an older woman who had no possessions to cater for their daily needs.   And yet Ruth managed to look beyond her own situation.  She was proactive in finding ways of taking care of the needs of her mother-in-law.  We have a lot to learn from Ruth  It’s okay to acknowledge when things are not going perfectly in our lives, however, we must not let our difficult situations shape our future.  We all have the power, through Christ, to prevail.



Lord, forgive us when our difficult circumstances cause us to just focus on ourselves.  Help us to build perseverance in our lives, Amen.



Day Four

"Then she said, “Sit still, my daughter, until you know how the matter will turn out; for the man will not rest until he has concluded the matter this day.”" Ruth 3:18

It must have been painful for Ruth waiting to see whether she had just embarrassed herself before effectively proposing to Boaz but ultimately the wait was worth it. Waiting for the light to turn green when we’re running late is frustrating but on balance it makes sense to wait for it to turn green.

The logic of Ruth is that God wants us wait for a reason. His timing is so much better than ours and in ways we don’t undertand he is always working behind the scenes.



Lord, help us to be patient, to wait and listen in faith, Amen


Day Five

 "The women living there said, “Naomi has a son!” And they named him Obed. He was the father of Jesse, the father of David." Ruth 4:17 

Two generations later, Jesus was born and the rest is history.

Naomi had lost everything.  She was a widow who was grieving over the death of her two sons.  However, her daughter-in-law who stayed with her, married another of her relatives and gave birth to a son.  She  had no idea that in two generations time another son would be born to their family who would shape much of the future of human history.  King David was not just a fearless warrior, but it was also through his family line that Jesus came into the world.  The lesson from this is that although our lives may go through grim times we never know what the future may hold for us.



Lord, we thank you for your ability to make great things from not so great circumstances.  May we continue to dedicate our lives to you, even when we don’t know what lies ahead.  Amen.

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