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Open: Spend a moment just clearing your mind and asking God to show you something from his Word.

Recap: Were you able to act on something yesterday as a result of your reading from Ruth?

Starting Point:

  1. Who is the most impressive person you know – someone who has great integrity and character – and what makes them so special?
  2. Has God ever led you (or is he leading you right now) to do something that you know is right even though it will be very difficult?

Read: Ruth 1:16-22 (Ruth’s decision)

Some things to consider:

  • Ruth’s decision here doesn’t make sense. She should go back home and remarry as soon as she can – her entire future is dependent on it. Naomi reminds her of this – there is nothing that Naomi can give her.
  • Ruth decides to stay with Naomi, but this is an invitation to a very lonely life. Going to Israel as a Moabite would have been a hard sell for a good Jewish man. Marrying a woman from the land where they kill babies is not a very marketable idea. Add to that the fact that the two of them would have a very hard time finding a place to stay and means to support themselves. It is a life of loneliness and poverty.
  • Ruth stays because there is something more than security and a future – perhaps she wonders how Naomi will take care of herself. Perhaps she is concerned for the future of this old widow.
  • It is interesting that Ruth uses God’s personal name “the LORD.” Whenever you see the word “LORD” it is the Hebrew form of “Yahweh” or God’s personal name that was told to Moses. Perhaps it means that Ruth has made a very personal connection to God already and wants to honor the woman through which she learned about this God.
  • They arrive early in the barley harvest (early spring) and Naomi is in a bad place. She has made reference twice now to God treating her bitterly – she even wants to be known as “Mara” which means ‘bitter.’ God is not out to punish Naomi – she just feels like this because everything has gone so poorly.
  • Ruth is a lot like Job. If you don’t know about Job, check out his story sometime. Google it.

What is it saying?

· In this passage, what is one thing that sticks out to you that God seems to be saying?

What should I do?

· If God is saying something in this passage, what do you feel he is leading you to do today?