This past Monday we had a Bible Study discussion at lifegroup on the book of Ruth. So in doing my reading in preparation for the discussion, something popped out for me: at the point where Naomi, Ruth’s mother-in-law, asked Ruth & her sister Orpah to go back to their homeland for they’d have better chances of getting remarried there, Ruth was faced with a decision. She had to choose between love & self. She chose love.
One of the things that I’ve come to learn is that many times when I’ve been in a similar kind of situation, choosing love turned to be choosing self, unknowingly. I’ve come to see that my journey of life is lined up with love steps, and it’s in choosing to walk in love/to put others before myself, that I’ve gotten to discover & experience more of the amazing life that God has prepared for me. That one decision that Ruth made was a destiny shaping decision, and it’s a decision she made, not knowing the outcome.
In Psalm 139:14-16, it talks about how every day of our lives was planned out even before we lived one of them. Paul in Ephesians 2:10 talks about how there are good works that God has already prepared for us to do. What I learn from this is that in order to make strides along this journey of life, in order to make progress towards living the life that God has prepared for me to have, I need to be alert to those good works (read “love steps”) that God has placed in my path, and to follow through with them. Ignoring that prompting or opportunity to walk in love towards someone else could keep me further away from experiencing the amazing life that God has prepared for me. (for further reading, read Psalm 23).
Many times we seek direction from God regarding the next step to take in our lives or what to do in a particular situation. The Bible tells us that God is love (1 John 4:7-8), and for many of us the direction we seek could easily be found if we not only asked, “Lord, what should I do?”, but also “What is love asking of me?” The direct answers/solutions we might be seeking could most probably be lying behind that seemingly unrelated love step that God is asking us to take. You’re likely to find that as you follow love, as you take those love steps, that the answers/direction you were seeking were hidden therein. It may not be apparent at first, but make a commitment to walk in love, to put others first, to follow that prompting in your heart to love, and discover the amazing life that God prepared for you before you were even born.
* Pray this prayer: “Lord, help me to be more alert to the opportunities that present themselves to me everyday to walk in love. I want to walk in love towards others. Help me do so. Help me understand your love for me more and more, so that I may share that same love with those around me. I want to love others as you have loved, and continue to love me: unconditionally and extravagantly.”
* Be alert to the opportunities that come your way to walk in love, and seek to follow through. The Greater One lives in you.