Then [Ruth] came softly and uncovered [Boaz’s] feet and lay down. At midnight the man was startled and turned over, and behold, a woman lay at his feet!
The Christian life is not lived in a comfort zone.
In Ruth 3 we find Ruth taking a great risk as she approached Boaz to request that he care for her as his wife. She, a single woman, went in the middle of the night to a barn filled with men after they had finished celebrating the completed harvest. Once Boaz fell asleep, she went to him under the cover of darkness and uncovered his feet. If she had made a mistake or had been discovered, there is no telling what these men would have done to her or what people might have said regarding her motives.
These events look strange to our 21st-century eyes, but Ruth’s unusual actions demonstrate a sincere trust in God’s care and protection. God had laid down in His law that Boaz could act as a kinsman-redeemer—a protector and provider—for Ruth. God had providentially led Ruth to Boaz’s field, where he had extended favor to her. Her story shows us again and again how God providentially rules over all unforseeable circumstances for His glory and the well-being of His people.
Like Ruth, we will sometimes face occasions in life when we cannot see much beyond our next step. Many of us are tempted to remain in the waiting room until all of the details are seemingly clear and known. We want to feel safe and in control. Yet if we insist on never moving until we do feel like that, our lives will speak little of spiritual progress and witness little of God’s miraculous work. The fear of going in the wrong direction leaves us going nowhere at all.
When we cannot see beyond our next step or when times of uncertainty come in life—and they will come!—we have to trust God and act on the basis of the truth of His word and trust in His Spirit’s guidance. Ruth’s plan was not fail-safe and certain, but she proceeded because she trusted God, who had proven His faithfulness to her time and time again.
Do you need to start thinking this way? Do you need to look above and beyond the borders of your comfort zone to that to which God may be calling you? If Ruth was motivated by trust and obedience, what are you motivated by? What is there about your life right at this moment that speaks of faith? There may be a decision to make, a place to go, a venture to undertake, or a conversation to have about which you don’t know all the implications, and all you can say is “I don’t have a clue how this is going to go, but it’s what God is calling me to do.” In these situations, God’s word calls you to use wisdom and then proceed in faith, step by step, trusting in the one who died for you and who promises to be “with you always, to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:20). Entrust your life not to the safety of your comfort zone but to the guidance of His providential hand.
Devotional material is taken from the Truth For Life daily devotional by Alistair Begg,