Ruth came from a nation that violently opposed God's people. Listen to the podcast, reflect on some questions, and go deeper into study on your own or with a group. If you're participating in our reading plan One Story that Leads to Jesus, this Reflections Bible Study lines up with week 12.
Once you’ve listed to the short podcast, take the time to reflect on these questions:
What feels impossibly difficult in your life or community right now?
God is present in and through hard times. There is hope. Take a moment now to remember that God cares for you and your community.
Ask God to transform your impossible circumstances into brilliant new possibilities.
If you would like to dive deeper, use these Scriptures and questions for personal study or small group discussion.
The book of Ruth shows us what loyal love looks like. It’s about trusting God and faithfully committing ourselves to support those around us who are in need. In Ruth’s story, we also learn about God’s impartial mercy. No matter a person’s background, they are valued and included in the family of God simply by trusting and following him. Lastly, the book of Ruth reminds us of the relentless hope of God in the lives of his people. When things are overwhelmingly difficult, God is still there, writing a story that leads us to the life of Jesus.
Feel free to reflect on all the questions or just a few right now. You can also reflect all throughout the week by focusing on one question per day.
How did Carissa’s message challenge or encourage you today?
How was Ruth loyal and loving to her community and to Yahweh? What does Boaz ask Yahweh to do for Ruth? How would Yahweh’s response be an expression of his loyal love for Ruth?
How have you experienced loyalty and love from someone in your community? What is one practical way you can honor their support and encourage them today?
Consider the metaphor Boaz uses to describe Ruth’s loyal trust in Yahweh. Young birds gather under their mother’s wings for warmth, belonging, and safety. How is this like trusting God?
When Jesus entered Jerusalem, he saw the danger that was coming toward his people and grieved that they had rejected God’s attempts to protect them. Read Matthew 23:37 to see how Jesus also used the analogy of a mother’s wings. How does this passage illustrate what it looks like to trust or mistrust God?
Consider the impossible situations Ruth and Naomi faced in the story. They lost family, country, home, status, safety, and financial provision. How do you relate to this? What support do you need in your own life?
How can other people in your community relate to Ruth and Naomi’s losses and suffering? What do they need physically, emotionally, spiritually, socially, and economically? How can you offer loyal love and mercy to them this week?
Turn your reflections into a prayer. God sees and knows everything that feels impossibly difficult in your life or community right now. There is hope. Take a moment now to remember that God cares and ask him to transform your circumstances into brilliant new possibilities.