But Ruth said: “Entreat me not to leave you, Or to turn back from following after you; For wherever you go, I will go; And wherever you lodge, I will lodge; Your People shall be my people, And your God, My God.”
Naomi was returning home after ten years in Moab (Ruth 1:4), where she had travelled to survive the famine. During that time she was not only widowed, but she lost her two sons as well and ended up living with her two daughters-in-law. Naomi, and presumably her husband and sons, continued to live a God-fearing life while they were in a foreign land. Now as Naomi departs, she insists that her daughters-in-law return to their families. Orpah chooses to rejoin her people and their gods (Ruth 1:15), whereas Ruth chooses to remain with Naomi and to follow the God of Israel.
Even though Naomi’s family had been uprooted by famine, she and her family remained faithful to God as they were temporarily displaced from their home. They trusted in the Lord, and their faithfulness and obedience to Him had an undeniable impact on the history of Israel and the world, for Ruth would later marry Boaz and become the great grandmother of King David and therefore be part of the lineage of Jesus Messiah. Ruth saw the difference in lives that were set apart for God, and she desired that in her own life, and therefore chose to remain with Naomi and go to Israel.
When we face affliction and tribulation, we are to remain faithful to God and not waiver in our walk with Him. Our Christian response to adversity will have an everlasting impact on those around us, and like Naomi, may even affect the course of history.
Pastor Jeff Mericle