Day 15: If I have found favor in Your eyes, Lord, why wouldn’t I {remain}?

“Remain tonight, and in the morning, if he will redeem you, good; let him do it.  But if he is not willing to redeem you, then, as the LORD lives, I will redeem you.  Lie down until the morning.”  Ruth 3:13 esv  remain

{Remain}  Also abide.  Stay in.  Attached to.

From my study of Ruth so far, she was a woman who knew how to remain… to stay… to abide.

Ruth chose to {remain} with Naomi instead of returning to her mother’s home.  She chose a new homeland and culture and people in which to {remain} for all the rest of her days.  Ruth chose the One true God, Jehovah – The Almighty – over the false gods of her culture in Moab.  And once she chose Yahweh, she chose to {remain}.

How do I know that?  From the words of Boaz in answer to Ruth’s question, “Why have I found favor in your eyes…?”

“All that you have done for your mother-in-law since the death of your husband has been fully told to me, and how you left your father and mother and your native land and came to a people that you did not know before.  The LORD repay you for what you have done, and a full reward be given you by the LORD, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to take refuge!”  Ruth 2:11-12

These words of Boaz are similar to Jesus’ words to His disciples.

“I tell you the truth, at the renewal of all things, when the Son of Man sits on His glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.  And everyone who has left houses or brother or sisters or father or mother or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life.”  Matthew 19:28-29branch with fruit

I am so encouraged by these commands to remain.  I wish I had understood as a youngster that ‘being saved’ – going forward in a church, professing Christ as Savior and being publicly baptized was the beginning of being adopted into a new family.  I wish I had understood then that an eternity of abiding – remaining in a relationship – had begun already.  I wish I had remained at Jesus’ feet as Ruth remained at Boaz’s feet expecting to be at home with him and cared for by him and building a relationship with him in the present.

I am even more grateful to Jesus it is never too late to learn what it means to {remain} with Him.  Jesus was patient with me.  He was waiting for me to come back around and realize there is no true life or JOY in living apart from Him.  When I began to ask, “Where is this abundant life You promised, Jesus?”, He was right there to show me His way.

Lord, Jesus, my greatest desire is to {remain} in You.  I am asking You to teach me how to live daily in the truth our eternal relationship has already begun.  I will never be alone!  

Ponders:

No coincidence or accident I attended a women’s day retreat yesterday in which my friend, Kaitlin Miller, taught us so much about JOY in the Journey of following Jesus.  One really big take away for me was this truth from John 15:1-11

True JOY comes in abiding (or remaining) with Christ.  As I {remain} with Him, He fills me with joy and I am full of His joy continually.

Whatever, wherever we’re walking, we need to remember we must choose to {remain} in Him.  Christ has already promised to abide in us – we are never alone.  Our eternity of relationship with Him has already begun…

  • As you ponder this truth of {remain}ing in Christ – abiding – where do you see yourself?  Are you purposefully attached to Christ with an awareness of His never-ending presence?  Or have you wandered off?
  • If you are in a place of remaining, what fruit of the Spirit do you see produced in your life?  Does the enemy try to deceive you into thinking your life isn’t purposeful?  Resist the devil and he must flee from you.  Draw near to God…remain near and know He is already near to you.
  • If you feel far off, what would you like to say to Jesus?  Will you pour your heart out to Him in repentance?  Will you head for home with a decision to remain – to abide with Him?  Are you ready for your eternal relationship with Him to begin right here on earth?

Lord, we are grateful for Your desire to abide with us and for us to remain in You.  Thank You for Your promise to fill us with JOY and to never leave us.  May we be so faithful to remain at Your feet and experience the fullness of a joyful life simply because we are in You and You in us.  For Your glory, Jesus.  Amen.

Eyes on Jesus… you’re Shining!

~Lisa