Family, Marriage, Parenting
Week 5: Legacy of Obedience Ruth
Someone once said that disobedience was a crime against loyalty. That’s something to ponder. There are times when obeying is easy, and no sweat off our back. Other times, obeying means refraining from something we’d really like to do. There are times when obedience is downright hard. Obedience to God can cost but should be evidence of our love and loyalty to Him. The motive and attitude in our heart as we obey matters to God. Ruth loved and was loyal to her mother-in-law, Naomi. What flowed from that was unquestioning obedience. She clung to Naomi and insisted on following and obeying Naomi, and her God. Ruth did this without question, without a poor attitude, and with little regard for herself. What resulted was much blessing poured out not only on Naomi but also Ruth, leaving a legacy of faith running through the lineage of our Savior, Jesus.
CONNECTING AS A GROUP: After being told repeatedly not to jump on her bed, 4 year old little Grace was made to sit in a time-out. With her arms folded, she told her mom that she was still jumping on her bed in her imagination. There will always be rules, regulations, laws, codes of conduct, and Biblical commandments. Some are easy to follow and others are not. The best case scenario is
obey God out of love and loyalty to Him. are some rules that you remember from when
are easy to follow & which are difficult?
What are some rules that you have broken? What were the consequences?
Describe a situation in which you either obeyed or disobeyed and then share the outcome. How would the outcome
have been different if you’d obeyed differently?
STUDYING GOD’S WORD: Read Ruth 1:8-18. Ruth could have left Naomi just as her sister in law had done. She chose adamantly to stay and serve her mother in law and her God instead of returning to her own people.
Why do you think Ruth made this decision?
What was Ruth sacrificing to remain loyal to Naomi? Was she aware of giving up these things?
Read Ruth 2 and 3. The way that Boaz loves and provides for Ruth is a foreshadow of how God loves us, how He redeemed us with the death of Jesus, and how He blesses us by providing for us. He claims and loves us as His own children, no matter what.
How would you describe Ruth’s attitude while she follows Naomi’s instructions?
How is she rewarded for her obedience?
Why do you think Naomi told Ruth not to glean in anyone else’s field?
Read 1 Samuel 15:10-23. Like Saul, it is dangerous to think what we want to give God is better than what He asks of us. Saul thought sacrificing the best animals to God would be better than destroying them, but destroying everything was what God told Saul to do.
Saul thought he was doing something that would be pleasing to God
. What did God see in Saul’s actions? What was
God’s main concern and what does He value over our reasoning, and even over our sacrifice? Saul reasoned that God would be pleased with his actions. He did sacrifice to God out of what he kept. When was the last time you reasoned yourself out of obedience to God?
MAKING APPLICATION: As a group, make a list of the areas in your lives God is calling you to obedience. Next to each item, indicate whether you are being obedient God’s way, or your way. Also indicate whether or not you are obeying out of loyalty and love for God or for some other reason. Discuss ways to alter your actions, behavior, and heart so that it is right in line with God’s will and exactly what God is asking of you. List the people who will be impacted by your obedience to God’s ways.
PRAYING FOR EACH OTHER:
Praise God for loving us and redeeming us as His own, no matter how undeserving we are.
Ask God to keep your heart and mind open to His will for your life, and to give you the strength to follow Him, no matter what.
Ask for forgiveness for times when you have not obeyed God to the letter or when your heart has not been in your obedience.
Pray for a heart that willingly follows God, out of love and loyalty.
MEMORIZE THIS VERSE: “But Ruth replied, ‘Don’t ask me to leave you and turn back. Wherever you go, I will go: wherever you live, I will live. Your people will be my people, and your God will be my God.” ~ Ruth 1:16