Do you ever feel like you’re not going anywhere? And then sometimes you’re moving forward, sometimes backwards. This phrase just keeps resonating in me. Forward motion.
The girls and I were listening to a Bible story tonight about Ruth and Naomi. You may be familiar with the story. Naomi loses her husband and her two sons. The daughter in laws are encouraged to go back to their countries, but Ruth chooses to go with Naomi. They arrive back in Bethlehem with nothing. They live on scarce supply, but they are happy. They have arrived. They are waiting.
But, it doesn’t stop there. In the waiting, Ruth goes out to work. She propels herself outside of the despair of the situation – husbandless, homeless (more or less), without any other family or friends outside of Naomi and in a new land. Ruth reminds me of forward motion.
Ruth didn’t sit on the edge of her mat each day and whine about the circumstances. She got up and commanded forward motion.
There are two types of people I think about from this story. The one is a contender of forward motion and the other is a conspirator for forward motion. A contender is one who is in the runnings for, they are actively pursuing something. A conspirator is one who is planning by every angle and trying to assess the situation to devise a plan.
Ruth was a contender. She was a go-getter. She had a purpose and she wasn’t waiting around for the pieces to fall into place. She had someone who was dependent on her. I liken this to motherhood in some senses. There isn’t time to assess all the pieces, as a mom, you have to just go out there and contend for your children. As a wife, you have to contend for your spouse. As a care-giver, you have to make sure that things are in order.
Ruth wasn’t going to sit by and wait for the knock at her door. Actually, she would’ve had to marry the next brother in line, but because she was a foreigner, he didn’t want to marry her or receive the land that would’ve been his.
She got out there in the a field and worked to provide for she and Naomi. She happened to find the right field. She happened to be in Boaz’ land. Had she not been proactive, there’s no telling when they would’ve eaten. There’s no telling how long she would’ve gone without; without food, without sustenance, without a man, without the promise!
Ruth was in forward motion. She had a purpose and she wasn’t going to allow circumstances to slow her down. It seems to me that there are so many people in this generation especially who are waiting for a handout. They are waiting for someone to get all the ducks in a row for them. They have lost the art of forward motion. In fact, I don’t know if some even know how to catalyst themselves into motion?
I want to be a forward motion person. I don’t want to sit around and wait for someone to have a vision for me. I don’t want to wait until someone says I can, or I’m able to accomplish something. I know who I am and I know WHOSE I am. There is way more to life than just sitting around in despair.
Yes, it’s going to get dirty. I don’t think that Ruth felt clean all those days she picked up the scraps in the field. But, I can imagine that she was beaming with accomplishment when she could feed her family. I can imagine that she felt pride in the fact that she could not just take care of her home but she could give to those in need from her abundance. And, I can imagine her elation when God would choose her to marry Boaz.
Because of her forward motion she saw not just her needs cared for. She saw her mother in law live the life she deserved and she gave birth to the promise. She stands in the line of David, the line of Jesus – the promised Messiah.
Forward. Move. Forward now.