Have you noticed how hard it is for young women today to feel or be seen as brave? Welcome back, dear Roses, to the second and final part of Ruth: A Biblical Role Model.
Doesn’t it seem like society’s standards for women in this day and age are against us? I mean, unless you are taking drastic measures—like fighting crime, speaking out against secular injustices, or pushing back against gender norms—women aren’t ever really considered brave. We are taught from the time we are little what is expected of us, and a big part of that is by the things we watch, listen to, and interact with.
Back To Disney
In the Disney movie Moana, Moana is shown taking chances and risking her life to find a way to cure her dying island. When we see this, we think, Wow, she is so brave, going out there all on her own. But what we don’t see as easily is that she disobeys her parents when she goes beyond the reef, she lies to them, and puts herself and others in danger because she doesn’t think about her actions. She shows this in the beginning when she is first caught in the storm. She knows nothing of sailing, which puts her life in danger, and is only saved when the ocean picks her up. Again at the very end of the movie when she is battling Te Ka, she endangers Maui by putting herself in a position she can’t handle. Thus, Maui is forced to save her, injuring himself and breaking his hook in the process. Don’t worry though! She turned it into a really catchy tune that justifies her actions.
Bravery today ranges from surface to outlandish as we do things like drinking and jumping off cliffs just to prove we’re brave to the people around us. In Ruth 1:16-17, Ruth leaves everything she has ever known—family, friends, even her religion—so that she can follow Naomi. Being brave like Ruth is so much harder than jumping off a cliff because you have to learn to trust in something you can’t see. You have to learn to trust in God’s plan for you, even if it puts you into uncomfortable situations.
Yet, we aren’t required to conform to the standards society has put on us. We don’t have to color outside the lines like they push us to. All we have to do is meet God’s standards: color in His lines. Let’s not be brave like everyone else today. Let’s be brave like Ruth was by trusting in the Father, His Son, and His plan for us.
Back To The Bible
Ruth 2:13 shows Ruth asking Boaz for his favour. I’m reminded of our relationship with God. Just as Ruth yearns for Boaz’s approval, we yearn for the approval of our Father in heaven, and, like Boaz, God freely gives us His favor when we ask him.
Enter awkward situation. Deuteronomy 25:5 (HCSB) gives instruction to a wife regarding the death of her husband: “When brothers live on the same property and one of them dies without a son, the wife of the dead man may not marry a stranger outside the family. Her brother-in-law is to take her as his wife, have relations with her, and perform the duty of a brother-in-law for her.” This seems extreme in modern western culture, but it was custom in Ruth’s time. In Ruth 3:9 (HCSB), Ruth tells Boaz that he is her near kinsman and asks him to “spread his garment over her.” Put yourself in Ruth’s shoes. Would you have the confidence, the trust, required to ask someone to marry you… in the middle of the night?! I don’t know if I would, but that isn’t the point. The point is that Ruth did, and a big part of that is because she trusted her elders and the way God had made for her.
We’ve almost reached our conclusion, but, before we do that, I want to talk a little bit about honesty. You can find examples of honesty throughout the book of Ruth; for instance, when she answers Naomi’s question or when she leaves home, she was being honest about how she felt. All the examples in Ruth are easy to find, as they should be. You shouldn’t have to dig deep and interpret someone’s honesty. You should be able to see it in everything that they say and do. If Ruth wasn’t able to be honest and trust herself, she wouldn’t have become the incredibly inspiring person she was, or do the things that she did. The underlying story in Ruth, the thread that weaves her tale together, is trust. Trust in your elders and most importantly in God. He has made a way for each and every one of us.
Dear Roses, the next time you decide to go around the river bend, beyond the reef, or into the unknown, remember Ruth’s actions and model your own after them.
We’ve reached the end of our story. A lesson to take with you as you set this article aside and go about your day is that you aren’t born loyal, brave, or honest. Just as we see exemplified in Ruth’s story, these things are taught and learned and passed down from your elders and those around you. Being loyal, brave, and honest isn’t a walk in the park; sometimes you make enemies, and sometimes you make friends. Are you up for the challenge?
Using Ruth as a role model, what is something brave you could do this week?
What are some ways this mini-series has impacted you?
Comment below, Roses, and let’s uplift each other!
Article Written by
Jaybird Summers can rarely be found without her book or pen. As she’s matured, so has her joy of writing. Edward Bulwer-Lytton once wrote “The pen is mightier than the sword.” She’s never believed that more than when she’s writing for the encouragement of others with God’s word. Connect with her on Instagram.
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