Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – February 23, 2017
By Tripp Prince
Boaz replied, “I’ve been told all about what you have done for your mother-in-law since the death of your husband—how you left your father and mother and your homeland and came to live with a people you did not know before. Ruth 2:11
It’s no secret that in our culture, we care a great deal about how we are perceived and what people think of us. If there was any lingering doubt, a quick glance at social media will confirm this statement. In our online profiles, we go to great lengths to create a carefully curated image of who we want to be and how we want to be perceived. Yet the inherent challenge here is, of course, our public personas and our private lives don’t always line up. And if we are honest, the more time we spend crafting a public image, the less time we have to give to the pursuit of true wisdom and character.
When we remember the life of Ruth, we are given an example of someone who had an incredible reputation, yet was entirely unaware and unconcerned with her image or status.
Ruth was a woman who knew great pain and difficulty in her life. Though she was a widow without any promise of protection or provision, she had so fully encountered the goodness of God and received a new identity as a daughter in the family of God, that she knew there was nowhere else for her to go, even if the road was painful and fraught with danger!
This radical dependence upon God in the midst of trial is the foundation of Ruth’s true identity and character, and it was impossible for others not to take notice and marvel with wonder. And yet, the heart of our reflection today is this: though the reputation of her faithfulness and her character had spread far and wide, she was so busy living out that character that she didn’t even notice!
Ruth never took time to “read her own headlines,” or make sure others had heard of her trust in God or faithfulness in a time of trial, and neither should we.
In an age when Christians are unfortunately known for corruption, abuse, financial scandal, or the quest for political power, how we should instead long to live lives like our sister Ruth, where we have a reputation that precedes us in which we are first and foremost known for our trust in God and our faithfulness to his Word, even in dark and difficult times. And most importantly, let us be so busy doing the work the Lord has given us to do, that we don’t even take the time to notice or celebrate that reputation.
May we be filled with the life of Christ today and devote ourselves fully to the work of his Kingdom!
PrayerFather, give us humble hearts that are free from a love of self and fully devoted to you and your work in our midst. Amen.
ApplicationTake time today for a “social media audit,” asking yourself if you have spent too much time caring about and crafting your online presence. What habits can you develop to help you think about yourself less and of Christ and his Kingdom more?
Related ReadingProverbs 15:33; Luke 14:11; Romans 12:1-2; 1 Peter 5:6
Post/Tweet todayIs my reputation based solely on my carefully curated social media profile or on who my Savior Jesus says I am? #WisdomHunters #goodreputation
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