“Don’t urge me to abandon you, to turn back from following after you. Wherever you go, I will go; and wherever you stay, I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God will be my God.” (Ruth 1:16, CEB)
Wow. That’s devotion, isn’t it? Ruth was willing to walk away from everything in her life that was familiar, which, of course, means “safe”. She would go with her mother-in-law to a foreign land with a different language, different landscape, different food, different customs. Whew! That’s a lot to take in! A different religion, too.
It makes me appreciate the challenge in becoming a Jesus-follower for the first time, particularly as an adult who has had time to finely tune a lot of bad habits. Following Jesus means giving up some stuff that is familiar, which, or course means, “safe”, even if that stuff is truly bad for us. It means creating new friendships, finding your way through a church bulletin Sunday morning, singing new songs, eating the simple but incredulously fine meal of bread and wine and accepting the generous serving of grace that comes with it.
Who do you know on that journey into faith? Find them. Encourage them. You will be blessed.
God of Grace and Glory, remind us of the challenges found by new Jesus-followers. Help us help them stay the course. Amen.
– Pastor Fay Ann Blaylock, First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Falls City, and Zion United Church of Christ, Rulo