by Christopher Harbin

She Had No Control
Christopher B. Harbin
Ruth 3:1-5, 4:13-22, Matthew 5:33-37, Galatians 2:1-10

A great many of the conflicts between individuals, groups, peoples, and nations has to do with the singular issue of control. The reasons why control is important to us are varied. We could spend hours listing them. Perhaps at its root in our yearning for control is a matter of a lack of trust. We think others will take something from us, prevent the realization of our goals and objectives, or that in some other way life will not yield us the benefits we so highly prize. In large part it is a matter of not trusting others. We seek control for our own protection. Even so, the idea that we can exercise control over our lives at times appears to be a mere illusion. Is it possible to live a full life without the need to be seeking control from one or another source over the variable winds of life?
Ruth did not know where or how her life would develop in consequence of her decision to follow Naomi in faithfulness. She had joined her life with her mother-in-law, but had no idea what her future would be. Upon insisting on keeping that commitment, she lay aside control over her life, her future, her options, and her possibilities. She allowed Naomi to make the important decisions. It would be her responsibility to serve, help, and follow Naomi directions. She was about to embark on a journey to a new land--to a new life among people with customs she did not know. Determined, she threw aside the freedom to conduct her own life. She placed everything in her mother-in-law's the hands.
Such a decision may be somewhat difficult and fill us with fear, can't it? We don't know if for Ruth this decision brought sleepless nights. We don't know how to define the level of her concern on this side of her statement to tie herself to Naomi. Many times we think, reflect, and reconsider the decisions we've already made, especially the most important ones. It may well be that we question t ...

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