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Resolutions - Why Is It So Important to Be Where God Wants Me to Be?




Ruth 1

In the days when the judges ruled there was a famine in the land, and a man of Bethlehem in Judah went to sojourn in the country of Moab, he and his wife and his two sons. The name of the man was Elimelech and the name of his wife Naomi, and the names of his two sons were Mahlon and Chilion. They were Ephrathites from Bethlehem in Judah. They went into the country of Moab and remained there. But Elimelech, the husband of Naomi, died, and she was left with her two sons. These took Moabite wives; the name of the one was Orpah and the name of the other Ruth. They lived there about ten years, and both Mahlon and Chilion died, so that the woman was left without her two sons and her husband.


Then she arose with her daughters-in-law to return from the country of Moab, for she had heard in the fields of Moab that the Lord had visited his people and given them food. So she set out from the place where she was with her two daughters-in-law, and they went on the way to return to the land of Judah. But Naomi said to her two daughters-in-law, "Go, return each of you to her mother's house. May the Lord deal kindly with you, as you have dealt with the dead and with me. The Lord grant that you may find rest, each of you in the house of her husband!" Then she kissed them, and they lifted up their voices and wept. And they said to her, "No, we will return with you to your people." But Naomi said, "Turn back, my daughters; why will you go with me? Have I yet sons in my womb that they may become your husbands? Turn back, my daughters; go your way, for I am too old to have a husband. If I should say I have hope, even if I should have a husband this night and should bear sons, would you therefore wait till they were grown? Would you therefore refrain from marrying? No, my daughters, for it is exceedingly bitter to me for your sake that the hand of the Lord has gone out against me." Then they lifted up their voices and wept again. And Orpah kissed her mother-in-law, but Ruth clung to her.


And she said, "See, your sister-in-law has gone back to her people and to her gods; return after your sister-in-law." But Ruth said, "Do not urge me to leave you or to return from following you. For where you go I will go, and where you lodge I will lodge. Your people shall be my people, and your God my God. Where you die I will die, and there will I be buried. May the Lord do so to me and more also if anything but death parts me from you." And when Naomi saw that she was determined to go with her, she said no more.


So the two of them went on until they came to Bethlehem. And when they came to Bethlehem, the whole town was stirred because of them. And the women said, "Is this Naomi?" She said to them, "Do not call me Naomi; call me Mara, for the Almighty has dealt very bitterly with me. I went away full, and the Lord has brought me back empty. Why call me Naomi, when the Lord has testified against me and the Almighty has brought calamity upon me?" So Naomi returned, and Ruth the Moabite her daughter-in-law with her, who returned from the country of Moab. And they came to Bethlehem at the beginning of barley harvest.


Introduction

To answer the question "Why Is It So Important to Be Where God Wants Me"? I am going to use the bible story of Ruth and her mother-in-law Naomi. To thumbnail this story does it no justice - but here it is. Naomi lived with her husband Elimelech in the land of Moab - they were from Bethlehem but had moved because of severe famine and lack of economic opportunity. They had two sons - Mahlon and Chilion, they grew into men and they married Moabite women. Naomi's husband Elimelech died. In spite of this she stayed in Moab. Tragedy struck again for Naomi - both her sons became diseased and died as well. Naomi's will and spirit are broken and in her grief she decides she will go home to Bethlehem. Her daughter in-laws Ruth and Orpah are determined to go with her, but Naomi instructs them both to stay with their people and the god of the Moabites. Orpah, embraces Naomi and says goodbye - Ruth on the other hand makes her biblically infamous declaration - "where you go, I go."


Real Life Application

To process the very real condition we have described as "saving the saved" the story of Ruth and Naomi becomes the final piece of biblical truth, and the moral reasoning needed for any resolution to be possible. In a spiritual context a resolution is the vehicle to recovery and restoration. Determined resolutions are a big deal to God. Such as: I resolve to move forward from this place, and to make better choices for my life. A great biblical example of a resolution comes from the book of Joshua.


Joshua 24:15

And if it is evil in your eyes to serve the Lord, choose this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your fathers served in the region beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord."


In a natural context resolutions reveal the intent of our heart and the motive of our thinking for not just behavior but for people, places, and things as well. Resolutions reveal the possibilities for a better version of ourself or of our life in general. We want to be a better person, we want to be in a better place, we want to do something better more important and meaningful with our lives. We want to reach our goals, our purpose and our objectives.


Just as in a spiritual context - resolutions in a practical context will require faith, fulfillment, and a finish - that process then requires the courage to risk it and the discipline to do it - to do the work needed to get where you believe you should be. In a day-to-day application that looks like this...


Any resolution we make fully comes to life when our belief leads to faith - when our work and passion leads to fulfillment - and our determination and relentlessness lead to a strong finish.


Spiritually, the same principals and processes are needed - it is God's way.

Finally, resolutions are more than good intentions - when correctly acted upon they become the starting place for all of those things uniquely meaningful and significant for our lives. For us to resolve that we will be where God wants us to be is good and important thing. The story of Ruth clearly illustrates that for us.


Why is it so important to be where God wants me to be? Think for a moment with me of how many times you and I have been in a good place with God, been good with faith, been good with being and doing what is both right and not wrong, and yet we could not resolve to stay in that place... And so we became as Paul Simon sang: "You know the nearer your destination, the more you’re slip-sliding away."


It is important to resolve in ourselves to be where God wants us be because it is the place where He intends to reveal His word and fulfill His promises to us. Try this sample resolution with me.


I RESOLVE...

To be who God has called Me to be

To be where He has called Me to be when He has called Me to be there


That should answer all of our questions. To be where God wants us to be when He wants us to be there is the very place where He will reveal Himself to us and fulfill His promises in us.


Our life's journey of faith is all about getting there - resolutions to God help us get there. Getting to that place where He wants us, just so He can do what He wants to do in us. That is why it is so hard for some and so easy for others - just the way it is. But whether it is easy or hard, it is the place to be.


Conclusion

Ruth found that place when in her moment of resolution she said to her mother-in-law Naomi:


“Don’t press me to leave you and stop following you; for 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. Where you die, I will die; and there I will be buried. May Adonai bring terrible curses on me, and worse ones as well, if anything but death separates you and me.”


With Ruth in the place where God wanted her to be He fulfilled His word and His promises to her. God used her resolution to put her in a place where she could do and be more than she or anyone else ever thought possible. As an outsider she did not wait for a handout or someone to take care of her, by resolution she moved quickly into the place where God wanted her and from there she earned the respect and love of her new people and her new country. From working relentlessly and passionately in the fields, to resisting the temptation to take the easy way out, by risking everything to be in the one place that no one except Naomi thought she should be (except God). And by being in that place, she found the favor and love of Boaz. Ruth and Boaz were married, and together they gave birth to a son whose name was Obed, who had a son whose name was Jesse, who had a son whose name was David. By seizing her resolution moment to be in the place where God wanted her to be - when he wanted her to be there she became the great-grandmother of the greatest king of Israel - David.

#sermons #SteveIsaac #SavingTheSaved