“So . . .she . . . did all her mother-in-law had commanded her.” Ruth 3:6
We live in a world where integrity seems to be a forgotten character quality in every area of contemporary life. Whether it’s in politics, the world of business, in sports, or entertainment, integrity seems to be in short supply. People are more concerned with being held liable than doing the right thing. Many are focused more on avoiding pain, suffering, and inconvenience, than living godly lives and doing the right thing.
Character and integrity impact every detail of life. Character is what oil is to an engine. With it the engine runs smoothly, without it the machine begins to burn up and break down. Here in chapter three of Ruth it’s all about integrity. For Naomi, Ruth and Boaz the delicate situation in which they all find themselves playing a part, is held together by the personal integrity of each one of them.
Ruth and Boaz demonstrate their pure motives in this chapter. It’s the issue of purity and motives which are the very heart of the issue of integrity. Both believers and seekers struggle with pure motivations.
Many deal with God with impure motivations, by praying with ulterior motives hoping to “make” a change in those around them, while they themselves avoid the very change God is working to bring about in their own life. And, of course, if they are dealing with God in a way which lacks integrity, it’s hard to imagine they are dealing with others differently.
A follower of Jesus must make it a point to know their own motives, to ensure that we are trustworthy with His message. That when we speak, we speak not for the approval of the crowd, but only for God’s approval. That in our dealings with others, our motivation would be free of mixed motives or hidden agenda. That we’d never use our relationship with Jesus as a smoke screen to take advantage of others.
As Christ-followers, our driving agenda is to serve the Lord by speaking and acting out of a pure heart in ways which make His Presence obvious to those around us.
Be honest with God and yourself by reflecting on what your words and actions signify, and why you are saying and doing the things you’re doing.