Have the Heart of Ruth

We read in the Bible that Ruth, of Moab, had a loyal and loving heart.
So upon the death of her Hebrew husband, she felt that she couldn’t part
from Naomi, her beloved mother-in-law, who had urged her to make her way
back to Ruth’s own parent’s home; but, instead, Ruth begged to stay.

She shared her heart, stating that where Naomi went, so, in fact, would she;
where she lodged and the God she worshiped–these would also be
what she desired for her own particular life, even to her day of dying.
To stay with her late husband’s “family” was the future on which she was relying.

Naomi allowed Ruth, then, to go with her on her Bethlehem-Judah return;
there Ruth would find a special blessing that only God could have discerned.
For there was a kinsman-redeemer through Naomi’s husband’s line,
whom Ruth would meet, while gleaning in his fields, by God-ordained design.

Related by blood, willing and able to redeem this woman, Boaz entered her life;
a prominent free man, total provision was hers, when she later became his wife.
One can easily see an analogy here to the Bible’s New Testament account that we read of God becoming Man, through Jesus Christ–the Kinsman-Redeemer He knew we would need.

Like Ruth, leave the “god” you once were told about; find shelter under the
true God’s wings. Look to the Way, the Truth, and the Life–and experience the peace that Christ brings. Don’t try to make it on your own with God, through acts of service, however kind; there’s provision for us as “the bride of Christ,” which He, the Bridegroom, wants us to find.

P. A. Oltrogge

“But Ruth said, ‘Entreat me not to leave you or to turn back from following after you; For wherever you go, I will go; and wherever 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. The Lord do so to me, and more also, if anything but death parts you and me.’”
Ruth 1:16-17 NKJV

“May the Lord reward your work, and your wages be full from the Lord, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to seek refuge.”
Ruth 2:12 NASB

“You yourselves are my witnesses that I said, ‘I am not the Christ,’ but, ‘I have been sent ahead of Him.’ He who has the bride is the bridegroom; but the friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly because of the bridegroom’s voice. So this joy of mine has been made full. He must increase, but I must decrease.”
John 3:28-30 NASB (words of John the Baptist regarding Christ, the Bridegroom)

Other references:

Matthew 9:15, Mark 2:19,20

Rejoicing to hear of those of today who have left their perception of God to find faith in Jesus Christ, the Way, the Truth, and the Life–

“Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me.” John 14:1 NKJV

“Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.’” John 14:6 NKJV

With worship, looking forward…

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…what the Lord might say to many of His children…

If you’ve made some mistakes, I won’t forsake you.
Don’t let anxious thoughts overtake you.

Instead, cast all your anxieties and cares upon Me,
and worship Me, for that’s truly “key.”

Some things are best forgotten, in order to find
what lies ahead–I always have your well-being in mind.

P. A. Oltrogge

“…He Himself has said, ‘I will never leave you nor forsake you.'” Hebrews 13:5

“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7

“Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.”
1 Peter 5:6-7

“Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended, but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:13-14

“Give unto the Lord the glory due to His name; Worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness.” Psalm 29:2

“Be exalted, O Lord, in Your own strength! We will sing and praise Your power.” Psalm 21:13

Scriptures NKJV

Be Still, and Know that I am God

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“The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is thy faithfulness.”

Lamentations 3:22-23 RSV

Be still in the Lord’s presence, listening for His voice.
Then thank Him for abundant life today, and in His love, rejoice.

P. A. Oltrogge

“The Lord bless you and keep you;
The Lord make His face shine upon you,
And be gracious to you;
The Lord lift up His countenance upon you,
And give you peace.”

Numbers 6:24-26

“Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!”

Psalm 46:10

Scriptures NKJV

The Only True God

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Christ the Redeemer statue, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Regarding Christians, Muslims, and Jews,
some say the God they all worship is the same.

But the Bible is clear that the only true God
is the One who is known through Jesus’ name.

Realize it’s a fallacy that knowing God is the same to all three,
for Jesus said that “No one comes to the Father except through Me.”

His words hold true for other “faiths,” too, no matter which they may be.
“No one comes to the Father,” Jesus emphasized, “except through Me.”

There aren’t “many paths to God,” but He has provided a blessed one–
opened for us by way of Calvary’s cross through Jesus, His beloved and only begotten Son.

P. A. Oltrogge

“You know neither Me nor My Father. If you knew Me, you would know My Father also.” John 8:19

“And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.” John 17:3 (and all of John 17)

“Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.'” John 14:6

“For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.” John 1:17

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” John 3:16

“While he (Peter) was still speaking, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them; and suddenly a voice came out of the cloud, saying, ‘This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Hear Him!'” Matthew 17:5

“All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out.” John 6:37

“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God.” Ephesians 2:8

“For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation to everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also to the Greek.”
Romans 1:16

“And Jacob begot Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus who is called Christ.” Matthew 1:16

“Now there was one, Anna, a prophetess…coming in that instance, she gave thanks to the Lord, and spoke of Him (Jesus) to all those who looked for redemption in Jerusalem.” From Luke 2:36-38

“I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep.” John 10:9-11

“Seek the Lord while He may be found. Call upon Him while He is near.” Isaiah 55:6

Scriptures NKJV

Photo Unsplash
by Robert Nyman

A Very Present Help

“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.”
Psalm 46:1 KJV

Troubles come to all of us, trials are an unsolicited part of life;

but there is One who is a very present help in the midst of any kind of strife.

He’s not only present, but He’s VERY present amidst things which can be dire–

Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, remember, weren’t burned though engulfed by fire.
__________

The men had refused to worship the gold idol, as King Nebuchadnezzar had decreed–

Such a decree to these men of faith was something they simply wouldn’t heed.

Anyone who disobeyed would be cast into a fiery furnace that had been stoked very hot–

At the sound of the horn, flute, harp, or lyre, all were to bow down, but these
three men would not.
__________

Called before the king, he gave them another chance to obey, but they bravely made it clear…

that their God could deliver them; yet if not, they served Him only and had nothing to fear.

Then, thrown into the furnace, divine intervention left them without even the smell of fire–

Their hair wasn’t singed, nor their clothes affected, because no other “god” was higher.
__________

In the midst of the fiery furnace, a fourth “man” had appeared, among the other three.

His appearance was “like the Son of God;” and He’d loosed them and had set the men free.

Though they’d initially been bound together, Nebuchadnezzar saw them unhurt and walking separately around–

This miraculous event became proof to him that there was no God but theirs to be found.
__________

God has promised to be our sure refuge, whom we can run to for shelter from any storm–

If the “winds” of life become threatening or cold, under His wings, we’ll be protected and warm.

He’s the strength upon which we’ve come to depend; and we’re blessed by the love He supplies.

Keep looking to Jesus, your very present help. In every circumstance, that will prove to be wise.

P. A. Oltrogge

(The poetic account is derived from Daniel 3)

…trials sometimes come, but confidence in God’s love and care for us (Psalm 91:4) and the presence of His Holy Spirit within strengthen those who believe….
Jesus said, “And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever; that is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not behold Him or know Him, but you know Him because He abides with you, and will be in you.” John 14:16-17 (and through 26)

Acts 1:8 and Acts 2:1-4

Of such is the kingdom of God

I wrote a poem once about Christmas in heaven and how that might actually be…

imagining the beautiful carols sung there or heaven’s magnificent Christmas tree.

But I missed picturing the children of abortion there, opening the gifts that God, their Father, would give.

God’s greatest gift to them, however, is that there, in heaven, they can experience, in a new way, what it is to live.

So many children, torn from their mother’s womb, never got to see the light of day;

but some have escaped that cruel blow because of those who speak up for them and because of those who pray.

Life in heaven must be glorious, but one wonders what their lives might have accomplished on earth…

Let’s earnestly pray for those considering abortion to, rather, choose the blessed path of giving birth.

Lord, cause the darkness that pushes abortion to be pushed away itself, instead.

“Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them, for of such is the kingdom of God,” are loving words of life that Jesus said.

P. A. Oltrogge

Wonderful true story on this topic:
http://www.ilivedonparkerave.com

“Then they brought little children to Him, that He might touch them, but the disciples rebuked those who brought them. But when Jesus saw it, He was greatly displeased and said to them, ‘Let the children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of God,'” Mark 10:13-14 NKJv

“Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you…” From Jeremiah 1:5

“For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb.”
From Psalm 139:13-16

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The Creator versus the Atheists

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Even within a city or out on a rural farm,
we’re blessed to always enjoy the vast creation’s charm.

To say, then, as some do, that there is no God,
is a kind of blindness that seems, to me, so odd.

For there are many masterpieces on which our eyes can feast–
from the starting of a snowfall to the landscape when it’s ceased.

From the city to the beauty of the peaceful countryside,
the signature of the Creator is something atheists cannot hide.

P. A. Oltrogge

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“For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities–his eternal power and divine nature–have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.” Romans 1:20 NIV

“For he (God the Father) has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son (Jesus) he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible….” Colossians 1:13-16 NIV written by the apostle Paul to the Christians in Colossae

Look unto the Hills

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“I will lift up my eyes to the hills–
From whence comes my help?
My help comes from the Lord,
Who made heaven and earth.”
Psalm 121:1-2

Lord, you are the source of my help on any given day.
You made the heavens and the earth–On you, my hope will stay.
I will look even to the hills–On their horizon, I’ll always see,
through the eye of faith, my Savior, heading down with help for me.

P. A. Oltrogge

“He will not allow your foot to be moved;
He who keeps you will not slumber.
Behold, He who keeps Israel
Shall neither slumber nor sleep.
The Lord is your keeper;
The Lord is your shade at your right hand.
The sun shall not strike you by day,
Nor the moon by night.
The Lord shall preserve you from all evil;
He shall preserve your soul.
The Lord shall preserve your going out and your coming in
From this time forth, and even forevermore.”

Psalm 121:3-8 NKJV

“Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.”

words of Jesus in John 14:27 NKJV

Dear Child of Mine

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Read My Word daily,
dear child of Mine,
for I have a plan
for your life that’s fine.

Blessed and happy
I want you to be…
Every good and perfect gift
comes down to you through Me.

I’ve seen your sorrows,
and I’ve seen your tears.
Look to Me as your Father
and abandon any fears.

Don’t worry about anything…
instead, just pray.
Then you’ll hear My voice;
I’ll shepherd your way.

P. A. Oltrogge

“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.”
Psalm 23:1 KJV

and see Jeremiah 29:11-13,
James 1:17, John 10:27