"Once in the time of the judges there was a famine." —Ruth 1:1
Ruth lived in a time of famine and death. Her husband, father-in-law, and brother-in-law died. In times of famine and death, it's natural to have a survivor mentality and to make self-preservation the top priority. However, Ruth put aside her self and her needs in returning with her mother-in-law to Bethlehem.
We also live in a time of famine and death. The millions starving throughout the world are a symptom of spiritual starvation. God's people are spiritually anorexic. By stuffing ourselves with the things of the world, we have lost our appetite for the things of God (see Prv 13:19; Gal 5:17). We are being paid the wages of sin, that is, death (Rm 6:23).
Under these circumstances, we are tempted to focus on ourselves, but that's the worst mistake we can make. If we try to preserve our lives, we will lose them. However, if we lose our lives for Jesus, we will preserve them (Lk 9:24). We must do what Ruth did. We must commit ourselves even more strongly to the Lord and to one another. In these times of starvation and death, we need even deeper commitment to God, the Church, our spouses, our parents, our children, and our brothers and sisters in Christ.
Prayer: Father, make me a Ruth.
Promise: "You shall love the Lord your God with your whole heart, with your whole soul, and with all your mind." —Mt 22:37
Praise: St. Rose, like Ruth, served her family and her God all the days of her life.
Reference: (For a related teaching, order our tape Spiritual Anorexia on audio AV 101-1 or video V-101.)
Rescript: †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 4, 2013
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