Summary: All meaningful relationships rely upon commitment. The commitment will only go as far as the underlying character. We must strive to be a quality person and look for persons of quality in all our relationships. Marriage is the most important.
THE STORY OF RUTH: A RESCUE RELATIONSHIP
DON’T LEAVE CHARACTER TO CHANCE
A man came to pastor Phil after a message and began to share about his four failed marriages. Pastor Phil listened while the man explained his situation. The man said, “Each time I thought I found the woman of my dreams, but soon after the wedding I discovered she was not as advertised. I just don’t think there are any good women out there.” Pastor Phil wanted to respond compassionately and say, well there are good women, my wife and I have had a long and fulfilling marriage… When an elderly man who had been listening, chimed in and said, “Son, there are plenty of good women out there. You just lack the ability to spot one.” Well
TO FIND LONG LASTING FRIENDSHIP AND FAMILY BELIEVE THAT:
THE LORD PLACES GOOD PEOPLE WHEN YOU CHOOSE HIS PATH. (V. 3, 8-10; Prov. 16:33; Matthew 13:25)
UNDER GOD’S PROMISES YOU WILL FIND BLESSING.
OUTSIDE OF GOD’S PROMISES THE PLEASURES OF THE WORLD WILL BECOME BURDENS.
TO MAKE HEALTHY RELATIONSHIP DECISIONS
LOOK BEYOND THE OUTWARD IMPRESSION AND EXAMINE THE CHARACTER. (V. 2, 4, 11-13)
THE WORLD NEEDS MEN...
who cannot be bought;
whose word is their bond;
who put character above wealth;
who possess opinions and a will;
who are larger than their vocations;
who do not hesitate to take chances;
who will not lose their individuality in a crowd;
who will be as honest in small things as in great things;
who will make no compromise with wrong;
whose ambitions are not confined to their own selfish desires;
who will not say they do it" because everybody else does it";
who are true to their friends through good report and evil report, in adversity as well as in prosperity;
who do not believe that shrewdness, cunning, and hardheadedness are the best qualities for winning success;
who are not ashamed or afraid to stand for the truth when it is unpopular;
who can say "no" with emphasis, although all the rest of the
world says "yes."
Charles Swindoll, Living Above the Level of Mediocrity,
LOOK FOR SOMEONE WHO IS RESPECTED. (Boaz was a “mighty man.”)
LOOK FOR SOMEONE WHO PROTECTS OTHERS. (V. 7- Boaz and his company are good and caring people)
The Old Testament speaks about caring for the foreigner and the one in need. And while I agree with the principle of protecting borders for America, I am deeply troubled by the fiat order on immigration with the refugees. They spent years being vetted and we as a people made a commitment to help these hurting people. We can’t help everyone, but we promised to help these people. I want to believe it was a poorly thought through decision, but my heart breaks as a Christian thinking about it. I want to keep chipping away at the problem and look at other solutions as well. But, I believe we are called to protect the defenseless from the unborn until the day the Lord calls someone home.
LOOK FOR SOMEONE WHO IS REVERES THE LORD. (May the Lord be with you)
Beloved, I’ve now witnessed it several dozen times. Once again, a person who I have had personal interaction with posted on Social Media a post about their family troubles and in specific their children. Children who do not live for the Lord, don’t show respect for the parent, been involved in illegal drugs and illicit relationships. Basically these kids break the commandments from not keeping the Sabbath Holy to not honoring mom and dad, to not dealing with sexual morality.
Well when a person posts this about having tough love, it takes ever bit of me not to say well, “How about not committing adultery in front of your kids and the world?” How about not treating your kids like you are a teenager yourself. And how about going to church for God and not to appear dignified etc… See folks when you live openly in adultery and then have the gall to use God and Christianity to declare you will have tough love for kids all the while you demonstrated blatant hypocrisy. Don’t wonder…
LOOK FOR SOMEONE WHO DEMONSTRATES RESPECT FOR OTHERS. (V 9)
(YOU CAN ALWAYS BE KIND.)
How does this person treat those under them waitstaff? And those who cannot benefit them at all? Listen with the third ear. How does he or she talk to the mom or dad? How about their teachers? Or better yet, their boss and manager. Do they respect authority? Do they respect others when it counts? Listen to how they talk about their pastor when he preaches or exhorts on an area of life the steps on their toes? Do they attack or criticize or run away and avoid. Dr. Snapp shared with us as pastors that he believed that the greatest problem in our culture is a general lack of respect and respect for authority in particular. Don’t ever expect someone who does not fear God first and respect others will be a faithful friend