When we view God in light of our circumstances we are self-focused and see God as either impotent to help us or aloof and not caring that we suffer. However, when we become focused on God and His glory we step away from the realm of intellectual reasoning into that of faith. It is as we draw near unto God that He draws near unto us.
15 Then she said, “Behold, your sister-in-law has gone back to her people and her gods; return after your sister-in-law.” 16 But Ruth said, “Do not urge me to leave you or turn back 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. 17 Where you die, I will die, and there I will be buried. Thus may the Lord do to me, and worse, if anything but death parts you and me.” 18 When she saw that she was determined to go with her, she said no more to her. Ruth 1:15-18 (NASB)
God’s ways are not our ways. His ways are higher than ours. Those who have moved on into God’s stride have learned to view their circumstances in light of who God is. On the other hand, all of us have made the huge mistake of viewing God in light of our circumstances. This is 180 degrees in the wrong direction. When we view God in light of our circumstances we are self-focused and see God as either impotent to help us or aloof and not caring that we suffer. However, when we become focused on God and His glory we step away from the realm of intellectual reasoning into that of faith. It is as we draw near unto God that He draws near unto us. If we surrender to His will in our lives fully believing that His will is always right then we have turned around and are viewing our circumstances in light of who God is. For us to reach this level of spiritual maturity requires for God to work in our hearts. It is not something that we can do ourselves, it is a gift from God.
In the book of Ruth we read in chapter 1 of a family that moved from Bethlehem to Moab to escape a famine. The husband’s name was Elimelech. His wife was Naomi. They had two sons, Mahlon and Chilion. While in Moab, the two sons took Moabite wives, Orpah and Ruth. They lived in Moab for about ten years. Elimelech died and then Mahlon and Chilion died. This left three women without a male to support them in a culture that was deadly for women in this state. Naomi decided to return to Bethlehem because she heard that God had taken the famine away. As she left, both of her daughters-in-law wanted to go with her. However, Naomi, bitter in spirit, gave them the truth of the matter. Her situation was hopeless. She had no future. She intended to go back home and survive off of the kindness of family, but she could see no reason for the two young women to go with her.