Body + Spirit
The Makings of a Virtuous Woman
Naomi said to Ruth, “For all the city of my people doth know that thou art a virtuous woman” (Ruth 3:11b KJV)
Being referred to as a virtuous woman is one of the most flattering compliments that can be paid to a woman. But what does it mean to be deemed virtuous? The Bible gives an account of a woman whom was rightfully worthy of this remark. In the Book of Ruth, you’ll find a triumphant story about Ruth and Naomi who, against all odds, remained loyal to one another and overcame the hardships that they faced. Naomi refers to Ruth as a virtuous woman. It is from Ruth where we’ll discover what the makings of a virtuous woman are.
She is clothed with strength and dignity… (Proverbs 31:25)
In this story Ruth’s mother-in-law, Naomi, was in a state of depression due to the fact that her husband and both of her sons had died, which put her at risk of losing everything. Naomi’s life had taken a drastic turn that caused her to become bitter. Because of the devastation and anguish of heart, she started referring to herself as a bitter woman. Naomi begged Ruth to leave her and go home to her family; suggesting that she could live a better life there. But Ruth chose not to leave her mother-in-law. Ruth had great honor and respect for Naomi because even though she was troubled, she possessed great knowledge and wisdom. Not only did she stay with her, but she went to work in a field to provide for her. Ruth sacrificed her livelihood to help a woman who had no other hope.
But Ruth replied, “Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you, where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay…” (Ruth 1:16 NIV)
Naomi referred to Ruth as a virtuous woman because of her loyalty and dedication in choosing to remain with her in spite of hardships. Eventually Ruth met Boaz, who was the family’s kinsman redeemer, meaning he brought redemption to Ruth and Naomi. Because Ruth chose to sacrifice herself for another, she became the wife of Boaz. Boaz owned the field where Ruth worked, which allowed Ruth and Naomi not only to keep their home, but to also be owners of their land. Ruth went on to give birth to Obed who is the grandfather of Jesus, which is why her name is listed in the genealogy of Jesus. She exemplifies a true portrait of a virtuous woman.
The virtuous women of today should portray a picture of loyalty, strength, intelligence, and wisdom just like Ruth. These women know the depths of what it means to sacrifice, love unconditionally, and work hard. They also know that honoring God and living in obedience to His Word has its rewards. There isn’t a perfect being on this earth, but the virtuous woman is a picture of a woman to be honored for her faith, love, loyalty, and commitment. Like Ruth, we should take pleasure in reaching out to others with love and compassion in a time of need. In your study time, be encouraged to read the Book of Ruth in its entirety. It will surely bless you.
Bountiful blessings to you!