Stepping Out In Faith: The Rest of the Story
A few months ago I wrote this article about the book of Ruth and how much I want to be like her. When faced with a huge decision to stay in her comfort zone or step out in faith, Ruth chose the latter—boldly going where God called her. I’ve always been drawn to her decision because I’ve wondered what I would do in the same situation.
Then I got my chance.
Last summer my family and I moved from Loveland, Colorado to Berlin, Germany. We sold our home, packed our things and ventured out—saying yes to God just like Ruth did. And it felt great! Along with my boys, I embraced this new adventure, trusting in God’s plan for our lives and feeling the freedom that comes from turning away from the comfortable.
For Ruth, however, the story didn’t end when she said yes to God, and neither did mine. Ruth spent the next portion of her life in poverty, clinging to her mother-in-law for support and guidance. She’d done the right thing by stepping out, but she still had a ways to go before the story would take a turn for the better.
The same can be said about my journey. While my family found joy in the summer, it was followed by struggles in the fall.
My oldest son had trouble adapting to his new school environment.
My husband’s workload went through the roof as he tried to learn a new way of teaching.
And we all missed our family and friends like crazy.
Homesickness set in during the holidays, and I wondered if I’d made the right choice.
We took a leap of faith...and then hit challenges
What came after our yes wasn’t at all what I expected. As a result, I’ve been drawn once again to the story of Ruth, moving past the first chapter. I wonder if she, like me, questioned her decision to leave home. I’m curious to know whether she had regrets, or if she and her mother-in-law had disagreements about their new home. Ruth took a leap of faith…
…and landed in a puddle of muddy water.
Life didn’t get easier for her, but once again she made a tough choice: to stick with it, to endure. Continuing to serve and love those around her, Ruth found purpose in the struggle. Searching for God, she found hope. And when the time came, she was restored to her role as a wife, and took her place in the lineage of Jesus. She didn’t give in when things got hard, and continued to trust.
In November, I decided follow her lead.
Recently I reconnected with why God had us move across the world
Through prayer and searching, I was able to connect once again with the reason God brought my family to Germany. I began serving more fervently, looking each day for new opportunities to pour out God’s love. Each day I woke with the hope of making a difference, and slowly my mindset changed.
More often than not, the decision to step out isn’t the end of our stories. Like Ruth, it’s only the first chapter. The rest of the story takes endurance to push forward even when troubles come, looking forward to what God has in store, prayerfully pursing what God called us to, and looking around for ways to love God and others in the meantime.
I remain glad that we made the decision to move, and I would still encourage anyone to follow God’s call out of their comfort zone, whatever that may look like.
If you find yourself struggling, take heart. You’re not alone. God will make good on his promises in his time, and when he does, you’ll rejoice like Ruth and her mother-in-law.