I was reminded this week of the story of Ruth in the Bible. I like the story of Ruth. I like Ruth’s faithfulness to her mother-in-law, even after her husband passes away. I like her guts – traveling to a foreign country to start over. I like how she wasn’t afraid to just work hard – she spent hours each day picking up the left-overs during harvest time so that she and her mother-in-law could have enough to eat. And I love that how she maintained her dignity and integrity through it all.
I admire Ruth because she had strength of character and commitment even when it would be easily understood if she just simply walked away. The story of Ruth, to me, is a story of how God works in tragedy and in the small everyday-type things for good. Yes, it was terrible that Ruth lost her husband and her mother-in-law Naomi lost her husband. It was probably incredibly hard for Ruth to move to a new country and start over. And I’m sure there were days when she was picking up scraps of food in the fields that she thought, “man, this is NOT how I pictured my life turning out.” But in doing the seemingly small things – working hard, staying loyal to Naomi and focusing on the task at hand, Ruth was greatly rewarded. God ultimately blessed her with a new, godly husband and stability.
Sometimes it is SO hard to stay focused on the small, everyday things. For example, I am not a fan of cleaning our toilets. I don’t even think that there is a godly reward for cleaning our toilet, except that it’s not embarrassing to have people over; I don’t have to tell guests, “Never you mind that brown ring in the toilet – it was a stain from the previous owner!”
But I think that staying focused on the small things is what builds the mental muscle to stay focused on the big things. I am terrible at this – anyone who knows me well knows that a flashing light in Colorado can become a fascinating distraction for me and completely derail my train of thought. ::blink, blink, blink::
Which I suppose was the point.
It’s hard to stay on task daily. It’s hard to not get distracted by other, more interesting (yet less rewarding) things.
Some of you know that I had a recent addiction to the game Bejeweled Blitz. I may, or may not, have mentioned said addiction on this very blog. This addiction resulted in me sort of mentally checking out to play this game on a very regular basis. I could easily pass an hour on this game while watching horrid TV (I love you, Kendra!) or talking on the phone.
So I decided to cut out the game and instead fold some laundry, put away some dishes and sort through mail while I chatted on the phone or watched TV. I also got back into regularly checking my favorite blogs.
It also freed up time to read, prepare some things for the baby and get my life more organized. I was able to flex my mundane-stuff muscle, which is good, because I’m getting more and more convinced that if I can develop that into a stronger muscle, I’ll be better able to appreciate and enjoy the less mundane blessings in life.