Ruth 1:18“When she saw that she was steadfastly minded….then she left speaking to her.” The test had done a true work, and we see a woman who could stand fast.
Having done all to stand, is something in the great crisis and temptations of life “Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle.” (I.Thess.2:15)
When we have done all we can do to stand, God knows and honours that acted of faithfulness “Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;” (Heb.10:23) James said “Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.” (Ja.1:12)
The steadfast mind gives the steadfast step. The double minded man is unstable in all his ways according to James. Turning here and there like the wind, there is no dependence on the direction he may take. Note what Elisha said to Elijah “And it came to pass, when they were gone over, that Elijah said unto Elisha, Ask what I shall do for thee, before I be taken away from thee. And Elisha said, I pray thee, let a double portion of thy spirit be upon me.” (II. Ki 2:9)
Let us look at what Jacob said to his firstborn son Reuben “Reuben, thou art my firstborn, my might, and the beginning of my strength, the excellency of dignity, and the excellency of power:” but notice what Jacob said to Reuben in (v.4) “Unstable as water, thou shalt not excel; because thou wentest up to thy father’s bed; then defiledst thou it: he went up to my couch.” (Gen.49:3,4)
The man or the woman is made by something within them invisible to the world “And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.” (Mt.26:39)
When Christ was led as a lamb to the slaughter, the great conflict had been fought out in Gethsemane, and then the steps were calm and steadfast.
Firmness is the result of the thoughtful decision of an enlightened mind and a consecrated heart “ For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:” (II.Tim.4:6,7)
The steadfast mind makes the best companion. Ruth was ready for the journey to Bethlehem. And in all our journeys nothing is so precious as a steadfast heart “And Ruth said, Entreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God: Where thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried….When she saw that she was stedfastly minded to go with her, then she left speaking unto her.” (Ruth 1:16,18)
There are times of shadows and darkness, times of disheartening, times of misunderstanding in all our lives. In such hours a steadfast companion is God’s richest gift to us “A man that hath friends must show himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.” (Prov.18:24)
What consolation it is to know that our Lord’s support will not give way, that there will always be one eye to brighten, one hand to help, one heart to love, one mind to appreciate “The eyes of the LORD are upon the righteous, and his ears are open unto their cry.” (Ps.34:15) Notice what else David stated in Ps. 56:8) “Thou tellest my wanderings: put thou my tears into thy bottle: are they not in thy book?”
The steadfast mind is freed from the infinitude of lesser worries. Our mind must be made up. It must not be open to every solicitatio “When she saw that she was stedfastly minded to go with her, then she left speaking unto her.” (v.18)
Jesus our Lord set his face steadfastly to go to Jerusalem. The hardest journey of all to the shame and awful darkness and the cruel cross, “And it came to pass, when the time was come that he should be received up, he stedfastly set his face to go to Jerusalem,” Lk.9:51
If we are firm and decided in our purpose we shall not be wasting either time or strength “And thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it” (Isa.30:21) and (Heb.12:1) declares “Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,”