One day Ruth’s mother-in-law Naomi said to her, “My daughter, I must find a home for you, where you will be well provided for. 2 Now Boaz, with whose women you have worked, is a relative of ours. Tonight he will be winnowing barley on the threshing floor. 3 Wash, put on perfume, and get dressed in your best clothes. Then go down to the threshing floor, but don’t let him know you are there until he has finished eating and drinking. 4 When he lies down, note the place where he is lying. Then go and uncover his feet and lie down. He will tell you what to do.”
5 “I will do whatever you say,” Ruth answered. 6 So she went down to the threshing floor and did everything her mother-in-law told her to do.
3 You will keep in perfect peace
those whose minds are steadfast,
because they trust in you.
4 Trust in the Lord forever,
for the Lord, the Lord himself, is the Rock eternal.
Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. 10 Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. 11 Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. 12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. 13 Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.
14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. 16 Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.
17 Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. 18 If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. 19 Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. 20 On the contrary:
“If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.
In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”
21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
Peace is defined by words like tranquility, harmony, rest, quietness, contentedness, free from fear. There are many things in life that can disrupt peace. But one of the most common disrupters of peace in our lives and the lives of others happens simply by the words we speak. We can impart peace and life, hope and joy, or death and cursing, evil and strife simply by the words we speak over each other. So powerful are our words that we’re instructed often in Scripture to be wise in what we speak:
Speak truth, not lies. [Psalm 34:13]
Set a guard over my mouth, Lord, keep watch over my lips. [Psalm 141:3]
The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise brings healing. [Proverbs 12:14]
Make every effort to do what leads to peace and mutual edification. [Romans 14:19]
Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, only what is useful for building others up. [Ephesians 4:29]
As you read today’s Scriptures, think about how Naomi’s words to Ruth might have brought peace to her heart at such a significant moment. As Ruth was about to do something very risky, Naomi’s words and the confidence she had in Boaz as their kinsman-redeemer fostered peace in Ruth’s heart to carry out what was being asked of her. Ask God how you can be an agent of peace to people in your life today by how you choose to speak to them.