True love for others is revealed in who the love is focused on. Some people will say they truly love others but their actions and motives behind them is focused only on themselves. Others will reveal how much they love others because their actions and motives focus on others. As human beings we fluctuate between these two, with God always calling us to love others and the world calling us to love ourselves.
At times our circumstances will cause us to focus on ourselves. For example, Naomi had lost a husband and two sons, so she was in ‘survival mode’. The grief and pain were so great she could not look outward. But as time passes and she heals, her focus again looks outward. She desires to bring security and love to Ruth. Even though it will draw Ruth away from her, Naomi considers Ruth’s needs and life before her own. Her love is shown in this sacrifice that she is willing to make.
Today each of us will face choices where we can offer some of yourself for another. Will we choose to be self-centered or other-centered? Will we be giving or holding onto what we have? God calls us to follow Christ’s example of serving others. In telling us ‘the first shall be last’ isn’t Jesus saying that in God’s economy, we must think of ourselves last here on earth? Lord, help me to give of myself in all ways that I can today.
Scripture reference: Ruth 3: 1-5