Discussion starters for your small group, triad, or family worship time.
- As you read chapter 9 of The Story, what were some of the losses that Naomi and Ruth faced? How did each of them respond to these painful experiences?
- Naomi was a person of faith, but she also questioned God and was deeply honest about her struggles (Ruth 1:19-21). In what ways did Naomi's losses impact how she viewed God and his work in her life? Tell about a time you were honest with God about your pain and hurt. As you look back on that episode, what have you learned about God's presence and faithfulness?
- Boaz was a man of amazing character and wisdom (Ruth 2-3). What can we learn from Boaz's interactions with his workers, including Ruth?
- Throughout chapter 9 of The Story we get glimpses into Ruth's character as well. What are some of the exemplary aspects of her heart, attitudes, and behavior? How might Ruth be a role model for people today?
- Near the end of chapter 9 of The Story (Ruth 4:1-10), BoaZ offers another family member the opportunity to pay for and redeem the land of Naomi's dead husband and his two sons. When this other family member realizes it will cost him a great deal and gain him nothing financially, he declines. At this point, Boaz pays for all the property and allows the name of Elimelech (Naomi's husband) to be remembered. Give some examples of things God calls Christian's to do that cost us a great deal and do not pay off much (in this life or the eyes of the world).
- How did Jesus' life model service and sacrifice for people who really had nothing with which to pay him back? What has Jesus given you that you could never truly pay back? How can we express gratitude for his amazing generosity?
- When you think of how Naomi's life went from Mara (bitter) to Naomi (beautiful), what were the ways God extended grace to this faithful woman? Who needs you to come alongside them to remind them that they are loved (or beautiful) and what is one action you can take this week to extend God's grace to this person?
- How was God at work behind the scenes in Ruth’s life (list as many as you can find)? How is he active behind the scenes in your life?
- How does Boaz’s redemptive love for Ruth foreshadow Christ’s redemptive love for us? How does this narrative expand your understanding of what it means to be redeemed?