The Girl's Still Got It
By Liz Curtis Higgs
Categories: Bible Study, Motivational, Ruth, Spiritual Living
Where have you been? When you look at then and now, maybe the stars aligned. It was all just pure luck. It was simply meant to be. Well, almost. God meant it to be.
Now, where are you going? According to the book of Proverbs, "You can make many plans, but the Lord's purpose will prevail" (New Living Translation).
The same questions can be asked about the men and women in the Bible. And just like in our lives, God's purpose will be victorious in theirs – though sometimes the literary elements make it easier to see.
Take the book of Ruth. Ruth's travels from Moab to Bethlehem may seem to set up the story of David, to some serving as nothing more than filler pages between Judges and 1 Samuel. (Spoiler: In the book of Ruth, David gets the last word. Literally. Talk about throwing stones from one book to the next!) But bestselling author Liz Curtis Higgs takes pause with Ruth and reveals the bigger picture. In "The Girl's Still Got It," Higgs tells her story, our story – Ruth's story, which, Higgs says, "is a crash course in Sovereignty 101, with God whispering all through it, 'Trust me!' " (2).
The book of Ruth may be short, but its message is far from small. There is more to the two widows, Ruth and Naomi, and the hot hunk of a farmer, Boaz. From the very beginning, when a famine strikes Israel, Ruth and Naomi "endured a heap of heartache," not unlike many today (177). But with every challenge or misfortune, Higgs says, "If we start thinking, 'A loving God wouldn't do that,' we miss the truth recorded in his Word and the seeds of hope planted deep in our parched soil: God loves us too much to let us starve spiritually" (12). So the women carry on. Ruth, our main woman, continues loving others, trusting God, and seeking refuge, though she's not really sure of her future.
As Higgs parses each verse in the book of Ruth, offering astute details of time and place, it doesn't take long to see that Ruth's still got it – "Value. Significance. Vibrancy. Worth" (pg. 1). And so do we! But in connecting with Ruth, we also bond with Naomi – she becomes, according to Higgs, our "soul sister … [t]he one we get." Higgs continues: "God was with [Naomi] … loving her not in spite of her weaknesses but because of them…. God takes us as we are, even as he takes us where we need to go" (159). Through this, not only do we gain a friend in Ruth, we gain new insight into a lesser-known woman of the Bible, Naomi.
Higgs, author of the nonfiction series "Bad Girls of the Bible," is no stranger to the women of the Bible. In "The Girl's Still Got It," while she writes to an audience of women (the "you go, girl!" exclamations and clichéd chattiness may be a bit much for some guys), she is also writing about women; Ruth's story – Naomi's story – becomes our story.
But "[w]hy study the girls (and guys) of the Bible?," asks Higgs. "Because they help us understand God's character" (7). And God is quite the character. Arguably, so is Higgs. She is spunky and witty – and "The Girl's Still Got It" is immensely readable, unfolding a roadmap of two very interesting biblical babes.
When looking at life – at where you've been and where you're going – take reassurance in whom you're traveling with. When reaching a destination, Higgs says, "the female voice of our GPS system announces, 'You've arrived.' I always laugh. First, because she sounds so happy about it. And, second, because I know better. Spiritually speaking, we're not there yet. God is still working on us" (159).