The Book of Ruth is a wonderful story of conversion. The Moabitess Ruth married a refugee Israelite but was left a young widow. Her mother-in-law, Naomi encourages her to return to her parental home and start a new life. Her response is one of love and devotion: “But Ruth replied, “Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God Ruth 1:16 NIV).”
This young woman follows Naomi to Bethlehem where she is now the refugee. She is dedicated to her mother-in-law and works hard gleaning in the fields to have enough for them to eat. Her devotion is noticed, and a relative Boaz arranges for her to keep her dignity by gleaning and not begging, and yet has his men make sure enough is left for her to collect.
In the end, her devotion to Naomi, and to the God of Israel leads to her marriage to Boaz and her place in the genealogy of King David, and to Jesus!
True devotion, love, faith, and conversion doesn’t rely on one’s background, but on their heart.