This next installment to the Ruth Series will be a combination of chapter two and chapter three. Before I get to chapter two LATER in this post, I wanted to begin by showing you the start of chapter three, for it is significant when shown side by side with chapter two.
Chapter 3 has signs that things are changing in Ruth’s life. It starts with Naomi telling Ruth one day, “it’s time that I found a permanent home for you, so that you will be provided for. Boaz is a close relative of ours, and he’s been very kind by letting you gather grain with his young women” (Ruth 3:1-2). I read a few years ago a study of Ruth by the author Michelle McKinney Hammond. The book is called, How to Be Found by the Man You’ve Been Looking For if anyone is interested in checking it out. In chapter eight of her book, Ms. Hammond stated that in a way Naomi’s relationship with Ruth is an example of how the Holy Spirit works in each of us. I definitely can see that with the Holy Spirit’s guidance, we can know when God is saying it’s time for the next step. Verse 2 I find interesting because, Naomi points out whom it is that Ruth should marry.
Now stay with me here. If Naomi represents the Holy Spirit in this story then, who told Ruth that Boaz is the guy? Say, you do not see that analogy and Naomi is just a caring mother-in-law; well, the question is who led her to believe Boaz is that person? Hint the answer is the same: God. God knew when it would be time for Ruth to marry again, and he placed the man she should marry in her life at the proper moment. The details of that moment are described in the previous chapter.
Chapter 2 tells us that sometime after moving to Bethlehem, Judah, Ruth decided (after Naomi consented) to go look for work in the fields to provide for her and Naomi (Ruth 2:2). That is where we pick up reading the story. It says, “So Ruth went out to gather grain behind the harvesters. And as it happened, she found herself working in a field that belonged to Boaz, the relative of her father-in-law, Elimelech. While she was there, Boaz arrived from Bethlehem” (Ruth 2:3-4).
Talk about timing that Boaz and Ruth were in the same place at the same time. What are the odds of that? I want to note that their being at the same place that day, did not start the day Ruth decided to go search for work. I believe that it began the moment Ruth had the courage to leave Moab, to leave the place she had a greater chance to remarry, in favor of Judah where she is a foreigner so that she could follow Naomi and more importantly, follow God. This kind of full on devoted faith should be happening more often in today’s world. I am not talking about non-believers I am talking about Christians. Now a WARNING, what follows is not meant to be judgmental. I am simply stating what God has put in my own heart on the subject.
How many of us get tired of waiting for God or believe the window of waiting closed and it’s time to take action by joining online dating websites. You might be saying it’s simply the modern form of waiting but ask this: why even join the site? Isn’t the endgame so you and the one can meet? However, doesn’t that communicate to God something else? You do not fully believe that God can bring you and your mate together without your help to speed up the process.
Case and point, Ruth. Ruth did not go to the fields because she hoped her future husband would spot her there. She was focused on gathering grain for her and Naomi. She was living her life. To be honest, I believe she let any desire for a new marriage go when she left Moab. She probably believed there was no chance that anyone would think to consider marrying her.
I believe God who has done so many incredible things for Ruth, (in the remainder of chapter two and chapters 3-4), Abraham, Moses, Jacob, Joseph, David, Esther, Mary, and the list goes on, continues to do so today for us. I know that he can and will bring you and your one together in HIS timing. The question is, do you? Can you do like Ruth and not focus so much on the desire for a husband in favor of focusing on what God has already given you now. You have so much time to focus on your relationship with God, you have time to focus on your career without distractions, time to travel, time to spend with friends, time for plenty of hobbies, time for your siblings, parents and any other relatives. If after reading this, you feel that you cannot do that. That is ok. Ask God to increase your patience in this area or any other area you are struggling with, to increase your belief in Him, and ask God to transform your perspective on your current season.
All Bible Verses are from The Holy Bible: New Living Translation