Saturday 24 May, 2014

Ruth 3:6-18

6 So she went down to the threshing floor. She did everything her mother-in-law had told her to do. 7 When Boaz had finished eating and drinking, he was in a good mood. He went over to lie down at the far end of the grain pile. Then Ruth approached quietly. She uncovered his feet and lay down there. 8 In the middle of the night, something surprised Boaz and woke him up. He turned and found a woman lying there at his feet. 9 “Who are you?” he asked. “I’m Ruth,” she said. “You are my family protector. So take good care of me by making me your wife.” 10 “Dear woman, may the Lord bless you,” he replied. “You are showing even more kindness now than you did earlier. You didn’t run after the younger men, whether they were rich or poor. 11 Dear woman, don’t be afraid. I’ll do for you everything you ask. All of the people of my town know that you are a noble woman. 12 “It’s true that I’m a relative of yours. But there’s a family protector who is more closely related to you than I am. 13 So stay here for the night. In the morning if he wants to help you, good. Let him help you. But if he doesn’t want to, then I’ll do it. You can be sure that the Lord lives. And you can be just as sure that I’ll help you. Lie down here until morning.” 14 So she stayed at his feet until morning. But she got up before anyone could be recognized. Boaz thought, “No one must know that a woman came to the threshing floor.” 15 He said to Ruth, “Bring me the coat you have around you. Hold it out.” So she did. He poured more than fifty pounds of barley into it and helped her pick it up. Then he went back to town. 16 Ruth came to her mother-in-law. Naomi asked, “How did it go, my daughter?” Then Ruth told her everything Boaz had done for her. 17 She said, “He gave me all of this barley. He said, ‘Don’t go back to your mother-in-law with your hands empty.’” 18 Naomi said, “My daughter, sit down until you find out what happens. The man won’t rest until he settles the whole matter today.”

This passage of scripture, with some straightforward observations speaks really loudly.

The first for me is the way Ruth describes herself.  Previously Ruth was introduced to us as Ruth the Moabitess or as Naomi’s daughter in law.  Now, as Ruth is beginning to get on with her life she describes herself as Boaz’s servant.  Here is Ruth describing her future.  She is proposing marriage, by lying at his feet, and this description doesn’t reflect on her past, or her nationality, it is future focussed, vision oriented.

How do you describe yourself?  Do you do so in relation to others, I am the son of, the daughter of, the employee of, the friend of.  There is nothing wrong with this of course.  Do you describe yourself in relation to your role, husband, father, mother, wife, builder, plumber, doctor, accountant… again nothing wrong here.  Or do you describe yourself with the future in mind?

In different situations we describe ourselves differently, at work, at church, at home, in a team.

Yet there is an important power to describing ourselves with the vision of God in mind.  How often do you do this – for Ruth it was “I am your servant…”  Speaking what we believe is a powerful principle of faith (2 Corinthians 4:13)  Let’s continue to practice this principle.

Father, fill our mouths with vision that we speak out over our lives!

Written by Ps. Richard Botta

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