Lessons from Ruth
The book of Ruth is a short four-chapter book in the Old Testament showcasing God’s faithfulness. Naomi (mother-in-law to Ruth) left her homeland married and secure with her husband, two sons and their wives. She came back having lost everything including her husband and two sons. She was bitter and depressed.
Here are some lessons we can learn from their tough times:
When Naomi decides to return to Israel after the death of her husband and two sons, her daughter-in law Ruth insists on staying with her. Naomi tries to convince her to go back to her own family but she refuses, “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 1:16-17). She is faithful to Naomi just as God is faithful to us.
Upon arriving in Israel, Ruth goes out searching for work and food. She “just happens” to go to a field of a relative where she finds favor in the eyes on Boaz. He had heard of Ruth’s kindness towards Naomi and instructs his workers to allow her to glean in his fields.
Naomi took the initiative to go out and find work and God provided for her. From this we can learn that sometimes God may be waiting for us to take the first step.
In these pages, we also see that Ruth humbles herself by doing this menial and exhausting job. She shows her determination to provide and work hard for herself despite the circumstances and not just wait for someone to come to their aid.
Showing up uninvited to work someone’s field without permission could be dangerous. Ruth could have been harmed or reprimanded. But God’s protected her. Not only did Boaz not harm her, he also directed his workers to let some of the grain fall in her path.
Even still, God had more in store for Naomi and Ruth than just providing food and shelter. One night, Naomi instructs Ruth to wait until Boaz is asleep in the threshing room and go lie at his feet. By doing this, she was letting him know that he could find someone to marry her or he could marry her himself. After going through the right steps according to their customs, Boaz quickly steps up to marry Ruth.
Through the book of Ruth, we see that even in our dire circumstances, God has a plan. He not only provided for their needs, He also led them to Boaz. And through this union, Ruth and Boaz gave birth to Obed, who was the grandfather of David. And Jesus came from the lineage of David. Never doubt God has a plan. And know that His plans are always better than our own.