Saturday, October 22, 2011

Ruth: Harvest Ends, Now What?

By Mary Vee
Ruth 3


From Ruth's Journal


I knew harvest time would end soon. What could I do next to bring food into Naomi's home?


Naomi seemed to have the same thought the next morning. She said, "It's time for me to find you a husband who will take care of you and put food on your table."


She took a sip of her drink and put the cup down. "We have a tradition. When a husband dies, the closest relative has the first rights to choose to marry the widow and inherit all that she has from her first husband."


I shook my head and sighed. "Yes, but would this relative marry a Moabitess?"


Naomi held up her hand pointing one finger at a time as if counting and said, "This man, Boaz, has allowed you to work in his field throughout the barley harvest and also the wheat harvest. You're the only one he's invited to eat with the paid workers and drink from the vessels filled with water. He is our relative and should be willing to take care of you. Yes, Ruth, I believe he would be happy to marry you."


If he would marry me, we would have everything we needed. "What would you like me to do?"


"Boaz will be working at the threshing floor tonight. Put on your best clothes and go to him. Wait until he has eaten dinner, of course. When he sees you, he will tell you what to do."


"OK, Naomi, I will do as you say."


I took a bath, put on my best clothes, brushed my hair and waited until Boaz had eaten his dinner then went to the threshing floor. I found Boaz resting near the piles of grain. He called out, "Who's there? "


"It's me, Ruth, your maidservant. I've come to ask you to take responsibility for our home since you are our closest relative."


He smiled. "You are blessed. Thank you for showing me such kindness."


Me? How did I show kindness when he is the one who helped Naomi and me? I waited for him to speak again.


His smile grew. "You could have married any young man whether poor or rich, but you've asked me to take care of you and your house." He walked closer to her. "I will gladly do what you request, after all everyone in the town knows how kind and faithful you have been to Naomi."


He looked at the ground and blew out a puff of air, "There is one slight problem. I am a close relative, however there is someone who is a closer relative. I will go to him and ask if he wants to perform his duty as a close relative for you. If he does, then good, you will have someone to care for you and Naomi. But if he does not want to take care of you, then I will. I promise."


What wonderful news. Before I left, Boaz took my shawl and filled it with barley for Naomi and I. "Here," he said, "Don't go home empty handed. Take this food."


 I hurried back to the house and told Naomi the news. "Look at the gift he gave us!" Then I told her all that happened.


Naomi, in her wisdom, said, "Sit and wait, Ruth. Wait to see what will happen. I can guarantee Boaz will not rest another moment until he has an answer for you."


Thanks be to God. Once again, He has taken care of Naomi and me.


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Today's story shows how God continued to take care of Ruth and Naomi when they were poor and the harvest season was due to end.


God promises to take care of you because He loves you. Would you like to know how? Feel free to email me: mimaryvee@yahoo.com or speak with your parent or contact your pastor.


photo courtesy of Biblevisualimages.com

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