Devotional, Old Testament, Ruth

Just another step forward (Ruth 3:6-9)

So she went down to the threshing floor and did just as her mother-in-law had commanded her. And when Boaz had eaten and drunk, and his heart was merry, he went to lie down at the end of the heap of grain. Then she came softly and uncovered his feet and lay down. At midnight the man was startled and turned over, and behold, a woman lay at his feet! He said, “Who are you?” And she answered, “I am Ruth, your servant. Spread your wings over your servant, for you are a redeemer.”

Ruth 3:6-9 ESV Bible Gateway

Ruth came to Boaz in a totally humble and submissive way just as instructed by Naomi. She identified herself and boldly asked Boaz to take her in marriage – “spread your wings over your servant, for you are a redeemer”.  The phrase can also be translated as “spread the corner of your garment over me.” This was a culturally relevant way to say, “I am a widow, take me as your wife.” The narrator mentioned very little about Ruth’s appearance or any special talents. But we could see her faith and love for Naomi and God by her determination in chapter one to follow her old bitter mother-in-law.  In chapter two, we see her consistency, diligence, and faithfulness through her work in the field for Boaz.  And now in chapter three, we see a woman that is humble, submissive, obedient, yet brave.  Knowing that Boaz was the hope for the family line of Elimelech to get carried on, and knowing that Boaz was a godly man, Ruth bravely took a step forward and asked him to take her in marriage.  There was no guarantee that Boaz would say “yes”.  Even if he would say “yes”, there was no guarantee that her second marriage would work out! What if another famine happens on the land? What if tragedy repeats itself? What if….?  There was no mention in the narrative that any of those thoughts came across her mind.  All we see was that the commitment she had for Naomi in chapter one was not just commitment in words.  She carried out her commitment in action faithfully and bravely.  

On our journey to Heaven, no matter how committed, diligent, or obedient we are, we may encounter hurdles, disappointments hurts, and failures somewhere along the way.  Are any of your past disappointments and failures paralyzing you to move on? Has despair taken hold of your soul? If God presents an opportunity ahead, will you rehearse the “what ifs…” on your head and let fears take control? Or will you be willing to accept the challenge and give yourself a second chance bravely with your faith and His grace? God never promised a smooth journey to Heaven. What He had promised is mercy and compassion that’s new every morning; love that’s everlasting;  grace that is sufficient, strength in weakness, and His presence that’s 24/7!  Today let us humbly bring our failures, our hurt, worries,  and fears to His feet and boldly ask the Lord to give us the faith and strength to step out for Him again! Sometimes all it takes is one more step forward.   We can do it! 

Dear Lord, thank you for loving me and accepting me just the way I am. Help me not to live in my past failures and disappointment. Give me the strength to try again, and the courage the step out in faith for you!

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