In my study of the women in the Bible I of course stumbled across dear ole Ruth. Well I think of Ruth as old because my Grandmother on my mom’s side was named Ruth. She was VERY formal and conservative so much so that I did not feel a sense of love or acceptance from her. In my recent fascination with names and their meanings, I am finding that just because a person’s name has a deep significance to it; that doesn’t mean the person grew up to fulfill their namesake. So finding a youthful, hard-working, caring Ruth of the bible has had me rethink some things about the first impression I have of the name Ruth. Did you know that at one time Ruth was #8 on the most common Christian names?
So as most people know with the story of Ruth, she becomes widowed and chooses to follow her mother-in-law back to Judah (Hebrew territory) even though she is a Moabite-a foreigner. After a series of acts specifically done by Ruth, Boaz takes notice of her and shows her favor. Well actually shows her kindness in line with what the custom of the day expected; but looking out for her even further in who she was around, and in the pieces of grain his harvesters left behind. Then Naomi (the mother-in-law) tells her to show a kindness back to Boaz, which seems a little seductressy in my opinon—I mean sleeping at a guy’s uncovered feet??? Seems pretty scandalous to me. But it works and moves Boaz to take action so he can accept the property of Ruth’s deceased husband, which then gives her over to marry Boaz.
In all the right light, a strong man of business with farms and men, caring and generous man to give to the poor, and a man who saw a good woman and pursued her. He worshiped God and followed the laws of their culture although it gives some indication he was MATURE, it does not say he was OLD. And just as in this story MATURE doesn’t mean that he can’t, we can’t still have children. There is somewhere in me that still wants that. The other part of this story that really struck a chord with me is that it wasn’t something she did to WIN his attention, she just continued to live according to what she thought she SHOULD do to help her mother-in-law and it put her in the right place at the right time. So desperately, I want to be just in the right place at the right time. I am tired of working so hard at doing this or that, trying this or that, attempting this or that, but instead I desperately want to be living life, doing the things I do and have my Boaz NOTICE ME!!! Is that really too much to ask of God? Is that too much of a request of the man that will be in my life?
So in the reading of this I started to think of my hearts desire to be married and have a partner to share this life with. To have someone who wants me and loves me and is willing to work hard in this life as much as there is left. I can’t help but ask the question, “Where is my Boaz?” I mean I don’t know which field I’m suppose to be gleaning in or where I’m suppose to be laying my head to get a CERTAIN person’s attention; but a little hint would be nice. But I honestly want to know, Where is he?
Despite my whining and complaining about wondering where he is… the scripture today gave me hope. It gave me that true spring in my heart’s step that not all is lost, that Ruth was widowed and she did not have much of a positive future. Yet, her history did not determine her destiny. She followed Naomi and God to the land of promise. And it is in these moments of my heartfelt agony, that I actually have more hope than discouragement. It is almost like I now have a man to look for, like all the dating dances and courting confusion in my life has been replaced by this simple notion that I need to just wait for my “Bo” to show up and NOTICE ME (okay I shortened it because it sounds cooler to my American ear, but the image in my mind is still the same). That I need to continue to put my eyes on God and do my gleaning with joy, peace, and contentment; and he WILL COME!!!
And now instead of feeling this hopelessness that I will never find him or that this search is completely fruitless, I am reminded that I need to continue to do what I do (which includes working on my own mind and spirit). Work hard, fulfill my obligations to those I love, and seek out God (even in foreign lands away from home) and he will guide my steps to the right place. I mean even Ruth found Boaz’s field, and I am not buying that whole LUCK thing. So if God was guiding Ruth to the right field, will not God guide my feet to the right field? So now that this has inspired me to pray deeply but continue to work hard, I just know that in time I will see him, and he will notice me.
PS Just a few days after I constructed this post the most hilariously comic post was left on Facebook. Give the above writing I had to incorporate here: For all the single ladies , here’s a quick piece of Biblical advice: Ruth patiently waited for her mate Boaz. While waiting on YOUR Boaz, don’t settle for ANY of his relatives: Brokeaz, Poaz, Lyinaz, Cheatinaz, Dumbaz, Cheapaz, Lockedupaz, Goodfornothinaz, Lazyaz or Marriedaz & especially his third cousin Beatinyoaz. And don’t forget Painintheaz! Also do not fall for the very righteous-looking Lordinitovahyoaz. Please, wait on your Boaz & make sure he respects Yoaz !!