I’m still in the little Book of Ruth, and today I took a walk through the fields of Boaz. Naomi’s been busted and broken in all kinds of ways. She probably reckons she’ll never know joy again. Her husband and sons are dead. They’re never coming back. The days of hope are way past gone.
Busted and Broken Beyond Repair
Yes, I know, Naomi made it back to Bethlehem. In fact, she caused quite a stir the day she walked back into town with that Moabite daughter-in-law. But for all the hootin’ and hollerin’ the townsfolk made when she arrived at the city gate, what did it do for Naomi? It didn’t change the fact that she was broken beyond repair, with no prospect of joy in sight.
Joy is Coming
Past her prime, dirt poor, and her widowed daughter-in-law is a Moabite! I mean, come on: what man in his right mind would ever look Naomi or Ruth’s way? Naomi may be home, but all she’s really done is trade the fields of Moab for the fields of Boaz.
But what Naomi doesn’t know is that her story (and Ruth’s story, too) is about to change in the fields of Boaz. God is writing a new story, a story that will end with irrepressible joy.
The Unacceptable Finds Acceptance
In the fields of Boaz, Naomi’s unacceptable Ruth will find a glorious acceptance—one that comes not just with favor, but also with preference and special privilege. Judgmental labels will not have the last word over the shattered lives of Naomi and Ruth. The kinsman-redeemer will get the last word!
When I get to this part of the story, I could just shout for joy! You know why? Because the story of Ruth belongs to all of us. Through the Kinsman-Redeemer, the unacceptable finds acceptance, the unloved are loved, the empty are filled, and the broken are made whole.
It’s done my soul a whole lot of good to camp out in the Book of Ruth: not to rush through the pages, but to linger on every page and wait for the story to unfold. As I settle in, I think to myself that
I, like Ruth, have found a glorious acceptance!
Acceptance, Loved, Broken Made Whole, Irrepressible Joy, Hope, Restoration, Redemption