Some thoughts from reading the book of Ruth…a beautiful story of faithfulness and love.
Setting:- the book of Ruth is a story set in times when Israel had once again forgotten God’s leading. Once again they put their trust in themselves and forgot the God who brought them out of Egypt. A lot of the Old Testament seems to be a yo-yo of forgetting God, then God raises a prophet, they remember again and have victory, then they forget and so on and so on it goes. Sounds a lot like our personal stories! But one thing I notice is that in those times where it seems everyone forgets God, there is at least one person who is a glimmer of hope. One person who does not forget God, one person who keeps hope burning.
Naomi, Orpah and Ruth…despair, sadness, alone.
Husbands dead, future unknown, hope fading.
But out of sadness and despair we find HOPE.
In a time of sadness and choice – does she return home to the familiar, or does she stay with Naomi, her new family. Ruth epitomises faithfulness and integrity, and chooses the promise she made to her new family over home country. She chooses faithfulness. She chooses HOPE.
They are in need, there is no food, HOPE is fading. So the women glean in the shadows of the harvesters. Trying to be unnoticed and isolated, avoiding attention, Ruth does her best to collect precious grain. Needed sustenance, HOPE for a future.
But then she is noticed. Noticed by Boaz, who offers her more grain! Offering more HOPE, he becomes her rescuer, her own Kinsman Redeemer, her future, her security. To a family in hopelessness and sorrow, he becomes HOPE and Joy. He secures their future, secures their need.
Through Ruth and Boaz’s son Obed, HOPE is restored. A bigger HOPE is born…HOPE of a Saviour to come. Obed, the grandfather of David continues the family line of HOPE. Then HOPE is born to Mary. Jesus. Our very own Kinsman Redeemer. He has taken us to be his own, to secure our future when we were hopeless and orphaned.
Pass on the message of HOPE. A message that’s tells us that in this messed up world, there is HOPE of something better. We are not left alone, we have an inheritance, we have HOPE.