Journey in the Word

Karen Ingrid Clark

Ruth: Loss to Legacy

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Week Two – Day 2WK02D02

Read Ruth 2:4-7; Lev. 19:9-10                      SOAP Ruth 2:7

And behold, Boaz came from Bethlehem. And he said to the reapers, “The Lord be with you!” And they answered, “The Lord bless you.” Then Boaz said to his young man who was in charge of the reapers, “Whose young woman is this?” And the servant who was in charge of the reapers answered, “She is the young Moabite woman, who came back with Naomi from the country of Moab. She said, ‘Please let me glean and gather among the sheaves after the reapers.’ So she came, and she has continued from early morning until now, except for a short rest.”[a]

Leviticus 19:9-10 (ESV) – “When you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not reap your field right up to its edge, neither shall you gather the gleanings after your harvest. 10 And you shall not strip your vineyard bare, neither shall you gather the fallen grapes of your vineyard. You shall leave them for the poor and for the sojourner: I am the Lord your God.

O – Boaz’s greeting says volumes about his relationship with his workers.  He greets them in the name of the Lord – and they bless him in return.  There seems to be an atmosphere of mutual respect.    And – Boaz is a “noticer.”   He notices a new young woman gleaning in his field and asks who she belongs to.  In that culture, she would typically “belong” to either her father’s household, or to the household of her husband.

Ruth was out, gleaning among the sheaves of wheat.   She was picking up small pieces, after the reapers were done.   This was an Old Testament provision, set up by God Himself, to allow the “poor and for the sojourner” to gather food.   It wasn’t a “handout” – they had to work for it.  But – it was set up to allow them to work for their food – the leftovers, and the corners of the fields, as well as from the dropped grapes in the vineyards.

And, so Ruth was out, gleaning.  Her work ethic is shown here, as she had been ther since early morning, and only had taken a short rest.   She had asked for permission, and now had earnestly worked all day.

A – I was thinking, what would our country’s welfare system look like if there was a system in place for people to work – to have a way to gather needed items – and to give a sense of ownership in the obtaining of needed resources?  God had a good idea!

What is my take-away?

  • Do I greet others in a manner other than, “hi, how are you?” Do I bless them – even care about the answer I get?  Or do I do the social niceties?    Do my greetings reflect a blessing – or a concern for the person I am greeting?
  • Am I a “noticer?” Do I notice when there are needs in others?   Do I reach out – and even ask, like Boaz did?
  • Am I known for my work ethic? Do I work earnestly – or do I waste time?
  • Do I show true compassion to others around me?

P – Father God, take this woman, and use her in Your way.  Reach in my heart, and soften it.  Give me eyes to see, ears to hear, and a heart to respond to the needs and concerns of those around me.  Give me ways to bless others, and notice their needs, or their hearts.  Father, may I reflect Your love and compassion today.

Compassion Hymn – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-XLyibTpoB4

“There is an everlasting kindness
You lavished on us
When the Radiance of heaven Came to rescue the lost;
You called the sheep without a shepherd
To leave their distress
For your streams of forgiveness
And the shade of Your rest.

And with compassion for the hurting,
You reached out Your hand
As the lame ran to meet You
And the dead breathed again;
You saw behind the eyes of sorrow
And shared in our tears,
Heard the sigh of the weary,
Let the children draw near.

CHORUS
What boundless love,
What fathomless grace
You have shown us, O God of compassion!
Each day we live
An offering of praise
As we show to the world Your compassion.

We stood beneath the cross of Calvary
And gazed on Your face
At the thorns of oppression
And the wounds of disgrace,
For surely You have borne our suffering
And carried our grief
As You pardoned the scoffer
And showed grace to the thief.

How beautiful the feet that carry
This gospel of peace
To the fields of injustice
And the valleys of need—
To be a voice of hope and healing,
To answer the cries
Of the hungry and helpless
With the mercy of Christ. ”

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