Ruth 2:12, The LORD recompense thy work, and a full reward be given thee of the LORD God of Israel, under whose wings thou art come to trust.
Ruth’s Trust upon Yahweh became Talk of the Town in Bethlehem
The Living God ordered farmers in Israel not to harvest the corners of their fields so the poor and needy, such as aliens, widows, and orphans, could glean food enough to live (Lev. 19:9-10; 23:22). As an alien and a widow Ruth was qualified to glean. This law served as a type of social welfare program for the people in Israel.
She “happened” to glean in Boaz’s field
God’s hand of blessing evidently directed Ruth’s choice to go to that field. Ruth’s meeting with Boaz was not coincidence, it’s God’s plan all the way.
Boaz’s love for God and other people are important
There was no labour management dispute here since Boaz treated his workers with love and care. Ruth’s character was extra ordinary as the reaper foreman reported (v. 7) and as Boaz later testified when he had learned earlier (v. 11). Ruth had rested only for a while. In other words, Ruth was a hard working woman. Usually the poor went from field to field to glean. However, Boaz graciously considered Ruth as one of his maidservants (v. 8-9, 13) so she would not leave his field and so he could provide for her needs more fully.
Ruth wanted to know (v. 10) why Boaz was blessing her. The Israelites did not usually treat foreigners this way during the days of the judges. Boaz clarified that it was not her nationality but her unconditional love for Naomi (v. 11) and her faith in Yahweh (v. 12) that had touched him to bless her. It was clear that Ruth was completely trusting in Yahweh and that her solid trust had become Talk of the Town in Bethlehem.
Rather than depending on her mother in law or waiting for good fortune to happen, she took the initiative. She went to work. When Ruth went out to the fields, the God of Israel provided for her. If you are waiting for our loving God to provide, think about this: He may be waiting for you to take the first step to show just how important your need is.
Ruth’s job, although tiring, and perhaps degrading, was done honestly. What is your attitude when the assignment you have been given is not up to your real potential?
The task at hand may be the work God wants you to do. Like in Ruth’s part, it may be a test of your character that can open up new doors of opportunity.
Ruth was hardworking and loving, kind, faithful, and courageous. These qualities gained for her a godly reputation, wherever she went or whatever she did, her character remained the same. Our reputation is formed by the people who watch us at work, in town, at home, and in church. A godly reputation comes by firmly living out the qualities we believe in—no matter what group of people we mingle with or surroundings we are in.
The characters in the book of Ruth are examples of good people in action. Boaz went beyond the intent of the gleaners’ law in demonstrating his kindness and generosity. He did not only allow Ruth to glean in his field, but he also ordered his harvesters to let some of the grain fall in her way. Out of his abundance, he provided for the needy. How often do we go beyond the accepted patterns of providing for those less fortunate? Do we do more than the minimum for others?