Derek Smith, Lead Pastor LHBC

Ruth 2:1-13
Now Naomi had a relative of her husband’s, a worthy man of the clan of Elimelech, whose name was Boaz. 2 And Ruth the Moabite said to Naomi, “Let me go to the field and glean among the ears of grain after him in whose sight I shall find favor.” And she said to her, “Go, my daughter.” 3 So she set out and went and gleaned in the field after the reapers, and she happened to come to the part of the field belonging to Boaz, who was of the clan of Elimelech. 4 And behold, Boaz came from Bethlehem. And he said to the reapers, “The Lord be with you!” And they answered, “The Lord bless you.” 5 Then Boaz said to his young man who was in charge of the reapers, “Whose young woman is this?” 6 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. 7 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.”

8 Then Boaz said to Ruth, “Now, listen, my daughter, do not go to glean in another field or leave this one, but keep close to my young women.9 Let your eyes be on the field that they are reaping, and go after them. Have I not charged the young men not to touch you? And when you are thirsty, go to the vessels and drink what the young men have drawn.”10 Then she fell on her face, bowing to the ground, and said to him, “Why have I found favor in your eyes, that you should take notice of me, since I am a foreigner?” 11 But Boaz answered her, “All that you have done for your mother-in-law since the death of your husband has been fully told to me, and how you left your father and mother and your native land and came to a people that you did not know before. 12 The Lord repay you for what you have done, and a full reward be given you by the Lord, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to take refuge!”13 Then she said, “I have found favor in your eyes, my lord, for you have comforted me and spoken kindly to your servant, though I am not one of your servants.”

The historical account of the faith of Ruth is an incredible story of triumph after tragedy. Ruth’s father-in-law passed away, then tragically so did her husband. Both she and her mother-in-law, Naomi, were left desperate and alone. However, in the midst of this darkness Ruth decided to trust in Yahweh God and to serve. She made the famous declaration to Naomi, “Where you go I will go and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and Your God my God.” Ruth, a Moabite by birth, took a tremendous step of faith by trusting in the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel.

Now, in chapter 2 Ruth decides to glean from the field of a distant cousin of her husband. His name is Boaz, and while gleaning in the field Ruth catches his eye and a beautiful godly relationship is born. As a result Ruth, a pagan widow, marries into the messianic line and becomes the great grandmother of King David and ancestress to the Messiah.

What’s the moral of the story? Make sure you glean from the fields of others. Other godly believers have insights and experiences that you and I need to learn from. Scripture is clear that we grow through godly community. As iron sharpens iron so we sharpen one another (Prov. 27:17). Confess your sins to one another and pray for one another so that you may be healed (James 5:16). In the abundance of counselors there is victory (Prov. 24:6). Listen to advice and accept instruction that you may gain wisdom in the future (Prov. 19:20). What other godly Christian of the same gender do you gain wisdom and advice from often? What book are you currently reading that is challenging you in your faith and service to God? What do you watch or listen to that is feeding your soul and growing you?

Never forget that there is abundant grain in another man’s field. Glean from it. Gather all you can get. Store it up and use it when the time is right. Don’t succumb to the famine of your own foolishness. Glean from others and be filled with wisdom from above.

Heavenly Father, I know that I lack wisdom apart from You and the godly counsel of others. I ask today for Your wisdom, and I ask that you continue to send godly counselors into my life. I know I need all the help I can get. In Jesus name, amen.

Ephesians 3:20-21
Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.