Meanwhile Boaz went up to the town gate and sat down there just as the guardian-redeemer he had mentioned came along. Boaz said, “Come over here, my friend, and sit down.” So he went over and sat down.
Boaz took ten of the elders of the town and said, “Sit here,” and they did so. Then he said to the guardian-redeemer, “Naomi, who has come back from Moab, is selling the piece of land that belonged to our relative Elimelek. I thought I should bring the matter to your attention and suggest that you buy it in the presence of these seated here and in the presence of the elders of my people. If you will redeem it, do so. But if you will not, tell me, so I will know. For no one has the right to do it except you, and I am next in line.”
“I will redeem it,” he said.
Then Boaz said, “On the day you buy the land from Naomi, you also acquire Ruth the Moabite, the dead man’s widow, in order to maintain the name of the dead with his property.”
At this, the guardian-redeemer said, “Then I cannot redeem it because I might endanger my own estate. You redeem it yourself. I cannot do it.”
(Now in earlier times in Israel, for the redemption and transfer of property to become final, one party took off his sandal and gave it to the other. This was the method of legalizing transactions in Israel.)
So the guardian-redeemer said to Boaz, “Buy it yourself.” And he removed his sandal.
Then Boaz announced to the elders and all the people, “Today you are witnesses that I have bought from Naomi all the property of Elimelek, Kilion and Mahlon. I have also acquired Ruth the Moabite, Mahlon’s widow, as my wife, in order to maintain the name of the dead with his property, so that his name will not disappear from among his family or from his hometown. Today you are witnesses!”
Then the elders and all the people at the gate said, “We are witnesses. May the Lord make the woman who is coming into your home like Rachel and Leah, who together built up the family of Israel. May you have standing in Ephrathah and be famous in Bethlehem. Through the offspring the Lord gives you by this young woman, may your family be like that of Perez, whom Tamar bore to Judah.”
So Boaz took Ruth and she became his wife. When he made love to her, the Lord enabled her to conceive, and she gave birth to a son. The women said to Naomi: “Praise be to the Lord, who this day has not left you without a guardian-redeemer. May he become famous throughout Israel! 15 He will renew your life and sustain you in your old age. For your daughter-in-law, who loves you and who is better to you than seven sons, has given him birth.”
Then Naomi took the child in her arms and cared for him. 17 The women living there said, “Naomi has a son!” And they named him Obed. He was the father of Jesse, the father of David.
This, then, is the family line of Perez:
Perez was the father of Hezron,
Hezron the father of Ram,
Ram the father of Amminadab,
Amminadab the father of Nahshon,
Nahshon the father of Salmon,
Salmon the father of Boaz,
Boaz the father of Obed,
Obed the father of Jesse,
and Jesse the father of David.
~Ruth Chapter 4
The Book of Ruth could make for a pretty good Romantic Comedy in our culture today. Much of what takes place at “The End” gives us “all the feels.” It also gives us so much more than we could’ve ever hoped for the leading ladies Naomi and Ruth and our night and shining armor, Boaz. Without our hero, Boaz, the story wouldn’t wrap up with the pretty bow we all long for in a love story. This love story, however, isn’t just a love story between a man (Boaz) and a woman (Ruth) but it’s also a story of love between God and each of the leading cast, Naomi, Ruth, and Boaz. It reminds us that the true hero of each of our stories is God when we trust, obey and take action.
The thing about The Book of Ruth that makes it different from your average fairy tale is that all of our characters do something to “get the party started” so to say. They take action! They trust God and get after it! They don’t wait around to be rescued.
Ruth stays…Naomi comes up with a plan…Boaz says yes. Not only does he say yes, he actually gets off his behind and makes it all happen. At the end of chapter 3, verse 18 states, “Then Naomi said, “Wait, my daughter, until you find out what happens. For the man will not rest until the matter is settled today.” Our main man, Boaz gets the job done and he gets it done quickly. He gathers 10 of the elders of the town and finds the guy first in line to have the opportunity to buy Naomi’s land and to marry Ruth. He quickly makes this guy aware of his opportunity and he says, “no can do, buddy, because I can’t put my own estate in danger.” With his witnesses before him and the original guardian-redeemer’s sandal in hand sealing the deal that Boaz can now become the guardian-redeemer, he buys the land and he makes Ruth his wife. After that, it just continues to get better and better…Ruth has a baby boy…a grandson for Naomi and he goes on to become the great-grandfather of King David (who also goes on to be in the line of Jesus).
So what does this beautiful love story have to do with us?
We all have goals and dreams for our lives and yet too often we just go through the motions of our everyday lives complaining about the cards we’ve been dealt and then do nothing with what we’ve been given. We sit around and wait for the knight in shining armor to rescue us. We sit around waiting for our dreams to come true, but set no goals and wake up each day with no plan. The problem with most of us is that we fumble through life and wait for some kind of purpose to hit us on the head and drag us out of our comfort zones to make something happen. The desires of our hearts are out there, but hard work, dedication, faithfulness/trust in God, obedience and just plain getting to work is part of it.
Wherever you are in your walk with God and your journey to figure out your purpose on this planet, action is your next step. Maybe for you, that means seeking. Start praying about it and talking to God about your purpose and his calling on your life. Maybe you need to sit down and think about the vision you have for your life in 5 years, in 10 years, or a vision for your entire life. Maybe you already know your purpose and have a vision for your life but making a plan is the next step, setting some goals and sticking to them is what needs to be on your agenda. It’s never too late to get to work when it comes to your role (or your story) in God’s big story. Don’t waste another day wishing and hoping, get to work. You won’t regret it…I don’t think Ruth, Naomi or Boaz did.
God, I want to fulfill your calling on my life and I want to start today. I pray for daily reminders that action is always the next step whether it’s simply praying or taking a great big leap of faith for you. I pray that I would work hard and that I would make the most of my time and the opportunities placed before me to do good works for you. I pray that you would protect me from distractions and that I would realize that sometimes saying no to one thing means saying yes to something better. I pray that I would trust in you every step of the way. Thank you, God, for another day on this planet. Amen.
Today’s post was written by Amanda Sanders.
Amanda has been married to her high school sweetheart, Matt, for 12 years. Together they have three kids ages 10, 8 and 5. In this season of life, Amanda spends most of her time drinking coffee, teaching children, doing laundry and repeating herself. Occasionally, she has some time for working out, reading for leisure and writing. You can find her on Sunday mornings worshiping at our Real Life Kaley campus.