Ruth 4:1 – 2 “Meanwhile Boaz went up to the town gate and sat there. When the kinsman-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.”
The town gate of that time was kind of like the Starbucks of today. It was the popular hang-out. If you were looking for someone, and you weren’t sure where they would be, you’d just go wait at the town gate. Sooner or later, the person you wanted would show up. Just like today – sooner or later, that person is gonna need some coffee.
Now, Boaz was a man of high moral character, and he wanted to go about things the right way. He was probably a little nervous. After all, he was in love with Ruth. What if this other guy decided he wanted to marry Ruth? What if Boaz had to stand by and watch the love of his life become some other man’s wife – some man who didn’t even love her?
Many men in this situation would have just eloped. Then, the deed would be done, and even if people whispered about them and looked down on them for the rest of their days, still, it would be worth it, right? At least they would have each other. But Boaz wanted better for his bride. She had already had a hard life. He didn’t want to add anything else to the heartache she’d already experienced. He loved her enough to risk losing her, in order for her to have the standing in the community that he felt she deserved.
So, he used wisdom. He did what he needed to do to make her his own, and he did it the right way. He talked to this man publicly, and in the presence of respected witnesses. And, as we will soon find out, his integrity paid off.
Very often, when we are faced with situations that might not go the way we want them to, we scheme. We manipulate. We whisper behind closed doors, we make secret phone calls, we call in special favors. We do everything we can do to bend things in our favor. Everything, that is, except trust God.
But that’s not the way God wants His children to operate. He wants us to be above reproach in all things – even when things don’t go the way we want them to. He wants us to seek Him, and use wisdom, and act as He directs. And then, He wants us to let go of the situation and let Him handle it. No matter what.
Are you faced with a difficult situation, my friend? Are you tempted to manipulate and scheme, in order to bend things in your favor? If you do, you may win your little battle. But God will not be pleased. And in the long run, the pay-off of living in God’s will is much, much greater than doing things our own way.
Dear Father, It’s hard, sometimes, to give up my control of things. Please help me to always act with wisdom and honor, and to trust You in all things.