Ruth 2:8 – 9 “So Boaz said to Ruth, ‘My daughter, listen to me. Don’t go and glean in another field and don’t go away from here. Stay here with my servant girls. Watch the field where the men are harvesting, and follow along after the girls. I have told the men not to touch you. And whenever you are thirsty, go and get a drink from the water jars the men have filled.”
There’s no doubt about it – Boaz was smitten. He had no reason to want a poor widow woman coming into his fields. There is no indication that anyone else was there gleaning. But Boaz instructed Ruth to glean only in his field. Not only that, but he spread his cloak of protection around her. He told her, “You come back here as often as you wish, and don’t go anywhere else. Stay with the women, drink when you are thirsty, and my men will leave you alone. You are safe here.”
In those days, a woman alone was open to all kinds of ridicule, insults, and even physical harm. Ruth could have had a hard road ahead. But Boaz made it clear that as long as she stayed near him, he would see that her needs were met, and he would protect her.
The same is true for each one of us. Our Father promises to meet our needs, and to provide a measure of protection, as long as we don’t go wandering off. As long as we stay close to Him, stay within His shadow, then our lives are easier. Our Daddy will protect us.
But when we choose, like Naomi’s husband did, to wander away from our Father’s protection, we will experience more hard knocks than we need to. This world will not treat us with the same gentle, loving care and protection which our Father offers. In this world, we will be insulted, kicked around, taken advantage of, even physically harmed. When we wander away from our Father, and the bullies of this world come, we are on our own. And usually, we don’t do so well on our own.
But just as Boaz wanted Ruth to stay close, our loving Father longs for us to stay near Him. When we do, we reap the benefits of His promises. When we obey Him, and seek daily to live for Him, we can know that He will provide for us, protect us, and shower His love upon us.
Dear Father, Thank You for Your promises. Please help me to stay close to You.