I’m already crying. It’s only Chapter 2. The tenderness. The compassion. The LOVE. It’s almost overwhelming. We already can see a love story unfolding between Ruth and Boaz, and we’ve gotten a huge picture of the love story between Ruth and Naomi as well. And maybe my upbringing in a farming community just makes this harvest romance all the more appealing to me. I’ve talked in the past how harvest was a spectacular season (even when the harvest wasn’t great) in my little hometown of Cherokee, Oklahoma, and greater Alfalfa County, so I can picture several farmers I know acting exactly toward Ruth as Boaz did. And you bet they’d already know her story! Anytime someone new shows up in town, the townsfolk make good and sure they get the lowdown on that person ASAP. In other words, Boaz already had been impressed by Ruth even before she showed up in his field.
Let’s look at Boaz’ leadership, too. I love it so much. If you had a boss like Boaz wouldn’t you just get excited to go to work everyday??? He’s so encouraging, patient and kind. Plus, he plays by the rules. Remember way back when when God said that everyone who harvests their fields should leave the spilled wheat on the ground so that those who don’t own land can come and “glean” the grains from the fields. This is what Ruth is doing. It’s certainly a humbling experience, but as we can see by the other women in the field, a necessary one for more than just Ruth and Naomi. Boaz is key in taking care of many families, and his leadership style shows us he is a humble provider who counts his many blessings and shares them with others. We all play some kind of leadership role, and we can certainly get some pointers from Boaz from this chapter, and we’ll see more in chapters to come. Let’s keep our leadership radars on as we continue to follow this romance.
Can we also talk about barley? We harvest a little barley in Oklahoma, but our main crop is wheat, which I’ve eaten straight off the stalk from the field many times. Not so great but a treat for a kid walking home from school or playing hide-and-go-seek on the farm. Barley grows in much the same way as wheat. I have seen barley fields, but I’d never tasted barley until last year when we ventured into an Ethiopian restaurant in downtown Bangkok. At the end of our (fantastic) meal the waitress brought out a pot of coffee and a basket of roasted barley. What a TREAT!!! Anyway, it’s silly I know, but in verse 14, when Ruth joined Boaz for lunch, and he gave her roasted grain to eat, all I could think was yummmm, lucky gal. Thanks for letting me have my dorky moments.
Writing prompt: humble leader
Humble leaders are some of the best leaders, and Boaz provides such a fantastic example to follow. Write about a humble leader you know, or if you truly can’t think of anyone, write about someone who could benefit from a little humility, and pray that God instills those values in that person today. (Maybe that person is you?)