Day 8: From Emptiness to Fulfillment

Read: Ruth 4:1-22

Reflect: In chapter 3, Boaz expressed his willingness to be the family redeemer. But he is a man of character and obedient to the law of God and he knows there is another man who is a closer relative to Elimelech than he. So he offers the opportunity to be the redeemer to this man. He declines, not wanting to marry Ruth. 

Thus Boaz takes a vow before all the people that he will be the redeemer, buy the land, marry Ruth and carry on the family name of her deceased husband. They get married and have a son. 

And then the story immediately turns back to Naomi. At the start of the story she lost everything. Her husband and her sons were dead and she was alone in a foreign land. Our story ends with Naomi back in her hometown bouncing a little baby boy on her knee. When she returned to Bethlehem she told the women that she was bitter and empty. Now those women are praising God as the restorer of life. Those same women ignored Ruth’s very existence upon their return to Bethlehem. Now those women are telling Naomi that a daughter-in-law like her is better than 7 sons. The women in the streets are proclaiming that Naomi has a son. 

Our story has seen Naomi move from mourning death to celebrating birth. Naomi has gone from empty to fulfilled, from sorrow to joy and from bitter to pleasant. And it is all because of the never stopping, never giving up, unbreaking, always and forever love of God. 

Respond: 

  • How has you seen God be the restorer of your life in unexpected ways? 
  • How has you seen God be the restorer of life in the Philippines this week? 
  • How is God calling you to labor alongside of him to restore life to those around you at home? 

Postlogue

The book of Ruth concludes with a postlogue recounting a genealogy. Seems like an odd place to end after such a beautiful story culminates with God’s overwhelming kindness shining so brightly in the restoration of life and unexpected birth of the baby. But the narrator wants to make sure we don’t miss why this is such a big deal: Because that baby was Obed, father of Jesse, father of King David. And of course, many years and many generations later another unexpected baby would be born in Bethlehem. And that baby, a descendent of David… and therefore a descendent of Ruth and Boaz… would grow up to be both our Family Redeemer and the Great King of all!

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