Becoming & Finding Your Ruth
Assuming that you already read Ruth 2 – 4, we’re going to go through the character traits of Ruth. Yes, Ladies! There is a certain type of woman that men should be looking for and that woman should thrive at becoming, according to the Bible.
In the last section, we talked about what God’s word has to say about finding a God-fearing man and what we as men can learn about becoming a God-fearing man. In this section, we will be looking at the same sections of scripture and seeing what God’s word has to say about finding a God-fearing woman and what it also says about becoming a God-fearing woman. I have to be honest though, being a man and writing this section is very hard because I am a man. But bear with me and let’s see key elements of a God-fearing woman in the life of Ruth.
God Fearing Women Work Hard
Ruth the Moabitess asked Naomi, “Will you let me go into the fields and gather fallen grain behind someone who allows me to?” Naomi answered her, “Go ahead, my daughter.” So Ruth left and entered the field to gather grain behind the harvesters. She happened to be in the portion of land belonging to Boaz, who was from Elimelech’s family. Ruth 2:2-3
As an uber driver, a car is an important source of income. Without a car, I’m unemployed. So that’s where I am right was in 2019, unemployed and waiting. Waiting for good news. In the days of Ruth, we know that those days were classified as days of oppression and full of famine. Ruth’s own life was lost. She lost her husband, at a time when having a husband was essential to a woman and the household, a little more than it is today. The thing about Ruth that is so amazing is she doesn’t just give up and die. She gets up and finds work to provide for the family she does have. So that is one mark of a God-fearing woman, they work and try to be a productive member of society. Solomon point’s this out in Proverbs 31:13 “She selects wool and flax and works with willing hands.” Don’t confuse this verse with slavery or maid. A woman is neither a slave nor a servant of her husband, but a woman is her husband’s partner and helper. Using her skills God gave her to help her husband and family and also be a productive member of society.
Personally, when I’m on dating sites and I come across a woman profile that says that they want to be a “stay-at-home-mom”, I just keep scrolling. God gave gifts to each person, skillsets, dreams, talents, and a mission for each one of us on this earth. I think that if the best you can do is just try to find a guy that will let you be a stay at home mom, your not only wasting your life but you are not fulling your purpose on this earth and you’re just laying a lot of stress on that guy you’re going to be married to. Men, don’t fall for these kinds of women, they aren’t looking for the interest of others, but only of themselves. Marriage is a union of Husband and His Wife looking after each other’s interests, so if from the very start they are just looking for a guy to let them be a stay-at-home mom, that’s not biblical and that is not a marriage. That is just a woman that doesn’t want to work and hoping to hit it big with a guy that will pay for everything. “A husband should fulfill his marital responsibility to his wife, and likewise a wife to her husband.” 1 Corinthians 7:3. To be fair, this verse was written around the context of having sexual relations with your spouse, but there is a case to be augured that part of “marital responsibility” is using your gifts, dreams, talents, and all God gave you to build up your marriage with your spouse.
Just to be very clear, Boaz had a job too, he was in charge of everything. I was a manager at Walmart for about 5 years before joining to marines. That job was not easy at all. The amount of stress that it brought and the number of people I was in charge of. All the changes that happened throughout the year because of seasons. It was a lot of responsibility I had under my belt. I would only imagine, Boaz didn’t have a very easy job. He had to make sure his workers were taken care of health-wise. This could be the reason he got reports about Ruth. Maybe he got reports about each one of his workers, but we read only about Ruth. There is a lot that goes into running a business. Making sure there is food, water, everyone gets paid and making sure that workers are following safety processes. We could go down the hole of Boaz’s job and all he dealt with, and he still made time to have conversations with Ruth.
Work is not a bad thing either, it’s actually a blessing. Work gives people purpose in life. People are driven by a purpose. Everyone has this God size purpose, but a lot of people don’t use that purpose for God. When God made Adam, he gave him the task to work the garden, and give all the creatures their own name. “The Lord God took the man and placed him in the garden of Eden to work it and watch over it.” Genesis 2:15. Later on in the story, he created a woman and brought this woman to Adam. The woman was named Eve by Adam, this is because God’s purpose to Adam was to name the creatures in the garden, so when Adam sees Eve, he naturally named her.
Here is the interesting part of the story of Adam and Eve. Adam is made in the image and likeness of God, so in a perfect world, like the Garden of Eden was the perfect world, Adam names this creature God brought to him, he named her ‘woman’, but why? Genesis 2:23 ”And the man said: This one, at last, is bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh; this one will be called “woman,” for she was taken from man.” We see that Adam named her woman based on his own understanding and that understanding was that she was created out of Adam’s own flesh. He didn’t see the bigger picture. God though tells us the bigger picture for the existence of women. Genesis 2:18 Then the Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper as his complement.” The purpose for the existence of women was the be the helper of men. The term helper is the same term that is given to describe the Holy Spirit, Jesus called the Holy Spirit, the Helper for the Church. John 14:26 “But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.” It’s possible that Adam wasn’t good at managing the garden that he was in charge of, so God made women help him out. Just like the church couldn’t do much without the Holy Spirit.
So Ladies, understand that God has given you value from the start of the world and a mission and you should be pursuing whatever that mission is on this earth. Men, listen, find yourself a woman that has her head on her shoulders and is a hard-working intelligent woman. Proverbs 12:4 “An excellent wife is the crown of her husband, but she who brings shame is like rottenness in his bones.”
God Fearing Women Are Honorable
I’m trying so hard to correctly say this. Throughout the story of Ruth, your notice that Ruth never disrespects Boaz or her mother-in-law. She listened to everything Naomi told her to do and she was always showing respect to Boaz. I don’t want to claim that women should be obedient to their husbands and they should bow down to them like they are a god. I’m against that teaching. When we read the story of Ruth, we see Ruth calling Boaz by Lord and bowing down to him, which was part of their culture, it was like how today we shake hands and tell our boss “Good Morning Sir/Ma’am”.
I guess we can say that Ruth was a humble woman. Humble women are honorable women. Same for men too. If you want to be honorable, you must be humble. Jesus and his disciples had this conversation in Matthew 18:1-4, “At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” And calling to him a child, he put him in the midst of them and said, “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” If you want to be great and have honor, you must be humble.
Ruth Was a Moabite
Also Ruth the Moabite, the widow of Mahlon, I have bought to be my wife, to perpetuate the name of the dead in his inheritance, that the name of the dead may not be cut off from among his brothers and from the gate of his native place. You are witnesses this day. Ruth 4:10
It’s important to understand that Ruth wasn’t of the same people as Boaz. This is the reason why the nearest redeemer wouldn’t redeem Ruth. Ruth 4:5-6 Then Boaz said, “The day you buy the field from the hand of Naomi, you also acquire Ruth the Moabite, the widow of the dead, in order to perpetuate the name of the dead in his inheritance.” Then the redeemer said, “I cannot redeem it for myself, lest I impair my own inheritance. Take my right of redemption yourself, for I cannot redeem it.” This goes all the way back to the “don’t marry foreigners” law that God gives his people. Ruth was from a people that worship other gods. So it’s completely understanding that this redeemer rejected Ruth.
Why then did Boaz not reject Ruth? We could begin with the fact that Boaz had a responsibility to “perpetuate the name of the dead in his inheritance, that the name of the dead may not be cut off from among his brothers and from the gate of his native place. You are witnesses this day.” Ruth 4:10. Honestly, that answer is not good enough for me. If the first redeemer said no because of Ruth’s background, Boaz could also do that same exact thing. By the time we get to Ruth 4, it’s the end of the barley harvest, Ruth 1 was the beginning of the barley harvest, so we have about 6 months of Ruth and Boaz getting to know each other. Boaz knew Ruth and Ruth knew Boaz. They built a friendship with each other.
This actually is very comfortable to me. I have been put in the friend zone many times by women that I have fallen in love with. The friend zone makes me keep searching. Men, maybe instead of trying to immediately make a woman you like into your girlfriend, first, make her into your best friend. Marriage is a lifelong relationship between two best friends, at least it should be! When we make marriage into a reason to have sexual relationships and nothing beyond that, we forfeited the opportunity to have fun and enjoy life to the fullest with the person we love to the fullest.
Foreigner to Relative
Why is that important? Boaz knew Ruth had rejected all her gods and way of life and accepted the God of Israel and this new way of life. So technically Ruth though she is a foreigner, Ruth became part of Israel during this time period, she is no longer a foreigner of Israel of God, but a relative of Israel of God. At the beginning of Ruth, she is referred to as a foreigner, at the end she is referred to as a relative.
God Uses Women
Then Naomi took the child and laid him on her lap and became his nurse. And the women of the neighborhood gave him a name, saying, “A son has been born to Naomi.” They named him Obed. He was the father of Jesse, the father of David. Ruth 4:16-17I think the story of Ruth is a great example of God’s heart towards women. God has a very special plan and he chooses to pick a foreigner named Ruth to fulfill his plan. He could have easily just picked a Hebrew Woman, but he didn’t, he picked a Moabite Woman, who most likely was worshipping other gods. He picked this woman to continue the genealogy of Jesus Christ. He picked this woman to display the Church and Christ through the Story of Ruth and Boaz. He picked this woman to give birth to the Grandpa of King David, this David which God promised a Kingdom Forever, a Throne Forever, and a House Forever. 2 Samuel 7:12-16 When your days are fulfilled and you lie down with your fathers, I will raise up your offspring after you, who shall come from your body, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build a house for my name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. I will be to him a father, and he shall be to me a son. When he commits iniquity, I will discipline him with the rod of men, with the stripes of the sons of men, but my steadfast love will not depart from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I put away from before you. And your house and your kingdom shall be made sure forever before me. Your throne shall be established forever.’”