The Promise Of A Loving God
I write this in the middle of deep silence. A sense of emptiness finds me, and I know it is not emptiness. It’s an ache. I work eight to twelve hour days, which is normal for most, and I have tried to shove too much in between. I finally found an hour to myself, and I wanted to cry. I cry a lot. When all the activity and bustle I have organized for myself no longer swirls around me, I am left to stare at all I have swept under the rug.
The storm I have raised around me does not require much faith from me in order to operate. The children I nanny will continue to grow, the store I work will open and close, and ministries rise and fade with the sun. This magazine will continue to publish, even if I stopped writing. It is easy to feel like God has no piece of these gears. My world turns, and I turn, and God seems to be on the outside of it all.
And I found myself reading Ruth again tonight, and her story always resonates with me. But the verse I fell upon was Ruth 3:18, after Ruth returns from the threshing floor and tells Naomi that Boaz is going to go talk to the other Guardian Redeemer. If you aren’t familiar with Ruth’s story, put this article down and go read it. It’s four chapters long, and maybe four pages total. It’s a powerful love story. I could probably go for ages about it. But, where was I?
Then Naomi said, “Wait, my daughter, until you find out what happens. For the man will not rest until the matter is settled today.
Wait. A word with which I have become too familiar. I actually took the time one day to investigate the Hebrew translation of this word. There are easily ten different ways wait is translated, and each of those ten words have various definitions of their own. I think I’ve had four or five specific seasons of wait in my life, and each of those were experiences of different ways one waits.
The word used here by Naomi is “Yashab” which is used in this context to mean, “Sit still.”
Naomi literally told Ruth to relax until she finds out what happens. Naomi has a confidence I envy. How can Ruth possibly relax at a time like this? She has no backup plan! She has no exit plan. Ruth and Naomi’s futures are hanging in the balance. They have put all of their eggs in this basket.
Ruth has nothing left. Neither does Naomi. I know personally, I would be shaking right about there. Why is Naomi so confident of the outcome even as she stares at the possibility of a very different outcome? She knows Boaz. She is banking on him fulfilling the promise he gave Ruth earlier in 3:12-13.
If you picked up Ruth at 3:18, it certainly looks like a tense situation that Naomi is being way too calm over. However, you have missed the first three chapters and seventeen verses leading up to that moment when Naomi says, “Sit.” Because, if you had read those other chapters and seventeen verse, you would have seen a recurring theme: God providing.
Naomi and Ruth left Moab to go back to Bethlehem with nothing with them except the clothes on their backs. Naomi was banking on God’s provision. In faith, and honestly, with no other option, she and her daughter-in-law return to Bethlehem. Things look bleak for a time. They were impoverished, lonely, and ostracized. Was God going to take care of them? Ruth takes a step of faith, banking on God’s law. She goes to gather grain. She “happens” to land in the field of the one man in all of Israel who can possibly redeem both of the women. Naomi tells Ruth to go to Boaz and bring this plea before him to redeem them. She is banking on his kindness, and God’s obvious guidance in their lives. Now, their lives rest in Boaz’s bartering skills. Okay, that’s a harsh way to put it, but you get the idea.
Do you see the pattern? Naomi isn’t wildly hoping. She’s isn’t gambling. She is picking up her eggs and putting them in the hands of God, who has shown Himself to be all that He says He is to her.
As someone who feels the need to always have a plan B, C, D, and E, this strikes me. Most days, I keep my eggs in a few baskets, because you never know, right? We live in an ever changing, crazy world. If one goes down, at least I’ll have like, four eggs. However, God is not a four egg only kind of God. He is a whole dozen kind of God. What I mean by that is not prosperity gospel. What I mean is, when He is clearly leading, there is nothing stopping Him. Don’t be afraid when He asks you to put all twelve of those eggs into His hands. I’ve written about this before, and obviously, I didn’t learn the full lesson. I missed the important step after handing all those eggs to God. Sit still.
Rest. He can take it from there. He won’t rest until the matter is settled, whatever it is in your life. Even if it takes years, He’s had it figured out before you even had the problem. So, sit still. Wait. Don’t be afraid. He will not let a single egg slip from his fingers. You have permission to hope and believe that God is who He says He is.
Because in case you were wondering, Boaz marries Ruth.
Have you been putting all your trust in God’s plan for your life?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Mia Grace loves sunflowers, words, old hardcover books, and fountain pens. She adores Jesus Christ, and seeks to listen and obey him in her life. Her life verse is Isaiah 52:7, and her prayer is for every girl to grasp the height, weight, depth, width, and power of Christ's love for them.