“That man (Boaz) is one of our circle of covenant redeemers,
a close relative of ours.”
When Ruth reported to Naomi the good fortune she had received from the hand of Boaz, there was no
question in Naomi’s mind that they had been favored. In this story we can identify Boaz with God our
heavenly parent. Ruth was excited because she had gleaned an unusually large amount of barley as a
result of her humbling herself and, basically, just going out and doing it. It wasn’t easy work,
in fact backbreaking, but knowing she was obedient and faithful seemed to ease the pain. Being young,
she may not have fully grasped the situation, but Naomi sure did. She recognized favor for what it was.
Ordinarily these two women wouldn’t have had much support from the locals, if any, because they were
newcomers without tangible financial resources or manpower to succeed by themselves,
and that was not looked upon kindly.
But Naomi wasn’t about to ‘look a gift horse in the face.’ Knowing in her heart that she and Ruth were being
favored, knowing it within her very being, her response was to act upon it lest it slip away. Favor is an
unmerited gift, freely given out of love or kindness, or both. No one can ask for favor, neither can they work
for it. When one is favored of God, no evil or corruption will block its flow. Can favor be sought? Sure.
Commanded? No. And Naomi had no intention of falling out of God’s favor, so she prepared Ruth to take
full advantage of whatever blessings were available. She knew that Boaz’s favor shouldn’t be taken for
granted. She was ready to respond, devoting all her attention to the Giver, securing their future.
Ruth showed Naomi respect, loyalty, and love. She was in a comfortable place with Boaz and Naomi both
being twice her age, for she felt secure. Naomi knew that, and with Ruth’s best interest in mind, she set forth
a plan whereby Ruth would be the ribbon tying the knot in the contract with Boaz. Naomi didn’t choose the
self-absorbed way by drawing Ruth in for herself only, but she shared her wonderful daughter-in-law with
Boaz, giving back to the source from which the favor came. The result was far better than any of them had
anticipated and they were all blessed of God.