In HER Shoes – Ruth (Week 7)
Welcome! It’s the penultimate summary post for this series on Ruth, and you can tell from this week’s verse that we are nearing the end of this story.
“So Boaz took Ruth and she became his wife. When he made love to her, the LORD enabled her to conceive, and she gave birth to a son.” Ruth 4:13
I kind of want to finish the series here – this makes a great happy ending doesn’t it! Well, lets take a look at what this happy ending really means.
For both Ruth and Boaz, this verse is a joyful one. There really is that element of a happy ending, where things come out alright for the hero and heroine of the story. Boaz, perhaps ostracised because of his mother ends up with a wife, and Ruth, the outsider widow who has stuck by her mother-in-law, gets a husband to protect and love her. Not only that but they are blessed with a son! I don’t think I could write a better ending. When I read this verse in this version and its says that Boaz made love to Ruth, it really does make me think of a relationship that is built on more than just ticking boxes and convenience. The language echoes of love. Other versions use the phrasing “and he went in to her”, which just doesn’t have as much niceness to it!!! We must remember that this story if likely being told from a male perspective, so the description of this act is probably more about what happened than why!
Despite wanting this to be a happy ending, we really don’t know what these two people are really feeling. I tried to step into Ruth’s shoes this week, and I think the only thing I could imagine her feeling was relief and secure. Relief things were finally going her way ,and secure in her future and her life. Isn’t that what most of us crave? A husband we can trust and rely on to be secure, a place to live that is secure and the knowledge that we have children who will look after us when we can’t look after ourselves? Security is a vital human need. So even if this isn’t a love story, but just one of two people meeting each others need for security, then that is a happy ending in my book.
The big thing that God has kept reminding me of this week is that happiness now does not wipe out the past. We can’t under-estimate how much the past has shaped us and impacted us. Ruth has a dead husband and I am sure that she probably grieved not only for him but for the children they would never have together. Although giving birth to a son with Boaz is cause for celebration, maybe it was also a reminder of the children she wasn’t able to have with her first husband. Maybe she cried in the night as she fed him, shedding a tear for what could have been. Even if we know its God’s plan and we are moving forward, leaving the past behind can be hard.
In our final week of the series, we are meditation on this verse:
“Then Naomi took the child in her arms and cared for him. The women living there said, “Naomi has a son!” And they named him Obed. He was the father of Jesse, the father of David.” Ruth 4:16-17
Join us over in the Facebook Community for the last Facebook Live Discussion of the series on Monday at 8pm.