So Boaz said to Ruth, “My daughter listen to me. Don’t go and glean in another field and don’t go away from here. Stay here with my servant girls. Watch the field where the men are harvesting, and follow along after the girls. I have told the men not to touch you. And whenever you are thirsty, go and get a drink from the water jar the men have filled.” NIV
This morning, I decided to test my theory that there were many more reminders to find in the books of the Bible that I have already visited than those that I found on my first pass through using the “fear not” list. I went back to Bible Gateway.com and typed in “worry,” and chose The Message translation. Since The Message is a fairly recent translation, my theory is that it will call worry what we call it, and not “taking thought,” or something else as earlier versions of the Bible have done.
Based on a cursory look, I think that this will be a very effective way to find some of the remaining reminders. For instance, had I merely read the chapter of Ruth in the NIV, I might have recognized this as a reminder not to worry, but, The Message makes it very clear. Verse nine says, “Watch where they are harvesting and follow them. And don’t worry about a thing; I’ve given orders to my servants not to harass you.” MSG
As I picture myself as Ruth, hearing these words, I can see what a relief they would be. Ruth has been in a harrowing time of transition. Her husband has died, and she has left the place that she was living and the people from whom she is descended to follow and care for her mother-in-law. She and Naomi are without a man to head their household, which was an extremely difficult position.
As I look at these verses, it strikes me that, with just a few sentences, Boaz is providing for Ruth’s most basic needs: food, water and safety.
I am certain that these words brought a wave of relief over her and, no doubt, banished whatever worries she might have been experiencing about gaining the necessities of life.
Naomi was faithful. Ruth followed her example. If we will step out on faith, God will honor that.
That’s what I’ll think about today.