by John O’Malley
The field belonging unto Boaz” (Ruth 2:3).
The book of Ruth, in its first chapter, keeps Elimelech and Naomi as the principal characters. In chapter two, the attention switches from them to Boaz. After Elimelech’s death, God used Naomi to cultivate His Gentile gem, Ruth. He used a man named Boaz to care for this Gentile gem.
How did God use Boaz to care for her? He began by using his possessions. He later used Boaz’s position. Then, He used Boaz’s provisions. All of this God did to care for His Gentile gem, Ruth.
Boaz was a resident of Bethlehem because of God’s will. Boaz was given the Hebrew title that, translated in other verses, would read a mighty man of valor. In Ruth 2:1, Boaz is declared as a man with great wealth and position. He owned fields outside of Bethlehem that would become the place of provision for Ruth. The fields Boaz owned would become the place of Ruth’s presentation. Boaz’s fields ultimately became the place of Ruth’s protection.
At that moment, the plan of God centered on Boaz’s will. God had much that He would do for Ruth with Boaz’s person, position, and possessions. God was going to do great things for Israel because of Boaz’s willingness. God was going to do even greater things for His Son Jesus because of Boaz’s surrender. Boaz was willing to allow God to use him and whatever God had given him.
Oftentimes, we are like young children when it comes to our possessions.We like what is ours. We are not prone to share unless forced by a higher authority. It takes an earnest threat to get most of us to give something beyond what we might not miss.
We scold our children for their refusal to share toys, food, or money; yet when it comes to our possessions, we end up acting just like our children. We do not share our possessions, position, or paychecks with anyone, including God. We tend to look at something and say, “Now, this is mine. If God wants to use a rich man’s things, that’s fine; but I am a poor man, and I do not care to have Him use my things.”
Oh, the blessings we miss when we hold back on God! There are times that God would like to use what He has given us; but we are slow to respond and sometimes even rebellious about what He wants to use that is ours. Imagine what poverty Boaz would have come to if he had been stingy with God? Imagine how poor we become when we become stingy with God!