Why have I found grace in your eyes ?



 

Ruth 2:10, ‘So she fell on her face, bowed down to the ground, and said to him, “Why have I found favor in your eyes, that you should take notice of me, since I am a foreigner?”’

Ruth, who was a Moabite woman, found grace in the sight of Boaz, an Israelite. As we all know, she was one of the daughters in law of Naomi, who had come to Moab as ‘full’ but was brought back to Bethlehem as empty. This was Naomi’s story in her own words (Ruth 1:21). Later, Ruth who had accompanied Naomi back to Bethlehem found grace in the sight of Boaz, who was a family member of Naomi’s husband, Elimelech.

It was a joyous moment in Ruth’s life when she realized that favor rested on her, for she had lost much in her young age, much more than any woman of her age could bear. She had lost her husband and had no children to raise. Nor had she any hope for any of such dreams. But she had a greater hope which she had caught hold of. And that was the hope to dwell with the living God of Israel and His people. The moment the realization of favor resting on her came into her heart, she fell on her face and bowed down to the ground. Then she asked Boaz, “Why have I found favor in your eyes, that you should take notice of me, since I am a foreigner?”’

 The answer of Boaz highlights two important aspects of faith life. Ruth 2:11, ‘And Boaz answered and said to her, “It has been fully reported to me, all that you have done for your mother-in-law since the death of your husband, and how you have left your father and your mother and the land of your birth, and have come to a people whom you did not know before.’ 

 

  1. ‘All that you have done for your mother-in-law since the death of your husband,…’ Take note here that Boaz considered all that Ruth did for Naomi after her husband’s death and not before that. Ruth might have surely done good to her mother in law even before she became a widow. But then, she had a strong human reasoning behind it…i.e do good and receive good in return. Being a wife and daughter in law, she had to be good to Naomi. But after she became a widow, she was free from all the laws that bound her to Naomi. But she used her freedom to choose to make herself like servant of Naomi. Thereafter, all her good doings for Naomi was unconditional and purely out of genuine love for her. This is how we are considered by heaven. God called us and redeemed us to worship Him and serve Him. But as long as we have a human reasoning of give and take behind it, all our doings are not worthy of being noted by divine eyes. On the other hand, if all that  we do for the Lord is backed up by a fervent heart of love, not expecting anything in return, surely its reward from heaven is rich.

 

  1. ‘….and how you have left your father and your mother and the land of your birth,…’ Boaz then considered all that she had left to join the people of God. Ruth had left her parents and the land of her birth. ‘Leaving’ at that age was cutting off all connections and communications. Surely we cannot have the favor of God unless we leave and chop off all those aspects from our lives that grieves His Spirit. There is no place for ‘compromise’ in the Holy Book of Bible. Ruth realized this very well. She strengthened herself to go through the pain of chopping off process of all that would block her access to the divine grace of the living God.

 

More than what and how much we do for the Lord and each other, its how and with what heart we do that attracts divine favor on us. And more than what we receive from the Lord,  its what we give up for the sake of dwelling with the Lord that matters in gaining grace.  Ruth 2:12,The Lord repay your work, and a full reward be given you by the Lord God of Israel, under whose wings you have come for refuge.”  Such lives are blessed and rewarded richly by heaven. Ruth who came to Bethlehem as a foreigner and empty handed was exalted by the Lord. She was redeemed by Boaz, who was rich in heart and wealth. She became a mother and also got the great blessing of being added in the lineage of Messiah.

May we ponder our hearts and lives in the light of this message. Are we focusing on what and how much we do more than with what heart we do ? Are we focusing on what we are receiving from the Lord more than what we are able to give up in order to be more and more like Him ? Dear friends, we often measure spirituality on wrong scales. Ruth was able to understand the heart of the Lord of Israel and hence was able to step into right steps of faith life. Lets align our mindset with that of Christ and run this race of faith. Ruth sought grace and nothing else. Grace gave her all that she needed and restored all that she lost.

God bless us all

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