And let fall also some of the handfuls of purpose for her, and leave them, that she may glean them, and rebuke her not. – Ruth 2:16
The story of Ruth and Boaz is a captivating one from the Old Testament. In these verses, we are already into the story where Ruth has come back with Naomi from Moab. Moab plays an important part in Biblical history. You find Moab was founded as a result of the sin of Lot. It was known for war, strife, and as a place of false idols. Ruth returned with Naomi and comes to the field of an Israelite named Boaz. He saw her in the field and said she should go nowhere else to “glean.” In other words, she was picking up the remnants that were left. Those harvesting had already passed through and this was only what was left behind.
To get the picture, Ruth had come from a place known for sin, known for worshipping false idols. She did not have the wealth of the world and was even living off essentially the crumbs of Boaz’s field. She was just trying to get through this world and was looking for a better place.
I can only imagine how Ruth kept thinking as she gleaned that field that things would get better. Perhaps she struggled with the challenges and difficulties. She was in a strange place, with strange people. But then all of a sudden, she finds a handful in the field. It was not by accident, it was a handful of purpose. Boaz’s harvesters were purposefully pulling out handfuls from the sheaves and leaving them for Ruth.
It’s very similar for you and me as we go through this world. We may seem to struggle when compared to many around us. While we may know the areas around us, as a Christian, we are strangers in a strange land. Our world is a sinful world and our heart belongs to Christ. Our soul longs to be in heaven with Him. Just when it seems like things may be tough, we seem to find one of the handfuls of purpose that God has left for us. Handfuls of mercy, grace, compassion, and love.
This world is not going to get any easier for the Christian. Our nation is a mess, having left God behind. Our world is filled with sin almost everywhere we look. Isn’t it wonderful that as we travel through life, we find the handfuls of purpose that God has left for us? It’s a reminder that while it may seem like a struggle now, He is still in control and the struggle will not last forever.
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