God’s Redeeming Grace (Part 5)

“He said, “Who are you?” And she answered, “I am Ruth, your servant. Spread your wings over your servant, for you are a redeemer.” Ruth 3:9 ESV

We are studying the book of Ruth – a redemption story with a genealogy that birth’s the Messiah and redeems the world. Ruth obtains blessings! Who need some supernatural intervention?! I know I do!!

Dear Heavenly Father – you are The Redeemer! Thank you for caring about the little things in our life and using them for your greater plans. You alone restore. You alone redeem. You alone are to be glorified!  Please open our eyes to see and our understanding to the ways of you. – In Jesus name we pray, Amen

Ruth – she was a servant. Not because she was born a servant, actually she was born a foreigner.  She chose to be a servant – she had a servant’s heart. I could quote all the verses in the Bible about the will of God is to have a servant’s heart. And because she remained in the will of God – She was blessed.

But we see she did another thing that is in God’s will.

This opening verse is Ruth’s future husband asking her who she is. But this verse is parallel to an answer Christians could give to Christ. If Christ asks: Who are you? We should answer, I am your servant. Spread your wings over your servant for you are my Redeemer!

She made the Lord her dwelling place (Psalm 91:9). Just look at Psalm 91 as a whole and see all the promises of protection and provision granted to those who run to God and hide under His wings:
“He will cover you with his pinions [feathers], and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness is a shield and buckler.” Psalm 91:4 ESV

Are you like me? Do you need some supernatural intervention in your life?
We can go to God and hide under His wings – this is actually His will. He will provide rest and strength and help.

How precious is your steadfast love, O God! The children of mankind take refuge in the shadow of your wings.” Psalm 36:7 ESV

For you have been my help, and in the shadow of your wings I will sing for joy.” Psalm 63:7 ESV

I love how these two verses are so similar and both verse 7 (of chapter 36 and 63) – always love when the Bible does things like this.
Anyway – Taking refuse in God, under His wing is a Parent/child relationship. It is a Protector/vulnerable relationship.  It is an In-Control/complete-surrender relationship. It is an “I got you”/”I trust you” relationship. Are you seeing why God wills that we go to him for His plans, protection and provisions?

He’s Got us – He has us in ways we cannot even begin to understand – for our good and for His glory – but are we doing our part of trusting and surrendering?  I have to admit. I struggle with trusting in the small details being covered. Proverbs 3:6 says we should trust him in all (ALL) [YES IN EVERY LITTLE DETAIL] things:
“in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” NIV
“Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.” NLT
“In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.” ESV
“In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.” NKJV
(It is worth noting it in a few translations.)

I also struggle with worry that I might not obey when told to and miss what God has – Oh how the enemy comes up against my mind in that way! Offering alternatives to God’s plan and trying to veer things off course! But grace – glorious grace has us covered when we try our best and fail!

Even here in Ruth we see a small hiccup – an alternative to God’s plan. 

In Jewish law, Naomi and Ruth can be “redeemed” by a close relative to Naomi’s deceased husband. Boaz is a close relative and, because he was sweet on Ruth, he was happy to do the job. But there was another man who what a closer relative who could “purchase” Naomi’s husbands inheritance and marry Ruth. Chapter 4 begins with Boaz informing this closer relative of this opportunity (in front of witnesses).
What if – yeah, I asked it – what if this other person decided to act on his right? He could have neglected Naomi and Ruth and taken the possessions. Leaving the women worse off than before. OR he could have taken his right and married Ruth – Would Jesus’s line then come from Ruth and this other man or would it have come from Boaz and some other woman?  God clearly ordained Ruth and Boaz – this was the enemy offering his alternative plan.  But God is in control. God is very much in control.

This leads to the interesting topic of God giving humans free will. We must chose to surrender to God and trust Him and we cannot be manipulated or forced into it.  However, God is able to raise up kings and tear them down (Daniel 2:21) and He is in control. He is able to control it all without “free will” getting in His way. My personal belief is that “free will” is not greater or stronger or higher than God’s will. So in many a situation I hear people say, “but they have free will” – and my response is usually “pshhh” with a great big eye roll! God is still able – and more powerful than a human’s free will.
So this closer relative to Naomi had the free will to disrupt God’s plan – yes. But God is bigger and so God worked it out so that this man was not interested in Naomi and Ruth.  How did God work that out? I do not know. Somethings we must wait to ask in heaven, I suppose. The Bible only says he was interested in Naomi’s husband’s inheritance until he learned that it included marrying Ruth. He excused it saying it would conflict with his interests in his own inheritance. (No time to get into Jewish law of that time, to debate on if this is true or just an excuse because he didn’t want to marry the young foreign widow named Ruth.)

So, we too have free will to do God’s will or not. Will we stand in the way of God’s plan for our own life in disobedience? 
Jonah tried to – He even tried to run away. But God has ways that are extremely convincing – at least Jonah thought so when he stood on the beach after being spit-up by a whale.  I always want to stay in God’s will – whale vomit seems very unpleasant.

Lord, please help us to commit to you in everything, both the big and little details of life. Help us stay on the path you have for us, so we may be blessed and fulfil your purpose – that You will be glorified in us and through us. As we trust you and hide under your wing – let it be our testimony and reward, as it was Ruth’s when Boaz said to her: a full reward be given you by the Lord, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to take refuge” (Ruth 2:12b). Thank you Lord for all that you are doing to work out our situation for our good and your glory (even when we don’t see it) – in Jesus name we pray – amen

If you don’t already, and today you would like to have a relationship with a God who can communicate with you and be part of your life (and protect you) – one who is full of mighty power and tender love, then please know that I have put the “A, B, C’s of Salvation” in my introduction. Please click here to follow the link.**

Thank you for reading ~ Grace be with you
Be healthy and blessed ~ I love you and love one another
Watch and Pray ~ Seek God & keep your eyes on Jesus!

Maranatha ~ Come Lord Jesus!

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