Barley Enough to Eat!
Now Naomi had a kinsman on her husband's side, a prominent
rich man, of the family of Elimelech, whose name was Boaz. 2 And
Ruth the Moabite said to Naomi, "Let me go to the field and
glean among the ears of grain, behind someone in whose sight I
may find favor." She said to her, "Go, my daughter."
3 So she went. She came and gleaned in the field behind the reapers.
As it happened, she came to the part of the field belonging to
Boaz, who was of the family of Elimelech. 4 Just then Boaz came
from Bethlehem. He said to the reapers, "The LORD be with
you." They answered, "The LORD bless you." 5 Then
Boaz said to his servant who was in charge of the reapers, "To
whom does this young woman belong?" 6 The servant who was
in charge of the reapers answered, "She is the Moabite who
came back with Naomi from the country of Moab. 7 She said, 'Please,
let me glean and gather among the sheaves behind the reapers.'
So she came, and she has been on her feet from early this morning
until now, without resting even for a moment." 8 Then Boaz
said to Ruth, "Now listen, my daughter, do not go to glean
in another field or leave this one, but keep close to my young
women. 9 Keep your eyes on the field that is being reaped, and
follow behind them. I have ordered the young men not to bother
you. If you get thirsty, go to the vessels and drink from what
the young men have drawn." 10 Then she fell prostrate, with
her face to the ground, and said to him, "Why have I found
favor in your sight, that you should take notice of me, when I
am a foreigner?" 11 But Boaz answered her, "All that
you have done for your mother-in-law since the death of your husband
has been fully told me, and how you left your father and mother
and your native land and came to a people that you did not know
before. 12 May the LORD reward you for your deeds, and may you
have a full reward from the LORD, the God of Israel, under whose
wings you have come for refuge!"
I Barley Know the Girl
This is no chance meeting. Naomi has Ruth glean in the fields
of Boaz, behind the harvesters, something the poor were allowed
to do. However, Boaz already knows the story of their hardships,
and shows extra kindness to Ruth. Beyond this his motives are
not known, but this could be the beginning of a deeper relationship.
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