We have looked at choices made by a number of the people mentioned in the book of Ruth. Naomi had a kind of roller-coaster experience. She saw unintended negative consequences of poor choices. She also saw God’s continuing grace to her as she weathered those consequences. She experienced what Paul declared about his relationship with God in 2nd Timothy 2:13, “If we are faithless, he will remain faithful, for he cannot disown himself.”
When Naomi returned she was quite critical about how she felt God had treated her. But God, through Ruth, opened a door of opportunity. Finally her eyes were opened. Later on Naomi is seen by the women of Bethlehem as follows: “Praise be to the Lord, who this day has not left you without a kinsman-redeemer…For your daughter-in-law, who loves you and is better to you than seven sons.”
When she grants Ruth freedom to find a field to work in it ends up being a field Boaz owns and is harvesting. The light bulb goes on in Naomi’s mind! God might still have a plan for her and Ruth. When her heart locks in on what God is doing and she draws on her reservoir of knowledge about love and marriage in that culture, God blesses her counsel. Ultimately she is redeemed, blessed and honored by the marriage and the birth of her grandson Obed.
As the book closes it’s clear that the unexpected consequences of her slow but sure response to God’s love and grace made her a part of God’s grand scheme of providing an ultimate kinsman-redeemer, our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Even a slow response of obedience pays. Choices matter!