Forgiven and Remembered
Mother's Day is here, and for many, it will be a relaxing day filled with joyous memories of your children or the memories of your mother. Nevertheless, for others, it may be a day filled with thoughts of failures, looking back on your life with shame.
Let us read Ruth 2:1 together, "And Naomi had a kinsman of her husband's, a mighty man of wealth, of the family of Elimelech; and his name was Boaz.
This seems to be an odd verse for Mother's Day, doesn't it? The book of Ruth is filled with several other verses that we could have chosen from, but I want to take a moment to reflect on what we see in Boaz. In Ruth 4:21, we note that Salmon begat or was the father of Boaz, but who was the mother of Boaz? In Matthew 1:5, the bible says, "And Salmon begat Booz of Rachab, and Booz begat Obed of Ruth, and Obed begat Jesse;" Rachab is also spelled Rahab and Booz is also spelled, Boaz.
Rahab, you mean Rahab, the harlot? We are not 100% sure if, indeed, the Rahab spoken of in Matthew 1:5 is the same woman in Joshua 2:1. However, there is a lot of evidence that would suggest that she is the same woman.
The question we should start with is, how did her past life affect the way she raised her children? Was she too ashamed to tell her little ones what her past life looked like? Or, would she willingly tell them of God's redeeming grace on her and her family's life?
Looking at her son Boaz, I would like to think that she openly showed her children the amazing redeeming forgiveness that God bestowed on her. We can see throughout the short book of Ruth that Boaz was kind and welcoming to his workers and the gleaners. In Ruth 2:4, it notes that Boaz came from Bethlehem and greeted the gleaners, "The Lord be with you" and blessed them, saying, "The Lord bless thee."
Boaz protected Ruth from the aggressive males that were also working the fields she was gleaning from (Ruth 2:9), and he noticed the excellent qualities that Ruth possessed (2:11 and 12). Boaz not only protected her from harm's way, but he also made it possible for her to eat with his workers as well as glean extra food for Naomi (2:14-19). Boaz was noted for his kindness by Naomi in verse 20.
He cared about her character by not allowing others to see her lying at his feet so as to mar her reputation (3:10-11 and 13-14). He was an honest man, knowing that there was another kinsman redeemer before he could take Ruth as his wife (3:12). He went before the other kinsman to allow him to take Ruth (4:3-6) as his wife. The kinsman declined the opportunity because his own inheritance would be marred, and he did not want to lose his own inheritance to Ruth and her future child.
So, as we have read through an amazing account of a godly man, we are drawn back to Boaz and his mother, We read in Proverbs 6:20 "My son, keep thy father's commandment, and forsake not the law of thy mother:" The mother carried an important role during the Old Testament of caring, tending to, and raising her children in the Lord. If Rahab had allowed her former life to destroy her future, would her son have turned out the way he did?
Today as you examine your past, as a believer, it is through God's redeeming grace that you have been forgiven (1 John 1:9). Because of Jesus' death on the cross, the sins of a believer has been removed from the presence of God. Hebrews 8:12 says, "For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more."
Do not let your past faults ruin your future opportunity; instead, let it be a way to show God's work in your life.
Happy Mother's Day!