KINSMAN & KEEPER

In the Old Testament book of Ruth there is a true story about two women who found themselves widowed and alone in a world and a time when being a single woman was challenging; both from an economic and a cultural standpoint. The names of these women were Naomi and Ruth. As they headed back to Bethlehem, the city where God’s people and presence dwelt, this mother-in-law and daughter-in-law had no idea what kind of life they would face; yet they knew that they knew that going back was the right thing for them. Little did they know that God had already planned out their lives for their good. As the story goes, Boaz, a distant relative (a kinsman) of Naomi, notices Ruth, falls in love with her, and refuses to rest until he has “settled the matter” – as Naomi put it (Ruth 3:18) – by making sure Ruth has one who will watch over (keep) her and Naomi.

While the story of Boaz and Ruth was about two ordinary humans, it is thee picture of the relationship of every Christ-follower and Jesus Christ. From the moment you give your life to Jesus He immediately becomes your kinsman (Jn. 1:12); that family member who shares a blood-line with you. Unlike Naomi’s kinsman, who told Boaz he could not keep Ruth, our kinsman – Jesus Christ – can and wants to keep us (2 Thess.3:3). He is both our Kinsman & our Keeper.

Over the years this story has been my go-to place when I’ve felt alone and discouraged with no idea what will happen to me next. When I go back and read the story of Ruth’s life I remember who God is to me – Kinsman & Keeper – the One who will walk me through all uncertainty and into His light (Ps.23:4). It is in such moments that I know that I know that I know, just like Naomi did, that all will be well because He – my Kinsman & Keeper – will not rest until He has “settled the matter” on my behalf.