Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Bethlehem Food Bank

TODAY’S SPECIAL: Ruth 2:1-12

TO CHEW ON: May the Lord repay you for what you have done. May you be richly rewarded by the Lord, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to take refuge. Ruth 2:12

The first thing Naomi and Ruth had to do when they got back to Bethlehem was figure out where to get some food. So Naomi sent Ruth to the food bank, right? Well, not exactly. But she did send her to a place where food was free.

In those times, farmers harvesting their crops were supposed to leave a little behind for exactly this reason - to feed the poor. People who needed food were allowed to go to harvested fields and pick up what was left over. This was called gleaning.

I wonder what Ruth’s thoughts were as she went out to her first gleaning job. Perhaps she wondered if there would be any grain left to glean in the fields. Maybe she worried that people would find out she was a foreigner and make fun of her or chase her away. In spite of any anxious thoughts, Ruth went out, as Naomi asked her to.

Ruth gleaning in the field - Artist unknown
Ruth gleaning in the field - Artist unknown
On her first day of work, Ruth happened to go to the field of a rich farmer named Boaz. While she was working he came by. Immediately he noticed this foreign woman. He had never seen her before.

He asked around and found out she was Ruth, the daughter-in-law to Naomi. Then he went over to her.

Boaz talks to Ruth - original by Paul Hardy
Boaz talks to Ruth - original by Paul Hardy
"Eat lunch in the shelter and have a drink of water any time," Boaz continued. "I’ve heard how kind you were to Naomi. May God reward you for staying with her and putting your trust in Him by coming to live here.”

How happy and relieved Ruth must have felt. God had seen her kindness to Naomi. He was taking care of her through the gleaning food-bank and kind Boaz.

PRAYER: Dear God, thank You for providing the things we need in many ways. Amen

MORE: Caring for the poor
Food banks are one way we care for poor people. What are some other ways poor people are cared for:
- by your country, province or state?

- by your church or school?

- by your family?

Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Adult readers - DAILY DEVOTIONS FOR ADULTS  are available too at Other Food: daily devo's

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