*Boaz believed in God. "And, behold, Boaz came from Bethlehem, and said unto the reapers, The LORD be with you.." (Ruth 2:4a)
*Boaz had a good relationship with other people. "And they answered him, The LORD bless thee." (Ruth 2:4b)
*Boaz was kind and helpful. "Then said Boaz unto Ruth, Hearest thou not, my daughter? Go not to glean in another field, neither go from hence, but abide here fast by my maidens: Let thine eyes be on the field that they do reap, and go thou after them: have I not charged the young men that they shall not touch thee? And when thou art athirst, go unto the vessels, and drink of that which the young men have drawn." (Ruth 2:8-9)
*Boaz's favour towards Ruth was sincere and abundant. "Boaz commanded his young men saying, Let her glean even among the sheaves and reproach her not. And let fall also some of the handfuls of purpose for her and leave them, that she may glean them and rebuke her not." (Ruth 2:15-16)
*Boaz did not take advantage of Ruth. "And when Boaz had eaten and drunk, and his heart was merry, he went to lie down at the end of the heap of corn: and she came softly, and uncovered his feet and laid her down. And it came to pass at midnight, that the man was afraid, and turned himself: and behold, a woman lay at his feet. And he said, Who art thou? And she answered, I am Ruth thine handmaid: spread therefore thy skirt over thine handmaid; for thou art a near kinsman. And he said, Blessed be thou of the LORD, my daughter: for thou hast showed more kindness in the latter end than at the beginning, inasmuch as thou followedst not young men, whether poor or rich. And now, my daughter, fear not; I will do to thee all that thou requirest: for all the city of my people doth know that thou art a virtuous woman." (Ruth 3:7-11)
*Boaz considered what was the right thing to be done. "And now it is true that I am thy near kinsman: howbeit there is a kinsman nearer than I. Tarry this night, and it shall be in the morning, that if he will perform unto thee the part of a kinsman, well; let him do the kinsman's part: but if he will not do the part of a kinsman to thee, then will I do the part of a kinsman to the, as the LORD liveth." (Ruth 3:12-13)
*Boaz kept his promise. "Moreover, Ruth the Moabitess, the wife of Mahlon, have I purchased to be my wife." (Ruth 4:10a)
If a woman's heart be searched deep,
By surprise a man may be caught
All the desires she ever veils
Would have never been in his thoughts..
The desire to be pure and grand
For her Creator be of use:
That no worldly treat can allure
Her soul's enchained sight at the Cross.
The desire to live free but chaste;
To know when to contend and cry
And learn to be brave yet fragile
On herself and others rely.
The desire to be of wisdom-
A woman of a rewarding life..
Then to cease living for her own
To be a mother and a wife.
The desire to love and be loved
Until beauty fades and life ends:
One man's sweet kisses to taste,
By strong arms be gently held..
There are far more precious desires
A woman just hides in her heart-
Would a man be man enough
And be ardent his search to start?
-18 December 2007
I just wanted to share this poem. I wrote it when I was too young to realise that "A woman without a man is like a fish without a bicycle". I find my ideas in this poem still prevailing over me, except that I was wrong to think (all) women desire or need to be loved by a man. As a Christian, now I'm convinced that even if I get married or not, my life has a sure happy ending in Christ.
Life is ineffably lonely without having our friends around us. It's even impossible to live without one, and if I knew someone who has none at all perhaps I would readily offer my friendship. I'm convinced God designed life to be about being friends with people, and that He Himself has friends amongst us. I believe friendships are essential to living.
We have a handful of answers to the question "What is a real friend?". I bet we can come up with the funniest to the most profound definition of a real friend, and still think we can't really describe one. When someone is a real friend, we just know it, feel it and experience it.
In the Bible, a friend is characterised as someone who loves you at all times (Proverbs 17:17) and whose wounds are faithful (Proverbs 27:6). The first verse speak about a friend indeed---a person who loves you every moment of your life, no matter what happens, even if you change or fall, and despite the difference in time and distance. The second verse tells how comforting it is to have somebody---a friend---who desires what's best for you, even to the point of hurting or causing you pain at times. It's true, real friends won't comfort you with lies and they will tell you what you need to hear and know.
Love, trust, honesty, loyalty and communication are indispensable to nurturing a friendship and making it last for a lifetime. From being friends, people become foes when they lack one or two of these things. We've heard of so many people who became strangers to each other because they gave in to hatred, betrayed trust, spoke lies or kept secrets, turned their backs from friendship and remained distant or silent for a period of time. For friendship to grow and stay strong through years, friends must remain as close as they can be, share each other's ups and downs, give time to listen to what must be said, do things together, respect personal differences and learn to stay true to each other even in trying times.
In times of distress and afflictions, real friends are there to comfort and buoy you up in the most thoughtful ways. During happy moments, they share your joys and make you even more blissful. At times you must be alone, they value your solitude and patiently wait for the time you bid them to finally sit beside you. In every decision you make, their advice is wise and encouraging---they won't let you take the wrong path. They accept you for who you really are, overlook your imperfections, know your worth, like what you do, examine your intentions and cause you to become a better individual.
What is life without real friends? I don't know. What and where am I without God-given companions? I can't tell. All I know is that I'm so blessed having them around me. I'm so grateful I have real friends.