Prepare For the Bridegroom

Growing with God: A daily devotional with Tonia Slimm.

Ruth 3:1-2 (NIV)
One day Ruth’s mother-in-law Naomi said to her, “My daughter, I must find a home for you, where you will be well provided for. Now Boaz, with whose women you have worked, is a relative of ours. Tonight he will be winnowing barley on the threshing floor.

Ruth 3:1-2 (MSG)
One day her mother-in-law Naomi said to Ruth, “My dear daughter, isn’t it about time I arranged a good home for you so you can have a happy life? And isn’t Boaz our close relative, the one with whose young women you’ve been working? Maybe it’s time to make our move. Tonight is the night of Boaz’s barley harvest at the threshing floor.
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“Then Naomi her mother-in-law said to Ruth, “My daughter, shall I not look for security and a home for you, so that it may be well with you? Now Boaz, with whose maids you were [working], is he not our relative? See now, he is winnowing barley at the threshing floor tonight.” -AMPLIFIED

How quickly Naomi has gone from being bitter Mara, back to herself, sweet Naomi. Remember, she had reached a turning point. Naomi’s hope has been restored. Now her focus has turned away from her own needs and pain to Ruth’s needs. “My child, it is my responsibility to find a husband and place of rest for you—a place where you will find rest and contentment.” -VOICE

Matchmaker mother-in-law Naomi quickly lays her plans. The Message Version brings across Naomi’s thoughts and intentions, “…isn’t it about time I arranged a good home for you so you can have a happy life?” Naomi saw the need to somehow carry on the family name and it would happen with Ruth, her daughter-in-law who was a Moabite.

Naomi basically says, “Get yourself ready! Here is the plan!” “Isn’t Boaz, whose young women you’ve been working with, our relative? He will be separating the barley from its husks on the threshing floor tonight. Freshen up, put on some perfume, dress up, and go down to the threshing floor. Don’t let him know that you’re there until he’s finished eating and drinking. When he lies down, notice the place where he is lying. Then uncover his feet, and lie down there. He will make it clear what you must do.” -Ruth 3:2-4 (GW)

Naomi has settled on Boaz as being the one who would be the kinsman redeemer. (We will find out though that Boaz was not the closet relative; there was another who was closer and needed to be approached before all this will be finalized.) Naomi directs Ruth how she was to present her cause of redemption to Boaz. First though she needed to get herself ready.

What is the spiritual significance of all of this? We need to remember that Boaz was a foreshadowing of Jesus, our kinsman redeemer and Bridegroom. Ruth, in turn, is a picture of us, the Bride of Christ. Naomi insists that Ruth prepare herself and get ready to go meet her bridegroom.

“It’s time! Tonight is the night! Get yourself ready, quickly! Bathe yourself. Put on some perfume and your finest clothes. You are preparing to meet the man you are going to marry!” -(Tonia’s Translation) Excitement, hope, and happiness has returned to this household.

All this brings to mind the need for us to be ready and waiting for our Eternal Bridegroom, Jesus Christ. We have been warned time and time again of the importance of being ready and waiting; for we do not know when His return for His Bride will be, but we must be ready!

“God’s kingdom is like ten young virgins who took oil lamps and went out to greet the bridegroom. Five were silly and five were smart. The silly virgins took lamps, but no extra oil. The smart virgins took jars of oil to feed their lamps. The bridegroom didn’t show up when they expected him, and they all fell asleep. “In the middle of the night someone yelled out, ‘He’s here! The bride-groom’s here! Go out and greet him!’ “The ten virgins got up and got their lamps ready. The silly virgins said to the smart ones, ‘Our lamps are going out; lend us some of your oil.’ “They answered, ‘There might not be enough to go around; go buy your own.’ “They did, but while they were out buying oil, the bridegroom arrived. When everyone who was there to greet him had gone into the wedding feast, the door was locked. “Much later, the other virgins, the silly ones, showed up and knocked on the door, saying, ‘Master, we’re here. Let us in.’ “He answered, ‘Do I know you? I don’t think I know you.’ “So stay alert. You have no idea when he might arrive.” -Matthew 25:1-13 (MSG)

Have you kept yourself in a state of preparedness for your coming Bridegroom? No man knows when He is coming back, but He is looking for a Bride that is ready and who has been faithfully waiting for Him. “But of that [exact] day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son [in His humanity], but the Father alone.” -Matthew 24:36 (AMP)

My Prayer:
Jesus, my Eternal Bridegroom, I have been faithfully waiting for you. My desire is to do only what is pleasing to you. Sadly, there are times though that I do sin and think, say or do things that are not pleasing to you. Forgive me please. Help me to remember that you are coming back soon and you are looking for a bride without spot or wrinkle; holy and set apart for you. Help me to keep my priorities straight; so that I am prepared and ready when you come! Come quickly, Lord Jesus!

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