‘Let fall handfuls on purpose for her.’ Ruth 2:16a
This verse comes from the story of Ruth who had returned to her own country with very little, after losing her husband. When seeking to pick up stalks of grain left behind by the harvesters for food, a wealthy and influential man requested his servants to ‘let fall handfuls on purpose for her.’
It made me think of the kindness of Christ when we seek to gather souls for Him, or assist in the church. Our little efforts to help build and extend the kingdom can seem so small in comparison to the huge harvest. But, sometimes for our encouragement, He lets fall handfuls on purpose so that we may gather souls into the kingdom. We think we have been successful but in reality Christ has been kind to us. He has allowed part of the harvest to be left behind so we may gather for ourselves. It throws a different light on all our previous efforts in the work of God. The times we have seen His blessing and souls affected by His Spirit, drawn into the kingdom and baptised in His power, had really nothing to do with us at all! It was His kindness in allowing us to gather.
What if our Lord in His kindness ‘let fall handfuls on purpose for her’ but she, or he, didn’t bother to go and gather these extra stalks of wheat? What a dreadful thought that we should miss these golden opportunities without even realising it.
I wonder in reality how many opportunities we miss, perhaps because we are so self-absorbed, or too busy doing important things of our own to listen to the prompting of the Spirit in our lives. Perhaps we are battering our head off a brick wall trying to open a door that will not open, no matter how hard we try, and miss the real opportunities that are waiting for us at our fingertips. Perhaps we’re too lazy to fight past our own indifference and get out the door and be ready for Him. It doesn’t really matter which category anyone of us fits into except for the fact we miss our Lord’s kindness to us.
We need to be like Ruth who had reached the end of her tether in her personal circumstances:
‘So Ruth gathered barley there all day, and when she beat out the grain that evening, it filled an entire basket.’ Ruth 2:17
Let’s change our mindset and as we go about our daily duties, whatever kind they may be, let us, like Ruth, seek to gather all day. Gather His conscious presence with you, gather the anointing, gather opportunities to speak to others so that in the evening you may return home with a full basket, brimming over with the kindness of Christ and be truly grateful for the kindness He has shown to you.
‘Ruth fell at his feet and thanked him warmly. “What have I done to deserve such kindness?” she asked.’ Ruth 2:10