I haven't been one to bake much bread. Growing up, we ate a lot of biscuits and corn bread, but now that I am older, I just stick with the corn bread. I really like a nice hearty European loaf of bread, though, and it is something that I should probably pursue baking. I love to be able to see bits of wheat and oats and seeds. I like the added crunch to my teeth. ....but I love the modern convenience of going to a store to pick it up. I can't even begin to imagine what the people before us went through in order to get a loaf of bread! Automatically, my mind wanders to one of my favorite Bible stories - the story of Ruth.
Naomi, a widow, also lost her 2 sons. Their wives were going to accompany Naomi back to her homeland, but she released them from the promise to go with her. Ruth, however, would not leave Naomi's side. She continued on to Naomi's land and Naomi's people. Ruth was an outsider, to be sure. She and her mother-in-law were very poor, so Ruth had to go gather bits of grain left in the fields by the harvesters. This was just a small step above begging. But Ruth caught the eye of Boaz, the field's owner. Everyone knew that Naomi had released her from coming, but everyone also knew that Ruth was faithful to help her mother-in-law. Her kindness plucked the chords of his heart, and he told his workers, "Let grain from the bundles fall purposely for her." Ruth 2:16 In other words, they were to take handfuls of their gathering and drop them so that Ruth could have enough.
Many of us have known seasons where we kind of felt like Ruth - just a small step above begging for what we need. Sometimes we think that we aren't worthy of blessings, and sometimes we think very highly of ourselves - we think that we are due the entire field, but we're not. It belongs to the Master. God knows exactly the amount of grain that we have available to us. Just like Boaz to Ruth, He will not let us suffer. God is our true Kinsman Redeemer, the one Who pays our debt and brings us home. Along the way, He gives us handfuls on purpose, knowing all along that we will have more than enough to meet our needs. You are not forgotten. Trust God. He cares for you and will make sure that you have what you need when you need it.
I'm glad that I do not need to harvest my own grains and mill them myself. I'm sure I could do it if the circumstances demanded and if the right tools were in my possession. Meanwhile, I enjoy local bakeries and healthy markets. I can pretty much get the things I need to create and excellent loaf, but when it comes to the situations of life, I'm so glad that the Master of the fields notices our needs and cares for every one.