Struggles of Joy Ending


Ruth smiled as she walked back to her house from the well. She had just gotten water and was heading home. She had been planning this moment for a couple weeks. Boaz was going to be so happy when he found out! She could imagine his happiness at the news!
            As she passed the market place, she knew that the town gossips were still there and probably had nasty things to say about her, but Ruth held her head high and walked on. Ruth no longer cared what anyone thought about her. She had a husband at home who loved her and showed her daily. She had a God who took care of her and kept his promises, and she had a mother who cared and loved her even when she didn’t deserve it. And now, she had another secret. Wouldn’t the gossips have lots to talk about if they knew? She couldn’t keep it secret much longer; the secret was going to grow. She looked down at her waste and smiled again.
            “Ruth!” Boaz ran up to her, took the pail of water off her head, and set it on the ground. Then he picked her up and spun her around. “I have wonderful news! All the threshing is complete! The season is finished! Praise God!”
            “Boaz,” laughed Ruth, “put me down, you big ox!” Boaz laughed and placed her feet on the ground again. She went over to the pail and picked it up. “Come with me to set this water down. I have some news to tell you.”
            “Uh oh, what have you done now, Ruth,” teased Boaz. “Will I be hearing of how you brought shame to my name?”
            “Well... not quite shame.” She turned and smiled at him, pulling him with her so she could put the pail down. “Now, can you guess?” She wanted to keep him in his misery as long as she could.
            “Um, you met some amazing man down at the well, you proposed to him, and he agreed?”
            “Boaz!” She reprimand, “Of course not! There would be no man I would ever propose to again!” He smiled at her and tucked a wisp of hair behind her ear.
            “I give up, what do you want to tell me?” He took her hands and looked into her eyes, waiting for the answer. She smiled at him and her face was that of a truly happy person.
            Feeling like her smile was going to rip her face off she said, “We’re going to have a baby, Boaz.” Boaz’s face went from pleasure to a blank and expressionless stare. Ruth laughed at him and said, “Aren’t you happy? You look as if you just found out that all your teeth need to be removed!”
            “Ruth, I ... yes!” His smile returned but it was much larger than before. “Yes, I am so happy! I am just, surprised. How long have you known?”
            “About two weeks now. Boaz, this means that Mahlon’s name can be carried on! And we now have a baby that is part me and part you. And we’ll have a child to raise and to love.” Her eyes got misty and she looked off into the distance. She was so happy and it made it better that she could share it with this man that she so deeply loved.
            Boaz let go of one of her hands and placed his on her abdomen. “Can I feel it yet?” He looked so perplexed that Ruth laughed. “No, not yet Husband. It’s only a few weeks old. He’s just over a month old.”
            Boaz took his hand away and picked her up. “Boaz! What are you doing? I can walk! I can walk!” She was laughing as he replied, “Yes, but I don’t want you to injure our baby in any way! I’ll carry you wherever you go!” He ran over to a chair, set her down, and got on his knees in front of her. She looked down at him and smiled.
            “Now we have a child to give to Naomi, and the child can carry on her son’s name. Praise the Lord! She will have a son again!” Boaz stood up after his proclamation and pulled Ruth up with him. As the two danced around like foolish children, Ruth looked up to her God and thanked him for her husband and for her child. They were complete, they had each other, they had their God, and now they had a child.


            “Push Ruth! Push! Don’t let that child win the fight! He must come out!” Naomi was beside Ruth as the town midwife was pulling the child. “Keep going, Ruth. God of Israel, give her strength!” Ruth loved the way that Naomi would pray in mid-sentence, but it was so hard to smile now. How could a baby fit through such a small space? How would it ever get out? Ruth clenched her teeth and pushed one last time, and suddenly there was relief and she heard the sound of her child crying.
            Ruth took an unsteady breath, but her smile told everything.
            “It’s a boy! Ruth, it’s a boy! Boaz! You have a son!” Naomi was running around, screaming out the news. Boaz rushed in, and he looked almost as tired as Ruth did. He went over to his wife and took her sweaty hand in his. “Ruth, are you okay?” His eyes were full of worry as he looked at his wife’s frail body.
            “Yes,” her voice was soft, but she was happy. “Yes, I’m happy. You have a son. Go see him. Bring him to me.”
            “We have a son, Ruth.” He stood up, walked over to the child, and picked him up. He held him in his arms and then said, “His name will be Obed, because he will serve Naomi in her old age. He will bring her joy and will be the son that she lost. May God bless him and keep him safe.” He smiled at his small son and then walked over to his wife’s bed. His eyes had the love of a husband and now a father. Overjoyed, he bent down and placed his child into his wife’s arms. Ruth kissed her child and then handed him to the midwife to be washed and cleaned up.
            When she had left, Ruth looked to Naomi. “You now have a son, Mother. Let him take care of you. He will be the son of your old age.” Naomi smiled and came over to the tired Ruth. She embraced her and then pulled Boaz into the hug. They were now family, joined together by the birth of a small, but very important boy.

Works Cited

Hubbard, Robert Jr. The Book of Ruth. Michigan: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1988.

The Bible. New International Version

The Bible. New Living Translation.

The Bible. Revised Standard Version.