By Guest Writer
“Take me under your wing.”
To take someone under your protecting wing is to make an outsider an insider. I’m trying to think of the last time I asked someone to take me under their wing.
One of my pastor friends has agreed to partner with the church I serve so our churches can do ministry together in our city. I always ask to meet him at restaurants he’s familiar with but are off my radar. So we eat together in places I might never otherwise go. I start going by myself after a while. One of the effects of being taken under my friend’s wing is that I feel like an insider.
In today’s text, Ruth’s mother-in-law, Naomi, wants to put Ruth under someone’s protective wing—someone who can give her a place among Israel’s people. Naomi says, “My daughter, shouldn’t I find rest for you, so that you will be taken care of?” (Ruth 3:1).
What she really needed and wanted was a protecting wing. And she had the courage and tenacity to put herself out there. She found in Boaz a man who could take her from standing on the outside, to a place of belonging.
Yet husbands are imperfect redeemers. They can’t fully bear the weight of what a perfect Redeemer is meant to be: someone who can give us eternal belonging. In Ruth’s story, Boaz’s redemption pointed in that direction. What God was doing through Ruth was even greater than what Boaz did for her. God was making her an eternal insider in the story of redemption. What God did—by working through Naomi to join Ruth and Boaz—didn’t just lead to Ruth’s redemption. It formed a link in the lineage of Christ Himself, who would bring us under God’s protective wing, making us insiders in the kingdom of God.
This passage in the book of Ruth reminds us of what the gospel is: the story of outsiders being made insiders. When our faith is in Christ, that is what we are.