Our culture has become a broad definition of what our destiny is. From all the trends and things we seen in social media, most of us are not really certain of the principles and beliefs we should hold on to. Speaking to the young men out there (whether you’re a Christ-follower or not), what is the culture says about your character? How do you see people despite their differences and background?
As I did my intimate quiet time with the Lord, I was astounded on how the “Book of Ruth” speak to me. It shows God’s power to use you and me towards redemption and salvation to the people around us. Whoever you are or what situation you’re in, I believe that God can still do miracles in the lives of people; and you too can do the same for them.
In the “Book of Ruth,” a man named Boaz was introduced as a relative of Naomi, the mother-in-law of Ruth a Moabite. A wealthy man from an elite clan of Elimelech who’s loved by his community because of his kindness and unwavering faith. And seeing the character of this man, there’re some important points about this man that our young men should admire and apply in this conforming society:
1) GODLY character changes the way we treat people
I remembered what Pastor CJ Nunag once said:
“Charisma gets people attention. Competence gets you promoted. But CHARACTER IS BEYOND PRICE”
As a young man who conforms with all hormones and attitude to this society, how do you honestly see ladies nowadays? Do you see them with their charms and looks? With their social media posts and popularity points? Or the way they seek God and deal with people?
Boaz, as a rich man with power and authority, sees Ruth, not as a foreigner but a woman of faith. He does not conform to what other people thinks of her background and circumstances but see more of her kindness and goodness as a committed companion of Naomi. And because of that, he became a channel of blessing to Ruth and Naomi. Not only that, her perspective about them being just an unworthy widows was renewed and their identity was restored.
Young men, as you build your character in accordance with God’s way, the way you see ladies is no longer about what they can and cannot do. You will not treat them with harsh gestures and conceit attitudes but with full respect and kindness. You will see us the way God sees us: PRINCESS. And as you do that, you leading us also to do the same. We will not see our lives as “unworthy female in the society” but as PRECIOUS PRINCESS of an Almighty God. No matter how talented or rich you are, Character is indeed beyond price. And it can only flow in a right direction if it came from the MOST upright Source.
2) Right Leadership means Right Intentions
“And when Boaz had eaten and drunk, and he was merry, he went to lie down at the end of the heap of grain. Then she came softly and uncovered his feet and lay down. At midnight the man was startled and turned over, and behold, a woman lay at his feet! He said, “Who are you?” and she answered, “I am Ruth, your servant. Spread your wings over your servant, for you are a redeemer.” – Ruth 3: 7-9
If you’re good looking and rich, there’s a bigger chance for you to have ladies admire and desire you. For some guys, they take it as a weapon to take advantage of things so they can get what they want. want. They will pursue ladies with their assets and defraud their emotions for wrong intentions. The question is this: What is the purpose of those assets? To take advantage of every situation or use it to reach people towards godliness? Like I said, a right character is beyond price and it can only flow from the upright Source. And through right intentions, it’s possible to make it happen blamelessly.
Boaz, despite his drunkenness, he did not take advantage of Ruth’s innocence to manipulate her. Instead, he blessed her with kindness and called her a worthy woman (Ruth 3:11). No catch or conditions. More than that, he recognized a GREATER Redeemer than him instead of boasting his power and authority (Ruth 3:12). Boaz’s willingness to wait patiently brings more hope for Ruth that she is well protected and taken care of.
Let me encourage you young men, EXALT JESUS MORE THAN YOUR TALENTS. The more you exalt Jesus, the more you become a blessing to the ladies, not a curse.
“Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time He may EXALT you” – 1 Peter 5:6
Ask God for grace so that you can be a man that He called you to be. Through that, you can selflessly lead the ladies towards Christ and be what He calls us to be. No catch, no tricks, no conditions nor hidden agendas.
3) Stand firm and be Responsible
Boaz, despite Ruth’s background, chooses to take responsibility for her and her mother-in-law Naomi. Since no one is going to do that for Ruth, Boaz took that step of faith to redeem her by taking her as his WIFE; not a concubine but a wife. Not because of what he will get from Ruth but because of her ENDURING LOVE AND KINDNESS she has.
“So when the redeemer said to Boaz ‘buy it for yourself,’ he drew off his sandal (a Jewish custom of redeeming). Then Boaz said to the elders and all the people, ‘You are witnesses this day that I have brought from the land of Naomi all that belonged to Elimelech… also Ruth the Moabite, the widow of Mahlon, I have bought to be my wife, to perpetuate the name of the dead in his inheritance…” – Ruth 3:9-10
Boaz chooses to take charge and because of that, it leads us to where we are today: a life with Jesus Christ. Boaz and Ruth’s son Obed started the family lineage from David to Jesus Christ; and if Boaz didn’t take that step, we wouldn’t have Jesus Christ today to save mankind. Well, God can think of a lot of things to make salvation happen. But He chooses Boaz and Ruth to start it so that we would know how God can use uncommon people and how He can make a good love story. A love story of redemption and eternal life.
Young men, you may not always in a right situation at all times. But I hope and pray that God will mold you to be like His own Son Jesus. Because in this generation full of wickedness and failing culture, we need you, men, to lead us, not to harm us. To secure us and not to take away from us. To love and accept us the way Jesus did for you and me. And I can’t wait for that moment where I can look to the way you live your lives and be thankful.