God has not stopped working through the story of these individuals within his mercy. Neither has God stopped working through the myriad of other stories of mercy. We are called to continue in this path within our own lives – sharing God’s mercy in partnership with others. Often the presence of an advocate can make all the difference – whether someone is playing that role for us or we are doing so for another.
In Ruth’s journey in this new land, she moves from a place of blessing to a place of risk. She has seen God’s blessing in the fields as her mother-in-law’s relative, Boaz, provides her protection and an abundance of grain. It would have been easy to rest in this provision and create a comfortable home with Naomi. But she is called to do more . . .
What might it look like to leave remnants in our work for others? There are definitely many opportunities for students and colleagues to collaborate or even to pass along a sought after task to another. Simply sharing ideas and resources is another way to provide items for others to glean.
However, at the same time, maybe only a week into a new program, our expectations for the story we thought we were entering often come crashing down. The students we expected to engage with in weekly face-to-face conversations have become remote avatars from around the world. The academic politics, the reluctance of others to share their research, and the generally inhospitable atmosphere of our departments are a struggle.
On our way. Once we’ve made a difficult decision to begin a graduate program or take on a new job, we like to think that we are on our way. There may be a few challenges following that initial decision, but the general path is before us. We just have to follow it.