“This is what the Lord says—the Lord who made the earth, who formed and established it, whose name is the Lord: ‘Ask me and I will tell you remarkable secrets you do not know about things to come.'” Jeremiah 33:2-3
connect – as in ‘connect the dots’ or connect the puzzle pieces.
As I ponder the word connect I’m reminded of individual pixels connected together to form a whole image on a computer screen. The individual pixel by itself or random pixels spread out on a screen and disconnected would be confusing – unrecognizable. And yet, connected we see the full picture – the whole and not the many individual pixels.
Another metaphor comes to mind, my parents’ dining room table covered with individual pieces of a 1500 piece jigsaw puzzle with just the beginnings of connected pieces. It will be a recognizable and beautiful picture when all the pieces are connected, however, in the process, it can be frustrating and difficult to grasp. Individual pieces can be fun and pretty to look at, but where and with what does this piece connect? How does this piece relate to all these other pieces to form the whole? And finally, what is the big picture?
Right now, you might be asking, what does any of that have to do with gleaning truth from the book of Ruth? Well, I purposely didn’t start out with the genealogy scriptures because I was afraid I might lose some folks. Though clearly when we read the end of this true story of Ruth, we see God connecting the dots.
The neighbor women said, “Now at last Naomi has a son again!” And they named him Obed. He became the father of Jesse and the grandfather of David. This is the genealogical record of their ancestor Perez:
Perez was the father of Hezron.
Hezron was the father of Ram.
Ram was the father of Amminadab.
Amminadab was the father of Nahshon.
Nahshon was the father of Salmon.
Salmon was the father of Boaz.
Boaz was the father of Obed.
Obed was the father of Jesse.
Jesse was the father of David. Ruth 4:17-22 NLT
And if the dots stopped there with David who became king we would have an amazing picture of the American dream. We could, as westerners – Americans, put our pioneer spin on the story and declare (in a John Wayne cowboy kind of accent):
See, if you just use some elbow grease, put your nose to the grindstone and dream big every day even a shepherd boy can work his way up to being king!
But that’s not God’s idea of me being a pixel in His Grand Design. He is God and He does as He pleases. God is Creator and I am the created. He has had the Masterpiece in mind from before the foundation of the earth was spoken into being by Him! And so, I am reminded today by the word connect that God is the One and the Only who is able to see the whole of His design.
Therefore it is in my best interest to place my trust in Him when I have more questions than answers. When I cannot fathom how my small pixel of a life could possibly count for anything amazing, I have to stop and ask:
“Lord, will You connect some dots for me?”
So then I read on from Jeremiah 33:3 and run into these words, which help to connect the dots from the end of Ruth.
“Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will fulfill the promise I made to the house of Israel and the house of Judah. In those days and at that time I will cause a righteous Branch to spring up for David, and he shall execute justice and righteousness in the land. In those days Judah will be saved, and Jerusalem will dwell securely. And this is the name by which it will be called: ‘The Lord is our righteousness.’
“For thus says the Lord: David shall never lack a man to sit on the throne of the house of Israel, Jeremiah 33:14-17 ESV
So what about this righteous Branch springing up from the lineage of David? God breathed these words to further connect more dots and help our understanding of His bigger picture of redemption – the plan He’s always had in mind.
The first book of the New Testament, the first gospel, the book of Matthew – chapter 1 – begins with the genealogy of Jesus Christ beginning with Abraham and then we read these familiar words only look how God connects the foreign women grafted in:
Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab, Boaz the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth, Obed the father of Jesse, and Jesse the father of King David. Matthew 1:5-6
He doesn’t stop there though as He did in Ruth. The generations are recorded one by one all the way to the birth of Christ. And we read the individual dots coming together to form a bigger picture of God’s good plan…
and Jacob the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ. Matthew 1:16
This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit. Matthew 1:18
I still have so many questions. Grateful, I am, my Father created me with a curious mind. He is the One who gave me the idea to spend 31 days gleaning through His true story of these ancient people – Naomi, Ruth, and Boaz.
The harvest of understanding has been abundant for me as little by little more of the pixel dots have been coming together. I pray I’m not the only one who has gained a clearer vision of the way my one little pixel of life fits in with God’s Grand Masterpiece.
For now, we see in a mirror dimly but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known. 1 Corinthians 13:12 ESV
- Do you have more questions about your life – life in general – than you have answers? Do you feel privileged to be able to take all your questions to the Living God to find out His perspective? What do these words from Jeremiah 33:2-3 mean to you?
- “This is what the Lord says—the Lord who made the earth, who formed and established it, whose name is the Lord: ‘Ask me and I will tell you remarkable secrets you do not know about things to come.'”
- Is it confusing to you – or difficult, as it is for me – to see your one little pixel of a life as an important piece of God’s grand masterpiece?
- If so, will you ask Holy Spirit to meet you in your questions and help your understanding of your true value and worth and true identity as God’s creation and His adopted child?
- Perhaps read through Ephesians 1 placing your name over every pronoun so you are able to read what God says about you in His word.
- If you don’t see yourself as a part of God’s plan, could it be that you’ve not accepted His offer of adoption into His family made available to you by the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross? Will you reach out to a friend who is following Jesus (or me through this blog) and allow someone to introduce you to the Living Jesus who is the Son of God and has defeated death, who intercedes for you and desires all will accept His free gift of salvation?
- Are there pixel dots which have been connected in this study resulting in your better understanding of the Scriptures today? OH, I hope so! Will you share a truth you’ve gleaned today?
Eyes on Jesus… you’re Shining!