Ruth 2:1-12Today’s symbol is a head of grain. Ruth gathered grain in Boaz’s fields, and he was kind to her. God brought Ruth into his family, and she became the great-grandmother of Israel’s greatest king. I wonder how Ruth felt, as she stepped out into Boaz’s fields, surrounded by strange workers and strange scenery? I wonder what it was like, to be alone and so far from home?I wonder if I have ever felt like a stranger in a new place? What did I do? How did that feel on the inside? What do I want to say to God about that time?I wonder what Boaz’s voice sounded like as he welcomed Ruth? Have I ever been welcomed by someone? Has someone ever spoken kindly to me when I was afraid? Can I say thank you to God for that time?Have I ever noticed someone who was new at my school? At my church? Can I ask God to help me welcome others when they may feel different or afraid?Ruth moved from being an outsider to the very middle of God’s story. She is one of Jesus’ ancestors! I wonder what this story shows me about who God is, and what God is like?We are halfway through Advent, and we are seeing God’s family grow. We are waiting for the time when God will keep his promise to save his people, and bring all of us into his family in Jesus. Can I say thank you to God for each of these stories? How can I wait for God to come and save today?Kind and gracious God, thank you for bringing us into your family, even when we were outsiders like Ruth. Thank you for having a place for everyone at your table. In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, Amen.