Summary: A sermon examining certain moments that God has ordained in our lives.
My Grandmother was born and raised in North Carolina, my Grandfather was from here in Talladega. One day I asked Grandma how the two of them met since they lived hundreds of miles apart. The story that followed absolutely fascinated me. It seems that Grandma was traveling home from a visit with her aunt and she boarded a bus that was completely full. A lady gave grandma her seat and next to her was the man would become her husband. Grandpa must have done something to impress her that day because he got her address. Not long after this he wrote her a letter asking her to marry him. She turned him down, he then wrote another letter and she turned him down again. When the third letter arrived (without her knowledge) Grandma's sister wrote him back and said yes. When Grandpa received the fraudulent reply, he immediately traveled to North Carolina to retrieve his bride. When he arrived someone said "who is that" and Grandma's reply was "I don't know but if the Lord doesn't know him any better than me, he is a lost soul!" Though she knew very little about him, she decided that since he had traveled so far, the polite thing to do would be to marry him, so she did and they remained married until the day he died.
I know that is a strange, almost unbelievable story but I sure am glad that it happened. You see, without that encounter their 8 children would not have been born. As a result I would not have been born, and my children would not have been born. In fact, our branch of the Jones family has over 50 people, none of which would have been born if Grandma had never gotten on that bus. But God had a plan, and I believe that what many would call a chance encounter was actually a divine appointment. Throughout our lives we will encounter many of these "divine appointments".
For the past couple of months we have been examining a love story that began with a divine appointment. I want to quickly review a few of the circumstances that led to the climax of Ruth and Boaz's story. Due to a famine in Israel, Elimelech left Bethlehem-Judah and moved his family to Moab. Elimelech and his wife Naomi had two sons, Mahlon and Chilion. Maholon and Chilion both married Moabite women. Eventually Elimilech and his sons passed away leaving Naomi, Ruth and Orpah as widows. Naomi and Ruth returned to Bethlehem poor and alone. In order to find food, Ruth sets out to find a landowner who would "show her grace" and allow her to glean barley in his field. Ruth found grace in a wealthy man named Boaz. Boaz immediately took an interest in her and did all that he could to provide more than enough food to sustain both Ruth and Naomi. Later, Naomi informed Ruth that Boaz was a near kinsman of her late husband. This meant that Boaz was qualified to act as Ruth's "kinsman redeemer". Ruth approached Boaz one night and asked him to do just that. Boaz was more than willing to take on the responsibility of caring for Ruth and Naomi but there was a problem, there was another man who was a closer relative than he was.
As we arrive at chapter 4 Boaz is going to confront this other kinsman and discuss the matter. The other man bows out and Boaz takes care of Ruth and Naomi's debt. Furthermore he takes Ruth as His wife and they have a son named Obed. This made them the great-grandparents of King David and ancestors of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. All of this can be traced back to one divine appointment in the field of Boaz, when Ruth met her kinsman redeemer. History would have been much different if these two people had not come together. But through it all, God had a plan and He saw that His plan came to fruition.
- Today as we conclude our study of the Book of Ruth I would like to preach a message entitled "Divine Appointments".
- I am confident that there will be several "divine appointments" here today.
1. It may be that some of you have a divine appointment with salvation. This could be the day that the Holy Spirit convicts you of your sin and convinces you that you need a Savior.
2. There may be some people here who have a "divine appointment" with restoration. It could be that you have wandered away from the Lord and this will be the day that you return to a right relationship with your Father.
3. Some of you may have a "divine appointment" concerning God's call on your life. It may be that this is the day that God calls you into a specific area of ministry. Or for some, He may call you to return to a ministry that you have neglected.