We make literally thousands of decisions a day never fully comprehending how those choices affect future events. Sometimes we feel we are just going through the motions of everyday life; going to school, work, or shopping. In one moment, our paths cross with another and we are changed. We like to believe that we are the masters of our own destiny, when in fact we are on a predetermined course orchestrated in love by Almighty God.
The Lord designed us for a special purpose yet, there are times when we have made a wrong decision. The path we are on is way out of sequence with our purpose. Something strange or fantastic will occur and a course correction is made. These special encounters are known as “divine appointments” or “divine interventions.” The specific timing of these events are perfect. Many people have a different idea of these happenings; some called them coincidences or chance. All those seemly random events that appear to mean nothing but in hindsight, they expose a purpose and relevance to a current situation.
There are many descriptions of these types of course corrections in the Word of God, which give details how these events affected people, nations and lives that were forever altered. Some changes were for the good and other events, were not so good. One story is in the Old Testament book of Ruth. A small family from Bethlehem left their home because of a famine and moved to Moab. During their stay, the father died and the sons married two Moabite women, which was forbidden by the Law of Moses, and they died a decade later.
Naomi, the mother was now deeply distressed, she had lost everything, there was no way that she could provide for these women and herself. She had heard the famine had passed in Bethlehem, so she decided to go home. On the way, Naomi realized that her daughters–in-law would not be accepted in her homeland. So she made a decision to send them back to their families, but Ruth refused to leave Naomi.
“But Ruth replied, “Don’t ask me to leave you and turn back. I will go wherever you go and live wherever you live. Your people will be my people and your God will be my God. I will die where you die and will be buried there. May the Lord punish me severely if I allow anything but death to separate us!” (Ruth 1:16-17 NLT). Ruth had made a choice to honor Naomi and her husband’s memory by fully submitting her life to serve Naomi who had nothing to offer her and to trust the God of Israel.
The Lord had given Ruth the desire to stay with Naomi, which kept her on the right path. Once back home, Naomi carefully instructed Ruth on the customs of the land and waited for the right time to aide in the marriage arrangement.
What were the odds she would begin working in a field owned by unknown relative? Was this a chance encounter in which she caught the eye of the man who would be her future husband? No, this was her destiny, a planned purpose that she could not have chosen. The Lord blessed Ruth for her obedience that led her straight into his purpose. Ruth married Boaz and their son was Obed. Obed became the father of Jesse who in turn was the father of David. Through obedience to her call and the courage to continue, Ruth was included in the lineage of Jesus Christ.
How about you, do you think there is a master plan for your life? Do you think that things just happen? Do you step out in faith, not sure of the end result? We on an adventure, moving through life on a predetermined route, that we cannot see. Will you trust the Lord to lead you to your destiny, fulfilling your purpose?
“For I know the plans I have for you” says the Lord, “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope”” (Jeremiah 29:11 NLT).
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