Chance or God’s Providence?

Growing with God: A daily devotional with Tonia Slimm.

Ruth 2:3 (NIV)
So she went out, entered a field and began to glean behind the harvesters. As it turned out, she was working in a field belonging to Boaz, who was from the clan of Elimelek.

Ruth 2:3 (MSG)
And so she set out. She went and started gleaning in a field, following in the wake of the harvesters. Eventually she ended up in the part of the field owned by Boaz, her father-in-law Elimelech’s relative.
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“So Ruth went and picked up the leftover grain in a field after the reapers; and she happened to stop at the plot of land belonging to Boaz, who was of the family of Elimelech.” -AMPLIFIED

We find Ruth leaving Naomi’s presence and heading out to glean in the fields. The wording for her arrival at the field is interesting:

NIV- As it turned out, she was working in a field belonging to Boaz…
MSG- Eventually she ended up in the part of the field owned by Boaz…
AMP- She happened to stop at the plot of land belonging to Boaz…
NKJV- And she happened to come to the part of the field belonging to Boaz…
KJV- and her hap was to light on a part of the field belonging unto Boaz…
NASB- She happened to come to the portion of the field belonging to Boaz…
NJB- Chance led her to a plot of land belonging to Boaz of Elimelech’s clan.

Each version gives the impression that Ruth by chance stumbled upon Boaz’s property; it was happenstance. I would put forth to you that, in fact, God lead her to Boaz’s property. It was part of His Master Design. There are no “chances” or “coincidences” with God.

“…and her hap was to light on a part of the field belonging unto Boaz, who was of the kindred of Elimelech.” The providence of God so ordering and directing it; for though it was hap and chance to her, and what some people call good luck, it was according to the purpose, and by the providence and direction of God that she came to the reapers in that part of the field Boaz, a near kinsman of her father-in-law, was owner of, and asked leave of them to glean and follow them.” -John Gill’s Exposition of the Bible

The Divine Providence of God can be defined as; the foreseeing care and guidance of God, divine guidance, or His guardianship for His creatures and creation. Ray Pritchard shares these thoughts on providence in his sermon, “The Invisible Hand: Coming to Grips With God’s Providence”:
“God’s gracious oversight of the universe.” Every one of those words is important. God’s providence is one aspect of his grace. Oversight means that he directs the course of affairs. The word universe tells us that God not only knows the big picture, he also concerns himself with the tiniest details.”

God moves in mysterious ways that we may not understand, but He always has a plan in place. We have to trust and believe that His love is genuine; and His intentions are always to give us His best. The question is, are we willing to accept His choices? Will we go where He asks us to go? Will we do what He has prompted us to do? Will we be obedient to His bidding? If Ruth had followed the promptings of Jehovah things could have turned out drastically different for both herself and Naomi.

“From the Christian’s perspective, there is no such thing as chance. God is either directly or indirectly involved in everything that happens to us. He can therefore be trusted and obeyed in any circumstance, because even the smallest details are under His control.” -Martin R. De Haan II

Things do not “JUST” happen with God, thankfully. Instead, God has a plan for each of our lives and He had one for Ruth’s too. It may have appeared to her and even to those around her that she “JUST” happened to end up at Boaz’s field, but it truly was part of God’s plan.

Remember these words of Jesus, “…for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him.” -Matthew 6:8b (AMP)

These words spoken by God to Isaiah are also a good reminder to all of us, “It shall also come to pass that before they call, I will answer; and while they are still speaking, I will hear.” -Isaiah 65:24 (AMP)

God’s Divine Providence took care of Ruth. He took care of all the little details in order that she and Naomi would be provided for. His Divine Providence extends to all of His dear children. Remember, Jesus spoke these words to His followers, “What’s the price of a pet canary? Some loose change, right? And God cares what happens to it even more than you do. He pays even greater attention to you, down to the last detail—even numbering the hairs on your head! So don’t be intimidated by all this bully talk. You’re worth more than a million canaries.” -Matthew 10:29-31 (MSG)

God loves you with an everlasting love! His Divine Providence will take care of you. Trust Him; He has everything in control. Down to the tiniest detail.

My Prayer:
Lord, you are so amazing! You take care of my needs even before I realize that I have them. Your goodness and guidance affects every part of my life. Help me to trust you always; even when things look impossible and improbable. I want to have the faith in you that I need. Thank you for that Divine Providence that touches every part of my life. Thank you for desiring to be part of my life. Thank you for caring so much. Thank you for being my All-in-All!

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