Pastor Carolyn Poteet

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September 8


Carolyn Poteet


"Light in the Darkness "


Psalm 13:1-6
Ruth 1:1-22

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September 6, 2019

"But Ruth replied, "Don't urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go, I will go, and where you stay, I will stay.
Your people will be my people and your God my God." 
       Ruth 1:16

Greetings in the Name of the Lord, Jesus Christ!
Welcome to Fall! Okay, it doesn't quite feel like Fall yet, but at least it is starting to get cooler. Our students are back in school, and everything is waking up after the summer slowdown. New Sunday School classes and small groups kick off this Sunday, and our Fall Kick-off picnic is coming up next Wednesday night.

This Sunday, we will also start our new sermon series, "In the Line of the King." We are diving back into the Old Testament and looking at the roots of what it means to call the Messiah the "Son of David." Who was David? Where did he come from? How could someone who messed up so badly still be called a "man after God's own heart?"

Where did David come from? We first get a glimpse of David's family in the beautiful little book of Ruth. Set in the time of the Judges, Israel was a mess. They were so disobedient the Lord allowed a famine to fall on the land. Naomi and her husband fled the famine and lived for ten years in Moab. Her sons took Moabite wives. And then everything went wrong. Her husband and both her sons died. With nothing left, Naomi decided to head home, to a little town called Bethlehem.

Naomi urged her daughters-in-law to return to their families, but Ruth refused to leave. She demonstrated her faithful love to Naomi by making the bold statement, "Your people will be my people and your God my God." Naomi doesn't realize it yet, but this moment is the turning point for her family. This act of faithfulness, the Hebrew word hesed or covenant love, begins the story of redemption for Naomi's family. It is also a metaphor for the redemption of all of Israel, as God acts to provide a redeemer for the nation first in a faithful king David and then through the Messiah, Jesus Christ.

The hard part of redemption stories is that we usually cannot see those turning points while we are in the middle of them. The Lord promises to "work all things together for good" (Rom. 8:28), but in those lowest points, it can feel like He has forgotten us. How do we handle those low points? How do we find the bedrock of God's faithfulness when we are caught in the storm? One of the best ways is to grab onto the memories of God's faithfulness in our own past and in stories like Ruth. God has been faithful in the past, and He will be faithful in the future - just as He was faithful to a Moabite widow who became King David's great-grandmother and one of the most significant women in the line of King Jesus.

Pastor Carolyn

PS - If you would like to make a donation to support recovery efforts in the Bahamas following Hurricane Dorian, you can give through the EPC. Our denomination has three churches on the Bahamas, including one in Marsh Harbor on Abacos, and recovery efforts will be directed through their ministries on the ground. 

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