The first Ruth and Boaz Coffee Morning was held in London on the 3rd of September. The Coffee Mornings are designed as more intimate occasions than our usual Ruth and Boaz meetings. The idea is to provide an atmosphere where our guests would have an opportunity for a more personal interaction with other guests and with the members of the Ruth and Boaz team. We have discovered that our guests sometimes require a one on one discussion or prayer at the end of an event and that is quite difficult to manage during the larger events.
The meeting began with a brief introduction by Pastor Tinuke Olashore who explained the reason for the meetings. She also stressed our ethos of discretion as a ministry. As a ministry, we DO NOT tolerate any form of gossip or tale bearing or discussing the issues that have been raised by guests and members. It is often difficult for people to bare their hearts and we must ensure that they are confident and safe in the knowledge that the only person we discuss their issues with is the only one who can truly solve them – Almighty God!
Pastor Ugochi shared the reason why she is so passionate about the Ruth and Boaz ministry. Research has shown that one of the largest groups in any church is single adults. She felt it would be a real failure on our parts if we neglected to serve this population effectively and empower them to make their mark on the church and society.
Our main topic of discussion for the day was “Wholeness”. Pastor Tinuke shared how in her years of working with this ministry and counselling numerous people, even married people, she has discovered that it is absolutely essential that each of us be whole in Christ before we attempt to join ourselves to another person.
She found that people who have been through a divorce appear to suffer the greatest amount of emotional trauma, as divorce has connotations of failure, rejection, a lack of closure and a questioning of one’s self worth. The aim of the Ruth & Boaz Ministry is to help people rebuild their sense of wholeness in Christ by recognising their value both to God, the body of Christ and to society at large.
Therefore, we also seek to build up our single members to ensure that when they do get married, they do not have to endure the trauma of divorce. The ideal picture of marriage is two whole people becoming one.
We also help our members to enjoy the journey of singleness as they recognise themselves as a whole, complete child of God who does not require another person in order to be perceived as valuable or of worth.
One of our guests shared how she had been asking herself lately what her motive for wanting to get married was. She had found that we have many reasons for wanting to be married including societal norms and pressure, shaking off the stigma of singleness even in our churches, some people just want a companion to sit with at parties!
She was currently on a journey with God to show her the real reasons in her heart and she felt he was asking her to be true to herself and identify the many pressures she was under. She shared how far reaching the fact of mature singleness can be – even leading to moments of perceived humiliation amongst friends or work colleagues. Also, she said that feeling of reduced self worth sometimes impinged on careers as you begin to think ” if no one thinks I am good enough to want to marry me, how am I even sure I am worthy of this job?” This could then prevent one from aggressively pursuing higher positions or opportunities.
Pastor Tinuke shared scriptures that show the impact of a broken heart and the importance of healing.
“The human spirit can endure a sick body, but who can bear a crushed spirit?”
Proverbs 18:14 NLT
God considers the healing of a broken heart so important that it was one of Jesus’ express missions on earth.
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, recovering of sight to the blind, to deliver those who are crushed”
Luke 4:18 NHEB
She reiterated that no one can heal a broken heart but Jesus. No medicine or therapy can.
“He heals the brokenhearted, and bandages their wounds”
Psalm 147:3 NET
The LORD is close to the brokenhearted, and he delivers those whose spirit has been crushed.
Psalm 34:18 ISV
Our guests were particularly impacted by the message of wholeness. In discussion after the meeting, one lady said she intended to go on a journey of discovering God’s love for her and her value to him.
The meeting ended with prayer and as hoped, we found that our guests were eager to stay behind and engage in conversation with the team members, availing themselves of the opportunity to share specific concerns and ask questions.
As always, God confirmed his presence at the meeting. When the first guest came in, one of the executives had an odd feeling that the meeting was especially for her. As the morning progressed, this feeling was confirmed! The lady was drawn to tears as the message of wholeness was shared. She kept saying “Ah God I’m so glad I made it here today!”
It is moments like this that confirm for us the importance of this ministry and keep us going. All in all, it was a great occasion and we look forward to the next one on the 8th of October.