Dear Ones,
Hope you are enjoying the weekend, even if the skies are dark today. This morning I cleaned and we have a funeral at noon for a pastor friend who use to live right down the hall from us who is now in his heavenly home
Devotions from Judy’s heart
It is the Lord who directs our lives and it is He who determines our outcome. Our lives are in His hand and He has the last word. In Prov. 16:9 (God’s Word) it says, “A person may plan his own journey, but the Lord directs his steps.” I woke from sleep and the words were playing through my mind of the song “Thanks to God for my Redeemer”. Now I wasn’t thinking of that song before I went to bed, so I wanted to pay attention; maybe the Lord had a message for me. This song was written in Swedish by August Ludvig Storm, Lieutenant Colonel of the Salvation Army, and translated into English in 1931. Perhaps you have sung it and realized you were thanking God not only for pleasant times but also dark and stormy times. We have both on our journey through life but we can still live in hope and thanksgiving when we know that God is by our side.  Eight years after Ludvig wrote the song he suffered a painful debilitating disease but he still remained thankful. A couple verses of this song goes:

           “Thanks to God for my Redeemer
            Thanks for all Thou dost provide!
            Thanks for times now but a mem’ry,
            Thanks for Jesus by my side!
            Thanks for pleasant, balmy springtime,
            Thanks for dark and stormy fall!
            Thanks for tears by now forgotten,
            Thanks for peace within my soul!

            Thanks for prayers that Thou hast answered,
            Thanks for what Thou dost deny!
            Thanks for storms that I have weathered,
            Thanks for all Thou dost supply!
            Thanks for pain, and thanks for pleasure,
            Thanks for comfort in despair! 
            Thanks for grace that none can measure,
            Thanks for love beyond compare!”
Let us remember that God is with us in the painful times as well as the pleasant times.
He determines our steps and know just how to direct us on our journey; therefore, we can live in hope for tomorrow no matter what happens today.
Challenge for today: Thank the Lord for whatever circumstance He has you in right now!