Dear Ones,
Hope you wake to a fresh day of His grace with you. Today is Donut day here and  Bible Study this afternoon and Maundy Thursday communion service tonight. Holy week is a good time to be reminded of our tendancy to sin and why we need a Savior. The question this week is: Are we aware of our own sin patterns and is it easier for us to recognize the sins of others? 
Devotions from Judy’s heart
   How honestly do we know ourselves? Do we believe we blow it because we are sinful and can we see ourselves with particular patterns of our failings? Once we come to know the Lord and forgiven of our sins, we are freed from the power of sin and experience grace, although we still continue to fail. But so good to remember that we are loved and welcomed back, just as the Loving Father embraced the prodigal son.
  Perhaps each of us have unique patterns of sin and temptations may come to me, that would not necessarily be the same for you. Some of us have more of the Elder Brother syndrome and notice the sins of others and think we are not as sinful and rather squeaky clean. Or we may identify more with the prodigal whose sins seem more obvious and who wants to run his own life, living for pleasure. But we all have the sin of pride and it may show up in different ways and sin patterns. I need to pray daily, “Create in me a clean heart, O Lord and renew a right spirit within me.” (Psalm 51:10) For it matters not if our sins are obvious or more hidden, we need to confess them and throw them off…root them out rather than trying to keep them under control.
   I am reading “Signature Sins” by Michael Mangis who is a professor of psychology at Wheaton College. He shares how we all have specific patterns of sin in our lives which has an effect on our thoughts, actions and relationships. We may choose to try to manage our outward behavior but neglect and ignore the poverty of our hearts. But he encourages us to face our sins and confess them and find freedom in grace. That will help us from paying more attention to the speck in our brother’s eye and ignore the plank in our own eye.
  Let us face our own sins for we all sin in thought, word and deed! We may sin outwardly for others to observe but we also sin by omission for the things we neglect to do.  Maybe you will be led to pray the Jesus prayer that I pray often, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me a sinner.” Sometimes I go for a walk and repeat that verse many times. I have an idea you will be getting more devotions from me on sin patterns as I go through Mangis’ book!
  Challenge for today: Quit the ways of pretending to be good, and let the Holy Spirit show you your heart.
Blessings on your day and prayers and love, Judy