Dear Ones,
 Hope you have a peace-filled day! I am going to the dentist early this morning and then to an ENT doctor at noon. Praying that she will uncover and treat my hearing loss. 
Devotions from Judy’s heart 
  I would like to share a bit more from a previous devotion on being patient with the weaknesses of others. Of course, there are times we get irritated with the weaknesses we see in others, but we can patiently look for things in them to celebrate and focus rather on that. What about exercising patience in the willingness to forgive those that sin against us? That may be a bit harder.    
 Author, Ajith Fernando, writes of how patient God is with each of us. As it says in I Peter 3:9, “The Lord is not slow to fulfill His promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.”                             
   The Lord has showed unlimited patience with us when we sin, and I am so thankful He doesn’t give us what we deserve; but how patient and forgiving are we when others sin against us? We pray in the Lord’s prayer that we would be forgiven as we forgive others that trespass against us. But do we?  We must remember that God’s love is greater than anything that anyone can ever do to us. If we truly believe that, we will be able to love those who hurt us for the Lord can take even our pain and make good come of it. But if we allow our thoughts to be dominated by the offense that we have suffered then we are saying that their influence on us is stronger than that of God. We have a choice though each time we are offended. Are we going to identify ourselves as a victim and let self-pity take over or are we going to apply God’s love and forgive and live in freedom?                                                                                                                                      
Sometimes the offender does not admit or is sorry that they have hurt us, but even then, we are to extend forgiveness to them. It’s important for our own healing as well as doing what the Lord tells us to do. If we refuse to forgive, then we block God’s grace from entering our hearts. But when we forgive, we set the other person free, and we also find that we are no longer a prisoner.                                                                                                                                         
 I have recently tried to pray for and bless anyone who has hurt me in the past. Even though I forgave them maybe long ago, praying a blessing on them is helping my own heart also. One lady that Fernando writes about was in a car accident and lived with neck pain for 22 years. She wasn’t able to turn her head so had to give up her driver’s license. Her pastor’s wife asked her if she had ever prayed for the driver of the accident, and she said no. This woman began to bless him and prayed aloud, “I forgive him.” As she did her pain all left and she was free after 22 years!    Let us not hold onto the wrongs done to us but forgive, as Jesus asks us to.
Challenge for today: Forgive and pray a blessing on someone who has wounded you! 
Blessings on your day and prayers and love, Judy