Dear Ones, 
Hope you have a wonderful weekend. Our apartment is filled with aroma as I have a big pot of lentil soup on the stove. I have a sinus head cold and the taste of stew perked my taste buds. 
Devotions from Judy’s heart 
 Al and I received a poem from a friend who is choosing joy rather than focusing on his loss, as his wife is fading away from Alzheimer’s. He is choosing joy by turning everything over to the Lord instead of being a victim, that he may be a victor. He shared Psalm 16:11, “You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.” Joy is not the result of wonderful external circumstances but rather joy is found in the person of Jesus. When we give Him control of our lives, we experience deep joy and the Spirit sets us free, almost as if we were flying.                                                                                                                                           In the poem our friend asks the question to a caterpillar if he would like to fly. But he responds by saying he couldn’t imagine why he would want to do that since he was content to be just crawling on the ground. He then asks the butterfly if he wanted to be a caterpillar again and he responded that when the spirit touched him he was no longer bound but free to fly and filled with joy. No, he would not want to be earth bound again.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          As I read the poem, I thought of how the Lord has so much for us to experience of Him and that often we settle for far less. Just like the caterpillar, we are content to stay put and not be growing and entering into all the new things the Lord has for us. In fact, sometimes life gets boring and we lack enthusiasm. It’s much like a plane circling overhead and not going anywhere. But like the butterfly, we can experience growth and fly here and there and know no bounds. We are set free for we have turned everything over to the Lord and our joy is not dependent on our present circumstances. Our friend quotes Hab. 3:17-18, “Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior.“                                                                                                                                                           Let us choose joy by giving Him our whole life for then we can praise Him no matter what!
Challenge for today: Ask the Lord to help you live joy in the moment that He has given you right now.
Blessings on your weekend and prayers and love, Judy