Dear Ones,
Happy weekend to you! Hope you enjoy time to get refreshed and renewed. Today I plan to make stroganoff and maybe start cleaning blinds and windows.
Devotions from Judy’s heart
Recently my favorite magazine came in the mail, and I read it from cover to cover with so many good articles. One that struck me was written by Laura Sandretti, who is an author and faith coach and titled, “Losing Your Sense of Sacrifice.” It spoke to me of having an all-out commitment to the Lord and what that really entails. We may first of all think of missionaries who have sacrificed everything and left their homes and countries and often live in poverty in a new land to reach people for the Lord. A missionary Dr. had said, “The first paradigm of missions is to lose your sense of sacrifice.” It is something for all of us as Christians to ponder for too often we think of the price of what it means to follow the Lord.

Laura responded by writing, “Until we lose a sense of what ministry costs us and the tradeoffs involved in serving others, we will struggle to love and serve as Christ did.” Perhaps we all have times that we are weary and then asked to drop everything to minister to a family in need. Or we get irritated when we are busy and called to serve when others around us do not do their part. It goes against our sense of fairness and we may grumble and complain and feel like a martyr.

But what if we lose our sense of sacrifice and become more selfless and even joyful in service to others? I love to get the newsletter of a missionary couple that we help support. They have spoken at our church when they were on furlough and exude joy as they tell about their ministry. Even their newsletters are not complaining about how tired they are or how much they sacrifice with all the many groups coming or other places they are called to speak, but rather how God is working and moving and the joy of being part of it. What a difference. When we serve others out of our own power, we will get exhausted and find ourselves complaining. But when we rely on the Lord and experience His love for us, our sense of sacrifice will turn into praise and joy, not complaint. Like Laura says, Let us not serve the Lord out of obligation or guilt but out of a spirit of gratitude for His love and generosity to us. May we be like Mary who said in Luke 1:38, “Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word.”

Challenge for today: When you find yourself grumbling about serving, ask the Lord to help you serve selflessly and out of a heart of gratitude.
Blessings on your weekend and prayers and love, Judy