Dear Ones,
Hope you are having a wonderful weekend. The house is full of aroma as I made a big pot of stew and other food prep. Ann’s are stopping by this afternoon so baked cookies. Please pray for our friend Nancy who had surgery this week but now in ICU on life support and organs are failing. It is still hard to believe. Her whole family needs prayers. 
Devotions from Judy’s heart
It’s wonderful to have good relationships with everyone but since we are all broken people, we have quite likely have felt the sting of being betrayed by a friend. It hurts and wounds but doesn’t need to destroy us. I read an article by Jen Allee and she writes about how Jesus was wounded and actually knew who was going to betray Him and when it would happen; yet he chose to demonstrate His love for his betrayer, Judas, and didn’t distance Himself from him. I wonder if we could do that under those circumstances. It is a difficult thing and maybe even harder if you know in advance that someone is going to turn you in. Jesus had supper with the disciples and then got up from the table and began washing their feet. This was normally done by a servant of the household but Jesus humbled Himself and washed all of the disciple’s feet, including Judas. Can we imagine what that was like? After He finished John 13:21 ((God’s Word) says, “After saying this Jesus was troubled in spirit and declared, ‘Very truly, I tell you, one of you will betray me.” Jesus knew exactly what would happen next but He just kept loving and left a powerful example for us.  Even in our vivid memories of a friend who let us down in the past, most of us have never experienced such betrayal. Wouldn’t it have been easier for Jesus to wait until Judas excused himself and then washed the other 11 disciple’s feet? But Jesus knew who He was and the mission He had been given and didn’t base His happiness on His relationships with others. That is good for us to remember also, not to let how others treat us define who we are. We are loved by God, and our happiness should not depend on warm fuzzies from others. It’s wonderful to have good friendships but because we are all broken people, we are hurt by others and we also hurt others. Allee makes the point that our pain is not permanent because this world is not our home. Our mission here is not great relationships with others but to share Christ with them. In fact, we can actually grow stronger through our wounds when we forgive others and give our brokenness to the Lord. He heals and strengths us to rise above whatever is done to us. Let us love like Jesus, forgive like Him and serve others.
Challenge for today: Don’t run from prickly people but ask God to open your heart and pour out His love to them.
Blessings on your weekend and prayers and love, Judy