Dear Ones,
Hope you have a wonderful weekend! The leaves are just beginning to turn their fall colors out my window.  I just made S.F. cookies and cleaned the apartment. We need to shop for Al this afternoon and often he stops at Culver’s afterwards!Emoji
Devotions from Judy’s heart
   Haven’t we all felt at times that we are entitled to justice when someone has done something to hurt us? We may even play the victim role and blame God for not being there in our pain.
  When we feel justified and focus on our pain of what someone else did, we will become bitter and find our heart gets left hardened. That is not a good place to be trapped, and it chokes out God’s grace and mercy.
   In essence we are saying that God why don’t you care and why don’t you deal with that person now and quit being so harsh with me. But the Jesus way is far different and He left us a powerful example from His own life. On the cross before taking His last breath, He asked His Father to forgive those who had crucified Him for they didn’t know what they were doing.   He forgave them even though they were not asking forgiveness and weren’t sorry at the time.
    We also are to embrace the cross and lay down our right to get even. That means a death to ourselves and canceling the debt of the ones who hurt us and putting it all in God’s hands. It’s not always easy to let go of that hurt and forgive them but we must remember all that God forgave us and we are also to show mercy to others. If we fail to forgive, we are like the slave in the story Jesus told, who was forgiven of his huge debt that he was unable to pay. But then this same slave would not forgive his fellow slave who also pleaded for mercy for his small debt, but instead threw him in prison. Aren’t we really just like him when we refuse to forgive? Like Paul said in Romans 2:4, “Or do you despise the riches of His goodness, forbearance and longsuffering (towards those who mistreat you), knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance?”
     May we not only forgive but also go a step farther and ask God to bless them, and pray for their welfare. We can then set aside our judgments and let the Lord handle the whole thing.
  Challenge for today: Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal those that you haven’t forgiven and then not only forgive them but ask God to bless them.
Blessings on your weekend and prayers and love, Judy