Dear Ones,
Hope you have enjoyed the day. We left early this morning from Mark and Andrea’s after 5 days of fun and food and fellowship together with their family. I felt like I had a real vacation and time with the Lord and them. We are at the Holiday just south of Indianapolis. There is a beautiful outdoor pool but looks like a storm so will wait. Thank you for prayers. Going to Iowa City tomorrow. 
Devotions from Judy’s heart
  What is the most wonderful thing in life? Is it not to be loved? Loved for who we are as a unique person and chosen by God? I am reading James Smith’s book, Embracing the Love of God, and though raised in a Christian home and becoming a preacher and author, he still struggled with comprehending He was loved by God. If we are honest, we have probably all had those thoughts of wondering would others love us if they knew really knew us?! Al commented that he read this book over 25 years ago and preached 10 sermons on it!
   But the truth is, God looks at us and smiles and loves us with a passionate love. He wants us to know it and feel it deep in our souls. Like me, maybe there are days we can really sense that love, but other times, especially after we have blown it, we wonder if He can love us still. But when we are forgiven and truly loved, it not only affects how we see ourselves, but it spills out on others. In many ways knowing we are loved is a process as we journey through life and more and more believe that He loves us and is always with us. Like Paul said in Eph. 3:18-19, “I pray that you may have the power to comprehend, with all the saints, what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.
  God doesn’t love us because we get up early to pray or that we help the poor or try to live flawlessly. But like Smith discovered, “God does not love, God is love.”  He never stops loving us because love is His nature. We can’t say the same about ourselves. We have to learn to love and receive His grace to be able to love like Him. He accepts us and loved us first and loves us every day of our lives. His love won’t ever change for us because it was not based on anything we did in the first place. We can’t earn it; we just receive it. He loves us as we are, not as we should be and want to be. We can’t lose His love for it is a gift. It is His pleasure to fill us with His love,
  Challenge for today: Ask the Lord to give you heart knowledge of His love for you!
Blessings on your day and prayers and love, Judy