Dear Ones,
Happy Labor Day! Hope you had a nice weekend and perhaps had a break from your labors. We had a wonderful weekend at the lake with lots of family. It was especially nice to spend time with our 3 grandsons, as they won’t be home again for some time. Today I made cookies and exercised and this afternoon I’m going to Kohl’s to spend the rest of my Kohl’s dollars! 
Devotions from Judy’s heart
Life is full of struggles and how we respond shows if our focus is on us or if it is on God.
When we returned from a long wonderful visit with friends, my heart was sad for all that my friend was going through with so much pain every day. I have been praying daily that the source of her pain would be known and that the doctors may have God’s wisdom to know how to relieve it. She never complains and I have to ask to get her tell me how she is really feeling. As I read this morning from Isaiah 43, I was mindful of her. “Don’t be afraid, I’ve redeemed you. I’ve called your name. You’re mine. When you’re over your head, I’ll be there for you. When you’re in rough waters, you will not go down. When you’re between a rock and a hard place, it won’t be a dead end—Because I am God, your personal God.” I am reminded that the Lord has her, loves her, and will be with her in the midst of her pain and all she goes through.
The Lord says these words to us as well, no matter what our struggles are. If we fret and complain, it only wears us down. We may not know how God is going to work in our situations but He is worthy of our trust. David says in Psalm 37, “Do not fret…it leads only to evil.” Fret means to gradually wear down something by rubbing or gnawing. If we obsess over things we can’t control, it gnaws at our peace and we get worn out. David goes on to say to say instead that we need to trust in the Lord, delight in Him, wait patiently for Him. That is not easy, but nothing good comes from fretting since it only seems to lead us to get bogged down and stuck. But if we don’t give up, we will grow through our circumstances and experience the strength that comes from Him. Have you noticed how we don’t seem to get stronger during the easy good times; but when we press on, we gain strength spiritually and can face our situation in His power.
Let us remember that His strength is available to us every moment of every day and we can depend on Him to carry us through.
Challenge for today: Be done with fretting and ask the Lord to help you press on in His strength.
Blessings on your week and prayers and love, Judy