Well, the last Friday of April has arrived! How did THAT happen? Why does it seem like the same period of time can pass so quickly sometimes, and yet drag by at other times?
So here are Friday’s devotions. Remember you can read Psalms and Proverbs to accompany each day on my page, Daily Scripture Readings. AND check out my new page, where you can have an opportunity to put compassion into action–whether through praying, sharing the linked causes, and/or donating.
“Thank you, my loving and sovereign God, that my failures and mistakes are part of the ‘all things’ You work together for good…as well as my tensions and stresses, my hostile and anxious feelings, my regrets, my trips into shame and self-blame–and the specific things that trigger them.
I praise You that ‘all things,’ including these, can contribute to my spiritual growth and my experience of You …When my heart is overwhelmed, I’m more aware of my need to cry to You…to take refuge in you…to rely on You.
How grateful I am for Your constant cleansing as I confess each sin You make me aware of, and then turn back to you as my Lord. I praise You that I’m free from condemnation simply because Christ died for me and rose again…I praise You…in humble gratitude for Your undeserved, unchanging love and total cleansing!”
–Ruth Myers in “31 Days of Praise”
“Self-doubt is simply the fear of being wrong. God does not want you to live in fear, doubting yourself or doubting Him. When we allow doubt and fear to take over, that’s when the wall to God’s blessings starts going up. Don’t let that wall even begin to build in your life.
Doubt is the fear of negative things happening, but faith expects good things to take place. It actually takes less emotional energy to walk in faith than in doubt and fear. People who believe and are positive are much healthier than those who are filled with fear, doubt, and negativity.
Positive people age slower than negative ones and in fact can live longer. There’s every reason to replace doubt with expectation.”
–Joyce Meyer in “The Confident Woman Devotional”
-1- Seems to be a common theme recently, in the devotions I’ve read and even on other blogs–all things, good and bad, being part of our overall life plans–and that God, some how, works things out for good. Freedom from condemnation. Must remember that, to avoid those “trips into guilt, shame, and self-blame!”
-2- I have never thought about self-doubt equaling the fear of being wrong. It’s also interesting to ponder that it takes less emotional energy to walk in faith than in doubt and fear!
So what are YOUR thoughts?
Do you believe that some how, God will work all things out for your good? Have you already experienced this in your life?
Had you ever thought about the connection between self-doubt and the fear of being wrong? How about the idea that walking in faith requires less emotional energy than walking in doubt and fear?
Yes, indeed–it is once again Three Things Thursday! So I’ll tell you about two things before adding my third and usual “thing” for the day: your daily devotions. I learned about this from my fellow blogger, Salma, of The Write Balance, who participates in this “Three Things Thursday” linkup every week. It’s fun to add a little variety to the week.
Thursday Thing #1. **Thumb surgery.** Oh yay.
So the arthritis has become worse in my right thumb over the past year or so; when I saw an orthopedic doctor about six months ago, he explained that there is no cartilage left between some of the bones at the base of my thumb AND there are bone spurs. The cortisone shot and this brace I’m wearing were just temporary “fixes.”
He highly recommended surgery to rebuild the joint and provide relief from pain and restore range of motion and functionality. Since the pain has worsened, and I’ve lost even more grasping/pinching ability (think of all the things that require that capacity, from brushing your teeth to buttoning shirts to holding a glass, and many more!)…yeah.
So I have a surgery consultation appointment on Monday, May 4th, so the doctor can explain to hubby and me what all is involved, and then they will schedule the surgery. This article here explains what is involved in the surgery and the recovery (that will be challenging, because I’m not sure what will happen with blogging, writing, sewing, and all during that time!) –> Basal Joint Arthritis.
Thursday Thing #2. **New quilt listing!**
I’ve been wanting to add more listings to my Etsy and Bonanza stores. I finally added one new quilt listing last night; it’s one of my favorite log cabin variations, called the Log Cabin Star. This particular quilt in the photo, shown as a sample, has a sad story. I originally made this quilt for my oldest daughter–and she lost it in a house fire!
I’m working on another one now for her–and a new one for hubby and me, in the same design, just different colors. I love how just varying colors and placement gives the log cabin design whole new looks!
Thursday Thing #3. **Devotions!**
Yes, devotions, because that’s one of the main purposes of this blog. Remember, too , you can read Psalms and Proverbs to accompany each day on my page, Daily Scripture Readings. AND check out my new page, where you can have an opportunity to put compassion into action–whether through praying, sharing the linked causes, and/or donating.
“Lord, thank You that You plan to use for good the struggles my loved ones face–including their disappointing choices, their unwise or even harmful ways of thinking and living, and their sidetracks from going Your way (as I see it–and Lord, I know I could be wrong!)
I praise You in advance for the part these difficult things are going to play in Your good plan for us–in eventual deliverance and growth and fruitfulness. I’m grateful that in all these things, the battle is not mine, but Yours…and the final chapter has not yet been written.
Thank You that You are at work to answer my prayers in Your good way and time. Thank You for past victories You have won in my loved ones’ lives–for progress and growth and answered prayers–and for the victories we will yet see in the future, to the glory of Your Name. I praise You that as time goes by, in new ways, You will show us Your goodness in the land of the living.”
–Ruth Myers in “31 Days of Praise”
“I believe people give their mistakes more power than they need. We should admit them, repent, and ask God to forgive us for them. We should also learn from our mistakes because by doing so, they can add value to our lives. Instead of allowing mistakes to make you feel guilty and bad, let them be your teacher.
–> And always remember that just because you make a mistake,
it does not mean YOU are a mistake! <–
To grow, we must step out and try things. We learn what works and what doesn’t. Learning from firsthand experience is a much better teacher than a textbook.
Pray: Lord, I’ve made my share of mistakes, but I refuse to let them rule over me. I take them as lessons that I am learning from, and I know You will lead me into all truth by Your Spirit. Amen.”
–Joyce Meyer in “The Confident Women Devotional”
-1- It is so difficult sometimes to continue to have faith in God and His ultimate plan even during the dark times of life. His timing is usually not our desired timing, either, so it continues to be an exercise in patience, and having faith in God, rather than faith in our faith–as we discussed earlier this week!
-2- This is such an important reminder: Just because we make mistakes, does not mean WE are mistakes! As we discussed in a previous devotional, we have to remember to differentiate between our “do” and our “who” – and not let our actions and mistakes define who we are.
So what are YOUR thoughts?
What do you think about “Three Things Thursday”? What are three things you’re doing or thinking about today?
Do you struggle to keep the faith even during difficult times, knowing God has promised to see you through?
Do you ever have difficulty separating what you do, from who you are?
Here we are at midweek of the third week of April–already! How’s your weather in your part of the world? In Maine USA, we are experiencing wacky weather where our seasons still seem confused: heavy rain and flood watches earlier in the week, frost on the car windows this morning, and now sunshine and 54 degrees, heading into the 60s!
Have you ever struggled with condemnation vs. conviction? Do you know the difference?
Let’s look at today’s devotional shares. Remember, you can read Psalms and Proverbs to accompany each day on my page, Daily Scripture Readings. AND check out my new page, where you can have an opportunity to put compassion into action–whether through praying, sharing the linked causes, and/or donating. I have recently added a third situation that is particularly heartbreaking!
“It is normal to feel guilty when you are initially convicted of sin; but to keep feeling guilty after you have repented is not healthy, nor is it God’s will.
Conviction is entirely different from condemnation. Condemnation presses you down and puts you under a burden of guilt, but conviction is meant to lift you out of something, to help you move up higher in God’s plan for your life.
If you are suffering under a burden of condemnation, lay your guilt before the throne of God and receive His forgiveness and mercy.”
–Joyce Meyer in “Ending Your Day Right”
“I used to wake up feeling guilty and condemned. I was full of judgment and criticism for every little mistake I made. But that outlook creates pressure inside of us that is apt to explode in the face of the first person who comes around.
If you struggle this way, begin your day by reading the Word. Knowledge of God’s mercy and forgiveness is vital in learning to love yourself so that you can love others. Live today to its fullest potential.”
–Joyce Meyer in “Starting Your Day Right”
-1- This is such an important distinction: condemnation weighs us down, while conviction lifts us up! It might not feel like that at first, but if we are honest with ourselves, we typically already have an awareness of something we are doing wrong. Acknowledging it and dealing with it helps us to grow and move on, whereas feeling guilty and condemned over it keeps us stuck on that “treadmill of guilt.”
-2- I’m so grateful for God’s mercy and forgiveness! Again, guilt and condemnation do nothing to help us grow, whereas recognizing conviction and receiving forgiveness allows us to grow and develop our potential.
So what are YOUR thoughts?
Had you ever thought about the difference between condemnation and conviction? Do you find it difficult to get out from under that weight of guilt or off that treadmill of guilt?
Did you ever think about the connection between condemnation and its affect on being able to fulfill your potential?