Romans 5:1-5(NRSV)

1 Therefore, since we are justified by faith, we  have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 through whom we have obtained access  to this grace in which we stand; and we  boast in our hope of sharing the glory of God. 3 And not only that, but we  also boast in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, 4 and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, 5 and hope does not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us.   

Psalm 31:24 (NRSV)

24 Be strong, and let your heart take courage, all you who wait for the Lord.   

DEVOTION -Amy Grenoble (Pennsylvania)

Foe many years, I have been battling an eating disorder.  Initially, it was a response to teasing in elementary school.  As I matured and developed a stronger self-image, the disorder faded.  After years of feeling I was living a “healthy” life, my disorder returned – stronger than ever.  I was forced to leave my job and enter inpatient treatment.  After nearly a month and a half in the hospital, then months in intensive outpatient care, I returned home.  I still struggle daily to stay on the road to recovery.  My days are filled with mental battles, prayers of desperation, attempts to repair injured relationships, and of course, appointments with healthcare providers.

I confess I have harbored resentment toward Christians who declare they have heard the voice of God.  Then one morning I had my own encounter with God.  As I sat in my physician’s waiting room, my eyes were drawn to a scrap of paper lying at my feet.  On it were the words, “Never give up.  Never give in.”  A message from God?  That’s what it felt like to me.

I placed this anonymous encouragement where I can see it every day, and I accept with gratitude that God uses many methods to reach us and provide exactly what we need.

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY: God speaks to us in many surprising ways. 

PRAYER: O God, thank you for seeking us and showering us with mercy even as we struggle.  Strengthen us for our journey.  Amen.