Today’s Truth

For God so loved the world, that He gave His one and only son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.

John 3:16

Friend to Friend

It was one of those days. You know what I mean. The minute I opened my eyes, I could feel the weight of the darkness. All I wanted to do was pull the covers over my head and pray that the world would go away and leave me alone.

But it won’t. I know that.

I have responsibilities – deadlines to meet, people who are counting on me, and things I need to get done.

So I do what I always do on those days. I take a deep breath, cry out to God for the strength to get out of bed, and literally make myself get up. That is the first victory of the day. Yes! I then get dressed – another victory – and even though each step feels like I am walking through quicksand, I keep walking, thanking God for each small battle won.

I have a sweet friend, Sara, who has more days like this than I can imagine. I really don’t know how she lives her life. Well, I do. Her faith in God is unshakable.

Sara has enormous health mountains to climb … I am talking serious, life-hindering physical diseases. Sara is a wonderful wife, the mother of four beautiful children, and does it all with a smile on her face and a sense of humor second to none. Sara is also a relentless encourager. I love her. Her faith challenges me and calls me up higher.

Sara always seems to know when I am having a bad day. I will invariably get a text or a message on Facebook from her asking what I am doing and how I am doing. And I cannot lie to the girl. She will know.

So last week, when I was having a pretty bad day, Sara sent me a message. She was having a good day. I was so glad. That girl deserves every good day she can get! And then she asked how I was. When I told her it was one of those days and that I was working on my lesson for my weekly online Bible Study, she encouraged me and said she would be praying for me.

I got back to work, trudging through every word, desperately trying to put together sentences and truths that would somehow minister to the women who are enrolled in my study. I prayed like crazy for God’s help, but felt like my prayers were bouncing off of the ceiling.

I heard the “bing” on my computer telling me I had a message on Facebook. I had forgotten to turn it off like I normally do when I am working on a writing assignment. The message was from Sara.

“I left you a little treat on the chair by your front door. Happy writing!” the message said. Unbelievable! The woman is unbelievable!

I literally ran to the front door and flung it open. Sitting on the chair was a large chocolate candy bar wrapped in bright cellophane paper covered in smiley faces. And it was not just any old chocolate bar. It was a Ghirardelli Chocolate Caramel Sea Salt bar … my favorite! I hugged it to my heart like the treasure it was – love wrapped in cellophane and chocolate.

Love showed up. I knew the effort behind that gift. I knew how much it had cost Sara. Not the money … but the sheer energy.

I sat down and relished every delicious bite of that candy bar. I ate the whole thing and finished my whole lesson … because love showed up. God’s love showed up through Sara.

I know. I know God’s love does so many big things in our lives. God’s love transforms the ugliness of life into a beautiful trophy of grace. Love covers the scars of sin. Love heals wounds and eases pain. Jesus was and is the living illustration and certain fulfillment of His Father’s love. The love of God is unconditional and unfailing and will stubbornly pursue us no matter where we go, no matter what we do or don’t do. God’s love satisfies the deepest longings of our soul, enables us to love ourselves, and frees us to love others.

God’s love shows up in big ways … but sometimes it is when God’s love shows up in little ways that He really gets to me. I am reminded that God is real … that He is faithfully present, and that He really does care about every minute detail of my life.

How about you? Is there somebody in your life that needs God’s love to show up through you today?

Let’s pray

Thank You for loving me, God. Honestly, I don’t understand that kind of love; a love that sent Jesus Christ to the cross so that I can live. But today, I celebrate Your love. Father. Please help me learn how to freely share that love with the people in my world.

In Jesus’ Name,


Now It’s Your Turn

Look around. Someone in your world needs to know that Jesus loves them. What can you do to help them experience the love of God? Make a plan … and then do it!

More from the Girlfriends

True love doesn’t collapse under pressure or fall apart in the hard times. In her MP3 download, Love That Never Fails, Mary shares her story and explains how to define, discover, and experience unconditional love. Check it out!

Be sure to check out the FREE MP3s on Mary’s website and connect with Mary through email or on Facebook.

8 Responses to “Love Shows Up”

  1. Marilyn says:

    Like a cool drink on a hot day, or a ray of sunshine breaking through dark clouds, this message deeply ministered to my soul. Even an unexpected gift from a wealthy friend iwould be a welcome delight, but a gift from someone who has to sacrifice so much to give it, is a rare and precious treasure. Much like Jesus sacrifice for our salvation!!!

    Thank you Mary for not only struggling through the mire to bring us girls His light, but also for sharing the encouragement that no matter how hard life is, someone else probably has it worse. Gratefully, we all still have the gift of being able to share His love. God bless you!

  2. Lydia says:

    Thanks so much for sharing your struggles. I, too, have a lot of “those” days, and it’s so nice to know I’m not alone!

  3. Cindy says:

    Sitting here in my chair this morning, reading your words and drinking the first cup of coffee of the day, and I am struck by the raw honesty of this post. You always seem so positive and uplifing in your writing. Then you open your heart to me, your reader, and reveal how difficult life is even for the strongest believers. Thank you for sharing this…I needed to feel like I am not the only one who feels this way from time to time. Bless you for your willingness to share….

  4. Debbie Leeper says:

    I have an Aunt, more like a cousin, only 2 years older than i. God sends me his love through her. She went through a divorce after a 30 year marriage. She is truly a Woman of God. She not only got her strength through Jesus that carried her through that horrible time but did it with such dignity that I had never before seen from anybody.
    I was going through something similar with a 30 year marriage while dealing with a chronic illnes, Multiple Sclerosis, that has devestated my life for 25 years.
    On some days I’m angry. Angry at my situation. Angry at my husband for breaking our vows more than once, and angry because God has allowed too much for me to handle at times. But when I stop to think about it, God has allowed my Aunt, to not only remind me about Jesus, but also to demonstrate the kind of love that Jesus has for me. She is a living testimony. She didn’t come through her divorce unscathed, but she did make it through her divorce and her faith remained unshaken.

  5. Kike' Greene says:

    Thank you for this sharing…we often think our trials are heavy duty until we read/hear about someone else’s. It is wonderful to be reminded that “love” shows up in so many different but effective ways. We need to take the time to recognize his embraces. Thank you again!

  6. Charlotte says:

    God bless you Mary for this devotion today. Once again, Love showed up right on time with your message. Your sharing the trials you sometimes face just getting up in the mornings and having to pray for God’s strength to do so made me realize I am not alone in doing the same. If only more people realized how much we all have in common, rather than focusing on our differences, we could then all provide more support and love to one another. Thank you for doing your part.

  7. Thank you all for your kind and encouraging responses to this devotion. Love really does show up in so many ways … sometimes in ways we do not expect … but God always comes through. And how amazing when we get to be part of the solution or a conduit through which God comforts or meets a need. God bless you as you give away the comfort you received when you were in need.

  8. Jackie Jones says:

    When my oldest son was 18 we were going through a lot with him , there were days that I couldn’t hardly do what needed to be done, Then one evening as I was cooking dinner one of the boys from next door ran into my kitchen with a bud vase in his hand with one one rose and a little babies breath, you know the one you buy at the super market, he said mother sent this to you, she said tell you she loves you . Your right I set down and cried , this woman had 6 kids she couldn’t afford the rose she sent me but I will never forget it .
    Thank you for reminding me , the little things that are such a big blessing .

Leave a Reply

"We loved you so much that we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well…" 1 Thessalonians 2:8