July 20, 2016





Warm breath in my face

Oh those sloppy wet kisses

 His favorite toy

By Martha L Shaw – © 2016



November 24, 2015


You were always there for me



Protecting me

And yet,

I took you for granted

Until one day.

I looked deep into your eyes

And you looked to my heart

And I gave it to you.


I was reborn!

By Martha L Shaw ©11-24-2015

When We Call


Who is your Jesus???  The question was  posed in a novel I am reading and combined with my devotional today and the Lord’s call to my heart, I must consider . . . seems to me Rick Luoni asked that once in a sermon in urging us to invite Christ into our lives and if you  know Fr Rick, he’s impossible to ignore on loving Jesus! 


The Word tells us “My light shines through you” and that is perhaps the greatest miracle of all!  I know I am weak  and broken yet  Jesus’ Word is Truth and regardless of my mess, Jesus shines through me through NO effort of my own but to say “yes” and give Him my heart.  I urge you to  invite Him in!





July 12, 2013

Is there such a thing as a simple relationship?  Yes, I believe so.  First, let me ask you something.  Have you had a relationship where:

1.      You didn’t trust the other one?

2.      You didn’t focus attention in the way you should on him/her?

3.      You did, in fact, focus time and attention on another?

4.      Were you untrusting? Unfaithful? Unloving? Impatient?Demanding?

5.      Did you, be honest now, hit the other with your demands yet not meet his/hers?

Sounds like a relationship doomed to fail.  In this relationship it seems likely the other would become angry, upset, disappointed.  It seems likely the other would seek to end your relationship and walk away.  Perhaps at this point you would make a plea to have one more chance?  You might indicate you “didn’t mean it.”  You might even ask him or her to help you be better?  How’s that working for you?

In our worldly relationships, it’s pretty obvious where the relationship is going to wind up.  Yet, in our relationship with the Lord we do all these things and He is in it with us in all our sin, lack of trust, disbelief, and more.  He keeps loving, giving, blessing and does NOT give us what we deserve.  In fact, He is eager to give us stronger faithfulness and trust.  Our brokenness leads us to a stronger relationship than ever with Him!  His love is NEVER going to be apart from us.  He is holding His hands out to us in love and forgiveness ALWAYS.  His hand is always eager to lead us!  We just need to say “yes.”  When saying yes is hard, He will help us.  I want a relationship like that, don’t you?

Lord Jesus, forgive my unbelief and recreate me and transform me.  Give me your hands, feet, eyes, ears, and heart.  Give me the courage to be the daughter you created me to be.  I love you and praise you for your undeserved favor and faithfulness at all times.  Thank you for never turning your gaze from me even when mine is turned from you.  Amen

OUR Vocation As Ministers – Yours And Mine!

August 3, 2012

Have you heard recently about how “the church” is failing in its mission?  How about those priests and pastors?  Seems there’s a lot of discussion on how they should do their jobs . . . it doesn’t matter which denomination or “church” you belong to.  If you are slowly walking to your car after services and aren’t overhearing criticism of what “they” should be doing and how “they” have failed . . . get your hearing checked.  More is often said in lunchrooms, bars, and so forth.  I’ve heard plenty said by folks who don’t go to church at all.  Seems the comments against the work of the church (and I question their source of information) are many from folks who may not know what a pew looks like.  I’m not judging, just repeating what I keep directly hearing.  There’s always some newspaper article, television news report, etc., and it’s rarely a shout of “hallelujah.” 

So, in thinking about this and in thinking about my role, about the load carried by those in ordained leadership roles within “the church” and the like, I did some reading.  I had a preformed answer but was seeking “higher authority” for facts.  Well, folks, we may not be living into the vocation, but as baptized and/or baptized and confirmed Christians (depending on your own denominational doctrine) we are all ministers.  Those sacraments and the promises made by and for us gave us that role.  The indwelling of the Holy Spirit or Holy Ghost enables us and we have much to do.  Not some vague “they” at all. 

Seems to me that when those who are not part of a church body offer “reasons” related to all the “church” is doing wrong, their words sound a bit like “the dog ate my homework.”  I can’t know what’s in another’s heart, but my ears sometimes hear it that way.  It also seems that if we spent just a small percentage of the time we devote to lamenting “what’s wrong with the church today” we might come to realize we yes WE are the church and WE have a vocation and commitment made with the Lord to be His ministers. 

My church has hundreds of members yet 2 fulltime priests and 1 part time priest.  How then can the ordained clergy fulfill their own roles AND the roles we ourselves have formally and sacramentally committed our lives to?  It is time to do our part.  What’s wrong with the church these days?  It might just be that the answer is OUR idleness in not meeting our commitment.  It is time to prayerfully step up and live as Christ has called us to.

Acts 6:2 ” “It would not be right for us to neglect the ministry of the word of God”

It Only Takes 21 Days . . . Hidden Blessings

July 31, 2012

I don’t remember the context, but my dear priest and friend spoke of training his dog not to do “mischief” on the carpet and reminded me that habits only take 21 days to “stick” and thus be a part of us.  I know, when you see a commercial and remember it but not the product, perhaps they missed the opportunity to make a sale.  However, my priest “sold me” on this concept even if I can’t remember the specific “thing” he may have been pointing to at that very moment. 

A recent devotional reading spoke the same message without any puppy puddles in the equation.  I “got it” quickly because of the puppy illustration, perhaps.  Anyway . . . think about the rough time when we first try to change our diet.  Oh, the difficulties as well when we try to add daily exercise to our routine.  How easily we can get out of step with our daily “rule of life” or our commitment to spending daily quiet time with the Lord.  Gosh, the scientific fact of a habit becoming part of us in 21 days has actually been proven.  Funny thing is that length of time seems so LONG.  I could say “three weeks” or “less than a month” or . . . but when we are talking about a life changing opportunity and growing in our relationship with the Lord, 21 days isn’t that much to ask is it?  Okay, I’m making a face as I say this, but my instinctive response to my rhetorical question is “sort of.” 

We are a society of “instant gratification” seekers.  So, the point made in my recent devotional reading which brought me back to my priest’s puppy puddles . . . was that we should find a reason to give thanks and praise in everything we face every day.  Admit it, that sounds like a simple “yes, of course – what’s your point here?”  We “get it” but speaking for myself I know I don’t always “do it.”  Know what though?  If we work at it, we will find His blessings in each of our days.  On a bad day it’ll be a challenge.  I know.  THEY ARE REAL AND THEY ARE THERE.  Blessings – how much better is it at the end of a long “I can’t take another day of this” sort of day to think back on it over a cool drink on the porch at night, reflecting on finding those unseen blessings which were right there with us in the distress of the rest of it?  I can tell you that it’s much more likely that if I don’t remind myself, I’ll sit on the porch and whine over all the crap in my day, my life, and then wonder why it’s all I seem to see?  Why am I in a bad mood?  Why does my head ache?  Why can’t I sleep? 

Take a deep breath . . .  in . . . out . . . in . . . out . . . now, ignore the phone, forget the honking car horn down the street, the barking dog, the loud music, and take a minute and find a way to release all that and FIND blessings.  It will only take 21 days to change a habit . . . I think when it comes to blessings, you’re probably gonna realize they begin to be very clearly present in your life much sooner than that.  Try it.  Baby steps . . . think of just one.  Say “thank you.”  Feel the Lord’s presence . . . try to go for a second “found” blessing . . . He was with us in the mess.  He didn’t have to get His hands dirty.  It was our mess, but He seeks to be “in it” with us and blessing us.  We love Him, but He first loved us.  FIRST.  Not “if you’re good” or “if you listen” or “if you could just get what I’m trying to teach you” but FIRST.

Really, 21 days is just a small portion of a lifetime.  Try it.  You’ll be blessed.  You already are!

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