Success At What Price?

December 11, 2012

I just heard it said that Stephen Foster who wrote the song “Oh, Susanna” was paid all of $100.00 for his work.  The song is part of our history . . . who doesn’t know the song and like it or not successfully hum it . . . maybe right now as you read this?  Gosh, it seemed pitiful to have a man who wrote something generations know by heart to have earned so little.  My instant reaction was that he should surely have been more successful.


Then, I reconsidered.  Know what?   This time the song and its author gave me hope, joy, and encouragement.  We bloggers do not make money directly from our blogs, most of us, but if success is doing what the Lord calls us to do, our work through Him is successful.  Being His servant and saying yes comes with a price, but not $100.00.  The price was Jesus blood shed for us.  Riches of the sort that matter cannot pay my mortgage or inflate my bank account.  They can draw others to Christ if I truly listen and obey.  How do you define success?

All Things New – An Acrostic

October 24, 2012

All around me is turmoil, yet . . .

Light still streams through the window in my room

Light still shines through the window in my heart

There is fog,

However He still shines through it

In my soul.

Nothing can take His love from me.

God’s promises are real.

So, I tremble then find strength to push on.

No, my own strength is not enough.

Everything in me relies on Him.

With Him is the victory, watch for it!  It’s coming!!!

By Martha L Shaw – Copyright 10-24-12

The Blessing of a Broken Heart

May 23, 2012

Does the title of this piece sound like a contradiction?  It might.  Stay with me though.  On Sunday I heard an amazing sermon preached by a priest I love very much.  His preaching style is uniquely his own and the Lord has used him to touch my heart and to inspire me in ways no other has.  I am so blessed to call him a friend.  So, as I listened to his message on Sunday I heard it in the way the Lord meant for me to hear it, but also as a friend who knows the man delivering it.  It was filled with personal experience which was so important in teaching us, the listeners, what we were to learn, but I knew the personal parts came from deep in his soul and likely made this harder to deliver than some messages. 

We, as writers, know this feeling in our own hearts as we share our own message about the Lord in our blogs and other media.  However, we are often sharing it with a faceless congregation while my priest had to do this directly before many many people, and harder still I believe is displaying his private “stuff” with people he knows and who know him.  He did it well and hearts were changed, I know.  Mine was.  So, why did I title this post the way I did? 

The wound is the place where the Light enters you.


I think Rumi understood.  What made the message received on Sunday so special was it’s authenticity.  My priest and friend ripped his heart wide open and we who heard and saw him preach couldn’t help but see Jesus there.  Rumi got it right.  Our human heart needs to be broken wide open so that His light can enter in AND so that His light  can shine on those He gives us to share our heart with for Him.  Our suffering is nothing compared to His . . . and sharing the grace and blessings He bestows on us never depletes our “stash” as He continually pours them on us in such abundance!  What a blessing our broken heart can be when we let Him take up residence there!

My 7 x 7 Link Award Acceptance and Nominees!

February 10, 2012


Thank you to Anne  –  for this nomination and the challenges in accepting it!  I love a challenge and as a Christian writer, this is a good thing!   Jesus never said following Him would be easy but He promises to be with us all the way!  How awesome is He? 

Now, the requirements:  First I must fit 7 of my blog posts into the following categories. 








Next I must select 7 blogs to nominate for this lovely award and challenge. 


I will now pause to notify them of their nomination so that they can come get a copy of the award badge and begin the acceptance tasks!

Finally, I must reveal a secret to you all.  Hmmm . . .  this is hard.  Before starting my blog I had lots of them, but since I now write them and confess them to you all here in my blog, this is tricky.  Hmmm . . . will it count if my big reveal is that I live in SC yet detest sweet tea?  It’s true y’all.  Oh, but if it’s any consolation, I do like shrimp and grits!

One Flickering Flame Becomes a Community

January 20, 2012



One Flickering Flame

by Martha L Shaw


Are you afraid?

Do you dare try . . .

You cannot overcome it,

or maybe . . .

One small candle lit

and held in shaking hands.

The light has come

but eyes squint to see it

and the flame flickers.

Suddenly, another candle

its wick still pure white

becomes enflamed.

Then another

and another still

and soon the warmth

touches hearts and souls

and the world is ablaze

with glory!




© 2012 Martha L Shaw – all rights reserved

Praise Him

November 17, 2011

My heart sees things in ways my eyes do not.  I’m thankful for this, especially since my eye sight is somewhat failing.  However, even if my eyes were 20/20, the human factor would still cause challenges.  My heart and soul can be convincing though.  It’s a good thing, when i surrender and see things His way.

Perhaps this is what made me see a portion of an ad for some product or service and misread it.  What a saw was the following:

“Praise in a world that isn’t . . . “

I cannot and will not speak for the whole world, but as for me, I know that as a Christian, I’m taught to praise the Lord at all times and in all places and to surrender to Him.  I know as well that the Bible very clearly puts praise above all else and our Lord loves us so that it pains me to realize that I am not always focused on praise as I should be.   One thing is for certain.  When i focus on Him with praise and thanksgiving, my eyes as well as my heart and soul see things in a totally different light.  They see things in His light. 

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