BEGIN EACH DAY WITH PRAISE

January 25, 2019

 

The scent of your love

Like an ever blooming rose

Awakens my heart

By Martha L Shaw – © 2017

dew


What the Songbirds Taught Me

December 3, 2018

I woke with a start!

My dog sat up at my feet in bed

Daylight began to shake its head

and so did my sleepy Scrappy!

She doesn’t care for rain

but loves the screened in porch.

I stood near and felt the morning damp chill.

My dog cocked her head and smiled.

I wondered . . .

Then rain and wind were not what I heard or felt

but rather

a choir of birds singing their songs in joyful harmony

from the upper branches of a tree in my yard.

Whether rain or likely reign,

they knew no fear . . .

only love.

By Martha L Shaw ©2018

 

birdcard

 

 


Jesus Culture…(Music)

November 29, 2016

I LOVE THIS! BE BLESSED!


When We Wait

May 21, 2016

 

I heard you sing.

Twas more a plaintive cry.

The sun dipped behind a cloud at the tone,

But,

Still you sang on.

Suddenly,

A second voice joined in

And her high pitched joy

Made for a beautiful duet!

By Martha L Shaw – © 2016

yellow birds


Sing My Soul

April 1, 2014

I have suddenly realized

That the quietness of my soul

Is playing a much different tune

Than it ever has before!

By Martha L Shaw – © 4-1-2014

sunrise


Quote of the Day – Dance!

February 26, 2013

One of my favorite people quoted this to me and I’d forgotten who said it.  Love it.  This is life in Christ!

Jesus

You’ve gotta dance like there’s nobody watching,
Love like you’ll never be hurt,
Sing like there’s nobody listening,
And live like it’s heaven on earth.

– William W. Purkey –

 


A Knowing – Tanka For A Rainy Saturday

August 18, 2012

Morning awakens

and the birds call out in song.

Yet, storms are coming. . .

surely they feel its approach?

Praises still ring . . . theirs and mine.

 

By Martha L Shaw – Copyright 8-18-2012

 


On Being An Instrument

August 1, 2012

The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera.

– Dorothea Lange –

I love the message contained in those words . . . there is such truth in them.  Taken literally, I can recall many times I’ve looked at photographs and been surprised at how different things looked!  I admit, if I’m in the photograph, I tend to think “oh, I wish I’d worn more makeup” or “why did I wear that blouse?” but generally I’ll see my garden in a picture and think “wow, it looks GOOD.”  My livingroom, in a picture, will catch my eye anew as I see things I walk by everyday with fresh eyes.  Vision . . . pictures . . . words . . .

What leaps off the screen to me as I reread the quote is the word “instrument.”  What is an instrument?  My church has many fine musicians.  As they perform their part in leading worship I seldom fail to feel the power of the Holy Spirit lifting me up.  The piano, drums, guitars, organ, violin . . . beautiful and life-giving instruments of praise.  Instruments.  Think about it though.  What is an instrument?  On its own, it’s not much.  It’s simply a thing.  Still and silent, it cannot encourage without a hand to pick it up and enable it or use it for a higher purpose than it can ever have left idle in the room.  As followers of Christ and as a people called upon to a higher purpose for Him, we can learn much from those violins and guitars and such.

We are animate as humans and thus we can perform without a hand holding us, this is true.  I’ve tried it.  Speaking for myself, I know without the Lord’s constant presence in my life, I am nothing.  Without the Holy Spirit leading me, protecting me, filling me, I can do nothing.  I need to surrender and be an instrument through which a divine hand plays music and inspires.  The music that this instrument that is me has any hope of producing comes not from the instrument herself, but through giving over myself to my love of Jesus and allowing Him to work through me. 

He has a purpose for my life.  He has a song for me to sing.  With His love and through Him, I will sing!  Sing with me, won’t you?  He has a song for each one of us to sing in the divine choir that is the Body of Christ in this world.  Choose to be His instrument! 

‘The Sovereign LORD is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to tread on the heights. For the director of music. On my stringed instruments.’  Habakkuk 3:18-19


Pray, Give Praise, and Sing

July 13, 2012

Well, first off I’m sorry I’ve been away for a couple of days but I had another eye procedure on my right eye which has been  weak for a long time due to an eye disease for which I’m being treated.  Good news to report.  My left eye, which has been out of focus since birth and which the doctor cannot correct was also afflicted with the disease which troubles the right and as financial provision needs are still a work in progress, he recommended I not do anything about the left and we’d focus on the right which is the eye I rely on for everything.  I agreed.  Last month, the news was far from good in that my right eye after four years of surgery and procedures was once again in need of another procedure. 

To complicate things, the left was much worse than it had been.  I do have some vision in that eye but cannot read with it, do any fine work, etc.  Well, my friends, while the vision is still as poor as always, the health of the eye from the disease was MUCH improved.  He could not explain it, double checked my chart and said “I’m sure we didn’t do anything on that eye . . . right?”  It’s true.  This healing can only have come from one source.  I cannot yet report DRAMATIC AND SUDDEN HEALING in my right eye but it also shows improvement, and I have been urged to go ahead and get new glasses.  Now, I was reluctant since, as those of you who’ve seen a photo may know, my eyes are larger than most and thus a costly fit for glasses.  Given my provision challenges, I hesitated to spend more than the amount of a mortgage payment on a pair of glasses which might last only a matter of days or weeks at best since my sight can change at any time. 

The doctor and his staff did extra tests on me and were able to prescribe for glasses AND were able to help me obtain them at much less than glasses have ever cost me WITHOUT my having to subject myself to questionable shopping mall eye-glass companies with whom I’ve had bad experiences in the past.  I was also given a 90 day warrantee on the prescription which means if my prescription changes within 90 days, I will be given new lenses at no cost to me.    My doctor feels confident that if we continue to treat this eye on a monthly basis, we will beat this disease yet!  Praise the Lord.

I will add here that I have been praying with expectancy for 3 years now feeling certain to the core of my being that healing was coming and the time involved here has not changed that, nor has the many challenges which have come my way, even though they are not all resolved at this time.  The blessings come too.

My doctor and his staff are Christians and this is evident.  At one point just yesterday as I was examined by his staff for glasses, she saw my concern, excused herself for a moment, smiled and said “don’t worry, God has a plan.”  She returned a moment later with the good news that my glasses would cost me far less than the retail price and that I could be seen by the appropriate professional “right away.”  I must say the tears which came to my eyes at that point were not entirely over the news she shared, but to a great degree over her obvious joy on my behalf.  She was so excited for me!

Some days the storm clouds seem to block the sun pretty effectively, but we know there is light in the distance and thus the darkness cannot extinguish it, can it?  I was just listening to a song which I’d never heard before and this song so seemed to sum up much of the happenings in my life in the last few years.  Challenges?  For certain.  Living outside my comfort zone?  You betcha, but at the same time the blessings have been AMAZING and so I look ahead with hope even though I still feel the pain of yesterday’s procedure. 

Our path in life with Christ does include pain, but if we stay on one side and avoid crossing through the painful part of the journey, we miss the splendor of what waits for us beyond.  I’m not willing to miss it! 

So, I thank you for your continued prayers, for sharing my joyful praise of Him, and here’s a link to a great song:

I’m Letting Go by Francesca Battistelli-Lyrics
 
I was just drawn to this verse from the writings of Paul and I am sharing it with you:

“Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” Philippians 2:9-11


Is There An Eden In Me?

July 3, 2012

Isaiah 51:3

The Lord will surely comfort Zion
    and will look with compassion on all her ruins;
he will make her deserts like Eden,
    her wastelands like the garden of the Lord.
Joy and gladness will be found in her,
    thanksgiving and the sound of singing.

 

How are things in your world?  Gosh mine can sometimes seem like a wasteland . . . the sun still rises and sets and yet do we appreciate the sunrise or sunset over our wasteland?  It seems that when we are caught up in the muck we only look down, occasionally look around, but rarely look up and so the splendor of a sunrise and the beauty and hopeful expectation can’t seem to reach us, for its avenue to do so is  through our own focus.  If we can only focus on the waste, it’s stench is all we know.  How sad! 

We want to be free of the desolation around us.  We “wish” it would be different, yet somehow we get caught in it.  The weeds grow tall as on an unkempt lawn and we become overwhelmed.  Voices we don’t want to listen to shout at us that we should “do something” and save ourselves . . . we are told to have faith . . . we are reminded to have a positive attitude and it can seem as though we are trapped. 

 

Does anyone know how it really is?

Does anyone care?

Do they not get what we’re going through?

How can they make it sound so simple?

Do they think this mess is my fault?

Hello????  Did you forget about me?

 

Read the quote from Isaiah again.   Are things out of control?   Is it truly hopeless?   Is there even the slightest suggestion of abandonment?   Any note of rejection?   No, there is not.  I don’t think so.  The wasteland was real, but just for a time.  The Lord’s promises are real and what He promised to Zion He also promises to us.  He is in the wasteland with us.  We will not remain there, though.  For look at the promises He has made to her . . .

Comfort

Compassion

From deserts to gardens

 

We have Him with us and in us.  We cannot effectively get ourselves out of the mess . . . but His arms are strong and as we find ourselves stuck in this wasteland, we know His touch.  We have His strength and His love.  His strong arms will pull us up and out and as we leave the wasteland and the desert becomes His garden for us we dance!  We sing!  We are filled with Joy and Gladness and Thanksgiving!  We do not have to know the answer, only to know the source of the answer.  He is the source and He is with us.  He is in us.  So, let us look up at the sunrise!  Let us not look down to the wasteland that’s all around us, but let’s sing a song of joy and thanksgiving from where we are right now!  We are not alone.  We are His.  This is reason enough to sing His praise!  Sing with me . . . You don’t even have to know the words to my song.  The song is in your heart and He hears its beauty and He delights in it!

 


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