Albums, Gifts, Homily, Mannerism, music, Poetry, Video

His Words Are Good

Listen carefully to my wisdom;
take to heart what I can teach you.
You’ll treasure its sweetness deep within;
you’ll give it bold expression in your speech.
~ Proverbs 22:17-18 MSG

I was inspired by these verses two years ago and composed this song. It took until this past February for it to see the light of day. And when it did, the light of day was being challenged by the darkness that surrounds our current season.

Our words and actions are dimmed when we rely on our own cleverness, but the Holy Spirit can bring clarity that’s crystal clear, it can strengthen emotions that are confused and fragile, and it can build up character to face the most imposing challenge.

Have I applied these words to my life? That’s a question I ask myself everyday because by nature I want to be in control and take care of my problems, my way! But that’s not how God’s plan is designed. There are many instances where he wants us to bring the issues to him, to allow him to handle the fears and doubts, to acknowledge that he is all loving, and all powerful God!

Friends, in these coming days I’d like to encourage you to allow God to drive, and to enjoy riding as we used to say, shotgun. Allow Him to handle the things that are out of your control (that’s called faith), and pray for the strength and wisdom to handle what’s within your realm. I say this because, His words are good!

Album: Love Strands

Video Credits: E.M.
Available at http://www.eddymann.com
© 2019 Eddy Mann

Lyrics:
Incline your ear and listen closely
Rest assured his words are good
Apply your heart and know his knowledge
Walk in confidence his words are good

Keep them close; keep them within you
Rest assured his words are good
Keep them ready; on your lips
Walk in assurance his words are good

Listen up and hear the wisdom
Rest assured his words are good
Know his peace and understanding
Walk in freedom his words are good

© 2016 Eddy Mann

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Albums, Homily, Mannerism, music, Poetry, Video

Save Me (Don’t Let Me Go Under)

During this breath of time, we’re moving in uncharted waters. No one has ever sailed through such a time as this, and whether we like it or not our faith, or lack of, is being revealed to the world. The unknown is challenging our senses, it’s unearthing fears we never knew existed. Those fears are evolving anxiously anyway the wind blows, and they needn’t do that.

We should only worry about what we have control over. The things of life that are beyond our control are what we hand over in faith. I love the vision of Jesus with his hands out. He’s said not to have come with his hands in his pockets but reaching out to us to relieve us of such burdens.

A while back I was in the midst of a deep dive into Psalm 69. As is often the case for me, I was inspired to write and composed a song called Save Me. I’m offering it up today as an answered plea for help and guidance during this unfamiliar season.

There is always hope in the name of Jesus. There is always love in a benevolent God. And there is always faith for the heart that surrenders.

Quicksand underneath me
Swamp water rushing over me
Going down on the count of three
Save me

Bleary-eyed searching for the key
Raspy dry from my endless plea
Darkness surrounding my marquee
Save me

Save me
Don’t let me go under
Save me
O’ God of wonder

O’ heaven and earth praise him
The seas and everything that lives in them
I shout my love and thanks, amen
Saved I am
Saved I am

© 2016 Eddy Mann

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Homily

Be Happy, I Am!

Enlight353

I’d like to honor my father by remembering the seasons of his life. To do that I have to start with a childhood that seemed to be littered with every illness known to man at that time. Remarkably through God’s grace he survived those weakened moments of his early life.

My father was blessed to be only one generation away from farmers. Because of this, though growing up in the Hunting Park section of Philadelphia, he grew up spending his weekends and summers on the family farm in Doylestown, PA. Though the time away created a little distance between him and his father, it enabled him to grow a deeper bond with his two uncles. At eleven years of age he was driving the tractor and by fifteen was making the milk and egg deliveries. The farm was also a blessing in that it always provided food for the table during the depression years.

My father missed his high school graduation as he had enlisted in the Navy towards the end of World War II. He served his time on a fire boat in and around the sea of Japan. Upon arriving home after the war the government had a program that enabled veterans to receive a small stipend of money each week for one year as a way to ease back into daily life. My father wrote that he became bored after a couple of months and looked for a job.

What followed was a forty plus year career with General Electric, which started in a warehouse and ended with a private office atop 3 Penn Center by Philadelphia’s City Hall. He had managed to rise to a level where he was the only one without a college degree.

It was during his early years at GE where he and my mother decided to spend a lifetime together.

My father until his last days always spoke of my mother as being one of, if not his greatest earthly gift from God.

My sister and I were brought into this world in a row home in the Olney section of Philly. My grandfather was politically involved and knew someone who helped my parents find the home during the post war housing shortage. We lived there until 1962 when we moved to Bustleton, and my parent’s dream home, in the then suburbs of Philadelphia.

As I was at an age where I was becoming more aware of my parent’s lives, I can recall the endless hours my father spent working on our church’s financial issues.

His passion, and gift, for finances was a way for him to serve God through those years.

I know that the news of my sister Lynn’s condition was a tough time for both of my parents. But as the years have passed, our lives have been so much fuller by having her blessing as part of them. We have grown in so many different ways by having her remind us what’s important, and what isn’t. My father was especially touched and grateful by the enlightenment she brought to his journey.

I can’t overlook my father the musician.

My father spent the first year of his piano lessons without ever touching a key.

That would never fly in today’s world where parents want to hear a song played by week two. He spent a year writing out chord inversions and learning harmony and theory. He was remarkably talented at creating different harmonic beds for melodies. I have a lasting memory of him yelling out the chord changes of a swing tune in real time as they were flying by as we sat by the beach one afternoon. He loved to play a supportive role to the other musicians in his band, always allowing them the freedom to express themselves. That supportive role was evident in most, if not all of his life.

In his later years he was really honored to be a lay minister. He loved to visit the homebound and hospitalized, to talk with them, and mostly to just be there for them. Administering communion was never something he took for granted. Even in this latter season, he was blessed to serve God.

Looking back as we do on these occasions, I’ve found a journey that’s connected with faith dots. My father’s life was peppered with moments of preparing, moments of providing, and moments of protecting. In short, a life of servanthood. We didn’t always see eye-to-eye, but we enjoyed our last twenty plus years together as best of friends. There was never a time in my life when I couldn’t go to my father for help… and a few times I know it must have been hard for him.

But if there’s a message here, it’s about living a life that is not centered on you, but on others.

My mother, my sister, the church, GE, friends and family can all attest to that fact.

In closing as I was going through some papers a week or so ago I found a small sheet that laid out my father’s wishes for this day. At the bottom of the sheet there was a section that read, ‘any last comments you’d like to make?’ My father wrote, ‘be happy, I am!’

You want to remember my father? Be happy, he is!

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