Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven ~ Matthew 5:16
During the month of February, while we recognize a dream, a groundhog, and a valentine, let us do so while shining a light of love in our world.
Let it be a light that brings about a notion of peace, a moment of happiness, and a vision of hope.
You can do that! God’s provision is sufficient (2 Corinthians 12:9), he has provided you with all that you need to make a difference in someone’s day, or better yet, in their life. So there it is, shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. Let it shine! Let it shine! Let it Shine!
Call me, text me, tweet me, message me, email me, write me… we were brought together by God for a reason.
Waking to a beautiful day just inspires me to no end. I can feel the energy rushing through my body as I rise to face the dawning light. It’s with great excitement that I prepare to begin the first steps in my continuing journey. I grab a large glass of water and my bible and dig in for some worship, praise and prayer. I savor that first cup of coffee as i check the morning emails (staying away from any social media traps) and then I prepare a light breakfast while carefully choosing my news source of the day. It’s a wonderful life’ someone once said, and after all we live to love so why wouldn’t it be? So you’re asking, ‘What’s with the but?’
Well let me explain. Up until this point I’m within the confines of my home, there’s no outside contact, but what waits for me outside my front door, or on our social media platforms are… other people. It’s not until someone cuts me off driving that my anger is tested. It’s not until someone hurls a less that complimentary opinion in my face that my confidence is tested. It’s not until I watch a loveless parent abuse a child on the sidewalk that my self-control is tested. It’s not until the clamor of the world surrounds me in such a way that my quiet peace is tested. You see it’s not until I interact with other human beings that my faith is truly tested, and a faith that doesn’t do anybody any good isn’t any good (thank you Andy Stanley).
So yes, we live to love, but don’t kid yourself, you’ve got to connect with the world and be apart of the answer by overcoming all the challenges. And it’s okay to be less than perfect from time to time. After all we’re all broken and only doing the best we can. But then God already knows that doesn’t he?
Believing on the promise Denying all happenstance Prayerfully among the Three Banding in the great dance ~ E.M.
With the release of ‘IHS,’ my eighteenth album, I’m overwhelmed with the journey I’ve been blessed to partake in. One never knows when life will unexpectedly create a turnabout, and all things common become the stranger, but as I realize this project coming to life, I’m resting in a niche that feels like favor.
Excitedly, I’m looking forward to seeing how these songs resonate with the world. Often in life we are asked to wait on His word, and this venture will no doubt require some patience on my part. So I take a deep breath and relish in the moment of quiet, because there’s still work to be done.
The great dance continues as this period of downtime has been abundantly fruitful. There are a number of projects in various forms of completion that are beckoning my time, and so as I return to my Loft sessions I pray you’ll be enlightened, energized, and entertained by ‘IHS.’
Moving about through the dawn of light A ghostly luminary Dancin’ around my stumbling tongue Shuffling through the dictionary Framing the flow in perfect love The poetry of romance Invited to coalesce the divine Converging in the great dance ~ E.M.
There is nothing that replaces family. We have an inherent need for kindredship. Our earthly tribe offers us comfort, understanding, and security. It’s the one place that we prayerfully are excepted just the way we are. But lost in our limited worldly existence, is the truth that we actually share in a much larger spiritual brother and sisterhood. The Author of all we know calls us sons and daughters. The Creator of the universe knows each of us by name and we are his children.
The inspiration for this song was from a meditation on 2 Corinthians 6:18 where we hear God saying, ‘… I will be your Father, and you will be my sons and daughters.’ This is actually a quote from 2 Samuel 7:14, and Isaiah 43:6.
My mother never knew her earthly father, but very early on she was blessed to embraced her heavenly one. Over the years that relationship grew to be unbelievably strong. She found in her earthly brokenness, a healing bond, a heavenly Father that she would never be separated from. She really was going home as her life here came to an end. She was going home to be with her ever loving Father in heaven.
It’s that kind of love that we’re all invited into. It’s that kind of endless love that our Father pours out on us each day. It’s that kind of unimaginable love that we’re capable of as his children, made in his image, created as family here and for eternity.
I wanted the soundscape to be a driving force. To negotiate through this life requires a deep spiritual strength. The darkness that surround us can be daunting if not downright demanding. So I stepped into a different sonic space to create what I felt was a strong supporting platform for this timeless message.
It’s certainly a return to some of my early roots, and it was actually quite a bit of fun to crank up the volume again. The early response has been very favorable and I’m looking forward to the moment when we can bring it to life in a live setting.
Until that time please feel free to share your thoughts on the song and on the entire album which is dropping February 19, 2021.
In His Service (IHS) will mean something different to each of us. Naturally there will be some over lapping, but the actual act of serving will look and sound different just as each of us look and sound different. That being said, a life of servanthood is the backdrop for this particular project. The songs within were written from a grateful place of giving. A realization of what has been called my life, and what my participation can bring in return.
In doing some soul searching I found my most pleasant experiences in life were of the giving sense. They were times and places where I stepped out of the crowd and gave something of myself. It didn’t have to be financial, in fact I believe the acts of personal involvement and the offering of time and place were of greater reward.
When I say reward I’m referring to the feeling of contentment that surrounds one’s self when they help someone out in some manner. Sacrificing my time and gifts has never been anything less than enjoyable. Especially in hindsight when I see the response on the recipients faces.
So this album took root as a season of reflection. It took hold of me and led me down a path of reminiscing with friends, looking back through photos, and prayerful discernment. The actual writing and recording went by very quickly without much re-writing and distraction. Being cooped up and isolated for the past year made for an abundance of time to create, so I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I found something positive in the experience.
The album drops Friday, February 19, 2021. It’s my hope that it’ll bring some color to what often has become a very black and white world. In His Service (IHS) means getting involved on your level whatever that may be. Being IHS means serving those around you whatever their needs may be. You have the ability to change a life with very little effort, with very little time , and with very little inconvenience. I challenge you to do your part. I know you’ll feel good about it in the afterglow.
We probably don’t listen as well as we’re designed. If we did, then scripture, and the lessons within, would produce much more love and compassion in the world. It exists, but it probably pales in compassion to our creator’s hopes. So when I wrote this, I was doing a deep dive into what nature offers us each day in the way of invitation and inspiration. The Kingdom is in constant conversation with us everyday. It never truly sleeps, it is fluid in that it is alive and changing continually. Loving God with all our heart, soul, and mind (Deuteronomy 6:4-5) requires us to hear that conversation and to be a part if it. It’s only in that neighborhood that we can genuinely listen and love.
On September 25, I’ll be releasing my seventeenth album ‘Pray On.’ It’s my prayer that these songs will enable you to find some encouragement and optimism as you journey forward.
Lyrics: There’s a bird in a tree, and it’s chirping at me Listen and love There’s some moss hanging free, and it’s swaying at me Listen and love
There’s a breeze from the sea, and it’s hailing me Listen and love There’s some shade that’s sincere, and it’s inviting me near Listen and love
Listen, Oh listen Listen and love All across the universe Listen and love Oh won’t you, listen and love
There’s a mist in the air, and it’s raining somewhere Listen and love There’s a cloud hovering by, and it’s whispering why We should… listen and love
There’s a leaf floating free, and it’s winking at me Listen and love There’s a stillness about, and it’s calling me out Listen & love
There’s a full moon tonight, and it’s making things right Listen and love There’s a flower in bloom, and she’s making me swoon There’s a rain pouring down , and it’s flipping’ my frown Listen and love There’s a rainbow above, and it’s promising love Listen and love
There’s some wind in the trees, and it’s buckling my knees There’s a tide rolling in, and it’s late again Oh we should, listen and love Oh won’t you, listen and love Why don’t we, listen and love
You don’t have to be seven years old to feel the energy and excitement of the ocean. There is a rhythm to the waves both aural and visual and it’s contagious.
Nature has a way of subtly sneaking up on our senses. Before long the rolling sounds, misty air and foamy splashing create a natural meditative effect. One that can transport the stodgiest of us into a youthful bliss.
I woke Thursday morning to witness a wonderfully loving picture of togetherness. There they were, just four friends hangin’ out in the early light of day. What a simple but beautiful picture of what we as God’s children seem to have so much trouble doing.
“Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins.” (1 Peter 4:8 ESV)
Lexi arrived early Tuesday morning …weeping. She left to go swimming around noontime …weeping. She returned home for a nap late that afternoon, only to leave after dinner …weeping.
Oh yeah, in between the tears she found it in her heart to allow me a momentary picture, as she pensively thought about …weeping.
We all have those days when nothing seems to go right, when everything we say is wrong, when the world just seems to be against us. We would do well on those days to remember the One who walks with us, watches over us, and saves us.
“The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.” (Psalm 34:18 ESV)
We took the day off… we ran away. It’s okay, we’ve been married for twenty-some years now. It’s a good thing!
It didn’t matter that the weather wasn’t perfect. It didn’t matter that we left late. It didn’t matter that we left a few things behind. What mattered was that we were together.
These little getaways have become a staple of our life, the unexpected wake-up-and-take-off moments.
It’s a very cool metamorphosis that’s been occurring over the years. what started out as two different souls has begun to morph into one as we grow older together.
Sure we finish each others sentences, we’ve even started to answer each other before we ask the question. But upon viewing this picture I’ve come to realize that we’ve now begun the process of becoming one body (note the single set of legs under the bench).