Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Because Of His Mercy...

"He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy.
 He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit,
 whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, 
so that, having been justified by his grace, 
we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life."

You are invited to join us as we worship on Good Friday

and Easter Sunday!

Harmonica players have a special place in my heart
so I chose this version of a favorite hymn for this post


Does mercy not make worth the while of ‘smile and try again’
For mercy meets us in each mile it metes, of joy and pain
Life’s flight of forward measured mien would be a fear-filled Must
Without love’s merciful Unseen to anchor hope and trust

Oh Lord, increase faith’s sacred claim, as we press to the Prize
Let Your Name be the only name our worship magnifies
Let the sword of the Spirit (which is your Word) be our might
For by your mercy, we are brought/bought from darkness into Light

May the mercy that you have shown fill us and overflow
From vessels made of skin and bone, so everyone may know
That You loved us so much you sent Your Son to pay the price
So that no one may perish but all have eternal life

Because of your mercy oh Lord our faith is not in vain
By Your mercy grace has restored mankind to You again
The deceiver, the enemy of God is overthrown
Once and for all you shed Your blood sin’s verdict to atone

Your sacrifice has washed away the need for bull and ram
For blood of beast could never pay, only a perfect Lamb
So by the mercy of the One who beheld Calvary
I AM became the scapegoat for the likes of you and me

Oh, let the wonder of such love give weary souls a lift
God loves each one of us so much He still holds out His Gift
Of ‘all who believe will not perish but will be forgiv’n
And receive everlasting life; not death and hell, but Heav’n

Mercy holds wide the door; the Ark of Safety is not sealed
Look up, do not ignore the stripes whereby mankind is healed
Whereby Hope is an anchor though life's storms may surge and toss
Mercy secures faith’s armour in the power of the cross

© Janet Martin

Surely He took on our infirmities and carried our sorrows; 
yet we considered Him stricken by God, struck down and afflicted.
 6We all like sheep have gone astray, each one has turned to his own way; 
and the LORD has laid upon Him the iniquity of us all.…

...without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness.

Therefore, brothers and sisters, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place
 by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way opened for us
 through the curtain, that is, his body, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, 
 let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings,
 having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience 
and having our bodies washed with pure water. 
 Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. 
 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, 
 not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, 
but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

Tuesday, March 30, 2021

To God Be The Glory Forever

 To God Be The Glory

To God be the glory
He did not withhold
The wonderful story
The cross would unfold
From death’s scene, so gory
From grief’s gloomy knell
Christ rose in victory
Over death and hell

To God be the glory
Death did not prevail
For sinners so sorry
His blood will not fail
Faithful to the finish
He suffered the cost
Nothing could diminish
His love for the lost

To God be the Glory
His beloved Son
Fulfilled His Love Story
With ‘Thy will be done’
Knowing Mercy’s offer
Would make scoffers laugh
Yet willing to suffer
On scorner’s behalf

To God be the glory
Whatever we face
Is not without mercy
From love’s nail-scarred grace
Whatever the sorrow
We must suffer through
To God be the glory
For He suffered too

To God be the glory
All who have believed
Will share in the Victory
That Jesus achieved
Through Redemption’s story
Of Never Again
To God be the glory
Forever, amen

© Janet Martin

Lent to Lose (in order to find)

On Sunday our message was from Matthew 16
 including the challenge in verse 25;
"For whoever wants to save their life will lose it,
but whoever loses their life for me will find it."

Oh, how easy it is to forget
Life is a gift, lent!
...a gift with sacred reckoning
on how it is spent

This poem is inspired in part,
by a family tragedy...

On Sunday night my nephew's 19 mo. old son went missing on their farm.
His body was recovered on Monday in a manure pump.
Please pray for strength and comfort
for my brother Stuart and their family and
esp. for my nephew and his wife, Charles and Andrea!

Sometimes the certainty of sorrow tries to steal the glow
And make us worry ‘bout tomorrow and what none can know
Sometimes senses of satisfaction lose approval’s nod

Sometimes the trouble we are born to tests want’s willful way
Tempting man with doubt’s first question ‘did God really say?’
For we see only the pieces; the picture as a whole
Must wait until God’s will releases body from the soul

Sometimes people are prone to ponder Mercy’s Upper Hand
But we were born to trust and wonder, not to understand
Born to find strength in surrender, not in a fist we raise
Born to be a humble spender of numbered, gifted days

Sometimes our own idea of what should or should not be
Makes us rebel against replies of ‘be it unto me
Sometimes sudden loss reminds us not to take for granted
What we soon will leave behind us, back to He who lent it

© Janet Martin




Monday, March 29, 2021

From a Fount That Forges Memories...

Happy 2nd Birthday, sweet grand-daughter!

...though without a doubt the celebration is bittersweet this year!
This is not quite the poem I had in mind but
 circumstance sort of moved the heart in this direction today!

Details here on

From a fount that forges memory’s fond mementos, mercy-lent
Pours the future to a suture that weaves pictures, echo-bent
Who knows what will flow from heaven to bestow laughter and tears
Where dawn kindles what dusk dwindles until ‘lifetime’ disappears

From the hand of God (no other, lest we confuse hierarchy
And forget the One who numbers days before one came to be)
From His hand, (the fount of mercy) time’s momentous stream runs rife
Until the will of the Giver returns to Himself, each life

Sacred is the surge of seasons, slowly reeling farewell in
Holy is the toll of twilight, siphoning the soul from skin
Precious is each gifted hour, arranged step-by-steppingstone
Faithful is the loving Father drawing his dear children Home

© Janet Martin

Your eyes saw my unformed body; 
all the days ordained for me were written in your book
 before one of them came to be.
Psalm 139:16

Divine Design (updated)

.(here is the update mentioned this morning)

Last night my nephew's 19 mo. old son went missing
on their farm.
His body was recovered today in a manure pump.
Please pray for strength and comfort
for my brother Stuart and their family and
esp. for my nephew and his wife, Charles and Andrea!

I will say of the LORD, 
“He is my refuge and my fortress;
My God, in Him I will trust.”
Psalm 91:2

The LORD is my rock, my fortress, and my deliverer. 
My God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield,
 and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.

But the LORD has been my stronghold,
and my God is my rock of refuge.

No matter what designs the must of trials we pass through
In Thee oh, Lord we place our trust; our refuge is in You
With gaping wounds of heart and soul, beneath the blows of loss
We plead for faith to make us whole by looking at the cross
For when life’s cup of joy is marred by sorrow’s agony
You reach with Hands redemption-scarred; our refuge is in Thee

The places that once brimmed with love and laughter’s harmony
Are full of tears, our visage dimmed with groaning sympathy
To Thee oh, Lord we pour our prayer; when understanding fails
Help us to place our burden where Your faithfulness prevails
To lean upon your promises for they are kind and true
No matter what designs the test, our refuge is in You

© Janet Martin


Sunday, March 28, 2021

Wealth of Wonder and Love


Wishing you a wonder-full and lovely day!

This morning is a gray, rain-drop spangled lake
rather than the golden wake of a few dusks ago...

What if this would be enough; life’s wealth of wonder and love?
What if we were satisfied with the joy that these provide?
What if our words would brim with thanksgiving’s heartfelt hymn?
What if this was happiness; finding more by wanting less

Life is rich when love/God is first; wealth of days, wonder-immersed
In spite of hard hills and holes, love and wonder still consoles
Waking worship’s madrigal, making life so worth it all
While we learn to cherish more, so much to be thankful for

Let's not seek plunder of stuff but more of wonder and love
Overflowing cups of praise from a decanter of days
Taking sparkles from life’s fount, making every moment count
Filling fortune’s treasure trove with wealth of wonder and love

What if, for all that we lack we found something to give back
Finding in love's kindliness the secret to happiness
Deepening, as years go, reverence for  'you and I'
Finding love and wonder's laud grounded in the grace of God

© Janet Martin

And let the peace of God rule in your hearts,
 to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful. 
 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom,
 teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, 
singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.

Saturday, March 27, 2021

Ah, This Is Faith

Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering;
(for he is faithful that promised;)

We do not have the eyes to see the ins and outs of doubt and dread
We cannot know the high and low of ways and means that lie ahead
That happiness of Mercy’s ‘yes’ is but the prelude to its ‘no’
Ah, this is life, where joy and strife run rife through grace whereby we go

Sometimes we strain to seize the rose forgetting beauty’s brutal stem
And he who suffered painful blows beneath its thorny diadem
How mercy bore without reproach, the horror of Golgotha’s tree
He did not choose to use His throne to refuse God’s authority

For this is love, the author of each sacrifice we choose to make
Without reproach, but simply for the glory of the Giver’s sake
Who offered to give all He had to prove the Father’s love for we
Who could not bridge the awful gap between God and humanity

Then pray, today our goal would be to wholly, humbly honour He
Jesus, who did not despise us, though He could behold Calvary
The brutal blows, the blood-bathed woes before His triumph over death
Then pray today our goal would be to praise His name with every breath

...for this is hope, to know in Whom we have believed and fully trust
In He whose sacrifice achieved once and for all, redemption's cost
Ah, this is faith to hold fast to the truth that His Word has made known
Until we touch the scars that tell how death and hell were overthrown 

© Janet Martin

Friday, March 26, 2021

Invisible Onus


While waiting for wild gales to subside a bit before going out
I seized the extra-poem opportunity without delay 😊

Opportunity is a bud begging to bloom!

It alights on the break of day like bird upon a limb
It spreads its fare like a buffet waiting to be a hymn
A sacred supplication from the moment we awake
An open invitation to be willing to partake
To rich and poor its coffer spills, minding ability
So we may seize its offer; it is Opportunity

It grants the chance to hope and pray, to do the best we can
To work with what we have today, and love our fellowman
To be a good steward with what God allots to our care
And not get caught up in the fruitless thought-life of ‘compare’
To bear the yoke of circumstance with meek humility
Aware that life is like a dance with Opportunity

…a bittersweet succession of love’s laughter, pains and aches
It lets us learn life-lessons, not through failure, but mistakes
It does not shake its head and sigh of us, ‘it is no use’
But with each day of granted breath we are without excuse
By the grace of the Giver, to embrace what waits to be
Where life is like a river rife with Opportunity

…that spills its ilk of silk and steel in an ethereal sup
Sometimes a milk and honey meal, sometimes a hard road up
Where nope and yup pour from a cup without jangle and form
Where Hope is but a wraith-like rope that dangles in the storm
Equipped by faith that makes us whole, for Opportunity

© Janet Martin

As we have therefore opportunity, 
let us do good unto all men, 
especially unto them who are of the household of faith

The Truth About Things

This poem was inspired partly by this morning's Bible Love Note
and partly by spending a few hours yesterday burning
brush picked up and raked form the yard...

'At death all Things will turn to dust and ash'

Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: 
and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it.

Truth does not shift its weight from foot to foot
Or like a shadow; it is absolute
The precedence of God no one outranks
Man’s part is to obey and give Him thanks
This keeps the heart from becoming enslaved
To the futility of Things, the ‘old man’ craved
Truth teaches us to value what we ought
Lest in the quest for wealth, Truth is forgot
Only treasures in heaven will not rust
All else at death will turn to ash and dust
Naked we came and naked we will leave
Beware, lest snare of Satan doth deceive

The grave is the cadaver’s final splash
At death all Things will turn to dust and ash

© Janet Martin

 Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, 
where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 
21For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.…

On that note I am about to leave to buy some things,
Because some Things serve a sweet cause such as
 a gift for Grand-daughter's second birthday!
Last year store-lockdowns and Covid restrictions
 kept her first birthday a rather low-key
celebration. no gifts, no party!
This year hopefully we will celebrate with renewed awareness and thankfulness
 of the preciousness of words like 'together' and 'hello'
and 'have a piece of cake'!

Thursday, March 25, 2021

From The Hull of Broken Darkness

This is more than transformation pouring from night’s broken pod
More than blush rush of creation; morning is the voice of God

We who trust the tender Shepherd know there is no need to fear
By His Shadow we are covered no matter what, He is near

Never alone, what a promise as we hope and watch and pray
From the hull of broken darkness pours far more than light of day

Lift your eyes above the chaos that afflicts this slip of sod
From the hull of broken darkness pours the faithfulness of God

© Janet Martin

Psalm 121

I will lift up my eyes to the hills—
From whence comes my help?
2 My help comes from the Lord,
Who made heaven and earth.

3 He will not allow your foot to [a]be moved;
He who keeps you will not slumber.
4 Behold, He who keeps Israel
Shall neither slumber nor sleep.

5 The Lord is your [b]keeper;
The Lord is your shade at your right hand.
6 The sun shall not strike you by day,
Nor the moon by night.

7 The Lord shall [c]preserve you from all evil;
He shall preserve your soul.
8 The Lord shall preserve[d] your going out and your coming in
From this time forth, and even forevermore.

Wednesday, March 24, 2021

Today's Challenge...(of what we do for who and why)

We were challenged at the end of Sunday morning's message 
to live in obedience to God, as taught through his Word, 
for the purpose, not of holding us back from our calling
but fulfilling it; giving God all honour and glory

Another day breaks
...and with it God's grace
and replies, soon left behind
Lord, help us to be vigilant,
and diligent
and kind

We wake, make plans, follow the lead
Of beck and call of want and need
Where what we do for who and why
Determines where our passions lie
Where what inspires/fires boast
Bears witness to who we love most
Where how and if and what we pray
Conveys much more than words may say
Where the hidden man of the heart
Plays a very important part
Because as time moves us along
The ‘hidden’ is not hid for long
But shows himself in how we live
In what we keep, in what we give
In gratitude and attitude
Where Rebel Self must be subdued
Where pray our utter goal would be
The soul’s accountability
And therefore, to renounce control
And pray that faith would make us whole
As with Mary’s humility
We reply, ‘be it unto me’
To glorify the One who gave
Himself, man’s selfish soul to save
So, death and hell will not prevail
When from time’s strait the soul sets sail
To meet love’s author, face to face
To reckon what we did with grace
Where what we do, for who and why
Proves who we seek to glorify…

Lord, pray that what we say and do
Today will bring glory to You

© Janet Martin

Do you not know that you are the temple of God
 and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?
If anyone [b]defiles the temple of God, God will destroy him.
 For the temple of God is holy, which temple you are.
1 Cor.3:16-17

Tuesday, March 23, 2021

Under The Umbrella of God's Care

Today's poem was partly inspired by my morning prayer as I asked God to please spread
His care like an umbrella over me and the kiddos that others entrust to my care...

The verge of what will be soon merges with all that has been
Whether valleys shadowed with death or pleasant pastures green...

While the kiddos play or 'help'...

... I sometimes find things to putter about with...

Pinch me! I feel like I just bedded down the gardens,
and though this may be a bit premature, (because yes,
 I do see the snowflakes in next week's forecast)
I just can't resist the urge to merge with garden-dirt a bit

(because the neighbors got a dog, we sorta did too😀)
(Yesterday morning while I was working in the kitchen I heard a clatter in the laundry room.
apparently the back door did not latch properly
after I hung out the laundry and this dog made himself at home without knocking😂

Nothing is better for a man than that he should eat and drink, 
and that his soul should enjoy good in his labor. 
This also, I saw, was from the hand of God.

Ah, here we are, not very far from learning’s next affair
But always underneath the kind umbrella of God’s care
Because showers of blessing come in every shape and size
Some welcomed with wide open arms, some hard to recognize

We never know what waits to show its face with smile or tear
But oh, the more we trust, the less each of us has to fear
God, we are prone to groan beneath the weight of ‘what might be’
Help us to learn to lean on you with faith’s humility

The gold of beaming rampart unfolds like a work of art
From the grail of God’s mercy to the cup of human heart
Where, here we are, not very far from Love's unfailing Hand
All that we need to do is reach and He will help us stand

The verge of what will be soon merges with all that has been
Whether valleys shadowed with death or pleasant pastures green
We kick the dust of want and must; it rises but to fall
God's grace spreads like an umbrella over one and all

© Janet Martin

The gold of gleaming rampart 

unfolds like a work of art...

Monday, March 22, 2021

Morning Meditation for Soul-feet


Your word is a lamp to my feet
And a light to my path.
Psalm 119:105

More, oh Lord, than light of morning
To be a lamp to our feet
More than blush and gold adorning
Where light and shadow compete
Where the way is wrought with pitfalls
That the sun cannot expose
As its east to west unravels
The path to life’s curtain-close

More, oh Lord, than resurrection
Of the orb that melts the dark
Pointing in the one direction
That will never miss its mark
Let your word, be like a beacon
And a lamp unto our feet
Let it light the way of reason
Ere death’s solemn gaze we meet

More, oh Lord, than light of heavens
Over each step to preside
Futile is yon molten lantern
Mortal’s deathless crux to guide
Thus, oh Lord, let your Word ever
Be a light unto our way
For Thy Word, oh Lord, will never
Lead the feet of souls astray

© Janet Martin

Sunday, March 21, 2021

Is There On Earth Any More Appealing Hymn?

The earth is the Lord's, and the fulness thereof;
 the world, and they that dwell therein.
Psalm 24:1

Is there on earth any more appealing hymn
Than the one that heralds the return of spring?
Is there a more welcome, sweeter melody
Than the robin’s cheery tir-a-tir-a-lee
Than the goldfinch, dapper in bright, yellow duds
Trees and bushes bursting with laughter-filled buds
Showers slipping earthward, washing landscapes clean
Rolling from blue heavens, a threshold of green
Than we, kissed by sunshine’s friendly howdy-do
Counting age-old blessings as if they were new
Peering like schoolchildren, out to yonder clime
Tossed by zephyrs peeling, ‘almost recess time’
Teasing bees from slumber, then the butterfly
Drawing from the garden, snow-white lullaby
Rousing in the farmer, vigor’s vim renewed
Spring is like a charmer, waking gratitude
Gratitude for seasons running through a hand
That created nature to heed his command
While we, glad with reasons that never grow old
Fling open stiff windows long closed to the cold
Hailing hope’s revival akin to the joy
Of welcoming home prodigal girl or boy
Like a celebration as wondrous rebirth
Ushers transformation to both hearts and earth
Comforting the ruddy, winter-weary reed
With a gentle study of pods run to seed
Probing autumn’s castoffs, tucked into the sod
Being kindly whispered back to life by God
He deserves the glory as hearts and buds brim
Is there on earth any more appealing Hymn?

© Janet Martin

Song of Solomon 2:11
For, lo, the winter is past...

Saturday, March 20, 2021

Spring and Morning Rhapsody

Like a golden chariot rolling from yon shore
Laughter lobs a lariat snaring winter's roar

According to the calendar winter is past!
Happy, happy spring!
This morning I heard my first robin of the season
heralding the break of day
and the return of spring-summer-fall!
Is there on earth any more pleasant hymn
than the one that heralds the return of spring?!

Noah Builds an Altar
21When the LORD smelled the pleasing aroma, He said in His heart, 
“Never again will I curse the ground because of man, 
even though every inclination of his heart is evil from his youth.
 And never again will I destroy all living creatures as I have done.

Genesis 8: 21-22

Evidence is throbbing
Over land and sea
Renewed promise lobbing
Mercy’s melody
Heaven’s hallelujah
Draws away the dark
Through God’s vow to Noah
Morning meets its mark

Like a golden chariot
Rolling from yon shore
Laughter lobs a lariat
Snaring winter’s roar
God honours His promise
Beneath Mercy’s wing
Covenanted onus
Always returns spring

From bud-brimming bowers
Like a leaping lamb
Harbinger of flowers
Hoists Hope’s oriflamme
Kindling hallelujah-
Sacrifice of praise
As we thank Jehovah
For His faithful ways

Like a rush of petals
Generations pass
Dust we stir soon settles
On man’s days of grass
With both grace and warning
Mercy spreads His Wing
Always bringing morning
Always bringing spring

Look, the ink of ages
Signs love’s legacy
Winter’s hoary pages
Melt to history
Tuning hallelujahs
With renewed delight
For spring is upon us
After winter’s night

Come, let's heap fresh altars
With offerings of praise
God's word never falters
Nor His perfect ways
Bow with thankful hearts, thus
Mercy will not fail
Light pierces the darkness
Spring rends winter's veil

© Janet Martin

Friday, March 19, 2021



Do you feel it;
The sense of Impending Infinity?

Do you hear it?
How dusk is the hinge on an unfathomable door
And This but the fringe of So Much More

Temporal, so temporary, Eternal, eternity
Yet the two are intertwined very, very intricately
Moments but breath-by-breath tokens preceding forevermore
Where final exhale flings open an unfathomable door

Such a blip of time to ponder what no one can comprehend
Life is no paperback novel; this is serious, my friend
Who knows when we will be ushered from the temporal to see
How what seemed so temporary will impact eternity

© Janet Martin

Peering Down the Habit-hole

Today we are taking a moment to peer down the rabbit, oops, habit hole!
(I'm blaming all the 'bunny-bobbles' around the bird-feeders
and yard for ferhuddling/befuddling me!) 😂 
(although habits are a bit like rabbits; they breed new ones😉)

Habit Definition: (Entry 1 of 2) 1 : a settled tendency or usual manner of behavior 
such as 'her habit of taking a morning walk'.
 2a : an acquired mode of behavior that has become nearly
 or completely involuntary such as 'she got up early from force of habit.'

The older I become, the more it dawns on me 
what a potent part habits play in who we become!
Wise to train/bend the limb in the right direction while it is green!

So true the adage; Old habits die hard

Some habits are shaped by necessity;
Others by apathy

Better to get in the habit of counting mercies
rather than misgivings!
A great day is a grateful day!

On my lots-of-tots days my habit of morning blog-post 
(unless it all comes together quickly),
 is now an afternoon nap-time post!

We enjoyed a gorgeous daybreak!
the colors as crisp as the air!

Habits are things we say and do often without much thought
Yet crucial in shaping who we become, like it or not
They tune the tone of grin and groan from the moment we wake
And set down crucial steppingstones to paths of life we take
As strengths or weaknesses imbue the elemental flux
Of word and deed soon turned into character’s vital crux

Habits can settle into mettle of response with ease
They wave no flag of caution to warn of deficiencies
As they seep into attitudes that benefit or taint
With either gratitude or rude and critical complaint
Therefore, we ought to hone habits with care for we become
For better or for worse, blessing or curse of habit’s sum

Ah, holy role of habits, what a potent part you play
A little bit like subtle fingers fashioning the clay
Where what is hidden in the heart has ways of showing through
By how habit accommodates the ways of say-and-do
To weave with ribbons of reply, wise, foolish, cruel or kind 
Life's everlasting legacy each of us leaves behind 

© Janet Martin

So here's a word of encouragement
to honing healthy habits
such as:
Pray before touching down on new day
Read God's word to keep faith's focus undeterred
It is wise to exercise
Eat good food for health-wealth
Chew words well before spitting them out

Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.
Psalm 90:12