Tag Archives: Martin Smith

A Journey In Four Songs

I’ve made no secret of how much music has been a part of my life and in particular part of my journey, from a trapped alcoholic to where I am now, messages through the music I listen to have been a vital part of the process.

When I walk I’ve often felt a song has played in answer to a thought or prayer that has been running through my mind at that point.  This morning was a little different, at first I felt one song had begun playing in answer to how I felt at that point, a little on the low side, it was Fall Apart by Josh Wilson, then followed by Becoming Who You Are by Mainstay, these two songs reminded me it’s okay to fail, it’s okay to struggle, God is there for us and as the song says “with every fall you’re just becoming who you are”.  I thought at that point that these two song were the answer to how I was feeling, then a third song played which added to the ongoing response to my feelings, this time Jars of Clay with Weapons, just a reminder that sometimes we don’t need to keep fighting, just let God go before us.  Then finally to complete the story was Our God Reigns by Jesus Culture.

So essentially it was as though I was feeling like I was falling apart, yet being told that’s okay, you can get through this and come out stronger, let God go before you and trust in him, all through four songs.

By the time I arrived at Church, I was once again feeling a completely different person and ready for a fantastic morning at Church once again.

‘Cause my whole world is caving in
But I feel you now more than I did then
How can I come to the end of me
But somehow still have all I need?
God I want to know you more
Maybe this is how it starts
I find you when I fall apart

I keep on chasing the wrong things and coming up empty
This isn’t who I’m supposed to be
I keep on learning the hard way from every mistake
And I’m finding each time that you fall, you’re just becoming who you are

Lay your weapons down
Lay your weapons down
There are no enemies in front of you

Hallelujah, we can finally see
How the bitterness was bruising on our skin
We didn’t notice that grace had run so thin
Till we’re falling apart and the cracks in our hearts let the truth sink in

Our God reigns
Our God reigns
Forever Your kingdom reigns
He reigns, He reigns
He reigns, He reigns
He reigns, He reigns

25 Verses For 25 Bottles

The day after my last morning walk, way back in September, I encountered something I never thought would bother me, nothing sinister, just a simple bottle of fruit juice, it sat right in front on me on the table all night, the problem was it resembled the wine bottles I used to drink from and when I say drink from, I mean I never bothered with glasses, it was straight out of the bottle, straight to the source, I didn’t need a glass.  That night I couldn’t take my eyes of the innocent bottle, it haunted me and I couldn’t get a handle on why I should, but it did.  The next morning I remembered I had recently come across a bag full of empty wine bottles which had been dumped in my cellar, I fetched them out, wrote out 12 bible verses, put one in each bottle and took them down to the recycle bins, I was rid of the ghost.

Or so I thought!!!!

When I went down in the cellar again earlier this month to fetch the Christmas tree, I came across another bag of bottles, at the time I wasn’t in a position to deal with them, so I left them and resolved that one day I would deal with them also.

So a few days ago I decided that New Year’s Day would be the perfect day to get rid of these once and for all, so this morning after my walk and a bath, I went down there to fetch the bag out, but to my surprise there wasn’t just one bag, there were three of them, I’m not sure how I didn’t find them before, they were right where I found the last lot, just buried slightly deeper amongst the rest of the old rubbish down there, in all I fetched out 25 empty glass bottles.

Because among them were also some empty beer bottles, I would say these are from Christmas two years ago, I never brought beer in bottles, I only ever received them as Christmas presents, so this last stash would be from around Christmas and New Year 2011, just three months before I quit drinking.

So I spent a couple of hours finding 25 verses and writing out two copies of each, my daughter Eve wanted to help, so she grabbed her bible and suggested a few verses, she helped write out a few of the verses too, in her best hand writing considering she’s only seven.  She helped until she got bored with writing.

The verses:

May he give you the desire of your heart and make your plans succeed.
Psalm 20:4

The Lord your God is with you, The Mighty Warrior who saves.  He will take great
delight in you; in His Love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.

Zephaniah 3:17 (NIV)

Look at the Nations and watch – and be utterly amazed.  For I am going to do
something in your days that you would not believe, even if you were told.

Habakkuk 1:5

Look to the Lord and His strength; seek His face always. Remember the
wonders he has done, His miracles and the judgements he pronounced,

1 Chronicles 16:11-12

Sing to the Lord a new song; sing to the Lord, all the earth.  Sing to the Lord,
praise his name; proclaim his salvation day after day.
Declare His glory among the Nations, His marvellous deeds among all peoples.

Psalm 96: 1-3

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

I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your
heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.
And I will put my Spirit in you and
move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws.

Ezekiel 36:26-27

A blessing for you, because the Lord your God loves you.
Deuteronomy 23:5

He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end.
Ecclesiastes 3:11

Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.
They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.  I say to myself,
is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.
Lamentations 3:22-24

Let us run with endurance the race God has set before us.
Hebrews 12:1

In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord establishes his steps.
Proverbs 16:9

Surely there is a future, and your hope will not be cut off.
Proverbs 23:18

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.

Proverbs 3:5-6

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare
and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.

Jeremiah 29:11

And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good,
for those who are called according to his purpose.

Romans 8:28

And the Lord will guide you continually and satisfy your desire in scorched places
and make your bones strong; and you shall be like a watered garden,
like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail.

Isaiah 58:11

Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing!
Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.

Isaiah 43:18-19

Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you.
For behold, darkness shall cover the earth,
and thick darkness the peoples;
but the
 Lord will arise upon you, 
and his glory will be seen upon you.
Isaiah 60:1-2

And though your beginning was small, your latter days will be very great.
Job 8:7

Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: forgetting what is behind and straining towards what is ahead, I press on towards the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenwards in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 3:13-14

Do not work for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures to eternal life,
which the Son of Man will give to you. For on him God the Father has set his seal.

John 6:27

And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,”
when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left.

Isaiah 30:21

The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.
Zephaniah 3:17 (ESV)

When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you.
Isaiah 43:2

25 Verses

25 Verses

Last time I only put a verse inside the bottles, this time I stuck one on the outside, over the label and put a different verse inside each of the bottles.

25 Bottles

25 Bottles

Verses & Bottles

Verses & Bottles

I put them all back in the bags and took them down to the recycle bins this afternoon, mission accomplished.

Proverbs 3:5-6

Proverbs 3:5-6

Ezekiel 36:26-27

Ezekiel 36:26-27

I pretty confident that this is the last of the empties stashed down there, the last remnants of an old habit, they can’t haunt me any more, those ghosts that were hiding in the shadows are now gone.

Strip everything away till all I have is You
Undo the veils till all I see is You

Strip everything away till all I have is You
Undo the veils till all I see is You

I will pursue You, I will pursue Your presence 
I will pursue You, I will pursue Your presence 

I’m pressing in to You so do not pass me by
I’m breaking through the boundaries
I will not be denied

I will pursue You, I will pursue Your presence 
I will pursue You, I will pursue Your presence 

Open my eyes, search me inside
I cant live without Your presence
I can’t live without Your presence

Missing Words

It seems so long ago since I wrote a piece of poetry, indeed it was way back on 17th November that I wrote Shelter, which was the day before I was prescribed anti-depressants by my Doctor.

Shelter was the last of three poems that I wrote within the space of two days, well I say days all three were written in the early hours, when I was unable to sleep, Mountains was posted at 1:38am and I Call Upon Your Name at 5:35am, both on 16th, then Shelter was the last posted at 1:32am on the 17th.

It may just be coincidence that my poetic side dried up when I went onto anti-depressants, but there has been a lack of artistic output since then.

I’ve had a few words go through mind, but nothing I’ve had the urge to write down and work with.

For a few weeks though, I’ve wanted to write an update to Mountains, a sequel of sorts, but I just haven’t got round to it, I know what I want to write I just don’t have the words, I can’t find them!

Then the other day something weird happened on my laptop, my screen saver scrolls through images with my favourite Bible verses, after I wrote Mountains I put the words on to a mountain image and added it to the gallery. But since Christmas Day, the words have disappeared from the image, just the mountains are were left, my words just vanished.

Tonight I’ve managed to get the words back on the image, so maybe I’ll find the rest of my words too.



Maybe a good walk in the morning may bring back my poetic side, hopefully!

Open up the doors and let the music play
Let the streets resound with singing
Songs that bring Your hope and
Songs that bring Your joy
Dancers who dance upon injustice

Did you feel the mountains tremble?
Did you hear the oceans roar?
When the people rose to sing of
Jesus Christ the risen One

Did you feel the people tremble?
Did you hear the singers roar?
When the lost began to sing of
Jesus Christ the saving One

And we can see that God You’re moving
A mighty river through the nations
And young and old will turn to Jesus
Fling wide You Heavenly gates
Prepare the way of the risen Lord

Open up the doors and let the music play
Let the streets resound with singing
Songs that bring Your hope
Songs that bring Your joy
Dancers who dance upon injustice

Did you feel the darkness tremble?
When all the saints join in one song
And all the streams flow as one river
To wash away our brokeness

And here we see that God You’re moving
A time of Jubilee is coming
When young and old return to Jesus
Fling wide You Heavenly gates
Prepare the way of the risen Lord

Open up the doors and let the music play
Let the streets resound with singing
Songs that bring Your hope
Songs that bring Your joy
Dancers who dance upon injustice

We’re gonna dance in the river, yeah

Worship, A Little Bit More Like I Used To!!!

For the first Sunday in what seems like ages, I actually felt like I could worship like I used to.

A few weeks ago I was in such a hole, I couldn’t even bring myself to sing along at all, I just stood at the back against the wall staring at the words on screen, I just couldn’t lift myself to do anything, I was empty.

The weeks prior to that it seemed like a real effort to sing along, I think I did, but not with any real feeling, more an obligation.

Last weekend was better, but I still wasn’t really with it. Today was a big improvement, I’m getting there, it’s a day at a time, but each day is a step forward, I feel more like I was a number of months ago.

The kids have been at their Gran’s over the weekend, so I’ve been on my own. It’s was nice to be invited to friends for lunch today, thank you David and Ceri for having me, also thank you to Leanne, Rebecca, Michael and Naomi for keeping me company, I really enjoyed it.

I’m still not sleeping well at the moment, last night I slept for a few hours, woke around 1.30am, I was then awake until around 5am, until I fell asleep again for a couple of hours. That seems to be about the norm at the moment, I think I can count on one hand the times I’ve slept right through the night in the last month.

I’m back at the Doctors on Friday for a medication review, obviously I’ll discuss this with him and see what he says.

The draw back at the moment is when I get tired the jitteriness sets in again, which can be really frustrating, especially as sometimes it feels like my hands aren’t doing what I want them to, this doesn’t happen that often now, just when I’m tired, but it does get to me.

But on the whole, I’m feeling better each day, it’s a day at a time, but it’s definitely getting easier as each day passes.

If faith can move the mountains 
Let the mountains move 
We come with expectation 
We’re waiting here for You, waiting here for You

You’re the Lord of all creation 
And still You know my heart
The Author of Salvation 
You’ve loved us from the start

Waiting here for You 
With our hands lifted high in praise
And it’s You we adore, singing Alleluia

You are everything You’ve promised
Your faithfulness is true
And we’re desperate for Your presence
All we need is You

Waiting here for You 
With our hands lifted high in praise
And it’s You we adore, singing Alleluia

Hallelujah, Hallelujah, singing Alleluia, we’re singing Alleluia

Waiting here for You
With our hands lifted high in praise
And it’s You we adore
Singing Alleluia