BY FAITH

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, 
for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go
Joshua 1:9
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                                BY FAITH

Ghostly apparitions hover over burnt orange grasses
Gray skies accentuated with billowed clouds
Gone is a sun playing more hide than seek
Trenches of tears streak down a windshield
Blurring the lines of reality and make-believe
Still a glimmer of hope where faith only sees.
Darkness invades where light should be
Haunting a soul filled of sorrow and grief
Road curves and twists through the screams.
So many see only what they want to
Asking, “Where is God?” around them
Can’t, or, won’t see the forest for the trees
Becomes the loneliest place to be
Like a poet in the midst of a dream
Looking for the song in the melody.
The Son never ever disappeared
Trust that He really, truly is there
Even when the foggiest of nights appear
Dreariest of days fill the pillow with tears.
One day the mask will be removed
Clear skies will once more bloom
And the haze that shadowed the land
Will transform in a most vibrant hue.

~Marcell Warner Bridges
©12 October 2014

© Bridgescreations, 2014

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

 “Why can’t I see God?”

“Why can’t I feel God?”

“How do I even know He is really there? I can’t see Him.”

When the sun hides behind the clouds, it is still there.  The clouds may be hiding it, but we know and trust that the sun is still there…by faith.

Just like the sun that is blocked by the clouds, by faith, we know in our hearts that God is there. We can sense Him in the weather, we can see Him in others, we can find Him in nature.

Where is God?  

For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.



He is the lamp for your feet, the light for your darkness, the shepherd to lead you, the hand to guide you.

Do not be afraid. Do not worry. Do not be dismayed.  

For the Lord your God is with you everywhere you go.
For You are my lamp, O Lord;
The Lord shall enlighten my darkness.  2 Samuel 22:29
© Heart Thoughts, Marcie Bridges, 2014
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BREAKING DOWN THE WALL

“Then the veil of the temple was torn in two
 from top to bottom” Mark 15:38
© Karen Murphy Photography, 2014
FIVE FEET TALL

It was five feet tall
and totally square
but in the center
it was not bare.
Massively strong
and yet, so weak
it held up tightly
then crumbled away.
No one saw through it
all, except one,
the one that was inside it
she was the only one.
Who knew all about this
‘cause she built the square
all around her soul.
A wall to protect her
from stones thrown
a way to feel secure
to be someone complete
to find hold of relief.
So she made it
five feet tall
and totally square
so that her whole being
could fit in there.

~Marcell Warner Bridges
(Originally penned under Marcie Warner)
©5, August 1991

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Walls are made for keeping things in and keeping them out. Some are made of stone, some of brick, and some of wood. Most of the time these walls are made to protect and to keep us safe.

There are also walls that should be torn down. Walls that keep us from opening up to others like in the poem above.

I was 19 years young. I was hurting and sad and mad. But I didn’t want to tell anyone. I just wanted to sit in my room, be by myself and keep the world out. Surely this would make me feel better. Surely this would keep me from being hurt anymore than I already was. But it also kept me from giving or receiving love.


We tape up a box around our hearts. We strive to keep everyone from knowing who we are. Don’t let anyone get close.

Including God.

God – The One Who created us. The One Who breathes life into us. The One Who gave His One and Only Son to be our sacrifice.

And He beckons us:


“COME TO ME AND LISTEN! Attune yourself to My voice, and receive My richest blessings.” – Jesus Calling, p. 281


Come and listen. How do we listen when we’ve built a wall between ourselves and God? How do we listen to obey His voice when we’ve hardened our hearts? We don’t. We can’t.

It’s time to tear down the walls. Open our hearts, our minds, our eyes and lives to The One who has saved us and The One who wants to commune with us because He loves us. The One who ripped the veil of the temple in two so we could come boldly to Him. With anything. Everything. Our WHOLE lives.

It’s time to quit shutting Him out and starting living a life worthy of our Christian walk.

It’s time to stomp the box to pieces. Crush it under our feet and let God in. Stop running from God. Stop running in fear.

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Incline your ear, and come to Me.
Hear, and your soul shall live;
And I will make an everlasting covenant with you
Isaiah 55:3
 
 
 
© Heart Thoughts, Marcie Bridges, 2014

PRECIOUS IS HE

“Oh come, let us sing to the Lord! Let us shout joyfully to the Rock of our salvation. 2 Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving; Let us shout joyfully to Him with psalms. 3 For the Lord is the great God, And the great King above all gods. 4 In His hand are the deep places of the earth; The heights of the hills are His also. 5 The sea is His, for He made it; And His hands formed the dry land. 6 Oh come, let us worship and bow down; Let us kneel before the Lord our Maker. 7 For He is our God, And we are the people of His pasture, And the sheep of His hand.”  Psalm 95:1-7a
  © Tee-Tee Barnes Photography, 2014

Precious is He who has set us free
Wonderful Lord, God Almighty
Whom created the earth, sky and sea,
Precious is He who gave life to me.

Faithful is He who laid down His life
Jesus our Saviour willing to die
Upon a cruel cross He paid the price
Faithful is He our Sacrifice.

Patient is He who forgives of our sin
Holy Spirit living within
Convicting our hardened hearts of it
Patient is He with those who are His.

Righteous and Holy is He on the throne
Eternal Father, everlasting Lord
Ready to make His entrance bold
Righteous and Holy is He, O my soul!

Glory to Thee forever, amen.
Alpha, Omega, Beginning and End
True and Faithful, glorious Friend
Glory to Thee, our praise we give!

~Marcell Warner Bridges
4, March 1996

© Tee-Tee Barnes Photography, 2014
 
“I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End,” says the Lord, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”  Revelation 1:8 

© Tee-Tee Barnes Photography, 2014
 
LET’S GIVE GOD PRAISE!!! GREAT IS THE LORD AND GREATLY TO BE PRAISED!!! 



© Heart Thougts, Marcie Bridges, 2014

WAITING FOR YOU

Therefore the Lord waits to be gracious to you, and therefore he exalts himself to show mercy to you. For the Lord is a God of justice; blessed are all those who wait for him.  Isaiah 30:18 (ESV)
© Karen Murphy Photography, 2014

LADY IN WAITING
I waited
I called you and we talked
I waited
I texted you and you texted back
I waited
I asked you how you are doing
I waited
and waited
and waited…

My phone is silent
My messages blank
My email empty
Day
after day
after day…

And I can’t
I can’t keep on like this
I can’t
Keep hearing you tell me I’m your friend
I can’t
Keep playing your words in my head
I can’t
Be in this one sided friendship
I can’t….

I waited
For you to be MY friend
I’m still waiting
To hear from you
Because being the one to always
pick up the phone, start the conversation
has gotten
old.

~Marcell Warner Bridges
©11 January 2014

© Karen Murphy Photography, 2014
Have you ever felt this way? Doesn’t feel very nice does it? Let’s turn this upside down.

How do you think GOD feels when WE treat HIM this way? Is your relationship with Him one-sided? Day after day after day He is waiting…

He waits and waits for us to come to Him.  He is so patient. So loving. He delights in our time with Him.

An Excerpt from Sarah Young, Jesus Lives:

          “…  Although many of your prayers remain unanswered, you can trust in My great faithfulness: I keep all My promises in My perfect way and timing. Among other things, I have promised to give you Peace that displaces the trouble and fear in your heart.

            If you become weary of waiting for answers to your prayers, remember that I also wait: so that I may be gracious to you and have mercy on you. I wait till you are ready to receive the things I have lovingly prepared for you. Blessed are all those who wait for Me—expectantly, longingly, trustingly.

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, “The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.”

—Lamentations 3:22–24″

(Jesus Lives, Sarah Young)

It is just as much a blessing and glory to God to wait for us to come to Him as it is for us when we DO go to Him. He’s waiting for your friendship. He’s waiting for you to come, just as you are, to receive His blessings. Softly and tenderly Jesus is calling you. Can you hear Him? Will you go to Him today? He’s waiting for you with open arms. COME.

© Heart Thoughts, Marcie Bridges, 2014

DEPTHS OF DESPAIR

“Anne Shirley: Can’t you even imagine you’re in the depths of despair?
Marilla Cuthbert: No I cannot. To despair is to turn your back on God.”
Lucy Maud Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables, movie 1985
FALLING

I’m falling.
Falling.
Falling.
Falling.
Falling.
Someone catch me.
Please.
Anyone.
Is there an end?
Falling.
I.Can’t.Breathe.
If I try
I will cry.
And if I cry –
there are too many people –
here
around me.
If I cry
then there is pain.
Pain.
Deep.
Dark.
Way. Down.
There.
Flailing.
Sinking.
Despair.
Desire.
Where.Are.You.God?
I’ve hit bottom.

~Marcell Warner Bridges
©28 August 2014

© Karen Murphy Photography, 2014   (Maui, Hawaii)
I’ve been thinking about the quote above from Anne of Green Gables and I wondered what it really means to be in despair. Is it the same as just depression? Or is it something deeper? So I did a little research. According to Merriam-Webster the definition for despair is this: “to no longer have any hope or belief that a situation will improve or change”.

Have you ever felt that way? That no matter what you do, where you go, who you are with, etc… your situation is never going to get better?  

Let’s read the words of the Psalmist as he laments his despair:

Psalm 42
For the director of music. A maskil of the Sons of Korah.

1 As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God.
2 My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God?
3 My tears have been my food day and night, while people say to me all day long,
 “Where is your God?”4 These things I remember as I pour out my soul: how I used to go to the house of God under the protection of the Mighty One with shouts of joy and praise among the festive throng.

Why, my soul, are you downcast?
    Why so disturbed within me?

The anguish King David feels is so palpable here. Can you feel it? Does it resonate within you? Oh it sure does me! King David didn’t have anti-depressants to take though, did he? So what DID he do to overcome his despair?

Keep reading (beginning at the second half of verse 5):

Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, 
my Savior and my God.


8 By day the Lord directs his love, at night his song is with me — a prayer to the God of my life.
9 I say to God my Rock, “Why have you forgotten me? Why must I go about mourning,
    oppressed by the enemy?”
10 My bones suffer mortal agony as my foes taunt me, saying to me all day long,“Where is your God?”
11 Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God,  for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God. (taken from the NIV)

© Karen Murphy Photography, 2014
(Kauai, Hawaii)
King David went to the only source He knew would and could help Him. GOD! He went to God to find his hope and His strength.

Don’t be afraid to go to God and to ask Him what it is that is troubling you. To make it clear to you and to give you a way out of it. You may need to confess sin that you have been living in and turn away from it before He can make a way for you to come up out of this pit of depression. In Psalm 32 (a Psalm of forgiveness) King David talks about how his bones grew old because he groaned so much through the agony of the sin he had been in. If you are in despair, consider first your position with God and make sure your heart is right with God before asking Him to show you what is putting you in your current state of despair.

Earlier we saw that despair says we no longer have hope that our situation will improve or can be changed. I think Marilla Cuthbert is right. When we don’t allow God to help us see how to get out of our situation that is causing the despair, then we are turning our backs to Him telling Him our problems are bigger than He is.

Whatever your struggle is today, would you go to the Truest Friend you can ever have and let Him take care of it? He understands. He forgives. He forgets. He changes lives and He cares more than anyone else! 1 Peter 5:7, “casting all your care on Him, for He cares for you.”

©Heart Thoughts, Marcie Bridges, 2014

THE TRUEST FRIEND

© Karen Murphy Photography, 2014
HOLDING HANDS ACROSS THE MILES

Hands clasped across the table
Tears falling through smiles and pain
Food forgotten in the moment
Whispers of love displayed.
Two hearts equally broken
By circumstances not of our own
Mended by the sweetest Spirit
His presence filling the space around.
Hugs fiercely, tightly given
Good-bye a solemn spoken phrase
Yet the hands that had clasped together
Would always stay that way.
Because miles driven between
Will never severe that grace
Hands clasped across the table
Whispers of love will forever remain.

~Marcell Warner Bridges
©24 August 2014
 

© Karen Murphy Photography, 2014

I drove up the mountain with an ache in my heart as wide as the Grand Canyon. I couldn’t wait to see my dear friend. I stood by the car waiting for her arrival with anticipation as massive as Texas. The hug we shared was the best I’ve ever had. We found a table and I’ll never forget holding hands and praying with her. A little later the tears we knew would come, came, while we held hands once again trying to say things we couldn’t say. It was one of the sweetest moments.  As we shared stories (can you believe we talked about snakes?!) my heart felt lighter and I knew that going back down the mountain I’d feel better than I had in a long while.

Did you know this is what it is like with God? He never leaves us nor forsakes us but sometimes the miles between earth and Heaven seem so far away we can’t feel His presence. But then one day, we open His Word, He fills the space around us with His presence and it is the sweetest time we’ve ever had. He engulfs us with His peace and we come away feeling better than we have in forever. Jesus is the best friend you can have. He loves us with an unconditional love that NO ONE can love us with. He is there for us anytime, anywhere, every time and everywhere.  Proverbs 18:24, “A man who has friends must himself be friendly, But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.”  Here on earth even those dearest, sweetest, best-est friends cannot compare to the friend we have in Jesus. 

We hugged one last time (I can still feel her arms around me now) tears once again brimming in our eyes, not sure when we’d see each other face to face again but we left each other knowing that the 2 ½ hour trip between our houses is only a whisper away.  



Michael W. Smith’s song “I Will Be Here For You” reminds me that God will always be here for me no matter what. 


© Heart Thoughts, Marcie Bridges, 2014

NEW EVERY MORNING

Through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed, Because His compassions fail not.
They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness
 Lamentations 3:22-23 (NKJV)
© Karen Murphy Photography, 2014
 
NEW EVERY MORNING

Though mountains around me shake
the earth beneath me quakes
my foundations crack and crumble,
You, O LORD, keep me from stumbling
directing my paths unfailingly
You keep me from troubles consuming
even when emotions are overwhelming.
In the night You hold me tight
In the morning Your mercies unfold
Never forsaking, never moving
Your faithfulness is new every morning.
When the rain pours and the winds blow
I don’t know which fork to take in the road
You, O LORD, bring healing to my parched soul
Mercies tears unceasingly overflow
As Your faithfulness immerses steadfastly
Thoroughly, completely making me whole.

~Marcell Warner Bridges
©10 August 2014

 
© Karen Murphy Photography, 2014
 
Dear Father God, Thank You for Your faithfulness to us. When we are not faithful You continue to draw us toward You. And in our times of need, You stay right beside us, holding us, comforting us, cradling us to keep us from drowning. Thank You for the mercies with which You steadfastly keep us and give us a new way each and every day to walk with You. Father, forgive us when we stray. May we seek to honor You with our lives in every word and deed.  Thank You Lord, for being our safe place. Our hiding place. May we rest in You and praise You even in our times of trouble. Father, thank You that with and through You we will never be consumed by anything but that You are faithful to bring new mercies upon us each morning. Lord, we glorify You. In Jesus’ Name we pray, Amen. 
 
WILL YOU SING ALONG AND WORSHIP WITH ME TODAY? LET’S GATHER TOGETHER AND PRAISE GOD FOR HIS STEADFAST LOVE, UNENDING MERCY AND HIS GREAT FAITHFULNESS TO US! I LOVE THIS SONG!
 
  
© Heart Thoughts, Marcie Bridges, 2014