A Song to the Lord

Psalm 23

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.

He makes me lie down in green pastures: he leads me beside the still waters.

He restoreth my soul: he leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of my enemies: thou anointeth my head with oil; my cup runs over.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

This is one of the shortest psalms written and one that so many people are familiar with because it is often read at funerals. However, this is not a psalm of or about death, it is poem to the beauty of life.

I just finished reading a book by Max Lucado called “Traveling Light.” This book and others I have read do an excellent job of expounding on this psalm.

However, none of the books or commentaries I have read about this psalm have ever given me the explanation of one sentence that has always been puzzling for me.

A shepherd is responsible for a herd of sheep. This is a simplistic definition for a very difficult task for the shepherd. For these animals are not very bright and need constant care and guidance. Therefore, it may seem a bit simplistic or even a bit condescending when we are referred to as sheep.

Our shepherd, Jesus, cares for us in such an overarching way that we want or need for nothing; all is provided and cared for.

Yet, one line was always been left unexplained. He prepares a table before me (for me) in the presence of my enemies. One commentary said that the table was the grass to eat but the psalmist already spoke of the green grass. Or it has been said it is a place of safety. Yet, that too is covered under the rod and staff of protection and direction. And in just the line prior it is stated that we need fear no evil.

Therefore, what is this table and why is it prepared for us? I think the answer lies in who we are as a chosen people. We have this wonderful table prepared for us, yet all around us are those who we perceive as enemies, foes, people who have hurt us or wish to hurt us.

Before, I come to the table I must wash my hands, I must bow my head in thanksgiving, and then…

Yet, can I truly come to the table before I have offered forgiveness to those who have hurt me? Can I truly come if I myself am in need of forgiveness?

Not only am I in need of forgiveness but I must forgive before I can come to this table. Furthermore, since this table has been prepared to overflowing then the next imperative is that I must invite those around to join me. I can not take of these abundant blessings unless I am open and willing to share it with all.

Furthermore, we can see that the table was prepared by the shepherd and that it is piled high to overflowing. All is given to us as gifts from above. Therefore, we can rest in the assurance of more.

This is why this remains one of my favorite psalms, it is always fresh and alive and there is always something new to be seen and experienced.

This shepherd is always with us, leading us on, giving us rest, anointing our heads, and challenging us to live with him in harmony with our brothers and sisters.

Yes, there is a bounty in the Lord.

Yes, more than enough.

Yes, to life with the Lord.

My dear friends I ask your forgiveness for a period of quiet with no words from me for a time. I ask that you accept this as an offering of bounty from my heart to yours.

With love,

Juju

Spring 2020

Reposting because this is still true

Here we are in the midst of a GLOBAL PANDEMIC in case you haven’t heard about COVID-19. There, I said it but that will be the last time I mention it because we have all heard and seen that plenty.

Here is a poem I wrote this spring about the aforementioned thing.

Spring 2020

We are all looking for some huge thing right now

The turning of the tide

Where finally we will see the end of this

And get back to “normal”

I predict there will be none of that

There will not be ringing of bells

Nor shouts in the street

It will not be like that

There may be celebrations

Small intimate ones

Why do I feel this way

When something is so large

You can not take in its enormity

The vast unfathomable essence of a thing

Some unnamed entity it started out to be

Yet no one can claim to not know

Every is a very large number

An all inclusive sum

Instead I predict

It will be quiet like

A gentle breeze

Yet no one will escape its passing

And I was privy to a miracle

Will be the only words we are left to say

 

Judy Angelheart

Copyright 2020


I promise I will be in touch soon.

Sending you love and angels,

Juju

 

 

A Woman’s Prerogative

 

 

SMILE

Are you talking to me

I am not here to perform tricks for you

 

You laugh

You look so pretty when you

SMILE

 

So what you’re telling me is

I’m ugly if I don’t

SMILE

For you

 

You laugh again

 

You know what’s funny

That you don’t know me

Or what makes me

SMILE

But I will share with you

Being commanded to

SMILE

Isn’t one of the things

That makes me happy

Makes my heart sing

 

So stop putting your

Demands on me to

SMILE

I’m not going to give

One to you

These are mine to distribute

As my heart tells me to

SMILE

 

Love,

Judy Angelheart

Copyright and all rights reserved 2018

 

This poem is dedicated to all the lovely women who have ever heard someone tell them to SMILE. My lovely daughter recently was lamenting about men telling her to smile. This poem was prompted by a conversation I heard this morning at the library. I overheard a man tell this beautiful woman to smile; she remained silent, she just shook her head.

What is it going to take for people (men) to understand that it is not flattering to be commanded, like a dog, to SMILE!

Stop doing it! It isn’t kind or respectful because our beauty- all our beauty inside and out is not here for your entertainment.

Sending out love to all my beautiful, lovely ladies- YOU are so much more than your smile. I hope this poem and the love I send with it will make you SMILE!

And to all the men, I am sending out an abundance of love and feminine energy. I know the majority of you are very kind and supportive of us beautiful women.

Love,

Juju

PS: I wrote this poem in my notebook, however, it would be more correct to say I quickly scribbled it before the Muse got away. Afterward, I neatly made a copy of this poem and walked over and gave it to her. I told her, “Thank you for being an inspiration for me this morning.” I waited while she read the poem and with tears in both of our eyes, we gave each other a hug. Then I walked away because I didn’t want her to feel obligated to me in any way and I also didn’t want to intrude any further on her day. She really is a beautiful lady inside and out. Thank you for the hug!

Girlfriend Hands III

Really

What was I thinking

Painting my nails

Of course the polish smeared and chipped

Within minutes

By the next day

They looked really bad

But I had no time to fix them

A busy week each day they looked

Worse and worse

Hunting through the linen closet

I finally found the almost empty bottle of nail polish remover

It wasn’t enough- UGH

They looked even worse

I wanted to hide my hands

Hoping no one would notice

Chipped pink sparklily nail polish

Stuck on from Valentine’s Day

Screamed- UGLY

Looks can be deceiving because in reality

These are writer’s hands

Penning poetry hands

These are amazing

Sending out healing hands

These are artist hands

Creating visions and sensations hands

These are nourishing hands

Preparing body and soul food hands

I scrap and scratch the last few flecks

Desperate to remove the traces of pink

“Out, out great spot”

However unlike he

I only wish to reveal

The true stain of these hands

Which conjour up such amazing things

Love is in the mix of all of these

Love,

Judy Angelheart

2/17/18 Copyright and all rights reserved

Thank you for letting me share a bit of my poetry with you for national poetry month.

Yes, these are my hands, dried and weatherworn. We need to remember that looks really can be deceiving; the person is always more important than the appearances.

We are finally experiencing spring-like temperatures here which makes me very happy! Sending out warm healing energy to all of you.

Juju

Another High School

Each of us has a voice that is unique to our experience. Sometimes we feel the strong need to add our voice to the fray. At other times we feel like our voice will take away from the voice of others, or that it is too small to make a difference. However, after much thought and prayers, my voice has something to say.

I work as a substitute teacher. I primarily work in elementary schools but I also go to the middle and high schools. I have been doing this work for many years; therefore, I have seen and heard a lot. After every major event in the country, the kids feel it and react. We all feel it. No one is immune. However, I continue to go to work, as do so many other teachers, secretaries, and all the other adults that work in the school buildings. Our children continue to go to school.

We have heard the voices of our young people. They are scared and scarred. Yet, I would be lying if I said I wasn’t also.

Just days after the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida, I was substituting at my local high school. As soon as I arrived, they assigned me to front hall duty for Lunch A. The front hall is a wide vestibule of glass doors and windows. Although the doors are locked I was fully exposed. I was on heightened alert due to recent events with nowhere to hide should something happen.

When I arrived, I noticed extra buses in the parking lot but didn’t know why they were there. I soon learned that the school was hosting a countywide choral festival; every middle and high school chorus from the entire county was there. They were there to sing and be evaluated by top judges.

It was wonderful to see so much positive energy from our young people, such beautiful voices. May all our children learn to sing together in harmony and heal the world.

 

Another High School

On the front lines

No distinction drawn

A wall of windows

Offers no protection

Stationed by the glass doors

I must not fear

There is a reason I am here

Always a purpose

An unwavering stance

My heart and soul

Flood with fierce love

For each one

Our children

Our future

Our joy

Today they come

Armed in chorus of voices

Let these be the only weapons

That ring out in our school halls

Love,

Judy Angelheart

2/26/18 Copyright and all rights reserved

 

When the world seems crazy and out of control our best defense is to lift our voices in hope, in peace, in prayer, and in song.

 

Sending love and healing out to all,

Juju

Postscript: I submitted this poem to Connections, a wonderful publication in the spring of 2018. The editors emailed me and said they wanted to publish it but didn’t have room in the spring edition. I emailed back and told them that I thought that the subject of the poem was so timely that they should reconsider finding room for it in the spring edition. However, they did not.
I reached out to them in fall 2018 to see if they still wanted to publish the poem and let them know that I had written a blog post. They did and it was published. I wish I could have had the chance to dedicate the poem, on page 49, to all of the young people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida and to the wonderful students who I have the chance to work with here at Calvert County, Maryland, with a big shout out to Patuxent High School where I was subbing that day. Well, at least I got the chance to do it here. Thank you all of you wonderful young people.

 

 

Soften

Sometimes

I wish I could

Back out

Become soft again

Open to the possibilities

 

If only we could

Become soft

Vulnerable

Able to see

All the possibilities

 

Love,

Judy Angelheart

Copyright and all rights reserved 2016

In in all the chaos of the world right now, we need to soften, not harden our hearts toward one another.

We can do this, we can become soft, tender hearted, and see the possibilities in each other.

Sending healing prayers and love out into the world.

Juju

PS: This is a crab growing, softening, becoming vulnerable and open. How about that!

Cast Upon the Water

“Cast your bread upon the water.”

Ecclesiastes 11:1

Standing at the waters edge

Gently lay blessings in

Send them off wide and far

Say a prayer to

Guide them there

Go to hands that have not

Sowed~ watered with tears

Succored to make them

Grow from tender

Shoots with bright green leaves

Surely what is shared

Shall return

Serendipitously

Love,

Judy Angelheart

copyright and all rights reserved 2015

Uber Exuberance

Examples abound of joyous flow

Xanadu found hearts released

Undulating to the sound of the lively beat

Bubbling up laughter soon explodes

Enticing to stay and claim this home

Rare this is to stray this far

Alluring us to play all day long

Treasures laid out not hidden away

Expatiate has set us free

Love,

Judy Angelheart

Copyright  and all rights reserved 2015

I think I got the rules right this time. 🙂  If I could find Xanadu, I am confident I would be an expatriate.

*Exuberate- to have something in abundance~ overflow; to become exuberant, to show exuberance

*Expatiate- to wander, move about freely; to speak or write in detail

Journey

I wish one day to sail away

Out upon the ocean sway

Join all the sea creatures at play

Jaunt the seas the rest of my days

Only touch land to frolic in the sand

Love,

Judy Angelheart

Copy right 2014 all rights reserved

The Good News

The angels woke me very early this morning. I have been sick for weeks and have been sleeping a lot. Early this morning the angels were in my room being extremely active. I finally decided to get up and when I did I was not disappointed, the sky was covered with small clouds that were red and orange. It was well worth getting up before sunrise to see the world come awake.

Like the beautiful clouds, I wanted to know what other good news the angels bring and was inspired to write this poem:

What News

What news have you to awaken sleeping souls and bring them up out of their slumber and into the light of love

What news have you to take the chill from the air and bring warmth to thaw cold hearts

What news have you to share to chase away the tears and heartsick blues

What news have you to get tired bodies to arise and dance once more the joyous spring to step that makes young again all old bones

What news have you to carry weary ones over troubled seas and rocky ways

What news have you to turn every key and set all captives free

What news have you

Angels please tell us all what news

The Lord is Risen to bring

All love!

The Good News!

Love,

Judy Angelheart

Copyright and all rights reserved 2014

Sending the angels out to visit you and bring you good news and all love.

Juju