Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Operation and Care of Farm Machinery

An art journey ~

Here is one of my painting processes
this week In The Studio
I'm honored to host the "Sneak Peak" this week!
I encourage you to visit the blogs of the other
creative inspirational artists and writers at the bottom of this post.
sneak peek

Listening to my mp3 player,
I hear this line:
"Turn this broken earth to holy ground".
I grab my pencil and the nearest paper
and jot down
"Luke 8. Parable of the Soils. 100 fold harvest."

And then I jot down a prayer
that spills from my heart:

A few years ago,
Beth Moore taught at a simulcast about this very parable.
It has stayed with me.
I've written about it.
Spoken about it.
And now created art.
But this piece grew in a way so directed by
the Spirit.

I found a book at a flea market 7-10 days ago
--a Bible story book copyright 1878--
in German.
My Grandpa Tommy was a German living in Russia
and immigrated to the United States through Ellis Island in 1908
when he was a baby.
My husband's grandfather John was German also.
I can't read German, but I deciphered this title was from Luke 8:4-15.
The Parable of the Soils.
This book below belonged to my husband's grandfather: John Wahl.

So, I am scanning this old farm machinery manual
that has incredible diagrams
and printing them for this piece.
I start reading the titles of the sections:

Each section starts with an intro and I am reading them.
And it is like Jesus is telling me this parable
himself right here in this old
John Deere farm machinery manual.
Don't ever tell me that
God doesn't speak to my heart
through something other than the Bible.
Yes, I've read the parable of the soils in my Bible.
I've studied it.  I've written about it.
But this little farm machinery manual
was full of truth!

Just read Luke 8:4-15.
{I put it on the piece, but go get your own Bible and read it.}
In the Parable, there is a sower, the seed, and the soil.
The Sower is God, the seed is the word of God, the soil is the heart of man.

So, I'm reading:
"Part One:  Preparation of the Seed Bed
{I'm thinking: the Soil, the heart of man, my heart}
The plow.
{I'm thinking:  An instrument used by the farmer/sower}
The plow is the most important implement used in seed bed prepartion.
Its purpose is to pulverize or break up the soil
admitting air and light--two essentials to normal plant growth.
The plow covers surface trash or manure, mixing it with the soil to decay (die) and furnish plant food."

Ok, so are you with me?
The plow pulverizes or breaks up the soil.
I relate.  In the past my heart was broken up, pulverized by the Sower,
who let in air and Light, essential for my growth,
covered up the surface trash/manure, {the crap of my old sin and surface fakeness}
mixed it up in the soil {my heart} to die {dead sin, dead fakeness, dead lies}.
To be the food for the growth in my heart.

Remember, I'm reading a farm machinery manual from, oh, I don't know, 1950?
And this is the message I'm getting.
Jesus is so good isn't He?
So good at speaking my language if I will listen.
So smart to teach us in stories.

Reading on in the manual . . .
"Part 2: Planting
If planted accurately . . . maximum yields will result,
provided, of course, that other conditions and practices are correct."

"Part 3:  Cultivating.
The destruction of weeds is the primary purpose of cultivation.
Weeds are truly theives . . . they steal profits . . ."

Weeds are truly theives.
In John 10, Jesus said the theif comes to steal, kill, and destroy,
but I have come that they might have life
and have it more
Weeds equals theif.
Weeds steal our abundant life, steal the intended abundant harvest.

And then we come to
"Part 4:  Harvesting"
I almost laughed out loud when I read the first line
because so many of you in my family and community know the
obvious truth of this statement:
"Harvest season is the busiest time of the year on every farm."
Whether it is the "harvest" of cows calving in the spring,
or the harvest of hay being put up in the summer,
harvest of grain, harvest of the garden.
Busy, indeed it is.
And if it's not busy?? 
Well, on a ranch or farm,
not busy harvest means not happy ranchers.

But seriously, read Luke 8:4-15.
The 100 fold harvest only comes with the right conditions.
The abundant fruitful life only comes
when The Sower is allowed to
do the hard work in our heart of
preparing the ideal seed bed
putting the plow to our hearts,
turning the trash into nourishment,
cultivating the weeds out that choke out the growth,
planting the word in the rich, prepared soil
of a good, noble heart,
that's been thawed from winter's freeze,
broken through the surface, through the shallowness of heart,
into the depths of the truest self,
softening the soil,
preparing it for the Seed
of the Word.
Which only then can it take root, grow, mature, and bear fruit
in our lives.
Not easy.
But the harvest is good.

As I made this piece of art.
And as Jesus spoke His parable through the farm machinery manual,
my thoughts turned to the good men in my life
that have been or are ranchers and farmers
{and I know, that ranchers are ranchers and farmers are farmers,
but most ranchers have to do some farming,
and many farmers do some ranching}.
But, anyway, these are some of them men I'm thinking of:
my husband Jim, my dad Phil, my brother Reed,
my Grandpa Tommy,
my brother and father-in-law, Les & Jim,
Jim's grandpa's Les and John,
my uncles
Roger, Willie, Marvin, Hofer, Odde,
some of my cousins,
those friends in our church and community
that I won't list because surely I'll leave somebody off.

And in my mind's eye,
I see Jesus talking to them
not wearing a robe,
but Wrangler's and a faded, grease-stained, western shirt,
smelling like the sweetness of fresh cut hay,
mingled with gasoline, dirt, sweat and grease
talking about haying equipment
breaking soil, seeds, cutting,

He wouldn't talk to them
in the thees and thous of King James language,
or with airs of arrogance, or with fancy speech.
He would talk to them in the language of
of cattlemen and farmers . . .
showing Himself and His kingdom,
with stories about everyday working life.


So much goes through my mind and heart
as I create a piece of art.
Some more than others.
This was one full of God speaking to my heart.
Putting a message into it.
He is the one who sits in the seat of the machinery . . .

Along with the piece above, these below are a tribute
to my home

and family and heritage

and a prayer for those hard working hands

that have meant so much in my life.

I'm thrilled to be taking my work to my favorite gallery in the Black Hills of South Dakota:

Showing Art & Photography at Jon Crane Gallery

256 Main Street, Hill City, South Dakota

Sunday, July 31, 2011, 2:00-5:00 p.m.

Art, photos, and text, copyright 2011.  Jodene (Jodi) Shaw.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Come Out of Your Shell

Ever felt like you were
in a shell?

And you weren't sure
if you should come out into
this newness
and own it
as your uniqueness?

Well, our "flying"
all looks a little different
because, well, we all have
unique flights to take.

And after coming out of that shell
stretching and growing our
wings there comes a time to take a deep breath
and take that
flying leap of faith.

So here are a couple results of those
flying leaps of faith
I started taking about a year ago:

Showing Art & Photography at Jon Crane Gallery
256 Main Street, Hill City, South Dakota
Sunday, July 31, 2011, 2:00-5:00 p.m.

November Artist of the Month
Sturgis Public Library
Art on display all of November
Tentative reception November 5 

As I type these,
I feel like I am making announcement
for someone else.

Psalm 37:4
Delight yourself in the Lord
and He will give you
the desires
of your

These two dates on my calendar
fulfilled something
that I barely allowed my brain
to indulge in thoughts
about a year ago
as I was just
stepping my little
beak out
of the

Gratitude to the Lord
for His grace
to allow me to be working in something
I enjoy so much.

Linking up with Jen
and these ladies at
Finding Heaven

Friday, July 22, 2011

Recent Art Special Orders


sneak peek

I've been working on special orders.

Megan's mom ordered this one
for her graduation.

Megan has traveled
doing mission and outreach work

in India, Ethiopia, inner city USA, Alaska, and more.

Working on this piece
for an 18 year old
stirred prayers in my core . . .
~what is my part, Lord, what would you have me do?~
~what am I doing to share the abundance in my life?~
~show me, and may I have courage to follow~


And then this one
Dr. Katie Harwood:
chiropractor, young mother, and wife
to Shawn who will be heading with the
National Guard's 842nd
to Afghanistan.


And by special request from
Michelle in Canada
for friends who recently had a baby:


And for Stacy whose friend will be moving soon:

It is an honor to have been trusted
to create art for others.
Fulfilling to my heart.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

With all your heart

What's your story?

Sing it.

Tell it.

Write it.

Share it.





That's what the little sparrow

and my little


remind me to do.

Be wholehearted.

With all my heart.

What is it that calls you

with all your heart?

To be.

To do.

To share.

To give.

Be wholehearted.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Hills Alive


More than a song.

More than a style of music.

Living worship.




what we have to give.

Soli Deo Gloria.

For His glory alone.

{Flatfoot 56 . . . Celtic flavored punk/rock}

100 plus degrees in Memorial Park.

Thousands of people.

Different styles.

{Couldn't understand much of what they sang,
but it was fun and this guy was a happy spirit.}

Different heritage.

Different backgrounds.

Different gifts.

But the same


The same


The same


{Sarah Little Cloud
shared shade with me and made these for me.}

The same




The one we all need.

Because each one

comes to a point to realize

we are not strong enough

on our own.

But that






{Shaw Cousins with Matthew West}









{Third Day
~ my niece said
lead singer Mac Powell
looks like Jesus in skinny jeans.}

I am not strong enough

or done enough

or brave enough

or physically fit enough

or rich enough

or good enough,

but He is

and He gives me

what He has

to complete me.

To make up where I lack.

To make me