Where It All Began!

A ‘Throwback Thursday‘ picture of where my love for horses all began!

Circa 1970?   Mark Schutter ©2014

Circa 1970?    ~Mark Schutter ©2014

I could not really say if this was the very first time I rode a horse by myself, but it definitely was part of what started my journey and love for horses.  I believe this was taken around 1970 when I was 5 or 6, on my uncle’s ranch in central Washington state. (Someone correct me if I am wrong! :))

During my lifetime there has only been one short period of time when my family actually owned horses and this was when I was in high school.  My love for this amazing animal has never wavered.  I have always looked for opportunities to ride and be around horses.  From hunting and pack trips into the wilderness, beach rides and even climbing over fences to ride horses in a nearby field.  Yes, my friends and I got caught and got into trouble! I even started studying veterinary science in college, before turning to pursue my other passion, art.

If you browse my artwork here on the blog in the tab Art Gallery or on my Fine Art America site you will see the image of the horse as a recurring theme.  The challenge of capturing the essence, power, beauty and poetry of this animal I love so much continues to drive me, today.

I guess you could also say it has come full circle as my daughter is now pursing her dreams of horses.  She is taking riding lessons in the Hunter English style from Josie Gillespie of Gillespie Performance Horses. We currently rent a horse for her to ride named Taj Rico, but we just call him Rico.  Rico is the only registered Spanish Arabian all white pinto, and just a beautiful horse.

charis and rico 2The above picture is from Grace Unveiled, my wife’s blog, and her post Arabian’sabout our daughter’s riding. You can also see more pictures under her recent Thankful Thursdaypost.

Now, tell me what is your passion?

Jaded Silence

covered by a gray skyA Gray Sky
sitting side by side
words left unspoken
thoughts left unsaid
love is unconsummated

behind an invisible mountain
standing side by sideAn Invisible Mountain
promises are unmet
hopes are uncertain
destiny is unfulfilled

beyond the physical world
swirling in the slipstreamJaded Silence
moments slowly pass
quietly slipping away
as our time fades
like many others
we live in
jaded silence

~Mark Schutter ©2014

The Silence of God

My soul, wait in silence for God only, For my hope is from Him.
~Psalm 62:5

When we experience ‘silence’ from God we may doubt our faith and even the existence of God. We so often are told the lie that silence signifies a negative experience. We pray, we listen and hear nothing but silence in response to our cries. We yearn for an audible voice to break the silence, to calm our growing fears and doubts.

Could God actually speak loudest in His silence?

God does speak of His everlasting love, faithfulness, power, gentleness, compassion, sacrifice, righteousness and grace. To hear that still small voice, we must quiet ourselves, remaining still and listening with more than just our ears and believing that God’s unending grace will be unveiled.

I believe, God’s voice may be found in…
• The rising & setting of the sun
• A snow-capped mountain range
• Clouds floating across the sky
• A bird soaring high overhead
• The delicateness of a butterfly’s wings
• A colorful rainbow after the rain
• The body of Jesus hanging lifeless on the cross
• The silent echo’s of an empty tomb

We tell ourselves God is silent, but He is not. We equate this perceived silence as His disappointment in our lives and nothing could be further from the truth as He daily shares His wondrous creation and love with us daily. When God seems silent and distant we should desire to remain there, to be captured by Him. As I grow restless in the silence, as thoughts arise that I must seek the answers elsewhere. I remember Peter’s response to Jesus when asked in the sixth chapter of John if he wanted to go away also. Peter replied, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.”

The answers I seek I believe are found nowhere else; so I will rest, captured within the silence of God.

Then the sun was darkened,... ~Luke 23:45

Then the sun was darkened,… ~Luke 23:45

But it did not and has not ended there.

 He is not here, for He is risen, as He said… ~Matthew 28:6

Happy Easter – HE is Risen!

Scars Across Our Hearts

broken hopes leave
scars across our hearts
dripping crimson drops that leave a trail
easy to follow for those who would look

♥♥♥

few would dare to see the misery

the pain and the hurt

that lives deep inside of you and me

♥♥♥

lives are maimed
while souls are chained
the blood that flows leaves us weak and dazed
we pray for healing carried on wings of faith

~Mark Schutter ©2014