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Who I Really Am



 
If you leave here with one thing, I hope that it is this... God loves you for who you are, not who you pretend to be!
 
You are probably here checking out my page, listening to music, reading my bio, looking at pictures and maybe watching a video or two. You may have come to purchase a CD, download a song or you simply found my place while surfing the net and you're just hanging out reading about what I do and what makes me tick. You might be here as a leader of a church or church program. Or maybe you just don't know why you are here. However it is that you came, I'm hope you will leave knowing more about who I am and what I am called to do.  I started sharing my life years ago, through simply telling my own personal story. I'm here to reach people, whoever you are, because you are just like me. You have a past, a present and, I'm praying, a wonderful future ahead. I want to make sure you leave here today with more than you came expecting. I want you to gain knowledge about who I am and what God called me to do. I want you to hear my story, through my songs. I'm hoping, through my little place on the web, something I shared will connect with you, and you'll understand what I'm all about. I also hope, if you are here and you don't yet know Christ, my place will bring you closer to understanding who He is and how He sees you.  It is my earnest prayer that, for the first time you will gain a better understanding of who you really are by applying this knowledge to create a personal change, growth and total surrender to a new journey with Christ.

This is probably a strange place to expect a thought to pop up or for a life to change, but I know how God works. It will happen. It's taken me all these years as a leader, a Christian artist, songwriter and speaker to finally see "Who I Really Am". I never took the time to figure it out. I was too busy, being busy, in the church to even know who I really was. I was busy pretending to be all the things people wanted me to be. I was tired, afraid and hurting! I couldn't let anyone see that. I'm pretty sure someone will stop by, who will be able to relate to those emotions and feelings. That is what my message and my new CD project is all about
"Who I Really Am"
 
Hi, my name is Leah and I'm so glad you found my site!

Leah's Friends

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  • Janet Peters

    Janet Peters leesburg fl

    Yes I would like your new download please. God Bless you!

    Yes I would like your new download please. God Bless you!

  • Jewels57

    Jewels57 Vancouver, B.C.

    Hi Sweetie! I am always uplifted and inspired by your candour and ability to put the 'real Leah' out there! I want to get up and sing with you! Your music is always relatable, singable and crafted well. Thanks for giving me a musical window into your heart. We have many similar interests and life parallels. You are a precious & sweet friend. It is my personal privilege to have you as part of my 'inner circle.' Love and huge hugs, Jewels :love::)

    Hi Sweetie! I am always uplifted and inspired by your candour and ability to put the 'real Leah' out there! I want to get up and sing with you! Your music is always relatable, singable and crafted well. Thanks for giving me a musical window into your heart. We have many similar interests and life parallels. You are a precious & sweet friend. It is my personal privilege to have you as part of my 'inner circle.' Love and huge hugs,
    Jewels lovesmile

  • Pam Rutland

    Pam Rutland Walton Communities

    Love this and love your music.

    Love this and love your music.

  • Lori McGrath

    Lori McGrath Hickory, NC

    I LOVE IT LEAH! Our current Bible study that I am teaching has been all about this very topic and how also that our past does not dictate who we are today in the Lord. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE IT! Thanks for sharing the link with me!:)

    I LOVE IT LEAH! Our current Bible study that I am teaching has been all about this very topic and how also that our past does not dictate who we are today in the Lord. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE IT! Thanks for sharing the link with me!smile

  • Nancy Mleczk

    Nancy Mleczk Turners Falls MA

    We were blessed by having Leah at Faith Baptist Church! I would encourage any church, or group to have Leah at your evenT

    We were blessed by having Leah at Faith Baptist Church!
    I would encourage any church, or group to have Leah at
    your evenT

  • Cathy Jo

    Cathy Jo Clanton, AL

    Love the site, music and overall message. Keep up the great work and encouragement. Love you cuz!!

    Love the site, music and overall message. Keep up the great work and encouragement.
    Love you cuz!!

  • Cyndi Smith

    Cyndi Smith Buford, GA

    Zebra Hugs, you know all the time I've messaged you I really did not take the time to get to know the real Leah until tonight. You are a beautiful soul and I can't wait to meet you. Have a very Merry Christmas and New Year! Cyndi

    Zebra Hugs, you know all the time I've messaged you I really did not take the time to get to know the real Leah until tonight. You are a beautiful soul and I can't wait to meet you. Have a very Merry Christmas and New Year!
    Cyndi

  • Patti

    Patti California

    Well, why didn't I come to this site earlier?? I love it!!!!!!!! Been your FB friend for over a year, and just now wandered over here...:D

    Well, why didn't I come to this site earlier?? I love it!!!!!!!! Been your FB friend for over a year, and just now wandered over here...biggrin

  • Dannel

    Dannel Davenport, IA

    Ok. So I'm a little slow in figuring this all out. I just ordered your CD!!! I'm loving the music while I type! It makes me smile. And I love the CD cover! love ya!

    Ok. So I'm a little slow in figuring this all out. I just ordered your CD!!! I'm loving the music while I type! It makes me smile. And I love the CD cover! love ya!

  • Kym O'Connor

    Kym O'Connor Sweet Home Alabama

    LOVE your beautiful and powerful voice! So glad I stopped by to be blessed by your gifts today! Love and zebra hugs my friend! xoxo :love: xoxo

    LOVE your beautiful and powerful voice! So glad I stopped by to be blessed by your gifts today! Love and zebra hugs my friend! xoxo love xoxo

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Again, I Say Rejoice! 




REJOICE IN THE LORD ALWAYS AND AGAIN I SAY REJOICE!
 
Life isn't always going down the road we would like.  Things get in the way of our happiness, and sometimes we are just plain caught off guard.  But in everything we can still rejoice.  It might not come overnight, it might be hard to find reason to rejoice, but God clearly wants us to remember him through our rough patches and difficult times.  The only way I know how to keep him fresh in my mind is to talk to him and rejoice in him. Even through the pain.
 
So, if you are reading this and are going through a really tough time, STOP and rejoice in the Lord! Rejoice that you have him by your side and that you have him to turn to.  Rejoice that he is good, consistent and loving. He's never changing, kind and consistent. Rejoice that he believes in you, gives you strength and picks you up when you are weak. Rejoice that he is who he says he is.
 
Rejoice in the Lord always and again I say rejoice.
Phil 4:1

Fantastic Friday - Take Jesus With You! 

FANTASTIC FRIDAY EVERYONE!
Whatever you might be going through, have gone through and still holding on to, I just wanted to remind my friends that Jesus truly is there for you. There is real amazing joy ahead of you as you walk through whatever it is you are walking though with Jesus.  So today, if you haven't already done this, pick HIM up along the way and take him with you!  1 Peter 1:6

Jesus, Jesus, Jesus - Sweetest Name I Know! 




WOW, I found this in my collection of pics I have and boy did my mind go back to my childhood.  This song brought back so many memories.  I remember singing this song at the church I attend and grew up in.  It reminds me of my grandma, my church, the friends I had/have and a lot of fun times at my church.  This songs takes me back to a time where I was learning to trust God as a child and grow in him.  I can truly say that Jesus is the sweetest name I know and that he fills my every longing, and keeps me singing as I go.  This song is one of many that set the path for me in music ministry.  So many, many memories.

 

What song brings back memories for you? Post on my blog, I'd love to read your stories!

Leah

Proverbs 3: 5-6 He Will Direct Your Path 




And He will make straight your path! And He will make straight your path?
 
I have been a Christian since the age of five. I have trusted God and worked for Him almost my whole life. I have been what I would call a faithful servant. I love ministry and I know He called me into it. I have never questioned that, but I have struggled from time to time when to change my paths. Some things I have done have been just seasons and letting go of those seasons have been tough, what I’m suppose to do next even tougher to know.
 
Moving to Georgia has been an amazing journey but has left me in the wilderness. Everything I knew had changed! Where I live, people I know, my church, my surrounding and the list goes on. At the same time there were changes going on in how I was doing in ministry. What I found was, I was lost. It was almost like what I think people with children feel when their children leave home. I think they call it empty nest feelings.  I was in such a panic to figure out my life that I did what I do best. I kicked in. I started working at how to move forward, how to make things happen and find what God wanted for me. God as given me a desire and that desire sometimes overflows and doesn't always lead to the best directions for my life. Not that they are situations that are good or bad, but just maybe more waste of my time kind of things.
 
I am not a waiter! I don't wait to make things happen! That has always made me who I am and it has always opened doors for me. God didn't design me to wait.  That honestly isn't something I really understand and can annoy me. If I asked someone to do something, I'm not asking people to do it tomorrow. That is why I just do it myself.  You can ask my hubby, the poor guy totally understands the waiting thing and he's married to a person who is NOT a waiter.  He knows when I ask him to do something I'm probably not meaning when he finds time, or when he sees fit. I mean for him to do it now. He has no concept of time. He needs deadlines; I am more of a self-motivator. That's what makes us work well together believe it or not.
 
But then, a few months ago as things began to unravel in my ministries with the move, with a women's group I had and with my own personal ministry, a couple of artist friends I have said during a conversation. "Why don't you just wait to see what God might have for you?  See where He leads? Don't do anything and see if he directs your path."  WHAT? I mean that's all well and good for other people but that's not how God designed me. Had they completely forgot whom they were talking to?  He leads me through my hard work. LOL! I'm a huge believer that God expects us to show up and that we don't just stand around waiting for Him to make things happen. I know how waiting on God to make the first move works, and that doesn't get too many people in ministry very far.   Anyhow, I gave a half OK; I might do that but wasn't really committing to it.  Then somewhere after the move I just gave up. I thought OK, maybe I am supposed to wait, maybe I'm washed up and this road is now the end. So I did it, I waited and waited and waited. I also found out looking back that God was putting things, people and opportunities in front of me as I was waiting that didn't connect to anything and I wasn't really moving forward with. But over time they would begin to connect.
 
God began connecting me with people. Some people I didn't really know I was supposed to connect with. We had a musical connection but I just didn't see that God wanted us to connect beyond that. Not for any reason really other than I wasn't paying attention. And maybe I wasn't supposed to pay attention. I think He needed to work at this for a few months, in small steps so I could put it all together, you know let me work it out in my brain. Before I knew it, I was back in ministry. Not that I was out by all means but as the pun is used, "We're Back in Business".  God had connected me to people, ministries, and organizations and I did nothing but watch till it was time for me to engage. He carved my path as I was sitting back and trusting Him and not leaning on my own understandings. He also allowed me to look back and see that He had worked things out for the good of me. I didn't work it out but the He did. I needed to see that.
 
How many times have you taken a situation, a feeling or a direction into your own hands rather than just praying and waiting on God to step in for you? Proverbs 3:5-6 clearly says Trust and Acknowledge Him. Those two things will lead us down the right path. Those two things aren't that easy to apply in a heat of a moment or when changing a direction. So, this week try to apply Trusting in the Lord with ALL your heart and wait, then acknowledge Him, let Him direct your path. Life is so much easier when God is in control rather than when I am in control. He saves me from heartache, time and um, a few failures.  But most of all, waiting teaches me that I'm not all that! I need God, His leading, His strength, and His guidance. It's not always the right thing for me to be in control if I'm not allowing Him to take the wheel. We are in ministry together and together we shall work. When He says wait, I will wait!
 
Just thought I would pass along my personal lesson for the week. :)
 
 

Smile When It Rains! 

Don't we all? I mean no one likes to be around someone that's just negative all the time. It's easy to be negative. I see that all the time on Facebook. Some people only post when they are mad, hurt, angry or aggressive. Sometimes I think Facebook has just become an outlet for people to vent.  I also think that Christianity shows up on Facebook as finding fault, adding failure, looking for hope and whining. There I said it, Whining! If God is all we need, is bigger than any problem or care we might have then why are we whining all the time? I hate to even write this because my first paragraph is negative. But, hold on. There is a point!
For those of you on my Facebook page, you know that I moved to the Atlanta, GA area about a year ago. It almost seemed like we moved over night. We left a house in Ohio to be sold and we really thought that God would make that house sale overnight. I mean we were 100% sure that this was God's direction for our life so he would make it easy on us by selling the house quickly. NOT! I can't tell you how many times over the last year I have said... We just need to get this house sold. Everyone's always asking me and I always have the same answer. Every night it's the same prayer and every day goes by and we still own a house. This house is not allowing us to let go of where we were. It's not making life down here easy. It's not helping us make plans for our future. It's made me question our direction and honestly God at times. I think we all get to the WHY place from time to time and I certainly have been there with this house. This house as become my thorn in my flesh. I just don't get all the why's but I'm also not going to allow satan to bring me down. I have chosen to "Smile in my Rain". 

Lately the theme that keeps coming back to me is...I am a positive person and I'd like to think that I am. I have a lot of reason why I'm like that. I'm not positive because I don't have struggles, or don't hurt. I have all those things, but I've always been the bounce back girl.  I don't wallow in misery. I kick in, find answers, move forward and get the job down. I draw closer to the one who will walk me through it, God. If I have to work harder I will. I'm not going to post how life stinks for me right now. (Haha, I might write a song about it though) God just didn't design me that way. If I believe in a God that knows all, then I'm going to do my best to smile in my rain because I know He sees it and He'll get me through it.

This last year has been an amazing time of seeing God show up. Seriously, if you only knew what we have been through and some of the stories of how God brought us through some situations that were just out of our control. It's really been a time of Smiling in my Rain.  God brought us to Georgia and for whatever reason our house hasn't sold. It would be easy to focus on that one thing but life isn't about my house selling. Writing that is just as a reminder to me as it is an encouragement to others. Timing is everything and God's timing is perfect. I don't want to wake up every day with a negative attitude because of a house that hasn't sold. I want to smile in my rain and bring humor, support and hope to those that might need it. I want a joyful life filled with enjoyable moments.

So, I guess my question for you is... are you smiling in your rain? Do you need to turn your negative into a better outlook? I'm not saying we need to plaster on a smile all the time and not face what we are going through. I'm just saying we need to give our rain to God so we can do His work and have a joyful life inspite of what the world hands us. Negativity is a tool satan can use to spoil anything. Positivity shuts the door for satan to creep in and steal our life.

Here's hoping we all find our happy place today!

Shine So Others See HIM! 



I have been serving in some capacity my whole life.  And throughout those serving years I have had to re-evaluate, regroup, change directions and even start over in what God was calling me to do. Everything I do I want to make sure that all roads lead back to Christ. I have to remind myself that it's not about me, not about my music and not even about my story. Those are all tools that are being use to reach others. But sometimes in the middle of all that I can get lost. Not so much about my story or my music. I work hard to keep that in check but more about the work of ministry. I get so caught up about making sure I do my work, send out those emails, make connections, find events, etc that I'm back at the wheel and controlling my own directions. I'm so afraid that if I don't work hard enough, God will take it all away.  There is such a fine line between being lazy and being controlling. I believe to be in ministry God is calling us to work. Not just wait, although waiting is something we all need to do too. In everything there is a season.  I don't balance well. I'm an all or nothing kind of gals and God has to place me back in the middle. I'm all work, work, work, work, work and his telling me back off, back off, back off. 

So, I'm working to listen to him so I don't try to SHINE so people can see me but Shine so that, through me others can see HIM!  You would think that would be easy but honestly sometimes you just don't see the nose on your face. God is putting me in check right now. He's wanting me to trust his path and let him lead. He could force me to step back but that's not the kind of God I follow. He wants me to see what I'm doing and he allowed me the time to see it. I need to allow him to open the doors at least for this moment. 

I'm kind of lost down here in Georgia. My friends aren't here. I'm starting over in ministry. I don't have the connections here I've had other places. People don't know me, trust, or even respect me for that matter. I've been told several times I'm a Yankee and although that's funny, there's something in that they are telling me. Through all that I'm trying to SHINE, shine without others seeing me but Christ. All of which is such a fine line walk. I'm trying to allow God to open the doors without me kicking them open.

Are you shining for yourself or shining so others can see Christ? What has God called you to do that you might just need to take a hard look at and see why you are doing that thing. Maybe it's time for you to re-evaluate, regroup, change directions or even restart your path. Here's hoping 2014 you draw closer to Christ and what he wants for you in your every day life. Here's to me staying on his path and keeping my eye's planted on him.

Happy January everyone!

Blessings!
Leah

TELL YOUR STORY! 




WOW, 2014 is upon us!
I have no idea how we get to this place so fast every year, but I'm excited about it! Each new year is like wiping the slate clean. I feel like it's a time to look back and improve our lives. We can start over again if we failed, or begin something new, or reflect on what we went through and see how God brought us through it.

I have been sharing my story all my ministry years. From the beginning I knew God's direction for my life and what I was suppose to share and well, it's me! The good, the bad and the not so pretty. You all know I don't aim to impress. I don't cookie cut anything, try to be someone I'm not or blow things up or embellish my life. Many of you get to read it on FACEBOOK and I'm so glad I get to share with you my life. It really is an open book. Most of all I love to encourage you. There's enough negative in the world and negativity doesn't make anything better. So, for 2014 instead of just reading my story, hearing my story or being encourage by my story I want you to sit down and write YOUR story. Yep, all of it. Take a day, along with a cup of Java and write your story. AND, if you do so... I'd love to read it! If you would be brave enough to write it down I would be honored to read it.

I'm heading out again for 2014 and my goal is to share my story so others will share theirs. There is so much power in our past and it needs to be unleased. I'm beginning with my Facebook friends. You have the first glimpse of what your 2014 could look like through your willingness to share your life through your story. I can't wait to see what God is going to do. I can't wait to see the growth, strength and power you gave just by opening up your life. Are you with me??

Leah
 

I'm Officially a Georgia Licensed Driver! 

Living In Georgia
 
WOW, I'm still having a hard time believing this, but I'm officially a Georgia resident! Today marks the day I am legally a Georgia driver vs an Ohio driver. I still can't believe God landed my husband and I down to this amazing state. It's so beautiful and the people are so friendly. I actually think I fit in real well down here. It's been a busy time for us but I see here in the near future things hopefully wrapping up in Ohio and us moving towards settling down and moving forward. It's been crazy having a house in Ohio and trying to make a life down here in Georgia but God has been faithful. He has supplied us with so many avenues and open doors along with people to help us when we needed it. I am so grateful for his leading, strength and peace. I don't know how people live without Christ in their lives.

Well, it's time for me to get back to scheduling. If you are reading this and are in Georgia or Alabama I look forward to possibly meeting you this year or 2014. Email me or give me a call. I'd love to hear from you!

God's blessings over ya'll! :)

Leah

Georgia On MY Mind! 

 Well, today is the day! We will be packing the 2 cars and our small ministries trailer with all the stuff we are still hoping to take with us and closing our door behind us tightly. It's a very sad day and yet an very exciting day. We are leaving behind but not forgetting some really great friends. We will be connecting back up regularly to some friends in GA we have been separated from for 20 some years and hoping to make new ones in our area.

The last few weeks have been a fog, alot of hard work and emotional to say the least. Jan and I were talking last night and he said, I don't know how people get through this(leaving friends/family behind) without Christ. I said I didn't know. This is definitely up there with the top 10 most difficult things we have ever done. Next, week I'll probably feel completely different about it. LOL! OK, maybe once we finally get into our apartment and feel like we have our own space. But through all this we see God and he continually reminded us we were not alone. We are walking together and he has picked this journey for us. He has clearly picked this journey for us.

Goodbye Toledo(Sylvania), OH! You have been our home for 25 years. We have had our ups and downs with you but you have brought us lots of memories and friends we will always have. You will be missed! Signing off from Ohio and y'all willl be hearing from me from GEORGIA!

Hello Georgia where ministries taken over! Loving the challenges that come with following Jesus!

It's HERE! Well, kind of! 



 
WOW, I can't believe in just a few days I will actually be holding my new CD project "Who I Really Am". But for now here is what the CD will look like and you now can start downloading mp3's right from my page.  I can't tell you all the emotions I have with this new project. If there was ever a CD I could say was me it would be "WHO I REALLY AM" So many stories written from the road. Life hurts, lessons, joys and grace all wrapped up in these 11 songs.  You'll have to check them out on the music page.
© 2012 Leah Martensen