Artist bio

My name is Isaiah Marshall. I am originally from Detroit, MI but call Spring Hill, TN home. I am a Spoken Word Artist, Author, and Speaker. I make art to glorify God, edify the Church, and to make Him known. I have the privilege to share my work on various platforms and look forward to sharing with you as I make art from broken pieces.


Tug of War


Spoken Word

Artist Statement

This piece is a piece called Tug of War. This piece was is a result of personal experience. I wrote this at a time after I lost two very important people in my life, my dad and grandmother, within four months of each other. In that season of my life I felt as if I was being attacked spiritually. As a youth pastor and Chaplain, I have the privilege of walking with others in their suffering. However, at this time I was also walking through suffering of my own. I was a wounded healer. This piece points us to Jesus who wants our whole heart and exposes the realization that the enemy wants nothing more than to keep us from giving our whole to Him. Jesus relentlessly pursues us. In this Tug of War for our hearts, Jesus wants to capture ALL of it if we will let Him.

How it fits into contest

This piece highlights the Spiritual battle that exists in us. The tug of war of our hearts. The emphasis is the Whole Armor of God found in Ephesians 6.

Music / Sound Sources

Poem written and performed by Isaiah Marshall.

Transcript / Lyrics

We are all familiar with the game of tug of war where we
Pull this rope back and forth, it reminds me of the lines that divide
Pulling us in different directions, at the intersection of confusion
Like, should I take the red pill or the blue one
Like, is this reality or illusion, a matrix, this fantasy,
This kingdom where we are the king painting the world’s narrative
Like Mike Angelo painted the Sistine. We, believe
That we are the artist of this world’s story but we are the canvas
We have been enlisted into God’s Army we are at war. A tug of war.
This war is not against flesh and blood though it often appears that way
As the ground has consumed so much blood making its plate from
Our hate. It asks the question, Am I my brothers keeper? The ground is crying out
because gluttony is a sin. And sin pulls us towards Death away from the One gives life
because what’s forbidden always looks pleasing to the sight
but I chose to stand as one who’s prepared to fight. 300! We are mighty men of valor.
I stand.
I’ve sagged my pants of conformity for to long now I stand with the belt of Truth around
My waist. I believe Truth, just like I believe the sun sets in the sky.
Not just because I see it but because by it I see everything. Truth is everything
That keeps me from falling for anything. I stand!
As one who has something to stand for. Tug of war.
I’ve worked the traps of the enemy by bench pressing the breast plate of righteousness.
My righteousness is only because of Him. He uses me to exercise the Body
Because this body is His dwelling place. So I work out Salvation shaping my core.
I stand as one that has something to fight for, tug of war.
This battle is not for the faint of heart, its known to get hostile
That’s why, I, march the front lines with feet readied by the Gospel of peace
Which ironically, also divides yet it multiplies. My feet callus yet beautiful how the Gospel saves lives.
I take up the shield of faith because faith in Him, the solid rock, is what I stand on
It protects me from the flames of the enemy. The enemy roams around like a Lion
Roaring seeking someone to devour like an entrée, so I take
The helmet of Salvation as I head into battle, I stay strapped with the sword of the Spirit which is God’s word.
His word is bond, giving sight to the blind no longer bound by chains I’m free, I’m out of Egypt, no longer a slave to sin. Eaten meat, all grown up like boys to men. The beast was slayed. The debt was paid. Head bowed praying to the Lord for boldness to proclaim the Gospel that saves lives.
He overcame the grave which means death was defeated. I call that liberty, we call that victory
We fight the good fight of faith that was already won on Calvary. He died because He had something to die for,
He rose, like the perfect gift you give to the one you love, He rose because He had something to rise for, to capture our hearts in this tug of war.

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