Saturday, November 16, 2013

Greetings from Austin Street

Happy Saturday! All is well at 811. Bruce and I worked around the house today. The work really tired Bruce and so he has rested from about mid-afternoon on.

Prayer alert! I am asking prayer for our oldest and dearest friends Carme and Dave Russell. Dave is suffering from a severe infection and is in the hospital in San Antonio. Please lift him in prayer. Thank you so much.

Lord, thank you for the privilege of worshiping you in so many ways. Thank you especially for the gift of music and singing.  Lord, may we honor your name in our worship and sing your praises from the depths of our soul. I love you Lord. In Jesus name, Amen

“But unto you who revere and worshipfully fear My name shall the Sun of Righteousness arise with healing in His wings and His beams, and you shall go forth…like calves [released] from the stall and leap for joy.”

Malachi 4: 2

The title of my meditation tonight is WORSHIP.  God is worthy of all worship and praise. Those who worship and adore God find healing in his wings. Music for me is very healing. Singing soothes my soul and also makes it soar. Bruce and I discovered we could sing together the first day we met and we began singing together that very night.  We attended a Sunday School Class dinner and some ladies heard us sing. The next day I received a phone call from one of the ladies to come and sing at a gathering and our concert ministry was launched. We have always sung Christian music and held the name of God as sacred word.

When we honor the name of God we are privileged to the promises of God and find healing in the intimacy in the Presence of God. Intimate worship of God can be found in prayer, in reading scripture, hearing the word preached or lifting our hands in worship and praise.  I think as important as an intimate worship of God is telling someone else about the One we worship. When we share God with someone else then we invite them to become worshipers too who can learn to honor the name of God.

Take joy in the journey remembering that hope does not disappoint. Wear comfortable shoes and get some sleep. Love you all, Bruce and Gaylene




Friday, November 15, 2013

Greetings from Austin Street

TGIF Today God is First on Friday!  All is well at 811. Bruce had some sort of participation in a music group today at the Center. I am not sure exactly what he does, but there is a family conference coming up in a week and I am going to find out. I will support anything that will help him find his singing voice again. Currently he sings the blessing at each meal we are together and “Happy Birthday.” I think some frustration is beginning to happen because tonight he expressed that he felt he was going to be this way forever.  So if you have an extra prayer, say it for him to try and celebrate the victories and the progress he has made and to not become road blocked when his language does not come out as he would like.  Thanks. God is good and love wins. 

God, tonight I ask you to send encouragement to Bruce. I know you have not forgotten him because so many of us lift his name each day. Help him to not become discouraged and to continue to push through this time and expectantly believe that his brain and abilities will be restored.  You live in eternity Lord, and we your children live on earthly time and it is difficult for us to wait. I know this waiting and working is not in vain. You will do more that I can ask or expect. Thank you Lord for your provision that helps us rejoice in all things. I love you Lord. In Jesus name, Amen.

Waiting is one of the toughest things we do here on earth. I think waiting on the Lord to work on our schedule is particularly difficult for us. We get weary and our hope might begin to fade. Do we ever think, “Why isn’t God working on this? or Why is this taking so long? and my personal favorite, Why aren’t You answering my prayers NOW?!” Faith is a gift from God, but trust is something that has to be worked on and renewed everyday. When we learn to trust God in EVERY circumstance then the desires of our hearts are received in joy to our Savior and the power and faithfulness of God will not be returned in discouragement, but in ways that we never thought possible giving us cause to rejoice.

I’ve thrown myself headlong into your arms—I’m celebrating your rescue. I’m singing at the top of my lungs. I’m so full of answered prayers.”

Psalm 13: 5-6

Take joy in the journey remembering that hope does not disappoint. Wear comfortable shoes and get some sleep. Love you all, Bruce and Gaylene


Thursday, November 14, 2013

Greetings from Austin Street

Happy Thursday! It has been a wonderful day here at 811.  Birthday greetings from many friends and family on FB.  Dinner with Bruce and Geni and a song to begin my day. This morning Bruce sang Happy birthday to me and sang my name. It was a holy moment. In four months he has said my name once and today sang my name. I was witness to a miracle and the recipient of one. I managed to cry my way through today, but they were tears of joy and thanksgiving.

 Dear Lord, thank you for your loving kindness and gifts of grace so generously given. Your timing is always perfect. I praise you and thank you for your marvelous comfort and hope. Help me to encourage others and share your presence and assurance when others are hurting.   I love you Lord. In Jesus name, Amen.

 Tonight the title of my meditation is Teardrops. How appropriate for today. I was given a gift of such wonderful sweetness that the tears of joy and thanksgiving flowed throughout the day. The meditation tonight reminded me that God has not allowed one of my tears to drop to the ground. God has caught them all and made them into something beautiful. My tears of joy and thanksgiving today were born out of grief. They are a sign that God knows fully all that I have been through and is using all of this for training to comfort others who are going through similar situations. I know what it is to hurt as others have hurt and fear as they have feared. I want to help people who have been similar situations that they can live through and live on and be comforted as I have been comforted. My tears and hurts are transforming me for opportunities for ministry. So I praise God for the miracles I have witnessed and those I have received and I pray that I will be able to help others be comforted because of the wisdom and kindness given to me by our merciful and loving God.

“They who sow in tears shall reap in joy and singing.”

Psalm 126: 6

Take joy in the journey remembering that hope does not disappoint. Wear comfortable shoes and get some sleep. Love you all, Bruce and Gaylene

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Greetings from Austin Street

Happy Wednesday!  All continues well at 811. I spoke with our family member today. Other than being very sore is doing well. Please continue to pray for healing and a peaceful spirit. Thank you. And…I think I have finished the first of the last papers. This is the paper that will replace the epic failed paper from earlier in the semester. Please pray that this one passes. I have learned a lot and I know this paper is far better than the other one. But please pray anyway.  Thank you!!

Lord, I want to know you more. Teach me your ways. Thank you that when I seek you, I find you and everything I need and all that my heart desires. You are and always will be my perfect Defender. I praise you for covering me with your wisdom, strength, and love. May you be exalted forever!  I love you Lord. In Jesus name, Amen.


I am on the last days of pursing the Master’s of Divinity Degree began in the fall of 2007. Yes, I have worked really hard, read many books, written many papers, assisted in worship in chapel, sat many hours in classrooms and received instruction from brilliant theologians. I have enjoyed every minute of this time and I will miss many things about my time in seminary.  For someone who will turn 58 tomorrow achieving this degree is a huge accomplishment!  What I hope I have done in all of this time and work is that I have not just pursued this degree, but that I have pursued God.  When we pursue God we receive joy and fulfillment that is far greater than the diploma given that affirms that I have filled all of the requirements necessary to hold a Master’s of Divinity. Pursuing God gives me a firm place to stand while filling my life with the presence, love and purpose of God. So my friends let us seek God with all of our hearts and I know that when we are surrounded with the love of God, wisdom and strength for each task will be available to us.  Counting it down my friends.


“Those who know your name will trust in you, for you, LORD, have never forsaken those who seek you.”

Psalm 9: 10

Take joy in the journey remembering that hope does not disappoint. Wear comfortable shoes, a put an extra blanket on the bed tonight and get some sleep. Love you all, Bruce and Gaylene

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Greetings from Austin Street

Happy Tuesday! All is well at 811. Bruce has taken the air conditioner out of our window and the heater is going. This will be our first winter without our heated waterbed. We have plenty of blankets and so we will see how warm we will stay. Today I sang my last special piece of music in Brite Chapel. I was accompanied by two extraordinary musicians on flute and piano. I sang, “A Simple Song”  from the Bernstein Mass.  As excited as I am to graduate, I am also mildly terrified and sad to be leaving Brite Seminary. I have enjoyed every moment of my time at Brite. I have made many, many lifelong friends and have learned more than I could have ever imagined. I have received instruction from the finest theological minds who not only teach what they know, but teach through the power of the Holy Spirit and in Jesus name.  I have one class day left, two papers, one test paper and one in class exam. The countdown has begun. Thank you all for your prayers over the years and hang in there with me just a bit longer. God is good and love wins.

God, thank you for teaching me about your healing and forgiveness. It is my desire to walk in loving reverence for you.  There have been lots of times in the last few years that I have faced really tough situations. In all of the sadness and times of great joy you have brought great comfort and been a reminder of how faithful you are. I trust you God and on you I can always depend. I love you Lord. In Jesus name, Amen.

A member of my family has had some recent serious health issues.  You have been praying for this yet unnamed person and your prayers have made all the difference.  Our beloved is doing well. Tragedy strikes and there are times we are placed in positions where we have to be the strong one. It usually happens when we feel we have been kicked in the gut with a Number 12 boot.  We try to be brave, but all we really want to do is cry. When those times happen let us go to God and be honest about how we feel when we are feeling really weak. It is our daily trust in God that makes us strong and nothing we do on our own.  Let us find ways to let God be strong for us. Scripture, prayer and daily writing work for me. What works for you?

“As the mountains surround Jerusalem; the LORD surrounds his people now and forever.”

Psalm 125: 1

Take joy in the journey remembering that hope does not disappoint. Wear comfortable shoes, throw an extra blanket or two in the bed and get some sleep. Love you all Bruce and Gaylene

Monday, November 11, 2013

Greetings from Austin Street

Happy Monday!  All is well at 811. It has been a long day with a wonderful outcome.  Thank you all for your continuous prayers and gracious thoughts. Please continue to keep each of us in your prayers. Thank you. God is good and love wins.

Dear God, I raise my highest praise to you for all you are and all you do. I thank you for the miracles you bring and allow me to witness. When I stop and remember all of the good things you have done I am sure I don’t remember them all, but I try to always remember your goodness.  Today I give thanks for your gifts of goodness and life and am humbly awed in your loving presence. I love you Lord. In Jesus name, Amen.

Today many of us gathered together approaching God in faith through prayer.  We were earnestly seeking God to be present with us throughout the day. God so loves it when we come to Him in faith and belief in His presence and then leave God to do the work that only God can do. God does not expect perfection from us but rejoices in the search.  As we continue to grow in our relationship with our Creator God the more our desires line up with the content of God’s heart. When we are going through difficult times God pours out upon us His tender, overflowing love. All we have to do is receive the love given and let the balm of comfort and grace wash over us bringing the healing and peace we desire.

 And you will seek Me, and find Me, when you search for me with all your heart.”

Jeremiah 29: 13

Take joy in the journey remembering that hope does not disappoint. Wear comfortable shoes, throw an extra blanket on the bed and get some sleep.  Love you all, Bruce and Gaylene


Sunday, November 10, 2013

Greetings from Austin Street

Blessed Sunday to you all!  All is well at 811. Please continue to keep our family and extended family in prayer to night and into tomorrow. Thank you, mighty and faithful prayer warriors. God is good and love wins.


Lord, I praise you for your holy loving ways. Thank you that I can always count on you. Thank you for providing for me. Your grace is sufficient for all our needs and your healing is always complete.  I love you Lord. In Jesus name, Bruce and Gaylene


God challenges us to do many things in this life. Some of the tasks are wonderful and some of the tasks will be accomplished through taking steps of faith.  The way we accomplish those things asked of us is by beginning our day in quiet devotion to God. Right now my life is full to overflowing and I must admit that I do not have my daily devotion before having coffee or even getting dressed. But when I have gotten to work or to the seminary I take time before I begin to teach the children or the professor come into the classroom I stop and have a quiet scripture time, brief devotion and an unobtrusive prayer time.  It only takes a few minutes, but it helps my day begin well and the day seems to go smoother. Here is the thing…God will meet me wherever I am and whatever I am doing. The one consuming desire God has is for us to know Him better.  Spending time with God is the best use of my time I have all day and makes the remainder of my day have new meaning and a little less stressful. A


“You answer us in amazing ways, God our savior. People everywhere in the earth and the sea trust you.”

Psalm 65: 5-6

Take joy in the journey remembering that hope does not disappoint. Wear comfortable shoes and get some sleep. Love you all, Bruce and Gaylene