Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Greetings from Austin Street
Happy Tuesday! All is well here at 811.

The candle is lit…

Dear God, I am listening. Help me experience your presence and mold my life into a vessel for which you would place you presence that will draw others to you in a deeply personal way. I ask you to make me ready for representative leadership this weekend as the support team chaplain. I lift up the entire team as we each have been called to serve. I praise you for this ministry. I praise you for those who will receive the gospel and that you are preparing their hearts to come into relationship with you. Thank you Lord and as you bless us with your loving presence may we bless others with your love. I love you Lord, in Jesus’ name, amen.

There is never a time in our lives when we are not with God. God is completely aware of our every need, every desire, every hurt, every joy and every request we make. But I think our greatest joy is simply being in God’s presence. I love closing my eyes, with some lovely music playing and experiencing the warm and peaceful calmness that surrounds me. I am in the presence of God.  It is during those times that God seems closer to me.  It almost feels as if I am sitting at the feet of Jesus listening to Him and His teachings.

God draws near to us to help us. We are given the opportunity to gain strength and wisdom when we are in the presence of God. So even if we are busy, driving or in quiet contemplation we can draw near to God and know (as my meditations says) “that there is no better place to be.” 

“The Lord is beside you to help you.”
Psalm 110: 5

Take joy in the journey praying as you go and be assured that God is always with you. Wear comfortable shoes and get some sleep. Love you all, Bruce and Gaylene

Monday, September 29, 2014

Greetings from Austin Street
Happy Monday!  All is well here at 811. It was my first day with children at school. It was great to see faculty and work with the students once again.  Please continue to pray for the Kairos Prison Ministry Weekend that will begin on Thursday. Bruce is serving inside the prison with the participants and the team. I am serving as the Chapel Leader with the Support Team. We all spend a great deal of time in prayer as we pray for each other and pray for the participants. Please join our prayers as we serve in this ministry.  Thank you.

The candle is lit…

Dear God, You walked ahead of your disciples on the way to Jerusalem. When you are in front of me I see where you are in my life. Lord Jesus, You are my great High Priest. I kneel before you knowing you are ever present reconciling me back to you each time I pray a prayer and ask for forgiveness for my sins. Jesus, you are completely worthy of my praise.  Thank you for meeting in the sacred space of my heart in love, unmerited grace, tender mercy and forgiveness. I love you Lord, in Jesus’ name, amen.

I love the stories of the Old Testament.  I also love reading psalms when I recognize the stories reflected in the poetry of the psalms.  There is one psalm (and maybe there are others) that makes what I believe is a reference to Jesus.  In the Old Testament the priest of the Temple represented the people before God. He would take their prayers, offer sacrifices for their sins and teach them about God. The problem about the earthly priests is that their offerings were only temporary. The sacrifices would have to be repeated.

But Psalm 110 speaks of the Great High Priest who will bring eternal salvation. This Great High Priest will not have temporary, but eternal power to forgive sins once and for all. This Great High Priest will not ask for our sacrifice, but will off Himself as the sacrifice for sin. My meditation tonight writes, “When Jesus came, he not only became the flawless everlasting sacrifice for your offenses, but became your eternal High Priest.”  When Jesus came to earth He taught the people about God by being the model of God’s grace and love teaching and preparing each of us to be close to God.  The good news for us as believers in Jesus and children of God is that we can trust Jesus with our deepest needs for He is our Great High Priest and will represent us before God in love.

“The LORD made a solemn promise and will not take it back. ’You will be a priest forever.”
Psalm 110: 4
“The LORD (God) says to my Lord (the Messiah), Sit at my right hand…Your people will offer themselves willingly in the day of Your power, in the beauty of holiness.”
Psalm 110: 1, 3

Take joy in the journey praying as you go. Wear comfortable shoes and get some sleep. Love you all, Bruce and Gaylene

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Greetings from Austin Street
Blessed Sunday to you all!  All is well here at 811. 

The candle is lit…

Dear God, I believe that you give your power to my prayers.  Thank you for giving each of us the way to speak to you.  Thank you for speaking to us through Your Word, those who preach the Word, others who pray the Word and when we serve the Word. Thank you for being the power in our prayers that changes things. I love you Lord, thank you for loving us, in Jesus’ name, amen.

The power in the prayers we pray does not lie with us, but in the One who hears the prayer.  It is the transforming love and grace of God that works through people who pray. When we submit ourselves  in prayer praising God first then God can accomplish His purposes.  I heard a speaker yesterday who was absolutely adamant that before we petition God for anything we praise God for everything of which we can possibly think. God works through His people who urgently and sincerely pray to Him. 

My meditation tonight says, “God sends your prayers out with the power to affect change and bless.”  I had never thought about God sending my prayers out with power to affect change and bless. I just thought I prayed and God took care of the rest. I am going to ponder that statement and see if I can put my own reflection into words. I do believe that we are called to praise God, to pray for each other and to confess our sins to God and one another.  I also take comfort in the knowledge that God remains close to those who pray. 

So my friends I will pray for you in the days to come and ask you to pray for each other and for me. Bruce and I are preparing for the Kairos Prison Ministry Weekend. It is a program based on prayer and the words, Listen, Listen, Love, Love.  So may we all listen to God this week and experience His loving Presence and in faith believing God will take our prayers and bless others bringing about change; even if the only changes we see are in us and we are blessed.

Confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, so that you will be healed. The prayer of a good person has a powerful effect.”
James 5: 16
“The Lord is far from the wicked, but He hears the prayer of the [consistently] righteous.”
Proverbs 15: 29

Take joy in the journey praying as you go. Wear comfortable shoes and get some sleep. Love you all, Bruce and Gaylene