Between Toll and Soul

Lord, I pay bill after bill
And it seems I only get more behind.
I know this isn’t so poetic.
But this is what’s on my mind.
I know money doesn’t matter to You,
And that You grace us with blessings.
Yet we are also to tithe our gifts,
And the bills just keep on pressing.
How do we balance between toll and soul
When we cannot ignore the cost of living?
How do we encourage one another
When there’s pressure to be giving?
So many say don’t worry about it,
That worrying is a sin,
Yet even You know we must give to Caesar
And tithe tithe to the ordained men.
Please forgive me, if my prayer is wrong.
I do not wish to shame.
I am just bringing it to Your throne,
And praying in Your Son’s Holy name.

11-8-2001 Thursday
Written by Gail Brookshire
Inspiration: A normal pay day
Thank You, God, for a paycheck!

Going On

Dear Family,
Only Days since a horrible travesty severed families and even wiped out one at least completely. Thousands still search in hope. Just as many say they would at least be comforted to know they were found dead than to never know at all. Survivors tell their stories on television making clear the message “appreciate your loved ones.” yet you and I have still not called each other to ask “are you okay?” Just on the wild chance that maybe we had taken off on vacation and been a victim. Even if we do happen to know, we still haven’t called to say “Man, am I glad to know it wasn’t one of us.” Or to know what is going on with us. We’ve not even gathered together for a prayer or talked of what can we do to help. We just don’t even know how each of us are.
Yet even as I have not called you, I know that it is not because we hate each other or love each other any less. I know that we have our lives. That’s what everyone always says to explain why it’s okay to be related and not keep in touch. “We’re all busy.” “We’ve all got things on our minds.” “We’ve all got our own lives.” “We’ve all got things going on.” And “It’s just a part of growing up.” People who think families should stick together no matter what call it growing apart, but that’s far from the truth as we are closer than ever at heart. So what do we call it?
I don’t know, but I do praise God that I can take comfort in knowing where we are all eventually going and that when we all get there we will never be apart again. As the song says, “What a day of rejoicing that will be.” We will no longer have to worry about what is going on with our loved ones because there will be no more pain or sorrow, no more bombs, no war, no more ugly sin and cowardly terrorists. We will be held and joined with all our family, even our Father in heaven and our Savior and Brother Jesus Christ.
So in case anything ever happens to you or I… and we do not get to talk… or even by some horrible chance do not know what has happened to the other end… take comfort in knowing that I am not alone… and I will know that you are not alone in the arms of God. I will wait to see you again and celebrate the gift of God’s love in eternal life and peace for us all. Know that Jesus and I are thinking of you and love you always. Here’s a hug from Him and me. And if you do not know what is going on with me in the end, don’t worry… Jesus is walking with me. And just in case I were to lose you, be sure to take this hug to heaven with you until I can get there to hug you myself. Just be aware that even my hugs can never compare to the loving arms of Jesus Christ, Our Lord and Savior. If you are ever lost out in the world and cannot find me because maybe you cannot remember who you are, nor remember me, know that I will never forget you and will always keep you in my prayers. And I will also know that Jesus is walking hand in hand with you.
May God’s peace be with you always.

Written by Gail Brookshire
Inspiration: A few days after 9-11

Focusing on You

Jesus, with all that was promised to be true
And always be there,
I pray that You will never be like they were,
No longer able to care.
In all the cruel and selfish things
I irresponsibly do to You,
I pray, Dear Jesus, that You always know
My love for You is true.
Though everything I say and do
Contradict my desire to obey,
I pray, Dear Lord, You would restore in me
A clean and righteous way.
For all the thoughts of evil things
That I allow to come between us,
I pray, Sweet Jesus, that You would win
And help me to just refocus.

8-16-2001 Thursday
Written by Gail Brookshire

Lives Unseen

Lives we never thought we’d live.
Actions we never thought we’d do.
On the edge of an uncertain world,
We struggle to do right by You.
Disappointments unseen by ourselves.
Regrets unpredictable by doubt.
We find only more sin to be sorry for.
Our human nature won’t give out.
Visions of what’s happening.
Sounds of what is to be.
You are the only One in life
Who can truly know and see.

8-8-2001 Wednesday
Written by Gail Brookshire

Jesus, Do You Regret?

Jesus, do You ever regret dying for my sins?
Do You ever regret dying for me?
Aren’t You sorry to see me betray You
As much as I claim to love You?
Don’t You ever get tired of me saying I know You
When it seems I deny You so often?
Don’t You grow weary of me calling on You,
Asking You to forgive me…
Again and again for the same thing?
Don’t You ever think I am hopeless?
How can You ever have faith in me
As evil and sinful as I can be?
How can You bear to love me so?
How do You tolerate my being?
I don’t know how You do it,
Why You love me,
Why You believe in me,
How You can stand to hear my name,
But I do thank You for loving me.
Thank You for believing in me,
Especially when there’s not reason to.
Thank You for not giving up on me,
Or casting me aside like the trash I am.
Thank You for knowing that despite myself,
I love You with all of my soul.

7-30-01 Monday
Written by Gail Brookshire


In trying to unclutter my life,
I find myself taking You in.
In trying to improve myself,
I find myself trusting men.
One minute, I’m cleaning up well,
Next minute I find I need space.
One minute I’m enjoying the view,
Next minute I see only Your face
Today I pick up broken pieces.
Tomorrow there will be new breaks.
Today I hold my head up high.
Tomorrow there will be shameful mistakes.
Do You not see a warning sign?
Do You not grow weary of games?
It’s obvious I am not alone.
I just don’t know their names.

7-19-2001 Thursday
Written by Gail Brookshire

Prophets Pen and Paper

Pen and Paper… what friends of mine,
Yet prophets like Moses and Paul.
Despite what could be read between the lines,
They can create works of art.
Though they have horrible and shameful confessions of historical stature,
They can make a mew and beautiful character
Out of the very villain so guilty.
They can explain the nature of what created the evil
And in the same message convey the transformation
Of the demon into an angel.
God’s beauty and magnitude of divine power
Boldly shouts from the pages.
The printed work joyfully embraces its reader.
And the prophets called Pen and Paper
Are serving God with the same holiness
As with love and wisdom in the Holy Bible.
God’s right hand made great warriors
Of even the simplest tools… pen and paper,
Just as He had done with the murderers… Moses and Paul,
Who were later known as great prophets.
Imagine what He can do with you and me,
If we will just believe and let Him.

7-1-2001 Wednesday
Written by Gail Brookshire


Curious of what I have suppressed, I wonder why I ever did.
Why would I be so scared and hurt, that I would keep happy times hid?
Something has happened that is sure, but what has happened has passed.
I need to let go of those painful memories to let the good ones last.
There are so many memories I do remember just because they were so bad,
So why allow myself to forget so much just because it made me sad?
I’ve already lived it and cried. I’ve already survived.
So what is it that I need to remember to get on with my healthy life?
And what if for some reason, I haven’t forgotten anything bad?
Why would I forget anything if forgetting it makes me sad?
I pray, Dear Lord, that You would release anything You may feel I need to know.
And if there’s anything or not, You would help me to let it all go.
I may not understand what I have suppressed, but getting on with my life I want for sure.
Be with me as I may not know just what I am asking for.
Be with me as I may face any demons that may be hiding behind any doors.
And if I should cross an unfair fear placed upon me by threats or events,
I pray, Dear Lord, that You would comfort me with Your love, peace, and Godly sense.
Help me to grow from whatever it is that has held me back thus far.
Instead, replace in me a spirit to know how great a power You are.
Make of me who You want me to be and use me for Your will.
I pray that others would benefit from what You have yet to reveal.
And thank You, Lord, for being there through whatever it may have been.
Just to know You were there with me, let’s me know my God is also my friend.

2-4-2001 Sunday
Written by Gail Brookshire

My Writing Gift

God, there’s a part of me that only talks to You through writing.
Is that wrong, or is that the part of me You made exciting?
I think it’s neat most of the time. I can say how I care.
But it can be problematic in not being able to share.
It’s just so hard to open up and trust. The world is scary.
But I have to get it out somehow, the burden that I carry.
Poetry, diary, short stories, and more I have to write.
I have to get it out, say it in so many ways, till I get it right.
People love my talent, my gift they say I am blessed with.
But rich, famous or not, they have no idea the gift it is.
I learn from me, I confide in me, and only You can see.
And when I feel I have to share, I set it free.
And yet I don’t have to repeat myself with the same news,
Freeing me of the guilt or shame in telling even You.
If anyone is interested in how I feel, they will read it.
If not, I don’t care. Fame, fortune, and attention I do not need.
I just need to write, to put my pen to the paper and flow.
I just have to feel like at least You and I care to know.
So as I write this poem about us, I finish up by saying,
I love it most when I’m personal, when my pen is praying.
For in that treasure I leave behind the secrets of my soul
That can help my son or others keep from losing control.
Just to know someone else felt the way they did
Will have made it all worth while, my writing gift.

1-4-2001 Sunday
Written by Gail Brookshire

Vile Reality

Vile… it’s all so vile.
Life, love, and reality.
Instruction for the children,
“Vile you shall be.”
Mr. Webster describes you as morally despicable,
physically repulsive,
of little worth,
utterly bad or contemptible.
Learn now what you are
and what’s to be.
Vile is your soul,
I shall help you see.
“But isn’t vile
something one doesn’t like?
I don’t like what you do.
It’s not nice.”
There’s a lot of things I don’t like,
but life is not fair.
Be a nice child.
Learn how to share.
Vile are the role models
that model the children’s souls.
Vile therefore are the futures.
Vile therefore the goals.

7-10-01 Written by Gail Brookshire
(by the grace of God)

That Bus

That bus… I lost all my innocence on that bus.
If only I had known where that bus was going.
But God and I both know where it was going.
I just didn’t realize what I was allowing myself to get into.
Sad fact is, I allowed myself to get into it.
How fast I ran back.
How sad I came back.
How nasty I crawled back.
And despite how far I ran
and how much I fled from my guilt,
the sin and shame
was all the same,
and despite the crowd
only I am to blame.
That bus… if only it were going back.
But I wouldn’t step near that bus if it were.
God help me and the girl on that bus.

7-2-01 Written by Gail Brookshire
(by the grace of God)

Roles of Life

He was older, but he was bolder,
and he was very deceptive.
She was in her youth and naive to the truth.
She wasn’t very perceptive.
He flattered the girl and filled her world
with all he could to gain.
She easily believed and easily received
a lifetime supply of pain.
He played the hero, cared for her zero.
He was the winner of the game.
She played the fool, subjected to his rule.
She was the winner of the shame.

6-24-01 Written by Gail Brookshire
(by the grace of God)

Renew My Purity

**God answered prayer! It took time and discipline… years ago the mercy of the Holy Spirit led me out of my wilderness. He did answer prayer. He still answers every day.**

Filth… I am filled with filth and perverse ways.
Why do I think like this?
God, you and I know it is wrong and sinful.
Why do you let this all persist?
I pray and I pray, from the heart of my soul…
cleanse me… renew me… purify.
I pray for you to be my strength and power.
Why does it seem you deny?
I need to be purified by your Son’s blood.
Yet, still I continue in sin.
Why do I betray the love of my life?
Why do I just give in?
God, please, cleanse me, forgive me.
Rebuild me in your hands.
Renew in me a joy for spiritual purity
and help me to take a stand.

6-12-01 Written by Gail Brookshire
(by the grace of God)

Numb and Amazed

Numb and amazed day by day
that I am alive.
I’ve seen so many things in life.
I’m amazed I have survived.
Sometimes it feels like
everyone around me
is just a passing moment
that almost seemed not to be.
Wondering and pondering
on how it’s all come down.
With all that I’ve experienced,
it’s surprising I’m around.
So I thank you, God, for each day
that I am blessed to live.
I pray that I share with others
the love that you give.

3-25-01 Written by Gail Brookshire
(by the grace of God)