Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 October 2018 Proverbs 26:12.

Proverbs 26:12.    Seest thou a man wise in his own conceit (eyes)? There is more hope of a fool than of him.
 

Ah mih breddren, unfortunately at 8 o’clock on this Wednesday morning, the last day of October 2018, my neighbourhood is dark, dismal and cold…it’s also raining. To tell the truth, I don’t even remember what rain looks or feels like, for the past two weeks that I spent in Jamaica, I never experienced a drop of heavenly blessing. Yes, a few times the sky darkened, but nary a drop of water fell wherever I happened to be. Hn! 

But I’d better get accustomed to this new state of affairs…and quickly too, because that’s going to be the new norm now. Oh to be in Jamdown once again, experiencing sea, sand, surf and salt, with the occasional bit of rum! (smile) Yes friends, that’s what dream are made of! But here is a taste of reality from the Swedish U.N Secretary General Dag Hammarskjold (1905-1961). 

He piloted the United Nations from 1953 to 1961, when his plane, under mysterious circumstances, crashed in Africa, on his way to try and quell a dispute over there. These are some of the words he left us: ‘Maturity: among other things – not to hide one’s strength out of fear and consequently live below one’s best.’ Words of great wisdom my people! 

And as Christians we have to stop living in fear and proclaim our strengths, strengths which we all have. As they say: ‘healthy thinking requires us to develop and use our many strengths.’

That’s never been truer of Christ’s church than right now, because instead of exhibiting strength, too many of us are embracing weakness and compromising our Christian beliefs and situations. We can’t afford to hide our strengths my people, because that’s when we enjoy our best life. 

And to help us do that, here is a li’l prayer from Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional. Please pray with me: ‘Thank you, Lord, for bringing me to the place where LOVE can knock at the door of my heart. O Father, do not let me be afraid. I shall not resist your affectionate touch. Let me, O Lord, have the spirit of a little child and dare to respond and run with open arms to your call of LOVE. Amen.’  

Oh friends, it amazes me that we can even contemplate resisting the Lord’s affectionate touch, much less do it! We must be mad, crazy, or stupid… or all three! But unfortunately a lot of believers do it every day.

No wonder their lives are so confused, strife-filled and unfulfilling. This action reminds me of Cousin Sol’s words in our Bit: ‘Seest thou a man wise in his own conceit (eyes)? There is more hope of a fool than of him.’ 

Yes friends, when we are so conceited that we turn away from God’s affectionate touch, there is more hope for even a fool, than for us. And in chapter 29, Cousin Sol says the same thing though somewhat differently: ‘Seest thou a man that is hasty in his words? There is more hope of a fool than of him.’ (Prov.29:20) 

And he reiterates his point in Ecclesiastes as the Preacher: ‘Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter any thing before God: for God is in heaven, and thou upon the earth: therefore let thy words be few. For a dream cometh through the multitude of business (effort or activity); and a fool’s voice is known by multitude of words.’ (Eccl.5:2-3) 

Oh friends, I doubt there have been ever been more fools than in this present age! Why? Simply because of the rampant technology that allows us to connect so easily to each other, which unfortunately we are using to talk a whole lot of nonsense, drivel and petty stuff, instead of real and serious matters. 

We’ve become a low standards, low level society in all aspects. That new, but oh so foolish phenomenon called ‘Selfies’ are driving us even further into narcissism and ungodliness, because we’re so focused on ourselves, not on God and others.

Everybody’s walking around with their smart phone – except me- thank the Lord –  (smile) paying more attention to it than what’s happening around them. Sometimes I just have to shake my head and steups at how technology has invaded and taken over our lives. 

But here is the ultimate word on our foolish and selfish, conceited behaviour. This from Jesus two thousand years ago, as he spoke to his disciples about the differences between the praying publican (sinner) and the supposedly devout Pharisee.

‘The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess. 

And the publican (tax collector), standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon (beat) his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.’ (Luke 18:11-14) 

Oh my people, in these end times there are too many of us like the Pharisee and not like the publican. Please, let’s try and turn it around nuh, for our sake, as well as our children’s.

Remember the Lord doesn’t need anything from us, but we need a whole lot from Him, and we’ll only get it by being obedient to His word. Now let’s go home declaring our Wednesday Wail, letting the world know our sincere and secure positions in Jesus. 

All together now…lets wail! ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! I am halfway home.

My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

And will that future ever be more glorious than we can ask or imagine! Much LOVE!

…turning away from God…that’s the most foolish thing man can ever do…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 October 2018 1 Peter 1:7.

1 Peter 1:7.    That the (genine) trial (testing) of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried (tested) with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing (revelation) of Jesus Christ.
 

Ah friends, life can be so unfair at times eh! Chuh! For the past two weeks I was waking up to bright sunshine, blue skies, aquamarine surf rolling up on the shores, and tall coconut tress swaying gently in the cool North East Trade Winds, with refreshing island talk drifting up to my room. 

But all of a sudden, I got up this morning and looking out my bedroom window, somewhat cloudy skies, multihued trees and a set of dead brown leaves on the cold looking grass shockingly greeted my sleepy eyes. It certainly brought my system to a standstill. (smile) 

But there was one redeeming feature; my neighbour has a tall tree in his backyard, don’t ask me what kind, and it is covered in golden yellow leaves from head to foot! It looks real beautiful, could be a wonderful poster tree for the colourful fall season. 

Yeh mih people, the ole fella is back home, dressed in his old red spring jacket, sitting in his old chair before his aged desktop, and writing much more comfortably than I did for the last two weeks on my laptop in J.A. But that vacation has been enshrined in the top ones that the duchess and I have taken. 

It definitely is not number one. That place of honour permanently resides in one we took some fifteen to twenty years ago, in the same Jamaica, but we stayed in a town house somewhere down in the Parish of Trelawney. And brother, the things we did; climbing Dunns River falls, rafting down the White River and numerous other tours. 

But I guess the highlight was boating up some river in the night with flambeaus, flaming torches all around, and drums beating in the distance, going to a night time barbecue somewhere along the river bank. Sorry, don’t ask me any more, because it seems I was totally wasted that night. (smile) The things we do when we are young eh! 

But in my maturity and brokenness, I was still able to do one amazing feat; walk up the winding, dangerous nature trail to the Blue Hole Waterfall, and then walk back down in my flip-flops. And I would indeed be foolish to take all the credit, or rather any of it, because it was the Lord who carried me back and forth on His strong, massive, magnificent shoulders. 

If I had known what it was like before attempting it, I doubt I would have done so. So please give the Lord all the glory, because in my weakness, His grace and strength were more than enough to see me through. Glory to the wonderful Deity we serve! 

And on that note of thanksgiving, here is something from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin that certainly describes my life in the past couple of years. It’s titled ‘Don’t Stop Lord.’ Please pray with me. ‘Lord In asking You to make me whole I certainly didn’t know What I was in for. You have ransacked me Until I sometimes feel There is nothing left. But don’t stop Lord Please don’t stop! I’m trusting that the product Will be worth the process.’ 

Yes mih breddren, when I asked the Lord for healing, I surely didn’t know the paces He would put me through. And if I had known, I can’t say for sure that I would have asked for it. But since we’ve come so far, it’s too late to turn back now. And even if I don’t feel like crying out to Him to continue, the wise and sensible thing to do is let Him finish the renovations and refurbishment, because as Bruh Paul confidently told the Philippians: 

‘Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you, will perform (complete) it until the day of Jesus Christ.’ (Phil.1:6) Yes my brethren, once the Lord begins working in us, He never stops until the job is done, even if it takes till Jesus’ Second Coming. So please don’t ever give up on Him! 

And the Bible Promise for the poem above is also our Bit. ‘That the (genuine) trial (testing) of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried (tested) with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing (revelation) of Jesus Christ.’ 

Oh friends, the Lord puts us through some tough trials to simply test our faith, to see how committed we truly are to Him. But He only does it for a ‘season,’ a short time. And if we stand strong and steadfast, He will bring us out of the testing fire, stronger, purer and more mature, like when gold and silver are burnished. 

As James says: ‘My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations (various trials); Knowing this, that the trying (testing) of your faith worketh (produces) patience.’ (James 1:2-3) And patience, re perseverance, is something ALL believers need to acquire, and sadly, it cannot be acquired without going through tough times. 

So please friends, let’s all try and bear up under whatever adversity comes against us, knowing that our ever-faithful God will not give us more than we can handle, and in any case will help us through the fire and the flood. And it’s going home time, so let’s declare our Tuesday Mantra with much sincerity, in loud voice and strong sense of purpose, proudly letting the world know who and whose we are. 

In unison now: ‘In God’s eyes, I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen!’ 

And to be true to our word, let’s go out now and share the wonderful LOVE and compassion of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ! Much LOVE!

…truly living for Jesus is not easy…but praise the Lord…it is certainly very rewarding…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 October 2018 Colossians 2:10.

Colossians 2:10.    And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power (rule and authority).

 

And just like that this great vacation is over! Chuh! Unfortunately, all good things do come to an end at some time. That’s the unbreakable law of nature. I tried to get an extension, but the boss lady said a stern ‘NO!’ It was extended once before and there’d be no more. It’s time to return to reality and responsibility, we’ve had enough of this fairy tale life. And I’ve learned over the years, never to argue with the boss. (smile) So I’m getting myself together to go back to the reality of the cold and responsibility. 

But for most of us, Monday means the first day of labouring for the week, and try as we can, we just don’t seem to make the transition from rest to work very well. So please join us in this most powerful medium, that of prayer, our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, as we petition our heavenly Father for His strength, goodness, grace, mercy and guidance to help us get through this day successfully. 

All together now: ‘Oh Lord God Almighty, Creator of the universe and all therein! We, your humble servants, praise your Holy Name and thank you that this Monday morning we have jobs to go to; jobs we don’t like, jobs that are unfair, difficult and even dangerous, but which serve a useful purpose here on earth; keeping lives and families together. 

We also thank you Father for the renewed vitality and enthusiasm you’ve wrought in our weary souls over the last two days. It’s that rejuvenation of Spirit which allows us now to sally forth with confidence into the evil, ungodly world that surrounds us, to begin a new week of work, constantly buffeted and bombarded by the enemy’s wicked taunts, wiles and lies. 

But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour. We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle. 

Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’ 

Yes friends, the antidote for all your Monday ills; crying out to our heavenly Father in sincere heart and reverence! And you know it worked, because you’ve felt the power of the Holy Spirit moving in you, lifting you up and putting a spring in your step! Glory to God my people! 

And that’s exactly why we declare that there is all sufficiency in Christ! He is enough to take care of EVERYTHING in our lives! I don’t know why we don’t realize and recognize that awesome power for what it truly is nuh. And it’s so important that we’ll continue with our Bit from yesterday ‘And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power (rule and authority).’ 

Why? Because there are some more important scriptures to recognise on that  subject. The first being one we like to quote, but don’t truly acknowledge in our everyday lives. ‘I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.’  (Phil.4:13) And why do you think that is so my brethren? Simply because Christ is strong and powerful and sufficient to fulfill all our needs, and we don’t need anything or anybody else to help Him do it! 

Whatever situations we might find ourselves in, Christ is powerful enough to get us out of them. Please remember that it’s our complete faith in Him that enables us to overcome the enemy. Now hear this other magnificent and reassuring scripture. Remember when Bruh Paul had some bodily issue troubling him and he prayed to the Lord three times to remove it? 

Remember the answer he received? The Lord said a polite but certain ‘NO!’  Just like the duchess did to me when I asked for another extension of our vacation. (smile) But the Lord’s reason was different. ‘And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength (power) is made perfect in weakness.’ (2 Cor.12:9a) 

Yes my people, it’s in our weak times that the Lord’s power really shows up. When we are strong, there is no real need for Him to do much of anything. But when we are down in the dumps, feeble and powerless…brother! That’s when His awesome might and power shows up. And Bruh Paul being the man he was, therefore declared: ‘Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities (weaknesses), that the power of Christ may rest upon me.’ (2 Cor.9b) 

Yeh, he decided that he would extol his weaknesses so that God’s power would work wonders in him. ‘Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecution, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.’ (2 Cor.12:10) Oh friends, I know that most of us don’t hold with Bruh Paul’s logic, we want to be always strong and in command, but the fact is that we see and need God’s hand in our affairs when we are weak, much more than when we are strong. 

Now just a couple more scriptures. In Hebrews, the author tells us: ‘For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.’ (Heb.10:14) Ah mih people, everything’s been made perfect for those who believe by Christ’s sacrifice, showing that He was more than sufficient to atone for all our sins. 

And finally, Bruh Paul tells the Ephesians, and by extension, we modern day believers: ‘Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ.’ (Eph.1:3) Yes friends, the Lord is worthy of praise because He has prepared and bestowed spiritual blessings on His people through the ministry of Christ, our Lord and Saviour! Please give Him much thanks and praise for His enduring goodness to us, by providing all that we need through Christ Jesus. 

And all God’s people declared a loud and grateful: ‘Praise the Lord! Amen!’ Much LOVE!

…in only the risen Christ…can we find everything we need…to live this earthly life…  
 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 October 2018 Colossians 2:10.

Colossians 2:10. ​  And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power (rule and authority).

And then it was Sunday; the first day of the week, the Lord’s Day, where fellowship, praise, worship and thanksgiving are encouraged in the Lord’s sanctuary. Let’s hope that all roads will have led there by the end of the day. Sorry for the Bit being so late, but as usual, it was due to good circumstances beyond my control. (smile) 

I went to an early breakfast, had my after breakfast nap, then went to a non-denominational service downstairs for 9.am, where we sang a couple of short hymns, and the young-boy preacher delivered a fiery sermon on the assurance of salvation and eternal life based on 1 John 5. Then, at the end, two of the dozen congregation got saved…Praise the Lord! 

However, on my way to back to my room, around ten-thirty, I met the duchess coming down, and she informed me that one of her cousins was waiting at the front to take us to brunch at the famed Pelican Restaurant in downtown Mo Bay. After that, we went to visit the owner of the restaurant in her fabulous hilltop home which is currently under renovation, but the scenery of the harbor and downtown Mo Bay is spectacular. 

Then she took us to see another even more magnificent property, this time out on the lagoon at Freeport. I was so taken with it that I asked the elderly owner if she would sell it to me, but unfortunately she said it was not for sale. I was only kidding though, because I don’t even have a pot to pee in, much less the millions that it would cost in any currency. (smile) 

Then we stopped at our cousin’s home so that she could get dressed to go to church, and we did not get back home until three p.m. Obviously I had to have a li’l nap before writing the Bit. And that’s how we’re so late. 

Anyway, as we do every Sunday, morning or evening, (smile) we sing a song of praise and worship to soften up our hearts so that they can be more receptive to the Lord’s Word. Today will be no different, and we’ll sing an old favourite by one of the most famous and prolific hymn writers, Charles Wesley, this one appropriately titled: ‘Jesus LOVER of my Soul!’

So let’s sing up a storm nuh: ‘Jesus, LOVER of my soul, let me to Thy bosom fly, While the nearer waters roll, while the tempest still is high. Hide me, O my Savior, hide, till the storm of life is past; Safe into the haven guide; O receive my soul at last. Other refuge have I none, hangs my helpless soul on Thee; Leave, ah! leave me not alone, still support and comfort me. All my trust on Thee is stayed, all my help from Thee I bring; 

Cover my defenseless head with the shadow of Thy wing. Wilt Thou not regard my call? Wilt Thou not accept my prayer? Lo! I sink, I faint, I fall – Lo! on Thee I cast my care; Reach me out Thy gracious hand! While I of Thy strength receive, Hoping against hope I stand, dying, and behold, I live. Thou, O Christ, art all I want, more than all in Thee I find; Raise the fallen, cheer the faint, heal the sick, and lead the blind. Just and holy is Thy Name, I am all unrighteousness; 

False and full of sin I am; Thou art full of truth and grace. Plenteous grace with Thee is found, grace to cover all my sin; Let the healing streams abound; make and keep me pure within. Thou of life the fountain art, freely let me take of Thee; Spring Thou up within my heart; rise to all eternity.’ 

What beautiful words of truth and gracious, grateful sentiment! And the Hynary.org website gives us this information: ‘Originally published under the title “In Temptation,” this hymn has as its theme the sufficiency of Christ to give comfort, power, and grace in any circumstance. It is a plea that Jesus will provide sanctuary to the tempted (st. 1), because there is no other refuge (st. 2). Christ is declared to be the sole desire of the Christian, who is undeserving (st. 3), while Christ’s grace is declared sufficient to cleanse the Christian from all his vile sins (st. 4).’ 

And all God’s people declared a loud and grateful: ‘Praise the Lord for His goodness to the undeserving children of men!’ And today we’ll deal with that theme, ‘The sufficiency of Christ,’ as much as we can. And what does that mean? Basically that we have EVERYTHING we need in Christ! We lack nothing whatsoever! As our Bit says: ‘​And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power (rule and authority).’ Yes friends, we don’t have to add or subtract anything from Jesus, for He is the END ALL and BE ALL! 

As the scholars explain: ‘2:10. Ye are complete in him (or, “you are filled by Him.”) Believers have been filled by Jesus with all the spiritual blessings they need, hence, they are “complete” and lacking nothing. This, too, refutes the heresy that denied the sufficiency of Christ and encouraged Christians to look to other spiritual beings for help.’ 

Oh friends that is totally unnecessary, for in Christ Jesus, we can find ALL we need to live a good and true Christian life. And we’ll end with this quote from the Website ‘All about Jesus,’ with this most appropriate quote: ‘Claiming the sufficiency of Christ, and realizing our sufficiency in Christ, is the absolute key to being victorious in our battles. Yes, we must be free from our attitude of self-sufficiency. We must have the might of Christ in our challenges, and in our weaknesses allow Christ to be our strength!’ 

Glory be my believing brethren! Truer words were never spoken! Please let’s take them to heart and live our lives to suit nuh, for that is the wisdom of heaven! Much LOVE!

…Christ is the complete package…thanks to the Father…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 October 2018 Matthew 5:13a &14a.

Matthew 5:13a & 14a.    Ye are the salt of the earth…Ye are the light of the world…

So now it’s Saturday…. But don’t quote me on that nuh! (smile) Oh isn’t it nice when you don’t have to know what day of the week it really is, and they can just freely flow into each other, and all you’re concerned about is whether it’s night or day?  I’m certainly enjoying it! 

And I finally got home from Kingston around 8.pm last night, after a long and unsatisfying four hour bus ride. The youngster driving figured he was handling a toy bus, just twirling away round the corners. However, on arrival in Mo Bay, some good goat belly soup at a family member’s yard, revived my sagging energy and spirit, (smile) then I came home and just rested quietly. 

But on a more serious note, here is a prayer that I found in my mother’s Bible after she died, and I’ve shared it before, but I’ve been moved to share it again today. It’s simple but all-encompassing, and it has become one of my favourites over the last few years. Please pray with me: ‘The light of God surrounds me. The LOVE of God enfolds me. The power of God protects me. The presence of God watches over me. Wherever I am, God is… And ALL is WELL!’ 

Oh friends, if all those things are true, then ALL must be WELL with us! And if you’re a true believer in Christ, then all those things ARE true, so you can draw the logical conclusion. But since it’s Saturday, we need to turn to some of the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. 

Hear this first one: ‘Life is short, and it is up to you to make it sweet.’ And is that ever true! Only you, and you alone can truly make your life sweet…Sorry, I forgot to say in conjunction with Jesus, because if He is not in your life, then try as you want, your life will NEVER be truly sweet. Jesus is the key, the honey that sweetens life! 

And this next quote complements that last one. ‘The truth is you don’t know what is going to happen tomorrow. Life is a crazy ride, and nothing is guaranteed.’ No my brethren, we certainly don’t know what’s going to happen tomorrow, and though life’s not always a crazy ride, for sure nothing is guaranteed, except salvation and eternal life if Jesus dwells sincerely in your soul. 

Then there’s: ‘I always like to look on the optimistic side of life, but I am realistic enough to know that life is a complex matter.’ Oh isn’t life truly complex! But the best way to live it is with an optimistic outlook. As they say, hope for the best, but come what may. That’s all we can do, though with Jesus as the guiding light of our life lots of sunshine will surely filter in to it. 

And this next quote tells us: ‘Life doesn’t require that we be the best, only that we try our best.’ Gospel truth my fellow believers! Our Lord and Saviour knows that we are not perfect specimens, and knows our weaknesses better than us, so He doesn’t expect perfection, just that we try to be diligent and excellent representatives of His, by always putting our best foot forward. 

And finally the last quote: ‘Positive thinking is more than just a tagline. It changes the way we behave. And I firmly believe that when I am positive, it not only makes me better, but it also makes those around me better.’ And that’s more gospel truth friends! Positive, Christ-like thinking is the best way to live this earthly life. And when you do so, obviously some of your good attitude will rub off on others. 

That’s what Jesus is all about. That’s why He highlighted our Bit in the Sermon on the Mount: ‘Ye are the salt of the earth…Ye are the light of the world…’ Yes my fellow believers, when we behave like salt and light, then we exude the properties of Jesus. And we can’t hope to be Christ-like, raised from glory to glory, unless we give off the same properties. 

We need to be worthy citizens of our society, involved in worthwhile causes, setting a good example, shining our lights, so that others can see the true way, that hard to find hidden path that leads through Jesus to the Father. But unfortunately I don’t think that we’re really doing our best in that respect, else the world would not have been overtaken by the evil enemy and his evil cohorts.  

If we were showing up our salty flavour and shining our bright light in the darkness of this evil world, Jesus’ LOVE Revolution would have had the upper hand on the world stage by now! But since we apparently have lost our salty, tasty flavour, we don’t seem to be good for anything now, and are just being trampled underfoot. 

It’s the same thing with our light. It seems like we’re hiding it under a bushel or basket, and no light’s getting out to those around us. Remember what Jesus said: ‘A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle (lamp), and put it under a bushel (basket), but on a candlestick (lampstand); and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.’ (Matt.5:14b-15) 

Oh friends, I know some of us are tired of hearing this sermon, but we need to hear it until we get it right! The evil enemy is running away with the world, and we are the only ones who can take it back. So let’s get serious and become true ambassadors of Christ nuh, and truly exemplify the diligence and excellence He expects of us, by making His wish come true. ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt.5:16) 

That, in a nutshell is our earthly job my people. Please, I implore us, let’s go out and do it nuh, so that Jesus and the Father can be glorified. Much LOVE!

…salt and light…the major qualifications for a Jesus ambassadorship…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 October 2018 Ezekiel 20:19.

Ezekiel 20:19.    I am the Lord your God; walk in my statutes, and keep my judgements, and do them.

Aloha one and all! It’s Friday morning in Kingston, J.A! Glory to God! We’re alive and kicking, and very grateful for that fact! Ah mih breddren this will be another holiday of unforgettable memories! Chuh! When I sit in my rocking chair and reminisce, this will be definitely one of my favourite reminiscences.

Yesterday morning I took the Knutsford Express from Mo Bay to Kingston, and after a three and a half hour drive through some lush green and beautiful mountain scenery, amongst which large, beautiful homes nestled, we arrived in the hustle and bustle of Kingston Town. Brother, has it ever grown and gotten busier since my days some fifty years ago! But you can never mistake the unmistakable, unique flavour of Kingston, because it has a flavour all its own.

My sister from my other family (smile) picked us up at the Bus Depot, and after taking us to lunch at a quaint J.A. restaurant, don’t remember its name, she left us in her apartment to rest.  And it’s a good thing that we did rest, because when some of the old U.W.I class of 69 began to show up, it got real hectic real fast! Now we’re all seniors many times over, but just like you couldn’t beat our indefatigable energy back in 1966-69, you still can’t beat it now!

And brother, did the old memories and reminisces fly! Most of us looked vaguely familiar to how we were back then, but there was no mistaking the camaraderie and friendship that three years at the University of the West Indies, Mona, Jamaica Campus bred! And the best part is that most of those who showed up were in the Social Sciences Faculty, so we didn’t only share social but also work related experiences.

Oh, by the way, if you added up the years of the dozen or so people that showed up, you’d probably come close to the thousand year figure. (smile) But all of us looked good and prosperous. Now that total would have even higher if several of our classmates hadn’t gone home to be with Lord a li’l bit early.

And I want to thank my big sister Maureen from my heart and soul for putting this amazing gathering together, because I hadn’t seen most of those people since I left the campus a half century ago. Just like how she looked after me in my campus days by writing my notes for the many lectures I missed, gone gallivanting somewhere about the country with friends – and I mean copying the actual notes from her notebook to mine, she’s still looking out for me fifty years later. The Lord bless her wonderful soul!

And as I sit here writing this, looking at her in the kitchen washing stuff from last night’s party, my eyes just flood with tears of joy and thanksgiving because she’s still the same warm, giving, caring and LOVING person she was all those years ago. So how can I say that I’m not amazingly blessed eh, when the Lord has brought such beautiful people into my life? It would be a certain lie, and the Lord would just cut me down to size.

Chuh! I had to stop there for a moment because I got all choked up. And is the ole fella getting choked up a lot on this vacation! (smile) But it’s Friday and we can’t leave out the workingman’s song for two straight weeks. So what’s he singing this bright, sunny, pay day Friday eh?

As usual, he opens with his thanks for Friday: ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday…and the weekend here at last. Oh bwoy! Is also payday weekend, so you can imagine how the food and the waters going flow! Hope some of we not foolish enough to blow it all on drinks and pleasure and not pay we rent and we bills and buy food for we pickney them! It good to party and enjoy life when we work hard all week, but we must do what we need to do first. Mama Yo! I done pay mih rent and mih larder full, so is time for me an’ mih friends them to drink up the waters and stuff we face with food, as we thank the Lord for Fridays and weekends!’

Yes mih people, it’s all right to have fun after you have taken care of your immediate responsibilities. But still the workingman allows too much freedom for the enemy to infiltrate his soul. That’s why we believers have a different weekend song, we call our Friday Chant which keeps us rooted and grounded in the straight and narrow way.

So let’s chant up the usual storm, in unison now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen!’ 

Yes friends, we need to keep up our diligence in the spiritual battle against the evil enemy. And the Lord has sent us this reminder this October morning. ‘I am the Lord your God; walk in my statutes, and keep my judgements, and do them. And hallow my sabbaths; and they shall be a sign between me and you, that ye may know that I am the Lord your God.’ (Ezek.20:19-20)

Ah friends, the Lord is crying out to us in heart felt sorrow to come back to Him, to give up our evil ways and the worldly idols we’re now worshipping. Remember when He warned the nations long ago, they did receive punishment when they refused to listen. So I don’t know why we think it would be different with us. The Lord is LOVING and gracious and merciful and forgiving… but only for a time. When you continue in willful disobedience, you will pay a harsh price.

Unoo see all the natural disasters that happening in the world today? So let’s wake up and smell the caffeine nuh, and return to where we came from nuh, when life was so good; the LOVING arms of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. Please friends, please let wisdom prevail! Much LOVE!

…as Uncle Charles (Charles Stanley) is wont to say…obey God…and leave all the consequences to Him…words to live by…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 October 2018 Joshua 1:9.

Joshua 1:9.    Have I not commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.

Ah mih people, instead of getting later, the Bits seem to be getting earlier! (smile) And today’s reason is not a bout of insomnia, but because I have to catch and early bus to Kingston. Oh yes, I am going back to the big city! I discovered a big sister from another branch of the family and we’re going to hold another gathering! Wow! Don’t I just LOVE the family gatherings, although this one will be mostly of old friends whom I have not seen since I left the university almost fifty years ago. 

Yes, I know, when you start bandying around terms like a half century, you must be getting on in age. But chuh! Age is simply how you feel, and believe me the ole fella is young. Hn! After the work out they put me through yesterday, I must be a young pup! Brother! They took me out of here about ten thirty in the morning and didn’t bring me back until seven in the evening…but it was an exceedingly good time. 

Hn, hn! I can say that now, but when I was hiking through the nature trail, through brush and bramble, across a fast-flowing stream on rocks, or makeshift boardwalks, holding on to a rope, climbing the high hills, on narrow, rough tracks, swimming in the cold, deep pools, feeling the hips and back resisting the inconvenience, I didn’t think it was so great. And at one time we just kept going up higher and higher, ostensibly towards the waterfall, and I kept asking ‘when are we going to reach it eh?’ 

But we had two wonderful young men as guides, who looked after us admirably. One looked after me in particular because all the others (three women) were more mobile than me, and he kept telling me that my safety was his only concern, and if anything happened to me, he would put me on his back and carry me back. But being a stubborn ole coot, I tried resisting his help in some difficult places. Thanks Mikey! Your professionalism and encouragement played and enormous part in me making it all the way up. 

However, I did not climb the waterfall, I know my limitations. (smile) I just stopped and swam in the pool at the bottom and watched other younger and more mobile specimens clamber up its rocky walls. Twenty years ago, that would be a no brainer, as I did at Dunns’ River Falls. But age does take its toll on the body. 

And after reaching the top, and being promised and easier path back, we discovered that they were repairing that path, so we had to come back the same way we went. But as always, the trip back never seems as laborious as the trip out and we made some good time back. Had a coconut water along the way, as well as being offered some samples of herb, which I refused, but it did smell rich and mouthwatering! (smile) What a way times have changed eh! (smile). 

And if yuh think that once we got back down things were easy, think again! We then had to climb some fifty something concrete steps to get back to the car and the main road. And yuh know what? The duchess took it all in stride, looking out for her husband’s safety all the way. ‘Be careful here dear, Watch your step, it’s steep here. Hold on to this railing, Yuh okay? Yuh think you can make it. Yuh not tired’ and on and on. But though I pretended umbrage, I appreciated the concern. 

 Oh they even bought me a ‘Blue Hole’ T-Shirt. That’s the name of the place, located on the northern outskirts of the tourist mecca of Ocho Rios. It was advertised as a warm mineral spring, but it turned out to be a cold river bath. But not to worry, a fine time was had by all, The Lord carried me on His strong, massive shoulders most of the way, so I was definitely in good hands, better than All State! (smile) 

And as we began our journey back, I began asking for mannish water. After asking a couple of people, we finally found a restaurant that had cow-foot soup. Praise the Lord! And brother, was it ever good! I couldn’t even finish the bowl, had to carry back some. Hope I can have it for breakfast this morning. As I keep saying, I’m here to recuperate, to get stronger, and those kinds of foods are what I need to strengthen the innards. (smile) 

Then the traffic back was disgusting, especially in Mo Bay, where we had to go down to the Bus Depot and pay the fare so we could get a decent discount. And would you believe it, the lady at the Bus Depot didn’t believe that the duchess and I were seniors, had to see our I.D. to believe it. 

And most important of all my people, is that I’m not feeling any real repercussions from the extreme exertion. As they, what doesn’t kill you, will strengthen you. It hasn’t killed me, so let’s hope it will do the latter. And what better scripture to be our Bit today, than the Lord’s eternal words of assurance to Joshua. ‘Have I not commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.’ 

With such powerful assurance friends, how could I be anything but strong and courageous yesterday eh? And as always, our great and faithful God kept His promise and looked after me…admirably too. So let’s go home now loudly and sincerely declaring our Thursday Blessings, being truly thankful for them as we ought to. 

Altogether now. ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! 

I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection! I am blessed with a compassionate heart and a positive outlook on life! I declare that any curse or negative word that’s ever been spoken over me is broken right now in the name of Jesus! I declare that everything I put my hands to will prosper and succeed! I declare it today and everyday! Amen!’ 

And if we’re faithful followers, we’ll now go out and share those amazing and awesome blessings with others, as Jesus so greatly desires. Much LOVE!

…true trust and faith in Jesus…can truly lead one to leap over one’s mountains…

 

 

 

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