Today’s Scrip-Bit   8 December 2021 Psalm 139:23.

Psalm 139:23.     Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my (anxious) thoughts:

Well, the wet, white stuff drizzling down out there, has my area white and slushy and messy. (smile) And you know that once man gets into something he just naturally makes a mess of it. The white stuff looks beautiful when it’s untouched by mankind, but after that…Chuh! It’s totally ugly! Anyway, with Christ in our lives, we can see anything, even the ugliest of the ugly, and it will look beautiful to us. That’s just how much His presence in our lives can accomplish. But before we can get to that state, or stage of mind, we first have to go through a metamorphosis, as described by this poem from our One Year Book of Bible Poems with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin, aptly titled ‘Turnabout.’ 

It says: ‘God, for so long I thought that by praying I could change Your mind. Often I prayed Fervently pleading Until I felt Emotionally pulverized. Then I gradually began to grasp That the purpose of prayer Is to find Your mind and let You change mine. Little by little The turnabout is renewing me. Slowly I begin to feel A settling quietness. I wait while You woo me To Your will, dear Lord. I wait until my thoughts Harmonize with Yours. For in my deepest heart Despite my guarded resistance I somehow sense That what You want from me Is stupendously more Than anything I could Dream or wish or want For myself.’ 

And that’s the gospel truth friends! Our great and wonderful God wants way more for us than we can even think or imagine, but we keep belittling ourselves. And until we sincerely and seriously come to realize His awesome plans and intentions for our lives, we will always fall way below our God-given potential. And the first step towards that goal is to realize that the purpose of prayer is not to change God’s mind, but to change ours, to bring our will into harmony with His. Remember He’s Number One, that means His will must be first and foremost in our lives. 

And even when we realize this, the turnaround doesn’t happen overnight, not even quickly, because it’s something we’ve got to become accustomed to, that must become a habit for us to successfully complete the metamorphosis. As the poem says: ‘Slowly I begin to feel A settling quietness. I wait while You woo me To Your will, dear Lord. I wait until my thoughts Harmonize with Yours.’ Yes my people, in all our dealings with our heavenly Father, a period of waiting is necessary. He can change us overnight, if He so desires, but then we would not appreciate the change like we should. 

Please note the butterfly; he begins life as a caterpillar, but he knows that flying is his ultimate end, and though he’s eager and anxious to fly, he knows that he must go through a period of waiting, of being a slimy, creeping, crawling caterpillar before he changes into a beautiful butterfly. And he also knows that the change from crawler to flyer is not going to be an easy one, involving many complications, but then too, he is willing to undergo that painful change from caterpillar to butterfly, so that he can achieve his divine destiny. 

Now that’s how we ought to be my brethren; willing to go through the changes, slow and painful though they may be, so that we can accomplish God’s divine plan for our lives. And the Bible verses upon which our poem is based are good, solid, meaningful ones from the pen of Bruh David, from that marvellous Psalm 139 – titled ‘The everlasting presence and power of God.’ They are the last two verses, where he pleads: ‘Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my (anxious) thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.’ (Ps. 139:23-24) 

Wow mih people! What an awesome request! But it’s a state to which believers must strive to attain. A state of mind where we can confidently and seriously ask the Lord to check our hearts and deal with any negative or evil stuff that’s buried deep within. Only when we can do that, will we have attained to a state of grace that allows us the freedom to come and go to God without any fear or anxiety, because we know that He will not judge or punish us, but meet us right where we are with His amazing LOVE and mercy. 

Yuh see how Bruh David was always in God’s face, regardless of the wrong things he might have done? That’s why God could call him His friend and a man after His own heart. He always came to Him with His problems, was constantly praising and talking to Him. That’s how we ought to be. As Bruh Paul said to the Thessalonians: ‘Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.’ (1 Thess. 5:16-18) 

That is what the Lord wants of and for us. To come to Him in prayer on each and every matter, big or small, being joyful and giving thanks, knowing that He’s in control and will eventually make all things right in our lives. But that depends on the levels of our trust in Him and our surrender to His divine will. And those can only grow over time, as we increasingly feel more comfortable with going to Him with all our problems and seeing His work in our lives. 

And if we want to see that ‘Turnabout’ in our lives then we must begin doing the things it takes as soon as possible, like right now! (smile) Because the longer we wait to begin, the longer it will take to happen, and we’ll miss out on a whole lot of good things in between. Yes friends, I can guarantee, that when you get comfortable with going to God on all matters, your life will change for the better. Oh…it might also get harder, but you will also be able to handle the difficulties better. (smile) That’s God’s promise. And He is faithful that promised. End of sermon. 

Now, for those of us who are sincerely working on our turnabout, let’s go home declaring (awrighttt!!!) our Wednesday Wail, letting all and sundry know of our wonderful position in Christ Jesus. Altogether now: ‘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 yuh better believe, that if we endure until the end, that future will be even more glorious than we can ever ask or imagine! Much LOVE!

…the best habit we can ever form…going to God on every matter…prayerfully, joyfully and thankfully… 

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8     

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