Today’s Scrip-Bit   29 April 2022 Philippians 4:13.

Philippians 4:13.      I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me.

Oh what a beautiful day! And for a Friday to boot, the start of the weekend! And the temperature might even come up a little higher than it’s been doing the last few days. Wow! As the man says in his song: ‘It’s too much of a beautiful day not to have a good day. So hope everything is blessed my neighbour. Have a beautiful day! Doh care what nobody say, just have a beautiful day!’ 

And if the Holy Spirit of Jesus dwells within us that should be automatic, with only peace and LOVE pouring forth from us, no hatred whatsoever. So, with the sunshine shining all around us physically, and the awesome light and LOVE of Jesus shining through us…Oh Mama! There’s no reason not to have a good and blessed day, regardless of whatever comes against us! 

And I know that some of us will complain and say, you don’t know my circumstances, and that’s true, but I’ve had rough circumstances too, and the Lord brought me through them because I trusted in Him to do so. And He will do the same for you, if you put your total trust in Him, because it’s all a matter of faith and trust! And yes, He’s promised to bring you through it all eventually, safe and sound, but also a tad more mature. 

However, you’ve got to learn to accept and believe the Lord’s promises, some three thousand in the Good Book, despite the turbulent circumstances. And that only happens by constant association with Him, that’s prayer, and serious meditation on His word, and remembering all the other times that He’s brought you through the storm unharmed…and doing it all with a good attitude too. (smile) 

No, it’s not easy, and it doesn’t happen overnight. But listen to these encouraging words of Bruh Pal written to the church at Philippi when they began helping him again financially, after some lean times in their church. ‘But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at last your care of (concern for) me hath flourished again (been revived); wherein ye were also careful (though you surely did care), but ye lacked opportunity. Not that I speak in respect of want (in regard of need): for I have learned in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.’ (Phil. 4:10-11) 

Yes friends, Bruh Paul was in a disgusting Roman jail when he wrote this, but he did not come upon that sentiment overnight, but through much hardship and suffering, aided and abetted by the Holy Spirit and the supreme trust in God’s promises that He would bring him through it all. 

And the scholars tell us that ‘Paul’s ability to be content despite the circumstances assures the readers that his joy of verse 10 is not solely over his “need” being met at their expense. He implies that he could have done without their financial aid. For justifies this implication. I have learned …to be content: The Greek here suggests that contentment is a lesson learned neither in a classroom nor overnight, but through many practical experiences in life.’ 

Consequently, he could say quite sincerely: ‘I know both how to be abased (live humbly), and I know how to abound (live in prosperity): every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need.’ (Phil. 4:12) And all of that simply means he’s disciplined himself to ‘to tighten his belt in lean times,’ and to live good in the prosperous times. In other words, he’s learned the secret of how to be satisfied in all circumstances. 

And I like how the scholars say: ‘Paul has acquired the skill for successfully living with little and with much, the latter probably being harder.’ Then they quote Thomas Carlyle, the Scottish writer, in support of that last assertion. ‘For one man who can stand prosperity, there are a hundred that will stand adversity.’ And we just have to look around us in our confused and crazy society and see that it’s true. But then Bruh Paul throws out his real mainstay, the real reason he can accomplish all those tough things. ‘I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me.’ (Phil. 4:13) 

Oh mih people, that’s it right there! Only with the strength of Christ working in us can we do those tough things, especially in tough times! But please note that that strength which emanates from Christ is not to do anything that we please, like lustful or greedy pleasures, but to do what’s in His will for us. That’s something we should all be very clear on. Christ’s strength imbues us to do His will, not our sinful desires. 

And though we might be able to manipulate some situations, please remember there will always be negative consequences for going against God’s will. That’s why Uncle Charles (Dr. Charles Stanley) keeps drilling it in our heads that the best way to live this life is to ‘Obey God, and leave all the consequences to Him!’ And you cannot find a better all-around philosophy than that! 

So, hopefully having made our point that Christ is the greatest thing since sliced bread, (smile) let’s end today’s session by going to the throne of grace in prayer, through our Friday Chant, seeking help in these serious times of need. As one voice: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through this past week. You know it’s been rough… what with all the anxiety, the confusion and havoc that the Covid-19 virus and our many other problems are causing. We can’t seem to fix it on our own Lord, that means we desperately need your help. 

Oh heavenly Father, with your omnipotent help, and our trusting faith, we know that we can stand strong and steadfast and defeat both the virus and the unrest in our streets. So Lord, we sincerely ask you today to give the governments and those involved in the forefront of this serious and unexpected storm, the wise guidance to handle the situation properly, with the least amount of loss to life and property as possible. And please help those of us who must go out to work amidst all the confusion, to be responsible and to stay safe, and avoid any more serious setbacks. 

And Lord, we fervently pray that You’ll use this situation to bring a lot of backsliders back to your fold, show them the error of their ways. And please introduce a whole new flock, who will embrace your LOVE and compassion by the example, we, your faithful believers set. Yes Lord, please use this pandemic and the unrest in the streets as a means of restoring faith in You, so that our sinful world can wake up and smell the coffee, sweet and strong! We pray this in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen!’ 

Now, the only way to ensure that the Lord will look down on us with a positive answer is to keep whatever promises we’ve just made. Let Him see them truthfully written in our hearts and manifested in our outward behaviour. Much LOVE!

…only with Christ working in and through us…can we live a truly successful life… 

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