Today’s Scrip-Bit   19 March 2023 Hebrews 13:5.

Hebrews 13:5.           Let your conversation (conduct) be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. 

Well, a good mildly snowy Sunday morning to you, my fellow believers in Christ Jesus! It’s oh so wonderful that we could gather in the Lord’s sanctuary to praise, worship and give thanks to our magnificent and ever-LOVING Creator! We are indeed blessed to have such a marvellous God in whom we can put our utmost trust and faith, knowing that He LOVES us unconditionally and will never leave us, nor let us down. He’s said that several times in His word. 

Moses said it on the Lord’s behalf to the children of Israel. ‘And the Lord, he it is that doth go before thee; he will be with thee, he will not fail thee, neither forsake thee: fear not, neither be dismayed.’ (Deut.31:8) Then the Lord said it Himself to Joshua when He made him leader of the Israelites after the death of Moses. ‘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.’ (Josh. 1:9) 

Now it couldn’t be any more explicit or reassuring than that, coming from the Lord Himself! It’s one of my favourite scriptures. I like how the Lord spoke to Joshua man to man, with no beating about the bush. (smile) And that’s how He usually speaks to all of His people.  And for good measure, the author of Hebrews wisely advises us: ‘Let your conversation (conduct) be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.’ (Heb. 13:5) 

And if that doesn’t satisfy your fearful spirit, then I don’t know what will. (smile) But now we’re moving on to our song of worship for today, one that’s not so old, less than a century, written somewhere in the second half of the 20th century by two hit-making songwriters, Jimmy Duncan (1927-2011) and Johnny Lange (1905-2006). Amongst Duncan’s hits was the country and Western tune, ‘My Special Angel,’ sung by Bobby Helms. And Lange (actress Hope Lange’s father)  gave us that rollick song, ‘Mule Train,’ sung in that big voice of Frankie Lane. But only the old folks will remember those seminal tunes. 

And just for our background knowledge, it seems that the Mule Train was an important part of American History. ‘The Mule Train, a protest caravan as part of Martin Luther King and Ralph Abernathy’s Poor People’s Campaign, where protestors rode in covered wagons pulled by mules leaving Marks, Mississippi on 13 May 1968 to converge on Washington, D.C. It was part of Martin Luther King Jr.’s last major effort to mobilize impoverished Americans of different races and ethnic backgrounds.’ 

But enough background now. Let’s get to our today song, simply titled, ‘I asked the Lord.’  And likewise, the words are few and simple, but the sentiment is monumental. So let’s offer up today’s sacrificial praise in a soulful, mid-tempo, joyful version, for it is a song of joy. A lot of people sing it slow and dirge-like, but I like the Carroll Roberson version, which is more up-tempo, with some life in it. 

So, finally, let’s sing. ‘I asked the Lord to comfort me When things weren’t going my way; And He said to me, “I will comfort you And I’ll lift your cares away.” I asked the Lord to walk with me, when darkness was all that I knew; And He said to me “Never be afraid, and I will see you through.” 

I didn’t ask for riches, but he gave me wealth untold, The moon and the stars, the sun in the sky, and he gave me eyes to behold. I thank the Lord for everything, and I count all my blessings each day; For He came to me when I needed Him, I only had to pray. And He will come to you, if you ask Him to, For He’s only a prayer away. And He will come to you, if you ask Him to, For He’s only a prayer away. Yes, He’s only a prayer away.’ 

And isn’t that the living truth my fellow saints! Our God is only a prayer away! All we need to do to contact Him is pray. Wow! It’s instant communication! Not even the faster computer or internet service has instant response. They all take some time to deliver their message, but with our God, He receives it right away. Sometimes we don’t even have to speak it, just think it and away it goes to heaven! Ah friends, I don’t know how to truly bring home to us the great importance of prayer and trusting our wonderful God. But the song says it all. 

When He’s asked for comfort He provides it. Bruh Paul states it thus in his second letter to the church at Corinth. ‘Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble (tribulation), by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.’ (2 Cor. 1:3-4) Mama oh Mama! How wise and beautiful is that eh? Our God comforts us so that we can turn around and comfort others with that same comfort He proffered to us. 

And as per walking with us when we’re alone and or afraid, we’ve already seen at the beginning, scriptures where the Lord promised to be with His people, all the time, so they need not be afraid or fear to be forsaken. And I truly LOVE the awesome generosity of our God. The person in the song says that they didn’t ask for riches, but He gave them wealth untold. This time in the form of eyes to see the moon and stars and the sun in the sky. But remember what the Lord did for Cousin Sol when he became king after Bruh David? 

In 1 Kings 3, The Lord appeared to him and asked him what he wanted. With a wisdom far greater than his 12 years, Cousin Sol asked for wisdom and guidance, an understanding heart to rule the people. And it so pleased the Lord that Cousin Sol had asked for wisdom and understanding, rather than riches and long life and the life of his enemies, He gave Him what he’d asked for: ‘a wise and understanding heart; so that there was none like thee before, neither after thee shall any arise like unto thee.’ (1 Kin. 3:12) 

He also gave him what he didn’t ask for; ‘riches and honour: so that there shall not be any (one) among the kings like unto thee all thy days. And if thou wilt walk in my ways, to keep my statutes and my commandments, as thy father David did walk, then I will lengthen (prolong) thy days.’ (1 Kin. 3:13-14) That’s why Cousin Sol is known as the wisest and richest man ever! And that’s how generous our God can be when we please Him, when we walk in His ways. 

Now there are a couple of things I’d like us to note before we close. The person in the song states that he counts his blessings each and every day. And that’s a habit we should all acquire asap, because it pleases God to see that we’re thankful, and it also reminds us of God’s generosity while encouraging us to put our faith and trust in Him. The second point is that all it took to get those excellent results was prayer. Yes, God answers sincere prayer. And whatever your situation today, He’s only a prayer away. And if you don’t remember anything else, please remember that! It will serve you in very good stead. Much LOVE!

you want to move God…then open up your heart…and pray…

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