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…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 December 2017 John 1:14.

John 1:14.   And the Word was made (became) flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.

And then it was Wednesday! Yeh friends, that means the long Christmas weekend is over and most of us have to go back to work now. Hn, hn! Most of us will be dead tired and won’t get much done this upcoming week, even though the massa constantly flashes his bullwhip at us. 

That’s because we had such a good time celebrating the birth of Christ. And though they’ve stopped playing, or rather inundating us with Christmas music, and we have to go back to work, the season is not over yet. Not by a long shot! (smile) 

And we’ll continue the peace, LOVE and good cheer for a li’l longer with ‘A Christmas Prayer,’ from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional. It’s too nice to pass up, just because we’re two days removed from Christmas Day. 

Please pray with me. ‘You lead me, Jesus Christ, to thoughts of God. I see you in a manger carved from a tree. I see you as a young man with hands that reach to touch hearts that hurt. Your caring reaches out like the strong and kind branches of a gentle tree reach out to invite road-weary and travel-worn wayfarers to quiet rest. 

I see you again hanging on a tree with outstretched arms taking in the whole world. From your cross, you show me that God will stop at nothing to save my soul. So, I celebrate God’s LOVE today as I celebrate your birth around a twinkling Christmas tree, I pray, my life, like yours, O Lord, may be tall and upright as a pine tree pointing, reaching, sharing, sparkling, life-giving; solid, sturdy, strong-rooted in God’s LOVE, a beautiful soul, evergreen forever. Amen.’ 

And all of that is gospel truth my brethren! Without God’s great and merciful LOVE, we’d be nowhere, still swimming in a sinful sea of muck and evil. But through Jesus’ amazing birth, God has given us a solution to our sin problem…’Just believe in Him, ‘ He says…’Only believe…’ And your sins will be forgiven and your souls washed white as snow! What an awesome promise my people! One that we’d be very foolish to pass up. 

That brings us to our Bit: ‘And the Word was made (became) flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.’ What a revelation! 

As John says at the start of His gospel: ‘In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not anything made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in the darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.’(John 1:1-5) 

Yeh friends, Jesus was with the Father from the beginning of time, there was a perfect fellowship between them. Jesus was distinctly divine and created the world through the spoken word. That’s why our words have such power today my people. 

But then Jesus put on the human flesh and came to live with us, but we didn’t understand or appreciate Him. How sad! He came to lift us out of the sinful sea of darkness and evil on which were then travelling and bring us into His bright light; the light that leads us on the straight and narrow path. 

As Bruh Paul declares in Galatians: ‘But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law.’ (Gal.4:4) 

And the scholars offer these explanations: ‘4:4. The fullness of time corresponds to “the time appointed of (by) the Father in 4:2. Made of a woman (or, born of a woman”). This stresses Jesus’ humiliation at leaving His preexistent glory and becoming man; without having done so He could not have died for our sins. Made under the law (or, “born subject to the law”); He was born a Jew under the law in order to free those under the curse of the law. (4:5).’ 

And verse 5 and onward says: ‘To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons. And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying Abba, Father. Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.’ (Gal.4:5-7) 

What a beautiful scene friends! If we believe in Jesus and try to walk in His ways, we are adopted by God and thus become a Son of God too like Jesus, and an heir with Him! Wow! How can anything be better than that eh? So as we go home today, let’s declare our Wednesday Wail, letting the whole world know just how tight we are with Jesus nuh. (smile) 

As one huge chorus 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 what a glorious future that will be, precious people of God! Much LOVE!

…walking with Jesus isn’t always easy…but it’s ALWAYS beneficial…to the human soul…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 April 2017 Psalm 103:2.

Psalm 103:2.   Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits.

Well mih breddren, like we’ve successfully completed another week of work in this confused and way too evil and lustful world! 

And sadly, it leads too many of us to enjoy the lusts of the flesh too much in our short time off. We try to make up for what we think we’ve lost during the workweek. 

That’s why so many of us joyfully declare: ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday! Oh boy, that means the weekend is here! Time for fun and games, partying and letting all our cares drift away to wherever they go! It’s all about a good time now! Oh thank God for Fridays and the weekends yes!’ 

And as I keep saying, the sentiments are understandable, but the reality is not. We do have little free time during the workweek, much less that a generation ago, when times were not so hectic and busy. 

And that’s sort of strange, when all the improvements we’ve made, were supposedly to help us get more free time. How ironic eh, with plenty more amenities, we have even less free time now than then! 

But that doesn’t mean we have to overdo the lighter side of life either when we finally get some time off. If we are to keep our sanity and some sort of steadfastness, our lives must have some borders, some restraints that we will not loosen. And our Friday Chant gives us a good example of that. 

So let’s chant it now nuh, with as much enthusiasm as the misguided soul above declares his Friday mission. ‘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.’ 

And all of that segues very nicely into our Bit:‘Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits.’  

And friends that’s exactly what we ought to do, every day, every waking moment of our lives! For remember, all the earth and its contents are His, and it’s only through His magnanimity and lavish generosity that we can enjoy even one iota of the things we enjoy! 

Now let’s look at a few of those things that Bruh David declares we ought to appreciate in this psalm titled – Thanksgiving for God’s mercy. 

‘Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases; Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with LOVING-kindness and tender mercies; Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle’s.’ (Ps.103:3-5) 

Ah mih people, if those are not things to be everlastingly grateful for, then I don’t know what is nuh! But yuh know what? Unfortunately, too many of us, simply don’t know, don’t pay attention to, or simply take those things for granted, and that includes Christians. 

But just think about it nuh friends, we have a God who forgives all our iniquities, all our sins, all our transgressions! Wow! That certainly is something to be thankful for! Listen to these scriptures nuh that uphold that contention. 

Isaiah declares: ‘For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king; he will save us… And the inhabitant shall not say, I am sick: the people that dwell therein shall be forgiven all their iniquity.’ (Is.33:22, 24). 

Now hear Zechariah, the father of John the Baptist, as he declares at John’s birth. ‘Blessed be the Lord God of Israel; for he hath visited and redeemed his people, And hath raised up a horn of salvation (a Mighty Deliverer) for us in the house of his servant David; 

As he spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets, which have been since the world began: That we should be saved from our enemies, and from the hand of all that hate us; to perform the mercy promised to our fathers, and to remember his holy covenant; 

The oath which he sware to our father Abraham, That he would grant unto us, that we, being delivered out of the hand of our enemies, might serve him without fear, In holiness and righteousness before him, all the days of our lives.’ (Luke 1:68-75) 

And friends, we all know that promise was miraculously and marvelously fulfilled by the coming of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! So why we don’t appreciate our wonderful God more than we do eh? I really can’t say nuh. But eventually, we’ll all have to answer that question to our Maker. 

Now let’s close with these moving words of Bruh Paul to Titus on the Christian life. ‘For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world (age); 

Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar (his own special) people, zealous of good works.’ (Tit.2:11-14) 

Oh my faithful followers of Christ, there’s absolutely no doubt that we need to be much more diligent in doing Christ’s work, if we are to truly show our thankfulness for His saving grace and mercy! Much LOVE!

…there is no greater gift in this evil world…than the forgiveness of sins…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 January 2017 Philippians 4:4.

Philippians 4:4.   Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice.

Ah friends, it’s just been one of those days. I got up early, but could not decide whether to write the Bit or go to the early morning church service. Hn! Consequently I did neither. 

Then I hem and hawed about whether to write the Bit or go to the later church service. I finally went to the ten o’clock service and did not get back home till after twelve, so that’s why I’m only now writing the Bit. 

Steups! What a good day for indecisiveness and laziness! Let’s be thankful that that doesn’t happen every day. 

And the church service was refreshing. Everybody was glad to see me back out, though they didn’t notice that at one stage during the pre communion prayers, I had to sit down because a bout of tiredness suddenly hit me. That’s because I purposely sat at the very back of the church. All in all though, it was a good time, and I hope it just gets better every week. 

Now let’s get in some praise and worship with this old hymn which accurately describes my situation right now. My physical state might not be the greatest, but certainly, ‘It is well with my soul.’ 

‘When peace, like a river, attendeth my way, When sorrows like sea billows roll; Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say, It is well, it is well with my soul. (Refrain) It is well with my soul, It is well, it is well with my soul. 

Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come, Let this blest assurance control, That Christ hath regarded my helpless estate, And hath shed His own blood for my soul. (Refrain) 

My sin—oh, the bliss of this glorious thought! — My sin, not in part but the whole, Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more, Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul! (Refrain) 

For me, be it Christ, be it Christ hence to live: If Jordan above me shall roll, No pang shall be mine, for in death as in life Thou wilt whisper Thy peace to my soul. (Refrain) 

But, Lord, ’tis for Thee, for Thy coming we wait, The sky, not the grave, is our goal; Oh, trump of the angel! Oh, voice of the Lord! Blessed hope, blessed rest of my soul! (Refrain) 

And Lord, haste the day when the faith shall be sight, The clouds be rolled back as a scroll; The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend, Even so, it is well with my soul. It is well, it is well with my soul…’ 

Yeh my people, I do hope it is well with all of our souls, for that’s where it really counts. That brings us to our Bit, a serious clarion call from Bruh Paul. ‘Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice.’ 

Oh fellow believers, that might sound somewhat difficult to do, what with all the difficulties we have in our current lives. But as a believer, it is essential for us to have continual joy, a steady spate of rejoicing, otherwise we won’t be able to handle our individual circumstances. 

Now we don’t necessarily mean constant jumping and shouting, but more a quiet thankfulness that makes the heart and soul feel satisfied, regardless of the situation. 

Listen to this explanation from the scholars. ‘4:4. The mention of believers’ names being recorded in heaven (v.3) causes the author to write rejoice in the Lord always. 

Harmony among church members, as Paul assumes will be the result of his plea in verses 2 and 3, is another reason to “rejoice.” In adding and again I say, Rejoice, it is though the apostle looks into the future, considers all possibilities of sorrow, and in spite of them all repeats “the command.” 

This command to rejoice at all times and in all circumstances is nothing less than a call to faith. For if the Christian believes that his life and all its circumstances are in the hands of a sovereign, wise, and LOVING God who is always working to accomplish good for him, then he can indeed “rejoice always.” 

And Romans 8:28, tells us just that: ‘And we know that all things work together for good to them that LOVE God, to them that who are called according to his purpose.’ 

So there is good reason to rejoice always. Why do you think I’m keeping my peace and hanging in there despite my numerous ailments? Because I’m believing on God’s promises to make everything right in His own time. 

Friends, that’s the only way to find some peace in this crazy, strife filled world, especially in the uncertain and apparently divisive era of Donald Trump’s presidency. 

Let’s pray that he will soon wake up and smell the roses and not simply make matters worse than they already are. Remember, as the U.S. goes, most of the world goes, thus we are also praying for ourselves. Much LOVE!

…if heaven is your future home…then there’s no need to be sad on earth…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 October 2014 1 Thessalonians 5:2.

1 Thessalonians 5:2.  For yourselves know perfectly that the day of our Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. 

Oh Friends, it’s a beautiful, though rainy Tuesday morning! Wow! We’re alive! And even more importantly we’re filled with the Holy Spirit; filled with the passion of Jesus Christ! Glory Hallelujah! All praise and thanks be to our merciful and magnanimous God!
 
Consequently, there ought to be a joy, an unspeakable, indescribable joy in our souls! The LOVE of Jesus, and LOVE in general ought to be pouring out of our hearts, souls, minds and bodies!
 
And if sadly it isn’t, then something’s seriously wrong my people! We need to rectify that most undesirable situation RIGHT AWAY, through prayer, communication and obedience to Almighty God!
 
Now here is an interesting quote attributed to Ethel Barrymore ((1879-1959) the renowned America actress, member of the renowned Barrymore family of actors. She says: ‘The more things you LOVE, the more you are interested in, the more you enjoy, the more you have left when anything happens.’
 
And that’s logic and truth personified my people! The wider the variety of our interests, the greater the enjoyment, and ability to handle loss or difficult times.
 
As the One More Day Devotional tells us: ‘Now is a good time for us to pursue our interests and to nurture both new and old relationships. We understand so well how easily and quickly our circumstances can change.’
 
And that sudden loss, the unexpected tragic ending was brought home to us so forcefully and graphically last week by the senseless violence that took place in this our fair country of Canada.
 
In the Province of Quebec, one disturbed young man ran over two military officers with his car, killing one and seriously wounding the other.
 
A couple days later, an even more ridiculous, scary and unfortunate incident occurred in Ottawa, the country’s capital. There, another disturbed young man shot two soldiers guarding the War Memorial Statue on Parliament Hill. One of those soldiers also died.
 
The young man then drove the short distance to the Parliament buildings, with all our elected representatives ensconced therein, and indiscriminately opened fire in the Hall of Honour of the main Parliament building.
 
Ah Lord eh! What is our world coming to eh Friends? It was somewhat poignant and hilarious to see pictures of our worthy representatives barricaded behind locked doors, cowering with fear under desks etc. I do hope that will serve as a wake up call for them to get serious about running the country properly and stop the nonsense they’re now doing.
 
Unfortunately though, the two perpetrators of the violence died in a hail of gunfire. So we don’t have the opportunity to find out exactly what went was happening with them, what brought on this outrageous and violent behaviour.
 
It’s alleged that the ever-growing Islamist extremist movement had radicalized them. But no one knows anything for sure. And Friends, unfortunately there are so many disturbed young people in our world today, that it makes me wonder about its future.
 
And sadly, the inefficient, crooked and corrupt governments, at all levels, are doing zilch to try and remedy the problem! They talk the talk, but don’t walk the walk. As I said before, I do hope that those incidents provide a wake up call for our leaders and legislators.
 
Ah mih breddren, it all just goes to show how tenuous, how fragile and uncertain our lives and circumstances are, especially in these violent and troubled times. However, it doesn’t mean that we have to cower in fear and anxiety, because we have Jesus, our great Protector, ALWAYS walking hand in hand with us.
 
And thus we can confidently say: ‘Tragedies and hard times will affect me, but I know I have the ability to move on.’ 
 
That brings us to our most appropriate Bit, Bruh Paul’s fateful words to the Thessalonians, which he prefaces with: ‘But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.’ (1 Thess. 5:1-2)
 
Yes my people, our wonderful Lord and Saviour can return at any time! Are we ready? What if He should come TODAY, RIGHT NOW? Are we ready to embrace that fateful moment? For all our sakes, I certainly hope so! For if not, then crapaud smoke we pipe! We’ll be eternally separated from our heavenly Father. And that’s a fate even worse than death!
 
Hear this explanation from the scholars. ‘5:2. The day of the Lord is an all-encompassing term to describe the period that begins with the Great Tribulation, and includes the second coming of Christ and the millennial kingdom. This Old Testament expression is here identified with the ‘parousia,’ (time of reckoning) already introduced. It will begin unexpectedly (cf.Matt.24:37).’
 
Yes Friends, the operative word there is ‘unexpectedly,’ which means we have to be prepared at ALL TIMES!
 
Now listen to Jesus expound on the subject. ‘But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only. But as the days of Noah were. So shall also the coming of the Son of man be.
 
For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day Noah entered into the ark, and knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of man be.
 
Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left. Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left. Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.’ (Matt.24:36-42)
 
That’s indeed wisdom for the ages my fellow believers!
 
And the scholars have this to say about that passage. ’24:39-42. The observation that the people of Noah’s day knew not the severity and suddenness of the coming destruction indicates that this last generation will be totally unprepared for the coming of the Son of man, the return of Christ to judge the world. (See 2 Thess.1:7-8)
 
The reference to two being in the field or at work at the time of Christ’s return implies the suddenness of His coming to separate the lost and the saved.’
 
Ah Friends, the situation couldn’t be stated any plainer than that! So please let’s do the wise thing today nuh, RIGHT NOW; let’s get ourselves together, so that whenever the Lord chooses to return, WE WILL BE READY! Much LOVE!
 
…for those who are found wanting when Jesus comes again…it will indeed be a sorrowful day…so in all wisdom…let’s not be found wanting… 
 
P.S. These late nights and early mornings will be the death of me yes! (smile) But better late than never! Much LOVE!