Today’s Scrip-Bit 9 May 2019 Psalm 46:1.

Psalm 46:1.   ​God is our refuge and strength, a very present (an abundantly available) help in trouble.

 

Allow Trouble to Lift You: ‘Truly we learn courage when we face danger; we learn patience when we endure suffering; we learn tenderness when we face pain; we learn to prize true friends when false ones forsake us; we treasure health when illness strikes and we learn to prize freedom when we are in danger of losing it! 

Without trouble we would be like plants that have sprouted, grown, and been nurtured in the overprotected shelter of a hothouse, too tender ever to live in the open.’ Oh what words of gospel truth those are! 

And furthermore: ‘We have matured as Christians when we learn that there is no progress without pain; there is no conversation without crises; there is no birth without painful travail; there is no salvation without agonizing repentance and no Easter without a Good Friday! There is no service without suffering…’ 

Yes friends, I couldn’t put it any better than that! Unfortunately those are not my words, but Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) from His Hour of Power Devotional. And yes, until we supposed Christians realize that a Christian life is not a sweet and fairytale life devoid of pain and hardship, but one fraught with periods of suffering, just like Christ’s, we’ll never mature, never grow in Christ as we ought to. 

Because as Gramps Schuller so rightly points out, if our lives are just easy and smooth, we won’t be able to face the rough and tumble trials that are truly life in this evil and ungodly world! In good, smooth, comfortable times we don’t grow, we just float along without a care in the world. But when adversity hits, that’s when we separate the goats from the sheep, that’s when we see what we’re truly made of, how strong is our backbone and belly! 

And in so doing, if we have the necessary faith and courage to stand strong in Christ, that’s when we grow! As Gramps Schuller also says later on: ‘Your trouble may be your greatest opportunity!’ And that’s no lie, because then you have to stir yourself and get yourself moving to solve your problems, in tandem with Almighty God if you’re wise! 

Remember Jesus didn’t promise that His followers would have clear and uneventful sailing in this topsy-turvy world, but exactly the opposite: ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation, but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’ (John 16:33) 

And if you’re a true believer, then you’ll know that Jesus doesn’t lie. Neither does He make idle promises. So if He says that life will contain rough times, then it will, but on the other hand, if He promises His peace during those times, then that will also come to pass. 

And remember He’s already vanquished the devil in his own territory; hell, death and the grave, by rising triumphantly on Easter Sunday, so we should not be overwhelmed by all the nonsense the enemy tries to tell us, for the victory is already ours! Glory to God! 

So now, let’s check out some scriptures that can help us handle trouble when it comes against us. And if anybody knew trouble, though he was certainly blessed, it was Bruh David. But he stoically declares (steups, wrong again) ‘One thing have I desired of the Lord, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty (delightfulness) of the Lord, and to inquire in his temple. For in the time of trouble he shall hide me in his pavilion: in the secret of his tabernacle shall he hide me; he shall set me upon a rock.’ (Ps.27:4-5) 

That means friends we just can’t run to God when times become rough, but must be in good communication with Him during the good times too. Now listen to the Sons of Korah: ‘God is our refuge and strength, a very present (an abundantly available) help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst (the heart) of the sea; Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof.   Selah.’ (Ps.46:1-3) 

Yes my brethren, let’s take a moment and contemplate on that nuh! Is our faith that strong? It ought to be, if we are truly walking in righteous and godly paths. And listen to Bruh David once again: ‘Though I walk in the midst of trouble, thou wilt revive me: thou shalt stretch forth thine hand against the wrath of mine enemies, and thy right hand shall save me.’ (Ps.138:7) 

Oh my people, that’s the kind of unwavering confidence we ought to have in our omnipotent God, for with Him ALL things are possible! And no treatise on trouble would be complete without these famous words of Bruh Paul to the church at Corinth. ‘We are troubled (hard pressed) on every side, yet not distressed (crushed); we are perplexed, but not in despair; Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast (struck) down, but not destroyed;’ (2 Cor.4:8-9) 

And why is that my faithful brethren? Because we’re ‘Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.’ (2 Cor.4:10) And now that we’ve conquered trouble, (smile) let’s go home declaring (right ho!) all the wonderful things contained in our Thursday Blessings. 

As one strong and sincere voice 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 as always, I have to remind us that those blessings are not for us to selfishly hoard, but to generously share with others less fortunate than us! Much LOVE!

…if we are in Christ…and Christ is in us…then we can overcome ANYTHING that comes against us…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 5 November 2017 Psalm 46:1.

Psalm 46:1.   God is our refuge and strength, a very present (abundantly available) help in trouble.

Well friends, Daylight Savings Time has ended. Steups! And it’s still a debatable question as to whom it helps, if anybody. However, the night shift will work an hour longer, and the day shift will get an hour more sleep…then a lot of people’s body clocks will be screwed up. 

Anyway, the good news is that it’s Sunday; the Lord’s Day, time for worship and gathering in fellowship, to hear His word, rejoice with each other and go home overjoyed and full of faith, strength and confidence to face whatever comes against us. Oh how special are our Sunday worship sessions! 

So let’s throw it into gear nuh, as we sing this awe inspiring hymn, ‘God is our refuge and our strength,’ which describes the omnipotence of our Maker and our God. With loud voice, in perfect harmony, sincerity and truth, let’s raise our sacrifice of praise to heaven and let our heavenly Father know how much we truly appreciate Him. 

‘God is our refuge and our strength, a very present aid, and, therefore, though the earth be moved, we will not be afraid, though hills amid the seas be cast, though waters roaring make, and troubled be, yea though the hills by swelling seas do shake. A river’s there, whose streams make glad the city of our God, the holy place, where God Most High hath made a strong abode. 

For God our refuge dwelleth there; that city shall not move. God is its strength when morning dawns, and will its helper prove. The Lord of Hosts is on our side, our safety to maintain; the God of Jacob doth for us a refuge high remain.’ 

And is that last sentence ever so true my fellow believers! Almighty God is definitely on our side, looking after our safety and being a safe place of refuge for us in time of need. Glory Hallelujah! What more can we ask eh? Not a whole lot. And the song we just sang was based on Psalm 46 – God is our refuge and strength, from which our Bit is taken. 

The sons of Korah, who possibly wrote it and sang it back in olden times, were in absolutely no doubt as to where their help lay: ‘God is our refuge and strength, a very present (abundantly available) help in trouble.’ And neither should we doubt my faithful brethren. We are the children of the Most High God to whom we can run for succour and reassurance at any time, day or night. 

No other faith has that privilege! Why? Because our God is the ONE and ONLY TRUE LIVING GOD! All others, be they dead or alive, are mere idols, figments of their believers imaginations.  NONE of them can do what our God can, or has the awesome power that He has. End of story! 

Hear how Bruh David puts it in Psalm 62. ‘My soul wait (silently) thou only upon God; for my expectation (hope) is from him. He only is my rock and my salvation: he is my defense; I shall not be moved (shaken). In God is my salvation and my glory: the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God. Trust him at all times; ye people, pour out your heart before him: God is a refuge for us.   Selah.’ (Ps.62:5-8) 

And who should know better than Bruh David eh, with the drama filled life he lived? Who, despite his iniquity was still considered a man after God’s own heart! And knowing that we won’t always walk perfectly in God’s will or be obedient to His dictates, Bruh David’s story should give us great assurance and encouragement my brethren. 

Consequently we should not be afraid to surrender our lives to God, to place our sincere trust in His mighty and capable hands, especially since He has also blessed us with His unconditional LOVE, by giving us His ONE Son, Jesus, as an atoning sacrifice for our sins, and His Holy Spirit as our Guide and Comforter.  

As the old people would say; ‘we living life in London!’ (smile) That simply means we’re living a good life. No doubt about it, precious people of Christ! Yes friends, when we’re living with and for Christ, our lives are so enriched and we’re so confident that we can adhere to the admonition from the author of Hebrews without too many problems. 

‘Let your conversation (conduct) be without covetousness; and be ye content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall (can) do unto me.’ (Heb.13:5-6) 

Ah mih people, with such a powerful and dynamic God, who also faithfully keeps His promises, why should we be afraid of mankind eh? If we should be afraid of anybody, it’s God, who has the power to do whatever He wants with us. And we’ll end with this li’l power play that the Lord put down on Israel during one of their disobedient times, as related by the prophet Hosea. 

‘O Israel, thou hast destroyed thyself; but in me is thine help. I will be thy king (where is thy king): where is any other that may save thee in all thy cities? and thy judges of whom thou saidst, Give me a king and princes? I gave thee a king in my anger, and took him away in my wrath.’ (Hos.19:9-11) 

Yuh see who is the real power, friends? Almighty God! So let’s be wise this Sunday nuh…to whom is honour and glory due… and just praise and worship Him in all His glory; exalt His Holy Name, give Him His just desserts, and let Him be our help and refuge in these abnormal times of strife and evil. That’s wisdom at its highest level. Much LOVE!

…to whom is honour and glory due…fear and reverence…obedience and worship…Almighty God…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 November 2017 Psalm 46:1.

Psalm 46:1.   God is our refuge and strength, a very present (abundantly available) help in trouble.

Saturday, oh Saturday; what a great day! Oh, let me take that back…no embellish it. Saturday is a great day -good for sleeping in, like I just did – (smile), but the real truth is that EVERY day is a great day in God’s world! 

How could they not be when you have the Holy Spirit of your Creator constantly walking with and dwelling within you eh? Oh, we ought to know that just because we call ourselves Christians and have Jesus beside us all the time, that all our days will not be worry and problem free. 

Unfortunately many of us supposed believers seem to think so, but if you look through the Good Book you’ll notice that some of the men and women of greatest faith and holiness, like Bruh Joseph, Bruh David, Uncle Job and Bruh Paul had more problems than some of their lesser peers, with the most important being our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. 

And what makes every day a great day is basically our mindset and attitude. A positive approach to life is the best. Obviously there will be some negative circumstances, but the trick is to try and consider them in a positive light; like the Lord is testing us, and this too shall pass, and He won’t allow more than we can bear. 

Our God must always be prominent in our thoughts whether we are experiencing good or bad circumstances. As Job said when his whole life crumbled in mere moments, we can’t always expect good and not some bad. That’s just how life is in our fallen and sinful world. 

And I have personal testimony to that this morning. And before giving it, I have to exhale a ‘Steups!’ and an ‘Ah Lord eh!’ Why? Because I just came down to my office to write the Bit, and lo and behold I saw that one of the panels in the ceiling of the office had come apart. 

Obviously I was annoyed, and further annoyed when I tried to put it back together and found that I couldn’t do it by myself. I couldn’t raise my hands above my head and hold all the stuff together at the same time. Some years ago I could have done it, although it has always been a finicky job; as you fix one side, the other tends to drop out etc. 

And believe me, I can’t see any reason why that particular panel fell out, except to test my resources. (smile) But am I going to let it spoil my day? Obviously not! It’s relatively a small, unimportant thing, which can stay as it is until I can get someone to help me put it back together again. 

Yeh friends, too many of us allow little things to rattle us and get us off of our ‘A game’ and spoil the rest of our day. That brings us to the quotes from our friend Anselm, who aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. I only got two from him this week, don’t know what happened. 

But anyway, this first one segues in quite nicely to what we’ve been talking about. ‘Don’t think too much…. you’ll create a problem that wasn’t even there in the first place.’ And that’s quite possible. 

When problems befall us we tend to over think them, wondering why, what, when, wherefore and all the other questions, which only makes the current problem bigger than it ought to be. 

I could have done that with the fallen bit of ceiling, but it wouldn’t have gotten me anywhere, except miserable. And it at least brought home the knowledge that I’m not as agile and supple as I used to be. (smile) 

And the next quote says: ‘Sometimes the wrong choices bring us to the right places.’ I really don’t know how to view that nuh, except to think that when we make wrong choices we can end up in places so desperate and helpless, that we are forced to turn to God for help to extricate us. 

And that’s why our Bit tells it like it is. ‘God is our refuge and strength, a very present (abundantly available) help in trouble.’ 

And all God’s people shouted a loud and grateful ‘Glory Hallelujah!’ because they know that that statement is the ultimate in truth. Yeh friends, when you belong to the most omnipotent force, the highest Being in the universe, you have no reason to fear what man can do to you. 

And as the sons of Korah continue to sing their song of praise and tribute: ‘Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst (the heart) of the sea; Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof.    Selah.’ (Ps.46:2-3) 

Yeh mih people, though the earth and all therein erupt in deadly turmoil, yet we who believe in Almighty God will not be afraid. Glory to God! So total is our surrender, so strong is our faith, hope and trust in Him, that nothing will move us, except His rejection. 

And we know that will NEVER happen! Not after He showed His undying LOVE and sacrificed His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ to atone for our abominable sins. 

So let us go forward this Saturday morning, filled with the strength, wisdom and understanding granted us through His Holy Spirit and make it a great day, spreading LOVE and the good news of Christ’s gospel to all and sundry. That’s the way our Lord and Saviour, Jesus, desires it. Much LOVE!

…don’t fear man…but certainly fear God…