Today’s Scrip-Bit 5 December 2018 Psalm 139:13.

Psalm 139:13.    For thou hast possessed my reins (formed my inward parts): thou hast covered me (weaved me) in my mother’s womb.
 

Aye friends and Scrip-Bit family… is Wednesday…and all is well! The ole fella’s somewhat tired though after a long day yesterday in the city, then going to bed fairly early, but not being able to rest properly, and wanting to sleep when I should be getting up. Hn! Yuh think it easy! Then not knowing what to say to you this cold morning doesn’t help matters either. (smile) 

But as always, our ever-faithful God just put this in my spirit to share with you. It’s a prayer I first discovered in the flyleaves of my mother’s Bible after her death. And though I’ve shared it before, these kinds of prayers are always useful, especially in the rough times, and it’s ever so appropriate for a morning like this. 

Please pray with me: ‘The light of God surrounds me. The LOVE of God enfolds me. The power of God protects me. The presence of God watches over me. Wherever I am…God IS…And ALL IS WELL! Amen!’  

And that is the gospel truth my fellow believers! Whatever we’re going through, and wherever we are, our great and faithful God is right there walking with us, before and behind, beside, and in us! Glory Hallelujah! No other faith can make that statement with the absolute truth that we can! Give God some of the much praise He deserves nuh my brethren! 

Yuh know for all that our heavenly Father does for us, we certainly don’t give Him enough thanks and praise nuh. Sometimes we get so accustomed to His mercy and LOVING-kindness that we just take it all for granted and forget to say ‘Thank You Father! Thank You for all You’re doing for me, even though I don’t deserve most of it!’ 

Yuh know friends, one of the things our God likes to hear from us is thanks and praise and exaltation. In fact that’s one of the reasons why He made us; so we could glorify His Holy Name, lift up His wonderful and awesome attributes, and let the evil heathen world know who is the real BOSS! 

Not Beelzebub, who the Lord just allows to run this sinful earth; but the Lord God of Hosts, the Holy One of Israel, Yahweh, Jehovah God! Now He is the real sahib: the Conquering Lion of Judah, Lord of Lords and King of Kings, Creator and Controller of this amazing universe! 

That’s whom our knees should bow to and our voices declare as our Alpha and Omega; our First and our Last, our EVERYTHING! For He made us… and controls our very destiny from the moment of our conception to the time we return to the dust from which we were created! 

And trust Bruh David to have the right words for us this morning: ‘Yea, the darkness hideth not from thee; but the night shineth as the day; the darkness and the light are both alike to thee. For thou hast possessed my reins (formed my inward parts): thou hast covered me (weaved me) in my mother’s womb.’ (Ps.139:12-13) Ah friends, how can we not glorify such a wonderful Maker and Creator eh? 

Listen further to Bruh David: ‘I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well (very well).’ (Ps.139:14) Ah mih people, I have to pause here and ask this very important question: do our souls truly know the extent of God’s marvellous works and how masterfully we were made? I doubt it yes, else we wouldn’t have to be harangued and chided and often forced to give God great thanks and praise. 

But hear Bruh David as he continues to praise God’s mighty work in creating human beings. ‘My substance (frame, bones) was not hid from thee when I was made in secret, and curiously (skillfully) wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.

Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect (unformed); and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned (the days fashioned for me), when as yet there was none of them.’ (Ps.139:15-16) 

Oh my people, how could we not praise and worship our God after reading that kind of truth eh? Our days were numbered in His book even before we were formed in our mother’s womb! Glory to God! And if you don’t believe me, or Bruh David, then listen to Jesus nuh, hopefully you’ll believe Him. (smile) 

‘And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him (God) which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? And one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are numbered. Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.’ (Matt.10:28-31) 

Chuh mih people! How reassuring is that eh; to know that the Lord knows the number of hairs on our heads and we are more valuable than many sparrows, who don’t fall down without His knowledge, much less the care and concern He has for us, His most precious creation! 

 Believe friends…please believe in His goodness and mercy; believe that His presence is always watching over us, as His power protects us, and His brilliant light shines over us, while His wonderful, unconditional LOVE enfolds us in His strong embrace! 

Now let’s go home wailing our Wednesday Wail, letting all and sundry know of our wonderful position in Christ Jesus. In unison and full sincerity: ‘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!’ 

Now let’s keep that wise position friends! Much LOVE!

…what a marvellous creation…is the human being…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 July 2015 Psalm 103:8‏‏‏

Psalm 103:8.   The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous (abounding) in mercy (LOVING-kindness).

HAPPY  CANADA  DAY!

Happy Birthday Canada! On this 1st of July 2015, we’re a bright and sparkling one hundred and forty eight years old today! Wow! And the celebrations will be enormous! I began mine last night as you can see from the lateness of the Bit. (smile)

And why not eh? Canada has been good to me. It’s where I’ve spent the last forty two years and counting of my life. It hasn’t been easy, but it has certainly been interesting and rewarding. Like most other countries we’re on somewhat of a downward slide now, but by golly, it is still the best big country in the world! Glory Hallelujah!

In 1867 the British North America Act conferred some self-governing powers on Canada and she became a Dominion of Britain. Since then she has not looked back and has gone on to take her place as one of the leaders of the free world. Let’s hope that continues as time goes by.

Ohhh! Lest I forget later on, let me remind us right now about Granny’s wise words. ‘Sonny boy… remember that drunk or sober, please mind yuh business.’

Words of absolute wisdom my brethren! For we all know that when we get into celebrating, we tend to get a tad loose and that only gives the wily old fox Lucifer a chance to invade our souls. And we definitely don’t want to do that. So let’s just keep our wits about us in the celebrations today.

And since it’s Wednesday, let’s do some wailing nuh. On the count of three: one, two, three. ‘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!’

Yes my people, is it ever so good to be alive on this first day in July, although the temperature is only supposed to go up to something like 21, and it is a tad chilly and cloudy outside. The summer doesn’t look to be shaping up too good nuh. But why to worry eh? Our great God is in control and He knows our wants and needs.

Plus He has faithfully promised never to leave nor forsake us, so if the true summer weather is a bit tardy in coming, we just have to take it in stride and rely on His wonderful promise to bring us safely through our dark times in the valley of the shadow of death.

Therefore we can now unconditionally declare: ‘The Lord God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is a mighty and magnanimous God! We will rest in peace, safety and joy in His holy and everlasting, LOVE, mercy and grace! Amen!’

And now let’s turn to our Bit which so wonderfully proclaims all that we’ve said so far. ‘The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous (abounding) in mercy (LOVING-kindness).’

Ah Friends, if our God didn’t possess all those glorious attributes, I don’t know, and fear to think what might have already become of us, with our truly disobedient and ungodly behaviour.

And as we’ve been doing for the last few days, let’s look at some scripture that shore up our Bit, beginning with Moses interceding with God for the people of Israel after they had foolishly rebelled against Him.

‘And now I beseech thee, let the power of my Lord be great, according as thou hast spoken, saying, The Lord is long-suffering and of great mercy, forgiving iniquity and transgression, and by no means clearing the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation.

Pardon, I beseech thee, the iniquity of this people according unto the greatness of thy mercy, and as thou hast forgiven this people, from Egypt even until now.’(Num.14:17-19)

Oh Friends, Moses wasn’t as stupid as he claimed to be nuh. The Lord was about to destroy the Israelites for their rebellion, but Moses used God’s own words back at Him, those He had used to Moses when He passed before Him on Mt. Sinai, while getting the second version of the Ten Commandments.

And I like the logic he used on God: If He destroyed the Israelites, then the other nations would say it was because He was unable to bring them safely through the wilderness. And we all know that our God LOVES a challenge! (smile) Tell Him He can’t do something, and you know He’ll prove that He can.

And though the Lord pardoned the Israelites, He promised, ‘But as truly as I live, all the earth shall be filled with the glory of the Lord.’ (Num.14:21) He rose to Moses’ challenge, and also declared that none of those who came out of Egypt and saw all His signs and wonders would step foot in the Promised Land. And so it was.

So my brethren, though our God is wonderful and merciful and kind, He won’t allow us to take advantage of His goodness and mercy, so please remember that there are consequences for continual disobedience.

Now hear Moses again, this time warning the Israelites that they were a holy people to the Lord and thus had great responsibilities. ‘Know therefore that the Lord thy God, he is God, the faithful God which keepeth covenant and mercy with them that LOVE him and keep his commandments to a thousand generations;

And repayeth them that hate him to their face, to destroy them: he will not be slack to him that hateth him (delay with those who hate Him), he will repay him to his face. Thou shalt therefore keep the commandments and the statutes, and the judgements, which I command thee this day, to do them.’ (Deut.7:9-11)

Oh Friends, we have it right there in black and white! We have also seen it in action down through the ages. So why do we in these unfaithful, ungodly and rather sinful times believe, or simply ignore the fact that we will not suffer God’s punishment for our boldfaced disobedience eh?

I assure us that we will, in God’s own time. He is indeed long-suffering and will give us plenty of rope, in the hope that we will wake up and smell the roses, or on the other hand, to hang ourselves.

Now let’s end with these words of absolute truth, as spoken by the great prophet Daniel in his prayer for his people, Israel. ‘To the Lord our God belong mercies and forgiveness, though we have rebelled against him.’ (Dan.9:9)

And that’s no lie Friends! But we can’t keep on rebelling and keep expecting mercy and forgiveness forever. It’s not realistic from a holy, righteous and just God, and it will not happen.

So please let’s take the necessary precautions and turn once more in confession and repentance to the One who created us, the universe and all therein. That is the zenith and epitome of wisdom. Much LOVE!

…disobedience and rebellion NEVER pays…regardless of who or what we think we are…

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 May 2015 2 Chronicles 7:14‏‏

2 Chronicles 7:14.  If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn away from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

Well a wonderful Wednesday morning to you readers out there in Scrip-Bit Land! It’s a tad on the chilly side today, as it was yesterday. Ah Lord eh! What is the weather coming to eh? We had a beautiful Victoria Day weekend, then yesterday it suddenly turned cold and windy.

As one Friend told me yesterday evening, ‘you were boasting in the Bit about sitting on your porch last night communing with nature. Let me see if you will do it tonight too.’ (smile)

And Friends, sad to say I didn’t. It was just too so and so cold. But them’s the breaks! And furthermore, the sun is shining, we are alive and kicking and all is right in God’s world! Bless His Holy Name. That’s why we can say, as the psalmist did eons ago: ‘This is the day the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it.’ (Ps.118:24)

We might as well my brethren, because the only other alternative is to be sad and miserable, and God gave us the day to be fruitful and multiply, both in terms of children and in His work here on earth. Anyway, we’ve reached the halfway point of the workweek – rather quickly and easily I must say –  (smile) so there’s no turning or looking back now, just straight ahead to the finish line.

And to help us do that, here’s something from Gramps Schuller (Robert H. Schuller) from his Hour of Power Devotional, on the subject of courage, which we can never get enough of. He claims that courage isn’t a gift, but a decision. And ‘Courage is not the absence of fear, it is the presence of a calling – a dream that pulls you beyond yourself. Hence it is something you can never lose. It is always something that you can choose. So, choose it today!’

And then, in a little poem, he declares: ‘I have it! My fears are going, going, gone! I feel a mysterious, calm, quiet, tranquil assurance rising deep within my being. This remarkable spirit of courage is overpowering me. It is the very presence of God working peace at the core of my invisible soul. Thank You Lord. All my fears are gone. What a relief! Amen.’

Yes my people, courage, like all other good things, comes from Almighty God! It is He who gives us the wherewithal to bear our burdens with chutzpah, and not give up to the fear the enemy tries to instill in us. So please, today, let’s be filled with courage, as we endeavour to do God’s work and be fruitful.

And we will need plenty of courage if we are to fulfill the words of our Bit, especially with the power of the unbeliever in today’s world, and his determined purpose to remove all aspects of God from our society. ‘If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn away from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.’

Ah mih breddren, what a most worthy promise! One that should allay all our fears. But even if we’re still fearful, we can do like Sister Joyce (Joyce Meyer) likes to say: ‘Do it afraid.’  We just can’t afford to let fear hold us back in these very difficult and trying times.

And we can punctuate that with these encouraging and uplifting words of Bruh Paul to Timothy. ‘For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of LOVE, and of a sound mind.’ (2 Tim.1:7) And that’s the absolute truth Friends, so please let’s not give into the fear mongering of this evil world, for the power that’s within us, the Holy Spirit, is greater than that which is in the world.

And all of God’s people gave out a loud shout of, ‘Praise the Lord! Amen.’

Now let’s turn to some scripture that pertains to the first of the four things in our Bit, that we need to do to turn back to God, so that He can heal us and our land. That’s ‘humble themselves.’

Oh Friends, one of the things our God thoroughly dislikes is pride. As Cousin Sol says in Proverbs 8: ‘The fear of the Lord is to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the forward (perverse) mouth do I hate.’ (Prov.8:13)  And in Proverbs 1.17, he mentions ‘a proud look (haughty eyes)’ as one of the seven things that are an abomination to our God.

So Friends, it’s obvious that we can’t come before our heavenly father in pride and arrogance, for He will just ignore us, possibly just have us thrown out from His presence. (smile) Now hear how He rewards humility.

Way back when, in the days of the apostasy of Rehoboam, king of Judah, Shishak, the king of Egypt, came to fight against Jerusalem with a mighty army. And he captured several cities of Judah before he came to Jerusalem.

‘Then came Shemaiah the prophet to Rehoboam, and to the princes of Judah, that were gathered together at Jerusalem because of Shishak, and said unto them, Thus saith the Lord, Ye have forsaken me, and therefore I also left you in the hand of Shishak. Whereupon the princes of Israel and the king humbled themselves; and they said, The Lord is righteous.

And when the Lord saw that they humbled themselves, the word of the Lord came to Shemaiah, saying, They have humbled themselves; therefore I will not destroy them, but will grant them some deliverance; and my wrath shall not be poured out upon Jerusalem by the hand of Shishak. Nevertheless, they shall be his servants; that they may know my service (distinguish my service from) the service of the kingdoms of the countries.’ (2 Chr.12:5-8)

Yuh see Friends, even though God provided them with some relief for their humility, they still had to pay a price for their earlier pride and arrogance. And I wonder why our world is in so much turmoil eh? Could it be partly because of our pride and arrogance and turning away from the ways of God?

You can bet your bottom dollar that our intransigence plays a big part in the disastrous state of our world my people!

And we shall close with one of the most notable scriptures on the subject. This from James: ‘Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.’ (James 4:10)

Oh my people, my people, there is no better advice to be had than that! So please, let’s just grab it and run with it nuh, so that our world, our children, will stand a much better chance of life and prosperity than we now do. That’s wisdom and common sense at the zenith! Much LOVE!

…humility…it is the first…and most important requirement…for gaining entrance to the Lord’s presence…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 11 May 2015 Psalm 46:1

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

Well Friends, Monday morning is here, time to get up and get rolling! Let’s hope that yesterday’s celebration of Mother’s Day wasn’t too incapacitating, and consequently you’re shaking it somewhat rough this morning. (smile)

I sincerely hope that Mothers all around the world were suitably revered and appreciated, but please, please, let’s keep up that adoration, respect and affection all the year round nuh. It doesn’t have to be with physical gifts, but simply spending more time than usual with them, more phone calls or visits and nicer words when they tell us something we don’t like.

Most mothers don’t want anything from their children but simple appreciation, in whatever form they can manifest it. So let’s try and do that nuh, for then we’ll be keeping one of God’s major commandments and also buoying the spirits of our mothers throughout the year, rather than one day in the month of May. We would all be much happier too, for the LOVE of Christ would then be truly spread abroad.

However, it’s now time to face the outside world once again, so let’s get the show on the road by singing our Monday Morning Battle Hymn with as much verve and gusto as we can manage.

Altogether now: ‘Oh Lord God Almighty, Creator of the universe and all therein! We, your humble servants, praise your Holy Name and thank you that this Monday morning we have jobs to go to; jobs we don’t like, jobs that are unfair, difficult and even dangerous, but which serve a useful purpose here on earth; keeping lives and families together.

We also thank you Father for the renewed vitality and enthusiasm you’ve wrought in our weary souls over the last two days. It’s that rejuvenation of Spirit which allows us now to sally forth with confidence into the evil, ungodly world that surrounds us, to begin a new week of work, constantly buffeted and bombarded by the enemy’s wicked taunts, wiles and lies.

But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour. We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle.

Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’

Ah Friends, that rendition wasn’t so hot this morning nuh. You could hear the crustiness and hoarseness in the voices as a result of too much partying yesterday. (smile) But we won’t let that stop us from going out and facing the music, the ungodly clamour of the unruly heathen, for Jesus is our most able Field General and goes before us.  

And furthermore, in the encouraging and uplifting words of our Bit, the Sons of Korah truthfully proclaim: ‘God is our refuge and strength, a very present help (an abundantly available help) in time of trouble.’

Oh my people, my people, those awesome words of wisdom and absolute truth ought to just lift our spirits and have us walking around like Superman; being able to do every and anything in the strength, power and majesty of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! (smile)

And somebody says, ‘Hold down brother, hold down. Don’t get carried away now.’ But Friends, that’s not getting carried away, but simply acknowledging the facts of this life. We can indeed do any and everything though Christ Jesus who strengthens us. The Good Book says that, (Phl.4:13) and the Good Book doesn’t lie.

So please let’s get excited and stirred up by the Holy Spirit which indwells us, as we go out there to face the traffic jams, the bad weather, the rude and ungodly co-workers, or whatever comes against us today! That’s the ardent desire of our Leader, Jesus Christ.

And since God is our refuge and strength, then like the Sons of Korah continue: ‘Therefore will we not 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)

Oh my brethren, those positive words just raise the level of faith and belief in my soul, and I hope they do in yours too. For you know our major problem in this life is the thing we call fear; technically speaking, the opposite of faith. But as Bruh Paul so wisely and truthfully told Timothy; ‘For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of LOVE, and of a sound mind.’ (2 Tim.1:7)  

Oh what inspirational words of gospel truth!  And shouldn’t that just have us fighting fit and ready to have a go at the enemy, anytime? It surely should my brethren. With the omnipotent Creator of the universe on our side, we shouldn’t be afraid of anything or anybody! 

And we’ll end with this uplifting warning from Jesus. ‘And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.’ (Matt.10:28)

And my people, the good news is that only Almighty God, our heavenly Father has the power to kill our souls and send us to Hades. So if we obey Him, we won’t have to be worried about that. Now let’s go out there and do brave battle for and with Jesus, because that’s what He expects of His loyal followers. Much LOVE!

…there’s no need to fear anything at all…because you and all-powerful God are a majority…

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 April 2015 Psalm 22:9 ‏‏‏‏‏‏‏‏‏

Psalm 22:9.      But thou art he that took me out of the womb: thou didst make me HOPE (caused me to trust) when I was upon my mother’s breast.

Aye Friends welcome to this turbulent, tempestuous Thursday morning, the last day of April! It was just one of those nights. I don’t understand it myself. I went to bed a few minutes later than usual, but also got up several times during the night and couldn’t go back to sleep, couldn’t find a comfortable spot to set my aching body so that that beautiful elixir sleep could overtake it.

I guess many of you old-timers experience that at one time or the other. But it’s definitely frustrating, especially when you fall asleep at the time to get up. But you know what Friends?

It’s all a part of living this earthly life. And when you have that marvelous Saviour of ours, Jesus, walking with you, you can afford to grin and bear it, because you know that He knows what you’re going through, since He went through some serious pain and torment Himself, and that eventually He will work everything out for your good.

Glory to God, my people!

And as an adjunct to that, listen to this quote attributed to Ethel Barrymore (1879-1959), the screen and theatre actress, member of the prominent American Barrymore family of actors, whose distinctive style made her the ‘first lady’ of the American theatre. Ethel is reputed to have said: ‘You grow up the day you have the first real laugh – at yourself.’

And isn’t that the truth my brethren! Until we learn to laugh at ourselves, our mistakes, our troubles and our good times, we’ll never conquer the internal muse that tends to lead us to sadness and heartache and complaining whenever things don’t go our way.

As my One Day Devotional for People with Chronic Illness reminds us: ‘It takes fewer muscles to laugh than to cry. We’ll breathe easier and deeper, and we’ll be much more content when we laugh… for laughter helps us to put things into perspective. It lends HOPE and meaning to life.’ 

And that’s the absolute truth Friends! But there are some things that we just can’t laugh at, like the destructive and disastrous state of our world. In the past couple weeks we’ve had hundreds of migrants drowning in the Mediterranean ocean, heading for the perceived balmy shores of Europe, in search of a better life than the calamitous one they had left behind.

Then there was the sudden eruption of a dormant volcano in Chile, combined with riots in Baltimore and a devastating earthquake in Nepal. Hn! And that doesn’t take into account the numerous wars and rumours of war, the seemingly never-ending strife that’s going on all over God’s beautiful planet.

Ah Lord eh! What a mess we’ve made of this wonderful Earth! But Friends, as we keep saying, while there is life, there is always HOPE!

That’s because our Creator has instilled that wonderful emotion in us from day one, as declared by Bruh David in our Bit. ‘But thou art he that took me out of the womb: thou didst make me HOPE (caused me to trust) when I was upon my mother’s breast.’

Yes my people, our great God knew the plans, the good future He had in store for us, so He made us with that little something termed HOPE, which causes us never to give up, never to simply lie down and die when times get rough, but to always have a spark of fire, like a pilot light going in our souls.

Now that’s a very good description of HOPE there my Friends, never thought of it before. But a pilot light never goes out, it just keeps burning quietly in the background; always ready to burst into flame when it’s needed. That’s the way HOPE operates in our souls; always there ready to burst into positive action, even though the surrounding circumstances might indicate differently.

So Friends, I’m here grinning like a Cheshire cat, because to muddy the waters even more, my allergies seem to have chosen this particular time to act up. There’s been a steady stream of sneezing and blowing for the last few minutes. But I’m practicing what I preach; I’m just grinning and bearing it all, because I know that all those things will eventually pass, fade away! All praise and glory to God!

Now let’s see what the scriptures have in store for us today, re that invigorating and renewing feeling called HOPE. And what better way to start than with these encouraging words of the psalmist, as he prays for help in old age.

‘But I will HOPE continually, and will yet praise thee more and more. My mouth shall show forth (proclaim) thy righteousness and thy salvation all the day; for I know not the numbers (limits) thereof.’ (Ps.71:14-15)

Yes Friends, that’s exactly how believers are expected to behave; always HOPING, and always proclaiming God’s righteousness!

Now listen to Peter, the rock, in his call to Christian dedication. ‘Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind (prepare your mind for action), be sober, and HOPE to the end for the grace (rest your HOPE fully upon the grace) that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ.’ (1 Pet.1:13)

What marvellous advice my people!

And the scholars explain that verse thus: ‘1:13. The exhortation to set one’s HOPE involves an inward resolution. Gird up the loins of your mind: The imagery is that of personal discipline and outward conduct. Be sober (Gr. nephontes): Be free of every sort of mental and spiritual intoxication. The revelation of Jesus Christ is the Second Advent when Jesus returns to earth to set up his kingdom.’

Now Friends, it’s time for us to ponder all that we’ve heard this morning, to digest it, then act wisely on it all. That’s the wisdom of heaven. Much LOVE!

…gird up the loins of your mind…then spring into action…it’s the Jesus way…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 April 2015 Psalm 22:9 ‏‏‏‏‏

Psalm 22:9.   But thou art he that took me out of the womb: thou didst make me hope (caused me to trust) when I was upon my mother’s breast.

Ah Friends, it’s Monday morning once again and the soaring sound of the trumpet is calling us to the battle lines, where our fearless and omnipotent General Jesus Christ is there waiting for us. And I must reiterate that our wonderful Leader always goes before us! He takes His role as a leader to heart and leads. He doesn’t follow, as so many other inferior generals do. 

And all God’s people loudly declared: ‘All praise to God for our marvellous Leader Jesus Christ! He is indeed the finest and fairest Leader in all the universe!’
 
And having said that Friends, let’s sing our Monday Morning Battle Hymn with much gusto, harmony and sincerity to boost our spirits before we hit the road.
 
Like one heavenly choir now, let’s sing: ‘Oh Lord God Almighty, Creator of the universe and all therein! We, your humble servants, praise your Holy Name and thank you that this Monday morning we have jobs to go to; jobs we don’t like, jobs that are unfair, difficult and even dangerous, but which serve a useful purpose here on earth; keeping lives and families together.
 
We also thank you Father for the renewed vitality and enthusiasm you’ve wrought in our weary souls over the last two days. It’s that rejuvenation of Spirit which allows us now to sally forth with confidence into the evil, ungodly world that surrounds us, to begin a new week of work, constantly buffeted and bombarded by the enemy’s wicked taunts, wiles and lies.
 
But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour. We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle.
 
Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’
 
That was pretty good Friends because we paid attention to the direction of the wonderful choirmaster, Jesus. Now let’s see if we can pay the same attention to Him out on the battlefield that’s the workday world and thus do as good a job in His name.
 
But yuh know what Friends? It all begins with that marvellous, magical, miraculous emotion termed HOPE; which, when mixed with belief, becomes the elixir called faith, which just grows and grows and grows, regardless of the circumstances or situations. Ah mih people HOPE is an innate instinct that we’re born with; our Creator provides us with it from birth. 
 
That’s why Bruh David could justify his hope, faith and everlasting trust in the God of his fathers with the words of our Bit. ‘But thou art he that took me out of the womb: thou didst make me hope (caused me to trust) when I was upon my mother’s breast.’  
 
Yesterday we looked at some scripture passages that dealt with HOPE, today we’re going to do the same. And my people God’s word is so chocked full of passages on HOPE, in all different kinds of situations, that it might just take me a couple of weeks to go through them all. Hn, Hn! Doh worry Friends, I’m only joking, but the Good Book does have a lot to say on the subject.
 
And we’ll begin with this rather interesting passage from Bruh Paul to the church at Rome. ‘For we are saved by HOPE: but HOPE that is seen is not HOPE: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet HOPE for? But if we HOPE for that we see not, then do we with patience (perseverance) wait (eagerly) for it.’ (Rom.8:24-25)
 
And that is not rocket science my brethren, but simple common sense! For if we see something in living colour, why would we still HOPE for it eh? But if we don’t see it in living colour, only through the eyes of faith, then we should HOPE for it, and wait with eager patience for it to appear in living colour.
 
And that’s where HOPE is tied into faith; it is the bedrock, the foundation stone of faith. (Heb.11:1) Without HOPE you cannot have faith, which is the next step in the process.
 
Now hear these words from Jeremiah’s Lamentations that tie in so nicely with what we’ve been talking about. Jeremiah is here talking about HOPE and relief through God’s mercy.
 
‘Remembering mine affliction and my misery, the wormwood and the gall (bitterness). My soul hath them still in remembrance, and is humbled (bowed down) in me. This I recall to my mind, therefore have I HOPE. It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.
 
The Lord is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I HOPE in him. The Lord is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him. It is good that a man should both HOPE and quietly wait for the salvation of the Lord.’ (Lam.3:19-26)
 
Oh Friends, those are indeed beautiful words of absolute truth! Words for all true believers to live by!
 
Therefore my people, logic dictates that we end here, with them resonating and reverberating through our hearts, minds and souls, to buoy and boost us up, as we go out to do the Lord’s work today. Go in the LOVE, peace and wisdom of God, my brethren. Much LOVE!
 
…without HOPE…what’s a man living for eh…he might as well be dead…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 May 2014 Philippians 4:13

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

strengtheneth me.

Oh Friends, another cultural icon has gone home to rest in Paradise after bearing the unholy pangs of this earthly life. I’m talking about Maya Angelou (1928-2014), the wonderful female American author, activist, educator, poet and actress, who died a couple days ago.

 

And believe me, hers was not an easy journey, definitely not an easy pilgrimage. But how could it ever be when you grow up Black in the racist white southern states of America in the early twentieth century eh?

 

And to make matters worse, you’re stubborn and ornery enough to marry a white Greek man, when interracial marriage was so strongly condemned, and even banned in some states. But such was the perseverance, the belly and backbone of Maya Angelou, that she stood her bounce and did her own thing, regardless of the racial problems. 

 

 

Obviously she paid for thumbing her nose at society, white society at that. But just like Nelson Mandela, who spent 27 years in prison, so too Maya, in the long run was vindicated, thereby proving that it was indeed possible to live life the way you saw and wanted it, provided you were willing to put up with the hard knocks it brought.

 

Eventually, her writings and her activism earned her numerous rewards, accolades, the LOVE and appreciation of a grateful public. Somehow or other though, I never became a big fan of Maya. Don’t ask me why, because I can’t say. She was indeed a good and prolific writer, but her overall work never thrilled me. Some of her stuff I did like, but when everybody was raving over her, I was just lukewarm. 

 

And I know that some of you might consider that heresy, (smile) but that’s just the way it is. I suspect too, that since some of her stuff that I read earlier on didn’t move me, I never had the inclination to delve deeply into her works. And it’s obvious that she didn’t suffer any lack for my not being her fan. (smile)

 

Anyway Friends, she was a refreshing and reassuring voice in the midst of a bigoted society. And she did stand up to all her detractors, like her forefathers did. And her life exemplified the saying that the Godfather of Soul, Papa James Brown made famous: ‘I’m Black and I’m proud!’

 

Unfortunately though, after some four hundred years, that is something a lot of Black people still have to put into practice. But then too, nobody can stand up to the rigours of racism, oppression and suppression without the help of Jesus!

 

As Bruh Paul so succinctly but wisely and truthfully says it in our Bit: ‘I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.’

 

And please believe me Friends, that’s the gospel, gospel truth! I’m sure people like Maya and Mandela could not have suffered the persecution they did, yet stand up to it and succeed in their efforts without strong faith in our omnipotent God. And if they could do it, when it was so much harder and dangerous, then so can we, my people, in these less risky times.

 

But we have to put the utmost faith in Jesus, which sadly, too many of us are refusing to do. And you know, before even Bruh Paul wrote those immortal words to the Philippians, Jesus Himself said them, or rather intimated as much. Listen, as He teaches the disciples through the story of the vine and the branches.

 

‘I am the true (genuine) vine, and my Father is the husbandman (vinedresser). Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth (prunes) it, that it may bring forth more fruit. Now ye are clean through (because of) the word which I have spoken unto you. Abide in me, and I in you.

 

As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.’ (John 15:1-5)

 

Oh Friends, that last statement is so profound and undeniably true, that every time we read it, we ought to stop and ponder the absolute truth it represents! Without Jesus, we can truly do nothing! Yet still, we foolishly try to live this life in our own strength.

 

Oh my brethren, when are we going to wake up and realize and acknowledge that fact eh, and then begin living for and through Jesus? Please remember that Jesus’ second coming is imminent; it could be today or tomorrow, and once He returns, all bets are off, there’ll be no longer any repenting and coming to salvation.

 

So if we’re smart, we’d jump on His bandwagon RIGHT NOW! We’d jump on the glory train that’s bound for heaven and getting closer with every powerful chug of its engine.

 

Oh my people, let’s stop being unwise nuh, stop listening to the lies and the deceit propagated by this evil and ungodly world, and grab hold of Jesus and all He stands for before it’s too late. Remember that the Father doesn’t even want to lose one single one of His greatest creation, mankind, to the master of darkness, Beelzebub.

 

And the Father has already done His part; provide Jesus as our saving grace. Now it’s up to us to receive that saving grace, believe in it, and put it into practice in our daily lives, because it’s wisdom from heaven above! Much LOVE!

 

…oh how it’s going to hurt the Father’s heart…when He looks out of heaven…and sees so many of His finest creation…woefully on the outside looking in…and there’ll be no one to blame but ourselves…

 

 

 

 

 

 

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