Today’s Scrip-Bit   19 September 2021 Matthew 11:28.

Matthew 11:28.      Come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 

Ah mih people, how quickly these days are passing! Would you believe it’s Sunday already? Didn’t we just celebrate it a few days ago? (smile) We might have. But it’s time to gather for worship once again on the Lord’s day, be it physically in His sanctuary, or at home through technological means. And today we will sing a song of hope, that was born out of a sorrowful life. The song is titled ‘What a Friend we have in Jesus,’ and it’s the indisputable truth, but the life of its author Joseph Mendicott Scriven (1819-1886) was not a happy one. Instead, it was filled with many trials and misfortunes that eventually brought him to his knees. 

The hymnary.org website tells us that Scriven was an Irish immigrant to Canada. Before he came here, apparently poor health caused him to give up his dream of a military career, and then his fiancée died in a drowning accident in 1844. He moved to Ontario, Canada soon thereafter and became a teacher, but misfortune followed him when his new fiancée died after a short illness in 1855. Poor fellow! And that seemed to be the last straw, for after that his life was never stable, and his eccentricities alienated him from his neighbours. 

They say, as a member of the Plymouth Brethren, he went about doing menial tasks for the poor and disabled, trying to live as literally as possible according to the Sermon on the Mount, and during his remaining years obviously needed the solace of the song he had written. But unfortunately, it never seemed to have cured his depression, thus it’s unknown whether he committed suicide or accidentally drowned in Rice Lake in 1886. But despite that sorrowful life, Scriven did leave us a gem of a song. 

And it’s worth noting that many of the wonderful songs we sing today came from adversity in the lives of the authors, who took a moment to pen their thoughts, their griefs, their sorrows, and also their hopes in Almighty God, so that we who came after them would have a means of solace in our time of misfortune and grief. So let’s pay some belated homage to Joseph Scriven right now nuh, as we sing those haunting but oh so true words he wrote in his time of need, so long ago. In soulful harmony, let’s raise our voices in sincere sacrificial praise. 

‘What a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear! What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer! O what peace we often forfeit, O what needless pain we bear, all because we do not carry everything to God in prayer! – Have we trials and temptations? Is there trouble anywhere? We should never be discouraged; take it to the Lord in prayer! Can we find a friend so faithful who will all our sorrows share? Jesus knows our every weakness; take it to the Lord in prayer! – 

Are we weak and heavy laden, cumbered with a load of care? Precious Saviour, still our refuge– take it to the Lord in prayer! Do your friends despise, forsake you? Take it to the Lord in prayer! In his arms He’ll take and shield you; you will find a solace there. What a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear! What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer! Yes, What a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear! What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer! What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer!’ 

And isn’t that the living truth friends? It most certainly is! We have a wonderful friend in Jesus, and an awesome privilege of taking all our problems to Him in prayer! Wow! The problem though is that we don’t take those amazing benefits of being in communion with Jesus as seriously as we ought to. We either feel that we can handle our problems ourselves, or that Jesus doesn’t have time or the desire to deal with our matters. But that’s the furthest thing from the truth my people. Jesus has the time, and also the inclination to deal with any and all problems we might have. 

Why do you think He offered us the Great Invitation eh? ‘Come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of (from) me; for I am meek and lowly in heart (gentle and humble): and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’ (Matt. 11:28-30) Now does that sound like someone who doesn’t have the time or the inclination to help His followers? Obviously not! But ofttimes it’s our foolish and stubborn pride that keeps us from going to Jesus for solace and help in our time of need. 

And even in olden times the Lord encouraged His people to come to Him. Hear these words from the prophet Jeremiah when the Lord promised a glorious return to the captives from Babylon. ‘Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and might things, which thou knowest not.’ (Jer. 33:3) Yes friends, from the beginning of time the Lord has always been entreating and encouraging us to call on Him, since He is our refuge and fortress and strong tower. 

Now listen to how Isaiah puts it on the Lord’s behalf nuh. ‘Can a woman forget her suckling (nursing) child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? yea, they may forget, yet I will not forget thee. Behold I have graven (inscribed) thee upon the palms of my hands, thy walls are continually before me.’ (Is. 49:15-16) How much more encouragement do we need to go to God in sincere prayer eh when troubles befall us eh? Jesus engraved us in the palms of His hand when He bore the nails in them on the cross. That’s another promise kept! 

And hear what Moses told the children of Israel before he died. ‘Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.’ (Deut. 31:6) But that’s exactly why the Israelites spent forty years wandering around in the desert; they were scared and afraid and didn’t believe the promises of God, even after he had parted the Red Sea and allowed them to cross over on dry land, then drowned Pharaoh and the Egyptian army. 

Ah my fellow saints, we have it so good it’s not funny! But sadly, we don’t truly believe it, and thus we can’t truly appreciate it, otherwise we wouldn’t be having all this fussing and fighting amongst ourselves and turning away from Jehovah God. And we shall close with these wonderful words of promise from Psalm 91 – God is a refuge and a fortress. 

The psalmist ends it with God speaking. ‘Because he hath set his LOVE upon me, therefore will I deliver him. I will set him on high, because he hath known my name. he shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him. With long life (length of days) will I satisfy him, and show him my salvation.’ (Ps. 91:14-16) 

What more can I say eh friends? All the cards are in our hands. Remember we need God much more than He needs us. It’s up to us to go to Him now, for He has already come to us. Much LOVE!

…if you can’t believe the promises of God…what can you believe eh…                                                                                                                  

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8      

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 June 2021 Matthew 11:28.

Matthew 11:28.     ​Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

Gather round friends, gather round, tis the day of the Lord! It’s an auspicious, a right royal occasion to give Him much thanks and praise for the awesome breath of life and the many other blessings He has so generously bestowed on us during our lifetime. I know we still can’t gather physically in large numbers, but that has not so far stopped us, and will never stop us from worshipping our wonderful God. In His omniscience, during this time of pandemic, He has conveniently made it possible for us to worship Him through technological means. And though something is lost in the translation (smile) it’s still better than not worshipping Him at all. 

Now, as we do each Sunday, we’ll begin worship with a song of praise and thanksgiving. And today’s song is that magnificent and most touching hymn titled ‘What a Friend we have in Jesus.’ Wow! And is it ever a hymn for these trying times! But before we get into it, let’s get a li’l info into its interesting history. According to the Hymnary.org website, the hymn was written by Joseph Medlicott Scriven (1819-1886), and Irish immigrant to Canada. 

‘Because his life was filled with grief and trials, Scriven often needed the solace of the Lord as described in his famous hymn. Educated at Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland, he enrolled in a military college to prepare for an army career. However, poor health forced him to give up that ambition. Soon after came a second blow—his fiancée died in a drowning accident on the eve of their wedding in 1844. Later that year he moved to Ontario, where he taught school in Woodstock and Brantford. His plans for marriage were dashed again when his new bride-to-be died after a short illness in 1855. 

Following this calamity Scriven seldom had a regular income, and he was forced to live in the homes of others. He also experienced mistrust from neighbors who did not appreciate his eccentricities or his work with the underprivileged. A member of the Plymouth Brethren, he tried to live according to the Sermon on the Mount as literally as possible, giving and sharing all he had and often doing menial tasks for the poor and physically disabled. Because Scriven suffered from depression, no one knew if his death by drowning in Rice Lake was suicide or an accident.’ 

No wonder such touching, encouraging and immortal words were able to come from the soul of that gentleman! Now let’s sing it at a middling tempo, with great gusto, truly acknowledging the wonderful friendship that Jesus provides for all who sincerely believe in Him. As one, harmonious, melodious earthly choir, let’s wake up heaven with our song of praise. 

‘What a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear! What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer! O what peace we often forfeit, O what needless pain we bear, all because we do not carry everything to God in prayer! – Have we trials and temptations? Is there trouble anywhere? We should never be discouraged; take it to the Lord in prayer! Can we find a friend so faithful who will all our sorrows share? Jesus knows our every weakness; take it to the Lord in prayer! – 

Are we weak and heavy laden, cumbered with a load of care? Precious Savior, still our refuge– take it to the Lord in prayer! Do your friends despise, forsake you? Take it to the Lord in prayer! In his arms he’ll take and shield you; you will find a solace there. What a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear! What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer!’ 

Oh my people, what indisputable words of wisdom! But unfortunately, so many of us refuse to put them into action. We foolishly refuse to accept the truth of the words of the hymn: ‘What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer!’ Yes friends, that ability to take everything to our God in prayer is one of the greatest privileges of being a child of God, a believer in Jesus Christ! We won’t even talk about Jesus just yet, but we’ll go back to the Old Testament where from way back when, the Lord promised to hear our prayers. 

Listen to the prophet Isaiah on His behalf. ‘And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear.’ (Is. 65:4) Now doesn’t that sound like an invitation for communication, a welcome to prayer? It certainly does! And the psalmist tells us quite clearly from Psalm 91- God is a refuge and a fortress – speaking on behalf of God: ‘Because he hath set his LOVE upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name. He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him. With long life will I satisfy him, and show him my salvation.’ (Ps. 91:14-16) 

Oh precious saints of Christ, what’s the purpose of claiming we know the Lord and not call on Him for help eh? None whatsoever! And when we get to the New Testament, Jesus Himself, our Lord and Saviour, our Deliverer from the bondage of sin, offered us this Great Invitation, the greatest that’s ever been offered: ‘Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of (from) me; for I am meek and lowly in heart (gentle and humble): and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’ (Matt. 11:28-30) 

Listen friends, Jesus didn’t sacrifice His sinless life on the cross of Calvary for fun nuh. He was quite serious when He paid our sin debt in full, and that invitation above is proof that He wants us to come to Him and lay our burdens down at His feet. He wants to help us bear the heavy load that’s this earthly life, that’s what His death and resurrection was all about. However, if we don’t take our problems to Him, in prayer, the method of communication the Father decreed between God and man, Jesus can’t help us. 

And do we ever have loads of trials and temptations, especially in these times of unforeseen storms. As the hymn says, ‘we should never be discouraged,’ but how do we do that without the help of Jesus eh? It’s impossible. Likewise, when friends and family forsake and despise us, Jesus is the One to whom we should look to for solace! And again, way back in the Old Testament the Lord faithfully promised it. Hear Isaiah tell it nuh. ‘Can a woman forget her suckling (nursing) child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? yea, they may forget, yet will I not forget thee.’ (Is. 49:15) 

And that obviously led Bruh David to pen these immortal words of comfort and encouragement. ‘When my father and my mother forsake me, then the Lord will take me up (care for me).’ (Ps. 37:10) And as one commentator points out, Bruh David didn’t say ‘if’ but ‘when’ meaning that’s something he knew for a fact. So friends, I don’t know what else to say to get us to go to Jesus for whatever we need, in whatever situation we might find ourselves. He is the answer! The ONLY true One! Only He can fix our problems and bring true peace, solace and comfort to our burdened souls. 

But we have to take our concerns to Him in prayer, because that’s the only way He will generally fix them. Oh, He can fix them without us asking, but the Father prefers us to initiate the communication when our souls are troubled. So please, let’s wake up to the advantages and privileges we have as sincere believers in Christ Jesus nuh, instead of frivolously wasting them. Much LOVE!

…Jesus not only saves our souls for heaven…but also helps with our problems on earth…                                                                                    

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 September 2017 Luke 18:1.

Luke 18:1.   And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint.

Ah mih fellow believers, it’s so good to wake up to the best day of the week once again! Yes, it’s the Lord’s Day; time for worship and praise, fellowship and spiritual renewal on a more particular basis. 

So let’s not be found wanting, let’s ‘hie’ ourselves hither to His tabernacle today and with our fellow believers praise and glorify and exalt God’s holy name. And, as always, let’s open with a song, for there’s nothing that gets us in the mood, opens our hearts, minds and souls to receive God’s Word like a bout of praise and worship. 

And today, as we desperately plead for help for ourselves and our friends, families and neighbours all over the world, who are facing very disastrous times, there is no song more appropriate than this one: ‘What a friend we have in Jesus.’  

So let’s sing it out, loud and clear, heartfelt and sincere, as we bring to remembrance all that Jesus has done for us, and has promised to do, both in the good times and the rough times, and the simple, but awesome fact that there’s NO ONE greater, or more important than Him, in our lives. 

The hymn was apparently written by one Joseph M. Scriven in 1855 to com­fort his mo­ther, who was across the sea from him in Ire­land. It was orig­in­al­ly pub­lished anon­y­mous­ly, and Scriv­en did not re­ceive full cred­it for al­most 30 years. 

With sacrificial praise from our lips then, let’s tell our story. ‘What a Friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear! What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer! O what peace we often forfeit, O what needless pain we bear, All because we do not carry everything to God in prayer. 

Have we trials and temptations? Is there trouble anywhere? We should never be discouraged; take it to the Lord in prayer. Can we find a friend so faithful who will all our sorrows share? Jesus knows our every weakness; take it to the Lord in prayer.

Are we weak and heavy laden, cumbered with a load of care? Precious Savior, still our refuge, take it to the Lord in prayer. Do your friends despise, forsake you? Take it to the Lord in prayer! In His arms He’ll take and shield you; you will find a solace there.

Blessed Savior, Thou hast promised Thou wilt all our burdens bear May we ever, Lord, be bringing all to Thee in earnest prayer. Soon in glory bright unclouded there will be no need for prayer Rapture, praise and endless worship will be our sweet portion there.’ 

Oh friends, what wonderful words of peace, comfort and reassurance! But yuh know, the most poignant and reality based words in the hymn are: ‘O what peace we often forfeit, O what needless pain we bear, All because we do not carry everything to God in prayer.’ 

That’s ever so true my people! A lot of our pains and problems stem from either our foolish pride or lack of knowledge, because both keep us from taking those same pains and problems to Jesus in prayer. And who knows what the results might have been, had we taken the time to go to Jesus in prayerful mode. 

And strangely, even in these times of serious disaster, many so-called believers won’t even consider turning to God in prayer, again because of foolish pride. Amazingly though, it’s the unbelievers, who most of all, in rough times, find their voices and cry out to God for help and mercy. 

Oh my brethren, please remember that prayer is the most powerful force in the universe. It’s God’s stated means of communication with us. So if we don’t pray, then effectively, we’re not communicating with the Most High God, our Creator and Provider. And who suffers for that lack of communication eh? Not God, but us! 

And though God might not answer our prayers the way we want them to be answered, He always answers them, whether it be ‘Yes, No, Not Now,’ or whatever. The problem is that we’ll never know His answer until we carry our problems to Him in prayer. 

Why do you think Jesus communicated the thinking in our Bit? ‘And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint.’ 

Because prayer is ever so important, so essential for mankind. It’s as important as food and water. If we don’t have those two ingredients for a while we die. We also die, spiritually, if we don’t have prayer. 

And the scholars offer this explanation. ‘18:1. To faint means “to lose heart.” Precisely when tempted to give up, men ought to be strong in their resolve to pray.’ I couldn’t have said it any better my brethren. 

And why do you think Bruh Paul made that bold pronouncement to the Thessalonians eh? ‘Pray without ceasing?’ Because it’s such a vital part of our existence! 

So friends, on this Sunday in September, when our world seems to be falling apart right before our very eyes, let’s be wise, remember the words of Jesus and Bruh Paul and get back to prayer; constantly and diligently, sincerely and humbly. That is the wisest action we can take in what seems to be the approaching end times. Much LOVE!

…prayer is spiritual food…essential for the believer’s soul…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 October 2015 Isaiah 40:29‏

Isaiah 40:29.    He giveth power to the faint (weak); and to them that have no might he increaseth strength.

Aye Friends, it’s Tuesday and unfortunately the ole fella is late and somewhat under the weather. But I guess that happens in the best of families eh? (smile) 

My ole right knee’s been acting up and doing some serious aching for the last couple days… Steups! It might even force me to cancel an appointment with a medic in the fair city of Toronto later on today to talk about my shoulder. Chuh! 

But yuh know what? It isn’t going to stop me from going down the street later to see a big American Gospel concert featuring the likes of Hezekiah Walker and Donny McClurkin and a host of others. (smile) 

Isn’t life great? It surely is my people. The aches and pains of old age and otherwise might slow us down, but we must not allow them to stop us from doing God’s work to the best of our limited ability. 

And here is a most appropriate quote from my ‘P.S. I LOVE YOU’ Poster. It says: ‘No one is guaranteed happiness. Life just gives us time and space. It’s up to us to fill it with joy and meaning.’ 

Indisputable truth that my brethren! Regardless of how blessed or ‘unblessed’ we are, it is still and always will be our responsibility to put joy and meaning into our lives. So let’s stop looking to other things and people to make us happy and meaningful. It is our God-given responsibility to do that for ourselves. 

And having made that point clear, let’s turn to our Tuesday Mantra and declare it with absolute faith, joy and meaning. (smile) 

Altogether now: ‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen.’ 

More indisputable truth my people! And as the old hymn so rightly corroborates and reminds us: ‘What a friend we have in Jesus, All our sins and griefs to bear! What a privilege to carry Everything to God in prayer! Oh, what peace we often forfeit, Oh, what needless pain we bear, All because we do not carry Everything to God in prayer!’ 

Yes Friends, whatever it is, good, bad or ugly, we need to take it all to Jesus and let Him help us sort it out, for without Him we cannot do much, but with Him…oh my people, ALL things are possible! 

That’s why we can believe our Bit. ‘He giveth power to the faint (weak); and to them that have no might he increaseth strength.’ What an awesome promise! 

Then when we add the seminal, the seed bearing scripture of Bruh Paul to the Philippians: ‘I can do ALL things through Christ which strengtheneth me,’ (Phil.4:13) ohhh, we get a most powerful and faithful promise that just lifts us up and takes us to a whole new level! 

Now I’d be rather amiss if I didn’t include the scholars’ explanation on that quote of Bruh Paul. ‘4:13. The apostle’s ability of knowing how to live skillfully on little or in prosperity does not mean that he is a spiritual superman. The reason he can live in such extremes is not owing to his own ability. 

Rather, he can do all things through Christ who strengtheneth him, thus enabling him to adapt to his various, ever-changing circumstances. God orders Paul’s various situations, and God gives him the strength to be content in them all, trying and perplexing though they may be.’ 

Yes Friends, the same thing applies to us all; the Lord orders or allows whatever circumstances we experience, then He, in His wondrous grace and mercy gives us the wherewithal to handle them. Now isn’t our God a wonderful Deity? He surely is! No other supposed deity does that for His followers. 

And then to cap it all, we have Jesus’ take on the subject. ‘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 15:5) 

Oh Friends, that’s what I LOVE about Jesus; He doesn’t hold anything back, He says it as it is: without Him, we can do nothing. And that’s the living truth! 

Now here is a short explanation on that verse from the scholars’. ‘15:1-9. Jesus explains the divine human relationship by the analogy of a grapevine. Jesus is like the main vine. The disciples are compared with branches. The Father tends the branches like a gardener. At that time of year (when Jesus spoke those words), branches of grapevines would be budding in Jerusalem.’ 

So my people, with all that evidence of Jesus’ power and LOVE and care and compassion, why do we find it so difficult to surrender our lives to Him eh? Why are we so reluctant to put our entire trust and faith in Him? 

I personally can’t see any good reason for that reluctance. But as we said earlier on, ‘life just gives us time and space. It’s up to us to fill it with joy and meaning.’ And believe me, the most joy and meaning to be found in this earthly pilgrimage is in concert with Jesus! 

That’s wisdom in spades my brethren! So please accept it, and put it into action. You will never regret it. Much LOVE!

…to know Jesus…ohhh…is just to LOVE Him…to LOVE and worship Him…with all our hearts mind, bodies and souls…what a beautiful way to live…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 July 2015 Hebrews 10:23

Hebrews 10:23.    Let us hold fast the profession (confession) of our faith (hope) without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;)

Well a warm and wonderful welcome to all you loyal and faithful Friends and believers out there in Scrip-Bit Land!

Welcome, welcome, welcome! It is ever so good to be in the land of the living with the awesome breath of Almighty God flowing through out frail and fragile human bodies! Wow! There is nothing else in the world that compares to that, for it is indeed the breath of life, the single, solitary thread that keeps us all going.

And it is all the more important when, as students, believers and followers of Jesus Christ, we are patiently and thankfully waiting for the new mercies, blessings, grace and forgiveness specially made for today, to be unleashed from heaven unto us saints down here on Mother Earth. Glory to God!

That’s why we should all raise our voices in praise and thanks and steadfastly proclaim; ‘This is the day the Lord has made, we WILL rejoice and be glad in it.’

Yes Friends, this Tuesday morning in early July is a blessed day, so please let’s treat it as such. And luckily, in my neck of the woods it just might be the second day of what now passes for summer weather with highs in the mid-twenties, though somewhat cloudy with a chance of rain. But we will take it any day over the cold white stuff. (smile)

And today I have an affirmation from Bubba Joel (Joel Osteen) from a little while back to share with us once again. It simply declares: ‘TODAY IS MY DAY!’ And that’s gospel truth my people, so please affirm with me.

‘God has destined me to be a barrier breaker! He created me to be uncontainable. I have talent and potential given to me by the Creator of the universe. There are seeds of greatness inside of me. Today, I choose to break free from a limited mindset and enlarge my vision.

Today, God is taking me places that I’ve never even dreamed of before. Today, God is fulfilling His purpose and destiny in my life. Today I will experience His favour like never before in every area of my life.’ Mama Mia!

And all God’s children declared a loud and proud: ‘Amen! So let it be!’

Yes my brethren, let’s allow it all to hang out today! Let’s break down those barriers of bondage that are holding us back from God’s best! Let’s release the seeds of greatness planted in our souls by our Creator and plant them in good and fertile soil, so that they can bear much good fruit, for that’s why they were planted in us in the first place.

Let’s enlarge our vision and our mindset because our God is a great and powerful Deity who doesn’t deal in small, petty and trifling stuff. And if we want to enjoy His best, then we have to improve and enlarge our minds and visions.

And today I was sent a heavenly zeppo to preach… sorry, to teach (smile) on the twin attitudes of hope and faith. Remember, without hope, there can be no faith, for hope is the place where it all begins.

And as the Good Book so wisely tells us; ‘Now faith is the substance (the realization) of things hoped for, the evidence (the conviction) of things not seen.’ (Heb.11:1)

That means through hope, we are assured of the things that we can’t see with our physical sight, but surely can see them with our spiritual vision. In other words, we see them through the eyes of faith! It’s a blessed assurance that we have in the promises and faithfulness of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ!

That brings us to our Bit: ‘let us hold fast the profession (confession) of our faith (hope) without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;)’

Yes indeed my brethren our great and wonderful and magnanimous God is indeed faithful to keep each and every one of His promises! He has not reneged on a single one down through all the ages, and He never will! Wow! What a great friend and Saviour we have in Jesus!

And there is no better way to express that than through the wonderful age-old hymn that so many of us grew up to. So please sing it with me, in hungry hope and expectant faith.

‘What a Friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear! What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer! O what peace we often forfeit, O what needless pain we bear, All because we do not carry everything to God in prayer. Have we trials and temptations?

Is there trouble anywhere? We should never be discouraged; take it to the Lord in prayer. Can we find a friend so faithful who will all our sorrows share? Jesus knows our every weakness; take it to the Lord in prayer. Are we weak and heavy laden, cumbered with a load of care? Precious Savior, still our refuge, take it to the Lord in prayer.

Do your friends despise, forsake you? Take it to the Lord in prayer! In His arms He’ll take and shield you; you will find a solace there. Blessed Savior, Thou hast promised Thou wilt all our burdens bear May we ever, Lord, be bringing all to Thee in earnest prayer.

Soon in glory bright unclouded there will be no need for prayer Rapture, praise and endless worship will be our sweet portion there.’

Yes my believing brethren, what an awesome assurance we can have in Jesus Christ if we allow Him to come into our hearts, souls, bodies and minds and work His good works in us! There is nothing or no one else under the sun that can promise and then faithfully deliver on those promises!

All we need is sincere hope and trust and faith and surrender to His unconditional LOVE and care which runs from everlasting to everlasting! He made us Friends, and has a plan for every one of our lives, but we have to bow to His sovereignty and righteousness if we are to be enlightened as to His wonderful plans for us. Not knowing, and thus not living out the beautiful plan earmarked for us is possibly the greatest disappointment we can ever know down here on earth.

And we’ll end with a massive scripture of assurance and encouragement from Hebrews, one which we all know, but don’t seriously accept and live by. ‘Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompense of reward. For ye have need of patience (endurance), that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise.’ (Heb.10:35-36)

Yes my people, we need some patience, sometimes plenty of it, but fear not, God’s promise will be fulfilled, just in His own time. So please stand strong and steadfast in faith, if you want to see the mercies and blessings of God in your life. That is indeed heavenly wisdom! Much LOVE!

…walking with Jesus might lead us along some rough and unpaved roads…but the rewards of His promise…oh Friends…they are indeed most wonderful and incomparable…trust me…I’m talking from personal experience… 

P.S. Oh Friends, I just LOVE writing these Bits that come straight from the heart, without any forward planning, like this one today. And I do hope that it triggers your hope, faith, patience and LOVE, and help them rise to a higher level, so that you can find true solace, comfort and joy in our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, as He desires you to have.

Oh mih breddren, I can’t even stop the words from flowing, that’s how much the adrenalin is running. (smile) Much LOVE!

 

  

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 October 2014 Psalm 4:1.

Psalm 4:1.  Hear me when I call, O God of my righteousness: thou hast enlarged (relieved) me when I was in distress; have mercy upon me (be gracious to me), and hear my prayer.

 Ah Friends, once again it’s Friday…! And as usual there are loud and joyful shouts of ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday! Thank God for bringing us safely through another week of work! Praise His Holy Name!’ 
 
Yes my people, we do indeed need to thank our heavenly Father for allowing us to successfully complete another week of life, both in the general world and in our particular place of work.
 
Many people can’t say that at all, so please let’s learn to appreciate the wonderful blessings we have, by giving some thanks and praise to our Creator and Provider, for without Him, we’d be all alone out on some lonely back street, languishing in abject poverty, as numerous others are unfortunately doing today.
 
And I don’t know why, but I got up a while ago humming the chorus to our old and dear hymn, ‘What a Friend we have in Jesus.’ And just in case it was a sign (smile) I decided to include it in our discourse today.
 
Please sing the first verse with me. ‘What a Friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear! What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer! O what peace we often forfeit, O what needless pain we bear, All because we do not carry everything to God in prayer.’
 
Yeh mih breddren, we have such a wonderful Lord and Saviour, such a wonderful High Priest and Advocate, to whom we can carry all our cares and problems for sure help, yet we foolishly decline to do so. Thus we suffer, endure so many unnecessary burdens and cares. That’s not very wise my people.
 
Jesus is inviting us to bring ALL our troubles to Him (Matt.11:28-30), so that He can ease our sorrows and relieve our pains. So please, let’s be wise and gratefully accept His most generous invitation nuh. We’re only hurting and depriving ourselves of wonderful opportunities to live that abundant life which Jesus died to provide for us.
 
We quickly turn to fickle and fallible man for help, when our omnipotent God should ALWAYS be our FIRST source of help. Let’s try and rectify that unfortunate situation today nuh. Let’s focus on taking our prayers to God, like Bruh David does in this evening prayer of trust in God – Psalm 4.
 
He opens it with the sincere and endearing request of our Bit: ‘Hear me when I call, O God of my righteousness: thou hast enlarged (relieved) me when I was in distress; have mercy upon me (be gracious to me), and hear my prayer.’
 
Friends, it’s simple and to the point. There’s no denying what he desires. And that’s all it takes to go to God; a sincere heart with a heartfelt plea. The Lord knows all our problems, but He requires us to come to Him to help us solve them. It’s true that He could solve them all with a simple snap of His fingers or a word from His lips, but that would make Him our lackey, rather than our Lord and God.
 
Please remember that we are in covenant with Him, and we need to perform our part in the covenant relationship, else the covenant becomes null and void. And today, since that’s the direction it seems our Lord wants us to go, we’ll look at a few instances where the importance and power of prayer are highlighted in the Bible, God’s divine Word to us.
 
And the greatest and best example of participating in prayer is obviously Jesus! The Good Book declares it thus: ‘And it came to pass in those days, that he (Jesus) went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God.’ (Luke 6:12)
 
Ah Friends, if Jesus, the Son of God, God incarnate Himself, still felt the need for prayer, who are we then, mere sinful mortals to think that we don’t eh?
 
And again, we turn to Jesus, this time as He positively promotes the act of prayer. ‘And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.’ (Matt.21:22)
 
Oh my people, our Lord and Saviour, Redeemer and Atonement for our abominable sins said it, so it must be true!
 
And way back when, Isaiah declared this word from our God on the subject. ‘Even them (those who take hold of my covenant) will I bring to my holy mountain, and make them joyful in my house of prayer: their burnt offerings and their sacrifices shall be accepted upon mine altar; for mine house shall be called a house of prayer for ALL people.’ (Is.56:7)
 
Oh my fellow believers, our God couldn’t be any clearer and simpler than that! His invitation is open to all those who are willing to accept it. So why don’t we do so today eh? Now that’s the million-dollar question! It’s not an idle or false and deceitful invitation like so many of man’s entreaties and advertisements.
 
We have oodles of examples, from Genesis to Revelation, where all the true servants of God prayed fervently to Him and received answers and benefits. So why are we so stubborn, so adamant in refraining from something that can only benefit us eh? I really don’t know nuh.
 
But in accordance with all we’ve written, we’ll go home with our own prayer today, our Friday Chant. No I didn’t forget, (smile) just thought it would be more appropriate today at the end rather than at the beginning.
 
So as one loud, grateful and prayerful voice, let’s chant: ‘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.’
 
Yes Friends, it’s short and simple, but as James so wisely and truthfully tells us: ‘Confess your faults (trespasses, sins) one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual (effective) fervent prayer (supplication) of a righteous man availeth much.’ (James 5:16)
 
And when we follow that heavenly wisdom my people, we certainly won’t go wrong. Much LOVE!
 
…to pray…to pray…and yet to pray…that is the pilgrim’s role…
 
 

 

 

 
 
 
 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 October 2014 Psalm 22:11

Psalm 22:11.    Be not far from me; for trouble is near; for there is none to help.

Wow Friends, it’s Friday! And there was lots of jumping and jiving and shouting: ‘TGIF! Thank God It’s Friday! Glory Hallelujah! The workweek soon finish, and party time start, especially on this upcoming long weekend of Thanksgiving! Mama Mia!

What a grand ole time we’re going to have; giving thanks and singing praises to our heavenly Father, for all that’s He’s so kindly done for us this past year!’
 
Yes my people, this is Thanksgiving weekend in Canada and there will be mucho mucho celebrations all across this great land, from the coasts of the Atlantic on the east, across the vast Prairies in the middle, over the mighty Rocky Mountains to British Columbia on the coast of the Pacific out west!
 
Please remember that one caution though of Granny’s: ‘drunk or sober mind yuh business.’ In all our giving of thanks, let’s not give, or allow the loathsome enemy even one toehold, one reason to infiltrate our godly spirits and make us stumble before Almighty God.
 
And to keep us somewhat in remembrance of that, let’s chant our Friday Chant with sincere passion and enthusiasm, which will hopefully lead to a fair amount of circumspection. (smile) All together now: ‘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.’
 
Now with that caution invoked, let’s turn to an interesting quote from Ashley Montague (1905- 1999) the British / American anthropologist and humanist, born Israel Ehrenberg in London, England, but who later migrated to the U.S, became a citizen and lectured at many of its famous universities.
 
Ashley says that ‘Every human being is a problem in search of a solution.’ And that’s the living truth Friends!
 
We all need help in many areas of our lives, but oftimes we’re too proud or scared to ask for it, afraid either of the changes that will be involved, especially since change is something many of us are very wary of. Though the old way may be troublesome, we still feel more comfortable with it, because we know it, and hold the supposed new and better way suspect since it’s unknown.
 
On the other hand, we’re sometimes too proud to let others know that we’re hurting and need help, that we’re actually less than we seem to be. But my brethren, it’s quite all right, in fact very natural and very wise to ask for help, and to consider change if it will either help solve or completely resolve our problems. 
 
And the best person to turn to for help is obviously Jesus Christ, our be all and end all, the great Helper, Healer, Friend and Redeemer! Remember His Great Invitation too; to come to Him when we are weary and burdened, and He will lighten our load and give us rest. (Matt.11:29-30)
 
And in his cry of anguish and song of praise, Psalm 22, Bruh David highlights the situation very well, when he cries out to Almighty God in our Bit: Be not far from me; for trouble is near; for there is none to help.’
 
And that is oh so true my people, for as Bruh David says later on in Psalm 60 – a prayer for help against the foe: ‘Give us help from trouble: for vain is the help of man.’ (Ps.60:11)
 
That’s also indisputable truth, since man’s help is often insufficient, not forthcoming, or deceptive and deceitful! Just think about all the fraudulent acts being committed in these difficult times in the name of help!
 
And Bruh David ends that psalm with these thoughtful and faithful words. ‘Through God we shall do valiantly: for he it is that shall tread down our enemies.’ (Ps.60:12)
 
Yes Friends, in this vast and controversial universe, it is only Jehovah God that we can put our entire trust in, and know for a fact that He will help us. Bruh David did it, and we see the most excellent results he achieved, although his life was not always the most upright and righteous. But he implicitly trusted the God of his fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, whom he knew to be ALWAYS FAITHFUL!
 
Remember the old hymn we sung recently: ‘What a Friend we have in Jesus, All our sins and griefs to bear. What a privilege to carry EVERYTHING to God in prayer!’ That’s the wisest move we can ever make my people!
 
The problem though is that with our busy lives in this busy society, we want answers and help immediately, now for now, sometimes even yesterday. But unfortunately when we go to Jesus, according to the nature of the problem, and the motives of our heart, we’ll probably not receive an immediate answer, or one that we don’t like.
 
But Friends, I can personally testify to the fact that if we take our problems to our Lord and Saviour, He will help us, in His own time and His own way! We just need to be patient, show the faith we’re supposed to have. And if the problem is genuine and requires immediate solving, fear not, He will do so.
 
That’s one thing about God’s timing, my brethren; it is perfect! He is NEVER LATE!
 
But the truth is, waiting patiently is not always easy, for even though I know that from personal experience, I still sometimes get anxious when His help doesn’t seem to be forthcoming in time. But NOT ONCE has He ever showed up late, ALWAYS on time! He is the supreme example of a just in time system!
 
And to encapsulate all that we’ve spoken of, (smile) let’s end with these true, beautiful and encouraging words from Psalm 33 – Praise to the Lord for His creation.
 
‘A horse is a vain thing (false hope) for safety: neither shall he deliver any by his great strength. Behold, the eye of the Lord is upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in his mercy; To deliver their soul from death, and to keep them alive in famine.
 
Our soul waiteth for the Lord: he is our HELP and our shield. For our heart shall rejoice in him, because we have trusted in his holy name. Let thy mercy, O Lord, be upon us, according as we hope in thee.’ (Ps.33:17-22)
 
Yes my people, as we hope in the Lord, so will His mercy and blessings be showered down upon us! Much LOVE!
 
…trust in the Lord with all thine heart…and lean not unto thine own understanding… (Prov.3:5) 
 
P.S. Oh Friends, I truly don’t know why the Bit is so late nuh, because I got up at a reasonable hour. I guess it was just my running around aimlessly, being a slow-coach, and/or trying to find the right info to use. (smile) But as always, with our great God, it works out perfectly, for His glory, every time! Much LOVE!

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 October 2014 John 15:13

John 15:13.   Greater LOVE hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

Aye Friends, we are alive and kicking to witness another brand new day, filled with God’s wonderful mercies, blessings and forgiveness! Wow! Isn’t that wonderful? It surely is, even though the weather in my neck of the woods is wet and chilly and miserable.
 
Hn! I guess my brother and his wife must have carried back the wonderful Tobago kind of weather we’ve had for the last couple of weeks while he was here. (smile) Anyway, regardless of the weather, let’s give our great God appropriate praise and thanks for allowing us to see another day.
 
And today we’ll be talking about Friends. I don’t know exactly how it’s all going to unfold, to pan out, since there is so much scripture dealing with subject, in good, bad and indifferent ways. But I’m going to be wise and simply put my faith in Holy Spirit to guide me into writing something sensible and useful. (smile) He’s been doing it for the last seven years, ever since I began writing the Bit, so why should He stop now eh?
 
I do know that we’ll begin with this poem from one of my favourite preachers, Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) taken from his Hour of Power Devotional. Don’t know if I’ve ever shared it before, but it’s certainly worth sharing again in this context, since it’s appropriately titled, ‘WHAT A FRIEND!’
 
 It boldly and proudly declares: ‘You have never failed, Lord, to be my one, essential, intimate friend. When I was: Lonely in striving – you encouraged me. Lonely in struggling – you lifted me. Lonely in serving – you supported me. Lonely in suffering – you comforted me. Lonely in sinning – you forgave me. Lonely in sinking – you renewed me. Lonely in succeeding – you rejoiced with me. What a FRIEND I have in Jesus! Thank you, Lord. Amen.’
 
Oh my people, I couldn’t have said it any better myself! And I’m sure that all of us can testify to the truth of those words, for we have all been befriended by God in our struggles in our pilgrim’s journey.
 
That brings us to our Bit; the overwhelming and oh so beautiful sentiments of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. ‘Greater LOVE hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.’
 
Wow! That’s all I can say in reaction that revolutionary statement! And the great thing about it all, my fellow believers, is that after making such a momentous and controversial statement, Jesus actually went out and died for us!
 
And all God’s children gave a joyful and grateful shout of: ‘Thank You Jesus! Thank You for dying for us on the cross at Calvary and paying our sin debt in full!’
 
Oh Friends, that’s a debt we can never repay! And Jesus doesn’t want or expect us to repay it either. All He desires of us is what He says after our Bit: ‘Ye are my friends, if ye do whatever I command you. Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.’ (John 15:14-15)
 
Yes people, to be Friends of Jesus, all we have to do is believe what He’s told us, all that He’s heard from His Father, and then do what he asks us to do. But unfortunately, in these highly revolutionary and technologically advanced times, those words have fallen on deaf ears, as man boastfully beats his chest and feels superior, like he’s a god himself.
 
And sadly, we just can’t see how foolish that type of prideful behaviour really is, when with all our wealth, power and technological advances, we still cannot control the length of our days on this earth. The One who originally breathed His breath of life into us, still controls how long we spend on His earth.
 
That brings to mind Jesus’ parable of the rich man who had so much goods that he decided to build bigger barns to hold it all, then to ‘take thine ease, eat drink and be merry. But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided?’ (Luke 12:19b-20)
 
Yuh see mih breddren, all the wealth and power couldn’t keep him from dying that night. So doesn’t that make us look silly and stupid when we can’t control the one thing that makes us go, our very lifeblood, but we boast about everything else that flows from it, as though we are so superior?
 
Steups! Sometimes I think that man is God’s dumbest creation , rather than the brightest yes! But that’s another story for another day. (smile)
 
And we’ll close with the first verse of that old hymn that tells us so much about friendship with our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Sing it with me please people, because we all know it, though we don’t all put it into actual practice.
 
As one mighty choir now: ‘What a Friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear! What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer! O what peace we often forfeit, O what needless pain we bear, All because we do not carry everything to God in prayer.’
 
Oh Friends, oh Friends, that says it all! Many of our problems exist because we don’t take them to Jesus in prayer. Just imagine the amount of peace we forfeit and unnecessary pain we bear, simply because we don’t do it nuh.
 
So let’s wake up today my people, and take EVERYTHING to our omnipotent and ever-faithful, ever-caring God, because that’s what He desires of us. And furthermore, our problems and pains will definitely be lessened, we’ll also have more peace in our lives, and our God will be pleased! If that isn’t heavenly wisdom, then I don’t know what is! Much LOVE!
 
…why be a martyr…by holding on to unnecessary strife and pain…when relief can be found…simply through words sincerely floated up on high…