Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 April 2021 Psalm 139:14a.

Psalm 139:14a.     ​I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made:

Saturday, Saturday! Thank God that lazy day called Saturday is here! Yes friends, Saturday has arrived…and we’re happy, despite the tighter lockdown restrictions we were handed in our province of Ontario yesterday. Ah Lord eh! When will it all end? The vaccines don’t seem to me making much of a difference, because every day we’re hitting record highs in new cases of the covid virus, be they the regular one or the variants. And no one seems to understand why this is happening. So, the only recourse is to lock down tighter. 

But again, that will only work if people responsibly adhere to the rules, which they have not been doing in the past, and why the virus has been proliferating for so long, until it had a chance to rework itself and become even more dangerous. But friends, the one constant in it all is the amazing presence of Christ Jesus in our lives! That has not changed, so as the song says, let’s keep Jesus shining through us, and together with Him, we’ll shine over the whole world, and let His glory fill the land. 

And since it’s Saturday, we need to check out the quotes that our friend Anselm sent us this past week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. Now they all seem to be centred around personal image and improvement, so obviously they will have some overlap. And the first one says: ‘Be yourself. An original is so much better than a copy.’ And is that ever the awesome truth! Have you ever noticed when you make a copy of something, it’s never as good as the original? 

Well that also applies to our lives. We come off much better when we let our real selves show and not try to be a copy of someone else. And that’s all the Lord is asking of us – to be who He created us to be, not try to be someone else. That’s why He made each of as a unique specimen and not copies or clones. As Bruh David says in Psalm 139: ‘I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right (very) well.’ (Ps. 139:14) 

Consequently, this next quote speaks very well to the first. ‘Above all, be true to yourself, and if you cannot put your heart in it, take yourself out of it.’ Truer words were never spoken my people! We must be true to what God made us, and whatever we do, make sure we put our very heart and soul in it, because our heavenly Father always expects the best of us. And if we find that we can’t put our hearts sincerely in something, then we should not get involved in it. As Bruh Paul told the church at Colossae, re Christian virtues and advice for domestic life. ‘And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.’ (Col. 3:17) 

And the scholars offer this explanation on that verse. ‘3:17. The beneficial influence produced by the indwelling word of Christ is not only to affect public and private worship (vs. 16), (where he admonishes them to sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with grace in their hearts to the Lord), but it is also to control all areas of a Christian’s life.’ 

And later on, Bruh Paul advises the slaves and servants thus: ‘And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ.’ (Col. 3:23-24) Yes friends, even slaves and servants were to perform their menial tasks wholeheartedly, doing their best, because they were not doing it so much for their earthly master but for the heavenly One, who promised them the reward of salvation in their Christian faith. 

That brings us to this quote: ‘If you’re searching for that one person that will change your life, take a look in the mirror.’ Now that’s something we should do everyday friends. Take a good look in the mirror and try to discern who or whom we really are! Everything in our lives begins and ends with us. We can’t expect others to improve our lives if we don’t first put in the effort and energy to do it. As the old saying goes; no one can make you happy but yourself. 

Just look at all the toys and conveniences we have in today’s modern world, but so many of us are still bored and miserable. That’s partly because we are expecting, looking for other things and people to make and/or keep us happy. But if we can’t first find happiness within ourselves, then we’ll never find it anywhere else. 

And the next quote fits nicely into the framework. ‘You can’t pour from an empty cup. Take care of yourself first.’ That should be obvious my brethren. We can’t give away something we don’t have, be it money, time, talent or LOVE! That means we first have look after ourselves, to grow in us, or our lives, whatever it is we want to share with others. So if it’s money; then we have to work to get some. With time, we must arrange our schedule so that we have some to spare. And for talent, we have to learn, or improve ourselves in whatever area we desire to help others. 

But you know the amazing thing about wanting to share LOVE: you need to do all of the above, especially spending time with the Master of LOVE, Jesus, and learning from Him and His word! Oh glory be mih people! As Jesus says, the two most important things in this world are to LOVE God with everything you have, and to LOVE your neighbour as yourself. (Matt. 22:37-40) And as we were just saying, if you don’t have LOVE for yourself, how can you give it to anybody else? But Jesus can teach us! 

And the last quote tells us: ‘Be proud of who you are, and not ashamed of how someone else sees you.’ Now that’s the gospel truth friends! Far too many of us are ashamed of ourselves for stupid, worldly reasons! God might be disappointed in us, but He’s never ashamed of us. So why do we allow mortal men like ourselves, to make us feel ashamed eh? Granted, some of us may be down on our luck, for whatever reason, but that’s no reason to be ashamed. Remember what Bruh David said; we’re ALL fearfully and wonderfully made, unique creatures of God’s sophisticated engineering, so there’s no need to be ashamed. 

We can always turn to God for His faithful help. Just look at Bruh Paul’s life, how he turned from destroying believers to lifting them up, with Christ’s help obviously, to the point where he could boast. ‘I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.’ (Rom. 1:16) 

And what better scripture to close with than this one from Christ Himself. ‘For whosoever shall be ashamed of me and of my words, of him shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he shall come in his own glory, and in his Father’s, and of the holy angels.’ (Luke 9:26). Yes friends, Jesus, as always, puts it in plain language. If we refuse to stand up for Him now, then, when He comes in all His glory, He won’t bother with us either. That just seems fair, doesn’t it?Much LOVE!

…human beings are God’s greatest creation…let’s truly reflect it in our earthly lives nuh…

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 April 2021 Proverbs 23:7a.

Proverbs 23:7a.     ​‘For as he thinketh in his heart (mind), so is he.

Well, it’s another bright and sunshiny day in the life friends! Please thank our heavenly Father for that! But because it’s also Saturday, we’re going to add a touch of lateness and laziness to it! (smile) That makes it a bright, sunshiny, late and lazy Saturday! Praise the Lord! 

So though we’re lazing through the day, that doesn’t mean we are allowed to forget our great and wonderful God. On the contrary, today is one where we should gravitate towards Him and His Word since we couldn’t spend as much time as we wanted with him during the busy workweek. And now that we have some more time on our hands today, it’s only appropriate, and right, that we spend more unhurried time with Him; talking, praying, reading and meditating on His wise and awesome Word, so that we can get our souls and spirits renewed. 

And a note of caution here, please don’t think that we’re doing this for God nuh, but for ourselves, so that we can truly enjoy the many benefits He offers. And as we are doing that today, let’s remember to send up prayers for the safety and protection of our unfortunate friends and families on the Caribbean island of St. Vincent where the volcano La Soufriere (sulphur outlet) erupted yesterday after being dormant since 1979. People are being evacuated from the island, but like it’s doing everything else, the Corona virus is making it difficult to do efficiently and quickly. 

Let’s pray that the Lord will give my old university classmate, Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves and his associates wisdom and guidance to handle this most serious situation, as it will not affect only St. Vincent, but also the neighbouring islands, with the resultant ash clogging up the atmosphere, causing breathing problems and restricting air traffic. 

Now, as we do every Saturday, let’s turn to the quotes that our friend Anselm sent us this past week, as he aspires to inspire us to a better tomorrow. And the first quote tells us to ‘Learn to let go and be clear of where you really want to head for.’ And I have no dispute with that because it makes very good sense. We must learn to let go of, to drop all the baggage from our past that is keeping us back from our destiny. However, when we get rid of the baggage, we must also know, as clearly as possible, where we want or intend to go; what’s our eventual destination. 

And why is that important? Because, if you don’t know where you’re going, you will get lost, get distracted, and go in a direction that’s leading you away from your God-given destiny, which can also be very detrimental to your health, physically, spiritually and emotionally. That’s why you need to know where you want to go before you set out on your life’s journey. And it does help to discover your destination, if you also know where you are coming from. As they say, you can’t truly know your future until you know and understand your past. 

That brings us to this next quote: ‘Owning our story and LOVING ourselves through that process is the bravest thing that we’ll ever do.’ And that’s no lie friends! Taking responsibility for our lives and LOVING ourselves in the process, takes immense courage, especially in this hate and strife-filled world, where everybody tries to blame somebody else for their problems and consequent lack of happiness. Now, it’s true that circumstances can come against us, over which we have no say or hold, but we’re still always responsible for our attitude towards them. 

But as faithful believers in Christ Jesus, that means we must come up over those circumstances with a good attitude, although that may be extremely difficult to do. Right now, the bane of our human existence is the sad lack of responsibility in our society! Nobody wants to accept it, but we all want to prosper and succeed…how? Riding on the backs of others. But God’s economy doesn’t work like that my brethren, for we only reap what we sow. And if we sow no seed, or only negative ones, we will get no harvest, or a negative one. Please, please, let’s remember that nuh, and begin taking responsibility for our actions. 

And this next quote segues very nicely into our conversation. ‘Self-LOVE is not selfish; you cannot truly LOVE another until you know how to LOVE yourself.’ And that’s gospel truth. Remember Jesus’ words on the two greatest commandments. ‘And the second is like unto the first, thou shalt LOVE thy neighbour as thyself.’ (Matt. 22:39) 

Now, to keep that commandment, we obviously need to have a strong LOVE for ourselves, because as our quote says, we can’t LOVE anyone if we don’t know how to LOVE ourselves. But in that process, it’s of the utmost importance that LOVE for ourselves doesn’t turn into a selfish, arrogant, vain, inordinate fascination, unkind, ungodly, narcissistic attitude. That comes from the story of Narcissus in Greek Mythology, where he sees himself reflected in a pool of water and falls in LOVE with himself. But when he realizes that that LOVE can never be reciprocated, he tragically goes off and commits suicide. 

Not a nice story at all, but unfortunately many of us still fall to those low levels and make life difficult for ourselves and those around us. This last quote though, will open our eyes, if we’re serious about getting to our God-given destiny. It says: ‘You need to learn how to select your thoughts just the same way you select your clothes every day. This is a power you can cultivate. If you want to control things in your life so bad, work on the mind. That’s the only thing you should be trying to control.’ 

That’s the truth right there in spades my brethren! The first thing we ought to learn to control is our mind, because that’s where all the battles in our life both begin and end. In Proverbs 23, Cousin Sol talks about not eating with a man that has an evil eye (is a miser), for though he tells you to enjoy the delicacies, he’s not sincere. ‘For as he thinketh in his heart (mind), so is he.’ (Prov. 23:7) 

And that’s more truth friends, for you can’t think evil and do good on a regular basis. What’s really inside of you will eventually come out. As Jesus said about the things that defile. ‘Not that which goes into the mouth that defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man…For out of the heart (mind) proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies. These are the things which defile a man: but to eat with unwashen hands defileth not a man.’ (Matt. 15:11,19-20) 

Yes my fellow saints, we can’t deny it, evil begins in our minds. Mahatma Gandhi, the Indian philosopher, politician and peace maker, said it thus: ‘A man is but the product of his thoughts. What he thinks, he becomes.’ Oh my people, thoughts are extremely important in shaping our personality and attitude. They can be good or bad, constructive or destructive, and eventually make us who we are. And we need to make our minds positive and productive if we intend to sincerely live for Jesus. 

And how do we do that? Let Bruh Paul tell us as he told the church at Corinth. ‘Casting down imaginations (arguments), and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.’ (2 Cor. 10:5) 

Now that basically means taking control over your thoughts; over what you think about yourself and life. It’s not easy to do with all the evil stuff that’s coming against us, but God has provided us with a way to do it, through His word and will, through His Holy Spirit that indwells us. So let’s remember that our mind is a battlefield between good and evil nuh. And Christ wants us to ‘Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.’ (Rom. 12:21) And there’s no better time to start practicing that than today; right now! Much LOVE!

…control what you think about…and what you think about will control you… 

P.S. Yes, it’s long and late, but that’s okay. It’s Saturday. (smile) Much LOVE! 

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 April 2021 Habakkuk 2:3b.

Habakkuk 2:3b.     ​though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.

And then it was Holy Saturday; that suspenseful day of waiting between Good Friday and Easter Sunday, the day after the tragedy, but the day before the great awakening of joy and celebration! And yes, it’s always difficult for us human beings to wait for something, even though we know it will be better than what we currently have, especially in these times of immediate gratification. 

But please wait patiently on the promise my people. For as the Good Book says: ‘For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.’ (Hab. 2:3) Yes friends, Easter Sunday will surely come, so let’s just mourn quietly, but expectantly today, show our tremendous faith, for we are assured of the triumphant rising of the Holy One of Israel tomorrow! 

Now let’s see what interesting quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week as he aspires to inspire us for a brighter tomorrow. Here’s the first one: ‘We can’t retract the decisions we’ve made. We can only affect the decisions we’re going to make from here.’ I don’t know if that is totally true nuh, because sometimes we can take back the decisions we’ve made, especially if they have not been yet implemented. But in the logical process of the situation, I guess you can look at the retracting as a new decision and not merely a taking back of the old one. So, in that sense, the quote is right. (smile) 

Then there’s this: ‘I cannot say whether things will get better if we change; what I can say is they must change if they are to get better.’ Now that seems to be rather truthful. If the current situation is bad, then things will only get better if wise change occurs. Merely leaving it the same will not cause any improvement. However, I totally disagree with this next quote: ‘When in doubt, choose change.’ That means you’ll be choosing change just for the sake of change, since there might be no good or logical reason to change. 

But change, especially significant change, should not be made without some good grounds, some useful purpose or enhancement such change will provide. And just because you have doubts, doesn’t mean you should just jump into the unknown. Although that’s what a lot of us are doing in these times of great change. Oftentimes, we don’t know what we’re doing or where we’re going, but because others are changing, are doing something new or different, we think we ought to do the same, we can’t let them get ahead of us, because we absolutely need to be a part of the in-crowd. But that is pure foolishness my brethren. 

Not all change is good for us, and the follow the Jones’ lifestyle only gets us into more problems than we already have. Just take the example of the new cell phones that come out almost every year. Some of us just feel we need to have them because they are new, and have new toys in them. But they are usually more expensive too, and don’t always work as good as the older ones. And in fact, most of us won’t ever use the new toys in them. 

We don’t even use our current phone to its best level. But there’s a new one out, and we must have it, we must keep up with the throng and make the phone makers even richer! And in such situations, re our first quote, we definitely may not be able to retract our hasty and thoughtless decisions. (smile) But as they say, to each his own. 

That brings us to the next quote: ‘When a defining moment comes along, you can do one of two things. Define the moment, or let the moment define you.’ Now that’s gospel truth friends! When defining moments crop up, you only have two options; to let the moment define you, or you define it. And the sensible option is usually the latter. You define the moment, you come up over the problem, don’t allow it to take you where it wants to go. 

And I guess we should define what we mean by defining moments. (smile) Those are basically important times in your life, when what is in front of you has the ability to change the trajectory of your life, like a new job offer, or meeting a new lady friend, or the most important defining moment in all of our lives, finding Jesus and cheerfully latching on to Him! When those opportunities appear in our lives, we have to face them mano -a- mano, rise up above them, take the bull by the horns sort of thing, evaluate the situations, and hopefully make wise decisions, because it’s not always in our best interest to let nature take its course. 

And that segues real nicely into our last quote. ‘A wise man can learn more from his enemies than a fool from his friends.’ Now that’s certainly an interesting statement. I guess it goes back to a couple of other sayings: ‘Keep your friends close, and your enemies even closer.’ And also, ‘Show me your friends, and I’ll tell you who you are.’ The last one insinuates that if you are foolish, then most likely your friends are also foolish, so there’s not a whole lot you can learn from them. 

Meanwhile, the first saying is telling us to keep a close eye on our enemies because we can learn their secrets and tactics, which will help us in our fight against them. But the whole thing boils down to having wise friends and no enemies. But if you do have enemies, as Cousin Sol says in Proverbs: ‘If thine enemy be hungry, give him bread to eat, and if he be thirsty, give him water to drink. For thou shalt heap coals of fire upon his head, and the Lord shall reward thee.’ (Prov. 25:21-22) And the scholars tell us that ‘Coals of fire does not refer to revenge or punishment but to pangs of shame that will lead to reconciliation.’ 

But Jesus goes one better than that. He says: ‘LOVE your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully (spitefully) use you, and persecute you.’ (Matt. 5:44) Now that’s not an easy row to hoe in this strife filled world of ours, but that’s what Jesus expects of His followers, and what we should all endeavour to do, if we bear His name, consider Him our Lord and Saviour. 

And remember, He’s promised never to leave nor forsake us, as He told the disciples: ‘and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.’ (Matt. 28:20b) So there’s no need to fear, for Jesus is always with us, leading, guiding and helping us through His indwelling Holy Spirit and allowing us to do great things in His name, through His divine strength. Much LOVE!

…one more day…just one more day…before the triumphant resurrection…please wait faithfully for it… because it WILL come…

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 March 2021 John 10:10b.

John 10:10b.     ​I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

So it’s finally Saturday, and we’re either sleeping in, getting ready to do piled up household chores, or getting ready to go out and do the grocery shopping that we also couldn’t do during the work week. But whatever it is we’re doing, even if it’s just nothing, please remember that our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ is always right there with us, leading, guiding, encouraging and LOVING us, through the indwelling power of His amazing Holy Spirit! 

And for that, we ought to be eternally grateful, because no other faith is guaranteed what we Christians have: the LOVE, mercy and grace of Jesus, that brings forgiveness of sins, and eventually leads to eternal life in heaven with Him. We indeed have the best of all worlds! So let’s give sincere thanks and do our best to walk holy as we go about His business today nuh, so that others can see Christ in us and be encouraged to come to Him, because that’s what He desires of us, His ambassadors, His agents, His foot soldiers! And all God’s children said ‘Amen!’ 

Now let’s look at the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And the first one says: ‘If you do not change direction, you might end up where you are heading.’ Yes friends, you can be pretty sure that if you don’t veer away from your current direction, you will end up where it’s leading. For you certainly can’t be going in one particular direction and expect to end up other than where it’s headed. 

Consequently, this next quote puts it all into the proper perspective. ‘We can’t be afraid of change. You may feel very secure in the pond that you are in, but if you never venture out of it, you will never know that there is such a thing as an ocean, a sea.’ And that’s the gospel truth! Too many of us prefer to stay in our comfort zone rather than step out of it and risk disappointment or trouble. But trouble and disappointment can, and will find you wherever you are. That’s for sure. 

The problem with staying securely in your comfort zone is that you will never really see the beauty and treasures that life really holds. That’s because life only opens up to those who truly seek it, who step out and look for it. Remember what Jesus said: ‘Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock and it shall be opened unto you.’ (Matt. 7:7) Yes my people, that’s also what life expects of us; to come seeking it. All its beauty and treasures won’t just drop in your lap if you stay safe and comfortable. The same thing goes for our Christian beliefs; we have to step out and show others Christ in us. 

And that brings us to this next quote: ‘The changes we dread most may contain our salvation.’ Now that’s no lie my brethren! Ofttimes, the change(s) we are most afraid of are the ones which hold the best end result for us. But that’s just life; the best things are usually the hardest to do and achieve. For whatever reason, life just doesn’t do easy as much as we would like it to. So we can’t run from it, if we want to enjoy it. We have to join the fray; get involved, handle whatever comes against us with a good attitude, with God’s help obviously. 

It’s the only way to live the abundant life that Christ says He came and died for us to have. And if you don’t believe me, listen to Him tell it. ‘The thief (that’s Satan) cometh not but for (except) to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.’ (John 10:10) And that abundant life is one filled with a heavenly perspective, trusting and surrendering to Jesus, walking in the Spirit, and letting its fruit blossom forth in our lives as we journey on to heaven and eternal life. And we can only do that if we are not afraid of change. 

So we move on to the next quote that says: ‘It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.’ And that’s true to a great extent since life changes whether we want it to or not. For example, we grow older and more infirm every day, although we don’t want to. (smile) But the ones who handle aging the best are those who realize the predicament and make the necessary changes so that they can still be productive. You eat as healthily as possible, get as much exercise as possible, pray and show LOVE as much as possible. 

Now that doesn’t mean we must change just for change’s sake. And that’s why I have an issue with our last quote. ‘We must be impatient for change. Let us remember that our voice is a precious gift and we must use it.’ I thoroughly disagree with the first statement. We should not be impatient for change, because all change is not necessarily good or timely change. And that’s one of the major problems in our world right now: everybody’s hollering for change! But look at all the problems that change has caused us in the last little while nuh, especially with the worldwide explosion of social media, where so much negative stuff is now being disseminated. 

Change is good to the extent that it improves our lives, and that does not mean making us fat or fatter and lazier, as has been the case in the last few years. We have so many helpmates nowadays, that we end up doing very little for ourselves, and that’s no good for the species, for as the saying goes, ‘if you don’t use, it you’re going to lose it.’ And that’s exactly what’s been happening to the human race. We haven’t been using all of our faculties and bodies, thus we are steadily losing the ability to function without all of our helpmates. 

And with the hasty pursuit of A.I. (Artificial Intelligence) we’ll soon lose even more, as we are required to do even less. You can see it already in platforms like what’s app, where after a few messages, they can almost write one for you. So, soon, we won’t even have to think any more, the machines will be doing it for us. And what do you think will happen to our minds and brains eh? They’ll simply atrophy. We’ll lose the ability to use them. Now is that what we desire for our species? Certainly not! 

Too much easy life is no good. That’s why societies fall into disarray and ruin, after having reached a pinnacle of work and productivity. Then they just sit on their fannies and enjoy the good life. But if everyone does that, the society crumbles. Life is strange that way. We work hard to rise to the heights, and when we get there, thinking there’s nothing left to achieve, we just allow it to fall apart. 

But that’s not what Jesus expects of his people, of His church my brethren! Our voices are precious, and He expects us to use them to be productive on His behalf right to the very end, even to our last breath, encouraging others to come to Him. So please my fellow believers, let’s stand up strong for Jesus nuh! Let’s allow our voices to be heard loud and clear for what we believe in, and don’t pursue change just for the sake of change. It’s not good for our species, or what God desires for us. Much LOVE!

…change is necessary…but not all change is good… 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 December 2020 2 Corinthians 10:5.

2 Corinthians 10:5.     ​Casting down imaginations (arguments), and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing every thought to the obedience of Christ.

And so, most of the excitement is over now…Chuh! I don’t know why as soon as Christmas day is over people seem to think that the Christmas season done nuh, and they stop playing Christmas music, because it isn’t. It lasts from the beginning of Advent, long before the actual day till into the New Year. Remember is a season. And nobody takes down their Christmas trees before January 7thor thereabouts. So if yuh Christmas tree still up then, that means is still the Christmas season, so you suppose to rejoice and give thanks and praise the Lord for the gift of Christ. (smile) 

Anyhow, today is Boxing Day, and the Province of Ontario lockdown tighter than ah don’t know what. For sure there’ll be none of the usual Boxing Day sales. Well if yuh can’t behave yuhself when the going is good, then you obviously going to suffer the undesirable consequences! 

And that’s exactly what’s been happening here in Ontario; people haven’t been obeying the Covid rules and the cases have been mushrooming, setting new records almost every day, so something had to give. Hope that now all the Christmas festivities sort of over, people will wake up and realize that unless we take serious precautions this virus will become increasingly virulent. But who knows what people will do eh? 

Anyway, it’s also Saturday, so let’s check out some of the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week nuh, as he aspires to inspire us for a brighter tomorrow. And the preface business still running. ‘Positive affirmation you should tell yourself to remind yourself just how awesome you are.’ And as always, I’ll remind us to remind ourselves that we only awesome when we in Jesus, and He’s in us! 

And the first quote is this: ‘Negative thoughts only have the power I allow them.’ And that’s the gospel truth, for since Christ has conquered hell, death and the grave, NOTHING negative, even the devil, has any power over us, unless we allow it. And as per negative thoughts, Bruh Paul reminds us that we should be about ‘Casting down imaginations (arguments), and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing every thought to the obedience of Christ.’ (2 Cor. 10:5) 

Yes friends, we need to be careful what thoughts we allow to exist in our minds, because the mind is the battlefield of the spiritual war in which we’re engaged. And how do we keep control of our thoughts? One website puts it thus: ‘The word of Christ should dwell in you richly. This can be accomplished by regular study and meditation in the Bible, by memorizing Scriptures, by church attendance, and through committed obedience to Christ’s teachings. It also says to teach and admonish.’ 

As Bruh Paul said to the Ephesians: ‘Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.’ (Eph. 5:19-21) Those are some of the ways we can keep our thoughts and minds strong and reject the negative stuff that’s ever so quick to jump in there. 

And the next quote tells us: ‘To make small steps toward big goals is progress.’ Now that’s no lie, for life itself usually goes in small steps, and there aren’t many times when big things happen suddenly as big things, but they mostly grow from small things until they get big. As mih Jamaican people say, ‘one one cocoa full basket.’ 

And that’s the living truth. You can only put one cocoa in the basket at time, thus we ought to esteem the small things in our lives, because put together, they can grow to big things. Like the mighty oak tree that grows from a small acorn – but it takes a long time to become mighty, doing so in small steps. 

Then we come to this: ‘No amount of guilt can change the past, and no amount of worrying can change the future.’ And isn’t that the indisputable truth. Yet we keep on allowing the guilt of our past to hamper our present and future and allow worry for the future to disrupt our present. That’s foolish my people! 

Once we have come to Christ and asked for forgiveness for our past wrongs, they were forgiven, so there’s no need to keep letting that guilt attack our souls and spirits. The problem there is that we find it hard to forgive ourselves, and that’s possibly a sense of pride. For if Almighty God has forgiven us, who are we not forgive ourselves eh? We’re just saying there that we don’t really believe and trust God’s forgiveness. 

And as per worrying about the future, Jesus said it loud and clear in His Sermon on the Mount: ‘Take therefore no thought for the morrow (therefore do not worry about tomorrow): for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil (trouble) thereof.’ (Matt. 6:34) 

Ah friends, every day has its own problems, more than enough, so there’s no need to take any from one and put it on the other. We just need to try and live ONE DAY at a time and not get too far ahead of ourselves, for life takes pleasure in gumming up the works if we try to be too smart. (smile) 

And our last quote says: ‘The control center of your life is your attitude.’ Now that certainly rings true! Our attitude controls our thoughts and actions. If we have a good attitude, then invariably we have good thoughts and actions. The opposite is also true. If our attitude is bad, then most likely bad thoughts and actions will predominate. And where do we get those polar opposite attitudes from eh? From the two options available to us in this world. 

As Jesus said: ‘No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and LOVE the other; or else he will hold to (be loyal to) the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon (earthly riches).’ (Matt. 6:24) And there’s no disputing that! You can’t serve God and the devil at the same time. You have to make a choice. And depending on that choice, you will adopt a certain attitude. 

If you choose Jesus, then your attitude will be predominantly good. But if you choose to serve Beelzebub, then your attitude will be predominantly evil! So it’s up to each of us to choose to whom we will bow, but bow to somebody, we must. Let’s hope that most, no, ALL of us choose to serve the One and Only Saviour of our fallen world; JESUS CHRIST! Then, good attitudes will predominate in our world. Much LOVE!

…oh…why is it so hard to get suffering sinners…to come to Christ’s comforting arms eh… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 December 2020 Matthew 5:14.

Mathew 5:14.     ​Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid.

Yes friends, we pretty late this chilly Saturday morning. And as usual, it’s because the ole fella did one of his real late nights, or early mornings, and the ole bod rebelled at getting up at the normal time without sufficient rest. (smile) And who says our body doesn’t have a mind of its own eh? So we’ll just get right down to business on this last Saturday before Christmas. 

Just imagine it nuh, Christmas is only six days away! And what a joyful time it will be, despite the many problems and much strife in our current world, because the birth of Jesus was the beginning of true hope for mankind. Glory be! And every time His birthday rolls around we’re filled with such hope, joy, LOVE, wonder and gratitude that we set aside our earthly problems to rejoice in His everlasting goodness, grace and mercy! So let’s see what our friend Anselm had to tell us this past week nuh, as he aspired to inspire us for a better tomorrow. 

And the new style persists, of prefacing each quote with these words: ‘Positive affirmation you should tell yourself to remind yourself just how awesome you are. I’m calm, happy, and content.’ But then I have to turn around and remind us that we can only be all those things if we’re truly in partnership with Jesus, for awesomeness, calmness, happiness and contentment don’t occur unless you have a strong personal relationship with the One who provides those things; Jesus Christ! Matter done! 

So to the quotes, and I believe we can tie the first two together: ‘I’m bold, beautiful, and brilliant,’ and ‘My body shape is perfect in the way it’s intended to be.’ And yes, we ought to become bold, beautiful and brilliant when we become members of Christ’s august body, the church, because according to Bruh Paul: ‘Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature (creation): old things are passed away; behold ALL THINGS are become new.’ (2 Cor. 5:17) 

And when all things become new in Christ my brethren then we do become bold and beautiful and brilliant because we are filled with the Holy Spirit of God which is sent to live in us and make us that way; bring us to a wonderful maturity in Christ! Give Him some thanks and praise nuh! And that maturity in Christ certainly gives our spiritual bodies a perfect body shape. I can’t say the same for the physical aspect, although with Christ in us and we in Him, some have been known to pursue right eating and consistent exercise to make our physical bodies look pleasing to the eye of the beholder. (smile) 

Then there’s this quote: ‘ I’m open to new adventures in my life.’ Oh yes friends, when we work and live for Jesus, we’re always open to new adventures. We have to be, because undertaking or being involved in new adventures is one of the many ways He uses us to promote His gospel. As a member of Christ’s church and body, you can be sure that life will not be humdrum and very ordinary all the time. 

Something new, or some variation of the old will always crop up to keep you on your toes, actively involved in His awesome ministry. And I can testify to that from personal experience. Since I’ve gotten closer to God, so many unexpected things have happened in my life, that sometimes I just have to sit down and ponder them in true amazement. So yes, walking with Christ is an adventure in itself. 

But this next quote, ‘I’m free to create the life I desire,’ is definitely not true if you are a serious believer in Christ. And to tell the truth, you’re not even free to create the life you desire if you hold the prince of darkness as your standard bearer, because he too makes certain unwarranted and disliked demands of his followers, which don’t fall into step with their own plans for their lives. So you’re never totally free to live the life you desire, because as they say, you have to bow to somebody; either God or mammon. 

And even then, life itself takes pleasure in throwing a monkey wrench into our best laid plans. But the best of all the worlds though is bowing to Christ Jesus, the One who’s name is above EVERY other name, and the One to whom EVERY knee will eventually have to bow. So the earlier you do that, the better it is for all concerned. (smile) 

That brings us to this last quote: ‘I allow my light to shine, I unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.’ Now that will certainly please the heart of Jesus, for that’s what He longed for, when He spoke these encouraging words during His earthly sojourn. ‘Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle (a lamp), and put it under a bushel (basket), but on a candlestick (lampstand); and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.’ (Matt. 5:14-15) 

And that’s the indisputable truth friends; a city that’s set on a hill can’t hide its light, neither do we light a light only to then hide it. But light is to drive away darkness and that’s what Jesus came to earth to do; to drive away the darkness from our imprisoned lives, give us a future and a hope, an expected end, not calamity, which darkness will always cause since you can’t see where you’re going. And that’s why too His word is a lamp unto our feet, and a light to our path; (Ps. 119:105) so that it can safely guide us as we traverse this dark and evil world. 

That’s why Jesus’ next words are ever so important. ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt. 5:16) Oh my people, we are Christ’s ambassadors in this dark world, that means He expects us to shine brightly, to do His work diligently and efficiently, so that all the world can see what His Father and Him and the Holy Spirit are all about; abundant earthly life, LOVE, joy, salvation and eternal life! 

And only as we diligently spread the Word and sincerely live the example, will others be willing to embrace our wonderful God and all that He so gloriously stands for! And when that happens, then we make that last quote ever so true; our light shining brightly, and allowing others to shine their light’s brightly too, so that God can be greatly and wonderfully glorified! Much LOVE!

…in this oh so dark world…Christians need to turn on their high beams…right now…  

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 November 2020 Matthew 7:12.

Matthew 7:12.     ​Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophet.

Well finally some decent sunshine in my area! Brother! We haven’t really seen the sun in my neck of the woods this past week, just mere dark, cloudy, dreary, wet days, with the occasional ray of tarnished sunshine. Let’s hope this bright flood will last for at a least a couple of days, I’m tired with what they consider the English type weather. (smile) And yes, I know I have Jesus to warm me up and brighten my day, but that doesn’t mean some physical sunshine isn’t nice every once in a while too! 

So since it’s that lazy day called Saturday, let’s turn to the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week, as he aspires to inspire us for a brighter tomorrow. And as the new style persists, they are all prefaced by: ‘Positive affirmation you should tell yourself to remind yourself just how awesome you are. I’m calm, happy, and content,’ but I will only reference it this one time. And a gentle reminder that all of that is only possible if you’re in cahoots with Jesus! (smile) And the first quote is an ever so important one: ‘I will not compare myself to strangers on the Internet.’ 

And do we ever need to stop doing that, because it is driving us crazy, especially when the images shown on social media are often outright lies and/or doctored images. We are allowing the practice of body shaming, amongst other negative habits, to destroy our self-esteem and make us dislike ourselves; the way we look, think and behave. That’s utterly foolish my brethren, for who says we need to look like or behave like others eh? If the Lord wanted us to be all alike, He would have made us so. But He wanted us all to be different, to be unique in our own selves, that’s why He created us like we are. 

So it’s a sin against Him, our trying to look like others, most of whom are fakers anyway. Right now, social media is the biggest expletive deleted satanic thing we have in our society. It’s being used for more negative stuff than positive. No wonder our society is in the disgusting state it’s in! Nuff said on that! 

Then there’s this quote that’s contrary to the first one: ‘I LOVE myself fully, including the way I look.’ Now that’s a li’l more like it! But we must also be on guard that we don’t over LOVE ourselves, or in a manner that’s more narcissistic than godly. It’s necessary that we like ourselves because we take ourselves with us wherever we go, and it’s not wise to have a constant travelling companion you don’t like. (smile) 

Remember the premium Jesus placed on true LOVE? He broke down all the commandments to just two: LOVE the Lord God, and LOVE your neighbour as yourself. (Matt. 22:37) That means respecting and caring for your neighbour as you respect and care for yourself. I guess it could be best described by what we call the Golden Rule, more sensitive and commanding words of Jesus from the Sermon on the Mount. ‘Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophet.’ (Matt. 7:12) 

Yes precious people, that ought to be the rule that we live by; do unto others as we want them to do unto us. But unfortunately that doesn’t hold true in today’s society, we practice the other side of the coin, doing to others what we don’t want them to do to us. Or as the ole people would say: ‘Do so ent like so!’ We obviously don’t like others throwing back to us what we first threw to them! Now why does that surprise us eh? 

That leads us to this next quote: ‘I am enough.’ Now that I believe is a rather disturbing thought and sentence. Why? Because in the first place we by ourselves are never enough! The saying that no man is an island is ever so true. We can’t stand alone and be as productive and useful as God desires of us. Remember why and what He said when He created Eve in the Garden of Eden? ‘And the Lord God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a help meet for him (a helper comparable to him).’ (Gen. 2:18) 

Then He formed Eve out of Adam’s rib. If He thought that man was sufficient alone, He would never have made woman to help him. So why do we think that we are sufficient unto ourselves eh? Remember Jesus’ words too about the vine and the branches: ‘…for without me ye can do nothing.’ (John 15:5b) And that’s the gospel truth! And until we all understand that and act wisely upon it, we won’t ever amount to what we were made to amount to! Matter fix! 

And again we have another somewhat troubling quote: ‘I choose to be proud of myself and the things I choose to do.’ Now hopefully all those things are not within the ungodly realm of Satan, but within the godly realm of Jesus! If they are within Satan’s realm, then you should not be proud of them, for why should we ever be proud of evil doing eh? 

But if they are within the realm of Jesus, you can be proud of them, but not to the exclusion of the one who gave you the strength and grace to do them; meaning Christ, through whom we can do ALL things. And in our pride, please, let’s remember these notable words of Bruh Paul to the church at Rome. ‘For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.’ (Rom. 12:3) 

And the scholars offer this interesting explanation of that verse. ‘12:3. The righteousness of God will cause the believer to conduct himself in humility in the local church (vs. 3-8). Paul meets two dangers that the individual faced in the exercise of his spiritual gifts. He might overestimate himself and try to exercise a gift God never gave him. Or he might underestimate himself and fail to exercise the gift God has given to him. Paul shows that God has given each believer specific gifts to enable him to do what God wants him to do. No one is excluded.’ And that’s the indisputable truth! 

However, we must be careful to remember that it’s only through God’s underserved grace that we do all that we do, and not get too big for our britches, like our world has recently gotten, else the Lord will cut us down to size, just like He’s doing right now with all the strife and disasters and sickness He’s allowing in our oh so wonderful, but oh so sinful world! 

And the last quote says: ‘I let go of all that no longer serves me.’ And that’s what we all need to do! And I’ll give us just two scriptures on that subject. The first is this, more words of Bruh Paul to the church at Rome. ‘And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.’ (Rom. 12:2) Yes friends, if we intend to live for Jesus, then we need to give up all that the world holds highly, and seek God’s righteousness first of all, by first transforming our minds, because that’s where all the major battles are fought. 

And lastly, let’s remember Bruh Paul’s words to the church at Philippi! ‘But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung (rubbish), that I may win Christ.’ (Phil. 3:7-8) Yeh friends, Bruh Paul gave up all his many educational and religious credentials to know Christ! He even considered them rubbish in the end. 

Now let’s remember that God prizes humility above pride, but we still need to have a delicate balance between both. So let’s go home with these words of Bruh Paul ringing in our hearts, minds, bodies and souls nuh. ‘I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.’ (Phil. 3:14) We couldn’t do any better. Much LOVE!

… a good and successful life…all hinges on…being in sync with Jesus… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 November 2020 Deuteronomy 8:18.

Deuteronomy 8:18.     ​Remember the Lord thy God: for it is he who giveth thee the power to get wealth…

Oh, it’s a lazy, hazy Saturday morning… and I’m late and hazy and lazy too! (smile) Did some other things before coming down to write the Bit, and now I’m a li’l miffed at myself for not getting started earlier. But them’s the breaks. Get over it self! (smile) 

And what’s the news this morning eh? Nothing has changed! The world is still in a volatile, unholy, strife-filled mess. And if you like the status quo, then I suppose that’s good news for you. If you don’t… well what can I say eh? Nothing but keep praying, repenting, getting back to God…and tell everyone you know, shout it from the rooftops that that’s the ONLY way our world will ever recover some semblance of normalcy! Nothing much is going to improve until there’s a big God-centred Revival in our world; a LOVE Revolution! Now that’s my stand…and I’m sticking to it! (smile) 

So, since it’s Saturday, let’s see what interesting quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And again, I only got three quotes instead of the usual five. And no, I’m not complaining – no way – because now I only have to wrap my head around three and not five quotes. Glory be! 

And he’s also continuing this new style of prefacing each one with this proviso: ‘Positive affirmation you should tell yourself to remind yourself just how awesome you are. I’m calm, happy, and content.’ But please remember we are only awesome and truly happy, calm and content in Christ Jesus; when He’s in us and we are in Him! Much LOVE and thanks to our wonderful Lord and Saviour! And also as usual, we’ll leave out the proviso from here on in. But please remember it in the context of Jesus. 

So here’s the first quote: ‘I choose not to criticize myself or others around me.’ Now that’s such a wonderful attitude! And besides our world is filled with too much criticism these turbulent days, unsupported criticism at that too. It’s one of our favourite games in this time of social media and rampant technology. And it’s one of those games where we like to give, but can’t take. We all LOVE to criticize, but we can’t accept it, even when it’s useful and true. 

Let’s stop for a moment and remember these awesome words of our Leader, Jesus Christ nuh. ‘Judge not (condemn not, criticize not), that ye be not judged (condemned, criticized). For with what judgement (condemnation, criticism) ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete (use), it shall be measured to you again.’ (Matt. 7:1-2) 

In other words friends, do unto others as you would like them to do unto you, because whatever you do, in whatever measure, it will eventually boomerang right back to you, and most likely you will be appalled at it. (smile) As the ole people would say: ‘Do so ent like so!’ And that’s the gospel truth, for we don’t like getting back the negative stuff we throw in other’s faces. 

But listen to this explanation from the scholars on the subject. ‘7:1-4. Judge not refers to an unfavourable and condemnatory judgement. This does not mean that a Christian should never exercise judgement of any kind under any circumstances. The point being made here is that we are not to judge the inner motives of another. We are not to render a verdict based upon prejudiced information. Nor are we to use ourselves as the standard of judgement for with what…ye mete (measure) you shall be judged. That ye be not judged refers to the ultimate judgement of God rather than our own judgement.’ 

Hope that clarifies the subject and means that our criticism level will drop by at least three quarters, because a lot of the time we criticize, it’s not even that we have prejudiced info, but NO info at all. That’s how bad criticism is in these troubled and uncertain times! 

And the second quote proclaims: ‘My potential to succeed is limitless.’ Now that is certainly true…but again under the right situation and circumstances. One must first be filled with the Holy Spirit of Jesus and being obedient and obeisant to Him, so that we can be calm, happy and contented. But here’s the kicker in these words of Moses to the Israelites: ‘Remember the Lord thy God: for it is he who giveth thee the power to get wealth…’ (Deut. 8:18) Yes friends, unless we are living under God’s protective and powerful umbrella, our lives won’t be as thrilling, adventurous and successful. 

Remember His words to Joshua on remembering and meditating on His word and doing all contained therein? Why? ‘…for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.’ (Josh. 1:8) It couldn’t be any plainer than that my people. And the thing we don’t understand about being successful in God’s mercies, is that with Him, success is lasting, not the uncertain, fleeting kind that comes when we try to accomplish it in our own strength following the ways of the world. 

So here’s the last quote…and it’s a dandy! (smile) ‘Difficult times are part of my journey and allow me to appreciate the good.’ And is that the indisputable truth! Thus the sayings like: ‘you can’t appreciate the sun until you experience the rain,’ ‘you can’t appreciate joy until you have experienced sorrow.’ It’s only when we experience the bad that we can truly appreciate the good. And nowhere is that clearer than in Jesus’ economy, for ofttimes He allows us to go through rough times to test our mettle, to mature us in His style. For we all know that we only truly grow in difficult times, not much in good ones. 

Now in this evil and sinful world difficulties do abound. And Jesus didn’t hesitate to remind us of that when He said: ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that ye might have peace. In the world ye shall tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’ (John 16:33) And He certainly overcame, hell, death and the grave. So he knows what He’s talking about. 

And His brother James puts it thus: ‘My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations (various trials); Knowing this, that the trying (testing) of your faith worketh (produces) patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire (complete), wanting (lacking) nothing.’ (James 1:2-4) Yes friends, we need to look at our trials from God’s viewpoint; that they are maturing us and making us more like Jesus in character which is God’s eventual plan for ALL of his children.

 And yes, most of us try to find a way to escape from the trials and temptations, but it’s necessary that we go through them if we want to mature and grow in our Christian faith. And remember too that the Lord has promised to always be with us, helping us all the way. Now that belief is what our faith is built on, and with it we can successfully navigate any problems we encounter in this world! So let’s stand strong and steadfast, surrounded by all of God’s faithful promises! Much LOVE!

…when trials and tribulation come…God’s saints successfully rise up over them…  

Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 October 2020 James 1:17.

James 1:17.     Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness (variation), neither shadow of turning.

Well at last we have a somewhat sunshiny opening to a day, not the cloudy, overcast stuff we’ve been having recently! And it’s a big Saturday in the northern climes; Halloween Day! It’s the day the society dresses up in ugly, evil looking costumes – the uglier and more evil looking, the better- and have the children go out ‘trick or treating,’ begging at other people’s houses for candy, and the adults have costumed balls and riotous parties. Well let’s see what’s going to happen this year of Covid nuh. 

Halloween hasn’t been officially banned, and there have been all sorts of comments, for and against, but the Covid-19 numbers have not been coming down, although the more populous areas are still in Stage 2 Lockdown. So, in my humble opinion, it is pure folly to have children running around the streets in the dark in this pandemic time to beg for candy from people most of them don’t know, and for adults to be having parties with unprotected crowds without any physical distancing. 

Even in the good times there have been petitions to ban the process because of the evil stuff people were putting in the candy and fruit to harm the children. And worse of all, if it glorifies the evil spirits like witches and goblins and the like, why have such a day in a supposedly godly society eh? But what does the ole fella know eh friends? Obviously not a whole lot. (smile) So we’ll just leave that subject alone and see what transpires later on. 

And since it’s Saturday, let’s turn to more appropriate things, like the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And it seems like he’s adopted a new style, prefacing each quote with the words: ‘Positive affirmation you should tell yourself to remind yourself just how awesome you are….’ 

Now I think that statement contains elements of both good and bad. The bad part is that if we focus on it too much, it could lead us to believe that we’re so wonderful and awesome in our own strength and thus we develop proud and narcissistic thoughts and behaviour. However, on the good side, we are awesome and wonderful IN Christ! No doubt about that! So let’s put some wise and sensible reins on our thoughts about our awesomeness nuh. (smile) Anyway, I’m not going to reiterate the opening sentence in each quote, since we already know what it is. I’ll just give us the important last part. 

And the first quote tells us: ‘My life is a gift and I appreciate everything I have.’ The first part is indeed true: our lives are gifts from God Himself. For God Himself, with His own hands, moulded man from the dirt of the earth, in His own image, then breathed His precious breath into his body. (Gen. 1:27; 2:7) And furthermore, James tells us thus: ‘Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness (variation), neither shadow of turning.’ (James 1:17) 

It stands to reason then, that if our lives and all the good stuff we have are gifts from God, then we ought to appreciate everything we have. But do we truly appreciate them? Not really nuh, not in our current greedy and ‘gravelicious’ society. For we complain more about the few things we don’t have, than we are thankful for the plenty we do have. Consequently, many of us can’t truthfully declare the next quote. ‘I’m calm, happy, and content.’ And we will never be able to do so until we realize that ALL we have comes from Almighty God…and begin appreciating it. 

Yeh friends, calm and content only come with an attitude of appreciation. And also, until you show appreciation for all that God has done for you, and is still doing, you won’t be able to make this next statement either. ‘I’m more at ease every day.’ For ease, likewise, comes only with true appreciation of all our blessings. One can’t be cantankerous, miserable and unappreciative and enjoy the abundant life that Jesus died for us to have. (John 10:10) 

Remember too that Jesus is the biggest and best gift that God gave us, through whom we achieve eternal life, despite our sinful, ungodly beginnings. Bruh Paul put it this way to the church at Rome. ‘For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.’ (Rom. 5:23) And if we have become wise and accepted Jesus as our Lord and Saviour, then most likely we’ll be able to proclaim this next quote. ‘I’ll surround myself with positive people who will help bring out the best in me.’ 

Oh friends, that is indeed wisdom from above! Why? Because too many of us surround ourselves with those who bring out the worse and not the best in us. That’s why the Good Book tells us so specifically: ‘Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God. But exhort (encourage, lift up) one another daily, while it is called TODAY; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.’ (Heb. 3:12-13) 

Oh mih bredrin, it is ever so important to surround ourselves with wise, godly people, who will encourage us to do good, to do our best, for that’s what Jesus desires of His followers. Remember too that no man is an island, and we can’t live this life alone, or in too much seclusion, for the Lord made us to have fellowship one with another. As the old people would say; ‘Show me your friends, and I’ll tell you who you are.’ And that’s the living truth, since our friends’ behaviour and attitude rub off on us. 

That brings us to this last quote: ‘I approve of myself and LOVE myself deeply.’ Now if all the other quotes are true of us, then we can make that kind of statement, but not too strenuously, (smile) because like believing we’re so awesome, it can lead us away from God, to the heights of narcissism, and we know there’s nothing the Lord dislikes like a proud, supposedly independent, self-LOVING person. Oh yes, we do need to LOVE and approve ourselves, but with a very careful attitude, so that we don’t go overboard and fall victim to the evil inherent in such thinking. As Jeeves would probably say: ‘circumspection my dear man – much circumspection.’ (smile) 

And I can’t think of a better way to end today, than with these immortal words of Jesus as per our earthly duty. ‘Thou shalt LOVE the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt LOVE thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.’ (Matt. 22:37-40) 

And that’s the gospel truth my people, straight from the Giver of the gospel! So let’s go out and action them nuh. It’s our bounden duty as believers in Christ Jesus! Much LOVE!

…from Genesis to Revelation…it’s all about LOVE…God’s LOVE for us…our LOVE for Him…and for each other…  

Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 October 2020 John 3:16.

John 3:16.     ​For God so LOVED the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Oh friends, it’s so good to finally awaken to a li’l sunshine after all the wet, dreary mornings of this past week! I believe this is the first time all week, although some of those days have eventually morphed into sunshiny ones. And just for your info, yesterday the sunshine won the victory! Glory be! It turned into a warm and windy day. So warm that I couldn’t sit on my porch in my shirtsleeves in the afternoon for very long because the sun was actually burning me. (smile) 

Imagine that nuh, in late October, in these northern climes. I guess it’s what we’d call a true Indian summer’s day. But the rain did come back late in the evening, and the dark clouds are now tussling out there with the sunshine for superiority, so it’s another watch and wait and see, just like we ought to be doing with our faith in Almighty God. (smile) But enough with the weather scene, let’s see what quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. 

And it seems like Anselm was on a positive affirmation kick this past week, (smile) because every quote begins with the words: ‘Positive affirmation you should tell yourself to remind yourself just how awesome you are,’ which is then followed by the positive affirmation. So we’re not going to repeat the first part, just the affirmation itself. And just as a gentle reminder, you are an awesome being if you are a follower of Christ Jesus, meaning that He is in you, and you are in Him! Glory Hallelujah! 

And the first positive affirmation of your awesomeness is: ‘I’m in control of how I react to others.’ Now that should be a very true statement, especially if we’re followers of Christ, because Christ was always in control of His reaction to others, and we need to follow His example. Look at how the Pharisees and other groups mocked and jeered and harassed and finally killed Him. But you never heard Him react with the same venom that they hurled at Him. And what were some of His dying words on that old, rugged cross? ‘Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.’ (Luke 23:34) 

And these words from the website Gotquestions.org, provide an interesting explanation of that particular situation.‘Jesus looked down from the cross upon a scene that must have been distressing to Him. The Roman soldiers were gambling for His clothing (John 19:23-24); the criminals on the crosses to either side of Him were reviling Him (Matt. 27:44); the religious leaders were mocking Him (Matt. 27:41-43); and the crowd was blaspheming Him (Matt. 27:39). 

Surrounded by this most unworthy lot, Jesus prayed for them. “Father, forgive them” is a prayer of unmatched mercy and LOVE. It is important to note that Jesus’ prayer, “Father, forgive them,” does not mean that everyone was forgiven, unilaterally, without repentance and faith. It does mean that Jesus was willing to forgive them —forgiveness was, in fact, the reason He was on the cross. The words “Father, forgive them” show the merciful heart of God.’ 

Are our hearts as merciful, do we show that forgiving and graceful attitude? That brings us to the next positive affirmation. ‘I’m courageous and stand up for myself.’ Yes, we ought to be courageous and stand up for ourselves. But again friends, we can only do so much on our own. We need Jesus as our backer, our titanic force that stands beside us and victoriously confronts all who come against us. What did Jesus say? ‘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) 

And that’s the gospel truth my brethren! Without Jesus, there’s not a whole lot we can do successfully. Remember too, the Lord’s admonition to Joshua when He made him leader of the Israelites after Moses’ death. Having told him that only through meditating constantly on His word, could he be prosperous and have success, (Josh. 1:8) He followed it up with: ‘Have I not commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee withersoever thou goest.’ (Josh. 1:9) 

Yes friends, we can stand up strongest and be the most courageous when Jesus is an integral part of our lives. And along with that comes this next positive affirmation: ‘I choose peace.’ Oh Mama Mia people! That’s a glorious truth! For when we are imbued with the spirit of Christ, peace becomes a natural by-product. Yeah! And the peace we find in Christ is not only awesome but also incredible, and it’s a kind of peace that we can’t find anywhere else. Wow! Here how Jesus characterizes it nuh. ‘Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let it be afraid.’ (John 14:26) 

Ah mih people, when the peace of Christ reigns in us, we’re neither troubled nor afraid, we can go through all sorts of troubles, like we doing right now, and yet still be at peace, because Christ’s peace is one that passes all understanding, all human reasoning. It’s a divine peace. And you know what that brings with it? This positive affirmation: ‘I deserve to have joy in my life.’ Yes precious people, joy is the fulfillment of Christ’s promise in our lives. Remember His immortal words? ‘I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.’ (John 10:10b) 

Oh my fellow saints of Christ, having life and having it more abundantly means enjoying our earthly life, hard though it may be at times, and not waiting until we get to heaven to enjoy it. What’s the purpose of Christ sacrificing Himself for us eh, and reconciling us to the Father, if we don’t enjoy that bountiful blessing down here? And remember too these marvellous words: ‘for the joy of the Lord is your strength.’ (Neh. 8:10) That’s why the enemy is always seeking to steal our joy, cause he knows that without it we can be easily defeated. Like Samson when Delilah cut off his locks became weak, so we become weak when we lose the joy of the Lord. 

And all of the above leads us to this last positive affirmation: ‘I am worthy of LOVE.’ And isn’t that the most glorious, awesome, indisputable truth? It surely is! As sons and daughters of God, heirs of God with Jesus, how can we not be worthy of God’s greatest attribute, LOVE, eh? Remember the main reason Jesus gave for coming to earth to save us? ‘For God so LOVED the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.’ (John 3:16) 

Yeh mih bredrin! It’s LOVE that moved God’s heart toward us while we were still sinners, and it’s LOVE that makes the world go round, and it’s LOVE that we don’t have enough of in this current world, why our society is in such shambles and steadily going down into the mire of hell. So let’s perk up, be courageous and stand up, for and with Christ, and show LOVE, for the devil cannot defeat us when we’re joyful and strong in Jesus. Much LOVE!

…what the world needs now…is LOVE, sweet LOVE…not just for some…but for everyone… 

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