Today’s Scrip-Bit 8 June 2019 Proverbs 18:21.

Proverbs 18:21.    ​Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that LOVE it, shall eat the fruit thereof.
 

Brother, it’s Saturday and I’m up early to write the Bit so that I can go to a Pentecost Prayer breakfast at my church, though I would have liked to sleep in some. But them’s the breaks. And it’s usually a good time and well attended, so no worries really. Oh, and Alyssa is home from the hospital, doing fairly well, as well as can be expected after major surgery. She sends her thanks for all the prayers you sent up to heaven on her behalf, and wouldn’t mind some more for a speedy not so painful recovery. (smile) 

And yuh better believe that the workingman was in seventh heaven yesterday afternoon when he got home and found that it was a wonderful summer’s day! I can just imagine how he quickly threw on his short shorts and tank top, then went outside and fired up the barbecue, threw on his meats, then sat quietly, or listening to some joyful music, sipping some brewskis and contemplating life, while the meat sizzled on the grill. Now is that the life or what! 

And I’m sure the same thing will be happening all around the place today, as it seems to be another nice day in the offing. Wow! Three nice days in a row! That’s what you called blessed! (smile) But enough with the small talk, because it’s Saturday and our friend Anselm sent us a whole slew of quotes this week, and some long ones too. So let’s get to them nuh, showing our appreciation for his sincere aspiration to inspire us for a better tomorrow. 

And here is the first one: ‘I think it’s important to get your surroundings as well as yourself into a positive state – meaning surround yourself with positive people, not the kind who are negative and jealous of everything you do.’ And I couldn’t agree more. Jesus also agrees, because negative and jealous people only drag you down, while you are trying to build yourself up. And to be a follower of Jesus, you must be a positive thinker, because He was the most positive thinking person that ever lived. He had to be, since He was the Son of God, and in God there is no negativity. 

Then there is this related quote. ‘Spending time with negative people can be the fastest way to ruin a good mood. Their pessimistic outlooks and gloomy attitude can decrease our motivation and change the way we feel. But allowing a negative person to dictate your emotions gives them too much power in your life. Make a conscious effort to choose your attitude.’ Ah friends, all of that is so true! And a successful life is based so much on our attitude toward our situations and circumstances, we can’t give others the leeway to make us become a negative person. 

And thus we have to make a conscious effort to resist negativity, because ‘It’s not the situation, but whether we react negatively or respond positively to the situation that is important.’ Yeh mih people, many of us face the same basic situations, but our responses to them vary a lot, thus our results also vary a lot. And those who have a positive outlook, with Jesus as their anchor and foundation, usually have better outcomes. No ifs and buts about that! 

Therefore, ‘Stop saying these negative things about yourself. Look in the mirror and find something about yourself that’s positive and celebrate that!’ Oh friends, remember God spoke the world into existence, that means words are powerful, and what we say, usually comes to pass. As Cousin Sol so wisely and rightly tells us: ‘Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that LOVE it, shall eat the fruit thereof.’ 

And as Jesus also informs us: ‘For by words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.’ (Matt.12:37) So if we keep saying negative things about ourselves it’s obvious that our lives will proliferate with negative stuff. Now we don’t have to go overboard and get narcissistic with it, (smile) but a healthy dose of self-LOVE and self-confidence goes a long way towards brightening our lives. 

And instead of celebrating our faults and failures, let’s start celebrating our good points and successes, even though they may be few. Jesus didn’t die for us to lead a miserable, negative and unhappy existence, but for us to enjoy life, in abundance, with joy and laughter uppermost in our lives. So let’s do that nuh. 

And to successfully accomplish that goal, the first thing we need to do is to think right thoughts, as our last quote reminds us. ‘I realized that if my thoughts immediately affect my body, I should be careful about what I think. Now if I get angry, I ask myself why I feel that way. If I can find the source of my anger, I can turn that negative energy into something positive.’ 

Ah mih people, that’s the answer to our many problems right there; our thoughts! We need to understand that the battle for supremacy over our lives begins right in our minds. As Sister Joyce (Joyce Meyer) calls it: ‘The Battlefield of the Mind!’ And count on Cousin Sol to have a word on it. ‘For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he.’ (Prov.23:7) 

Yes friends, as we think, so are we! Whatever is uppermost in our minds, is the direction in which we will generally be led. That’s why the enemy keeps flooding our minds with all of his deceit and lies, for he knows that if we think on them, we will eventually end up going in that direction. 

And that’s why Bruh Paul admonished the Philippians, and consequently us, thus: ‘Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest (noble), whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise (anything praiseworthy), think (meditate) on these things. Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do; and the God of peace shall be with you.’ (Phil.4:8-9) 

It couldn’t be put any clearer than that my fellow saints in Christ. As the scholars explain: ‘In order to keep God’s peace, the readers must occupy their minds with the right things (v8) and busy themselves with the right activities (v.9).’ Now it’s all up to us to integrate those attitudes into our lives. Much LOVE!

…one must make a conscious decision…to think right…and to do right…they won’t happen by osmosis…(smile)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 March 2018 1 Chronicles 28:9.

1 Chronicles 28:9.   And thou, Solomon  my son, know thou the God of thy father, and serve him with a perfect heart and with a willing mind: for the Lord searcheth all hearts, and understandeth all the imaginations of the thoughts: if thou seek him, he will be found of thee; but if thou forsake him, he will cast thee off forever.

Well friends, we’ve gotten through the horror of Good Friday, where we saw Jesus crucified to pay for our abominable sins. It wasn’t easy, but we understood the reason why it had to happen: No sacrificial death, no salvation. For the price of sin had to be paid in sinless blood, and Jesus’ blood was the ONLY one that met the full criteria. 

Now it’s time to wait for His awesome resurrection; His victory over hell, death and the grave, where He dangles the keys to the gates of hell before an awestruck, defeated Lucifer. (smile) 

Yes my fellow believers, our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ gave us the victory over the enemy by His sacrificial death on the cross. The least we can do now is show a fair amount of appreciation by living and working diligently and excellently in His name, to spread the good news of His gospel around the entire world. 

And since it’s Saturday, let’s look at some of the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. Here’s the first one: ‘Being happy doesn’t mean everything’s perfect. It means you’ve decided to look beyond the imperfections.’ Now that’s something a lot of us perfectionists need to understand. Perfection is not possible, and if we don’t rise above our imperfections, we’ll never be happy. 

Then there’s: ‘Be gentle with yourself, you’re doing the best you can.’ That’s something else many of us need to learn and do, because we keep beating ourselves up unnecessarily. Remember we can’t be perfect, so once we’re really trying, there’s no need to abuse ourselves. And what’s so foolish and unfair about that is we give a lot of leeway to others, but not enough to ourselves. 

So what then? ‘Focus on the good.’ ‘That’s elementary, my dear Watson,’ you reply. Not really nuh, because if most of us were constantly focused on the good, our world would not be in such a sorry state. It’s because we’re NOT focused on the good that life in this realm of plenty is so rough for so many. 

And we’ll end with this quote: ‘Rule your mind, or it will rule you.’ And is that ever so true my brethren, for it all takes place in the mind, or as Sister Joyce (Joyce Meyer) refers to it, ‘The battlefield of the mind.’ That’s where all our wars and battles take place. And that’s why when we allow the enemy to control our thoughts, he can therefore control our lives. Because as a man thinks, so is he. We become what we think about most. 

So if we think about the things of the world more than those of Jesus, then we’ll become more like the world, and vice versa. That’s why it’s necessary to have good and positive thoughts above all else. They will lift you up, while negative emotions will only drag you further down to Hades. (smile) And we don’t want that now, do we? Of course not! 

That’s why some of the best advice ever given to a son was that of Bruh David to Cousin Sol in our Bit. ‘And thou, Solomon my son, know thou the God of thy father, and serve him with a perfect heart and with a willing mind: for the Lord searcheth all hearts, and understandeth all the imaginations of the thoughts: if thou seek him, he will be found of thee; but if thou forsake him, he will cast thee off forever.’ 

Yeh friends, if we want to live godly and righteous lives, we have to keep our minds focused on stuff that’s godly and righteous. And remember that God looks deep into our hearts and minds to find our true purpose and motives before considering our outward show. So if what’s in our minds and what’s in our actions are different, then the Lord will discover them and act accordingly. 

For as Jesus said: ‘Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth that defileth a man.’ (Matt.15:11) And what comes out of us is what we have focused in our minds. So if our thoughts are evil, then our deeds will most likely be evil too. No wonder Jesus also warned us thus: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things will be added unto you.’ (Matt.11:33) 

Fellow believers, our omniscient and all powerful God knows what we need to function on this earth, and He has promised to give it to us if we keep Him first place in our minds, bodies and actions. If you think primarily on the things of the world, they will be of no avail in the long run. 

For as Jesus says: ‘Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.’ (Matt.6:19-21) 

Words of everlasting wisdom my people, from the creator of all wisdom! Now are we going to be wise and follow them, or foolish and think on the wrong things? That’s up to each individual, but please remember that there are consequences for each line of thought, and before you decide, it would be wise to consider the consequences of each. Much LOVE!

…obey God…and leave all the consequences to Him… (Charles Stanley)

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 November 2017 Romans 12:2.

Romans 12:2.   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.

And then it was Wednesday…another brand new day of mercies and God’s everlasting goodness! Wow! Are we ever blessed my fellow saints in Christ! And I do hope that we truly appreciate God’s LOVING-kindness, else we’ll be missing out on a lot, foolishly shortchanging ourselves. Anyway, that’s a sermon for another day. (smile) 

Today, we’re going to get right into our Bit. ‘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.’ As we said yesterday, you cannot enjoy the good things of God, unless you change your way of thinking, adopting the way God thinks, instead of the way the world operates. 

The scholars offer this explanation: ’12:2. Be not conformed  (lit; “stop conforming yourselves”): They are to resist being poured into the mould of the present thinking, value systems, and conduct of this world. This term is used only here and in 1 Peter 1:14.’  

And the important thing there friends is to RESIST being made like the world. We have to consciously and forcefully resist the world’s titanic efforts to swallow us up in its evil schemes and dreams, because it is an unrelenting force that never stops trying. 

And the only way we can resist is by having the mindset of Christ, keeping us resilient and ever strong. Remember friends, all that we are and do begins and ends in our minds. As Sister Joyce’s (Joyce Meyer) book title indicates, it’s a battlefield, ‘The Battlefield of the Mind.’ 

And that’s no lie, for all our battles are first fought in our minds, then we put whatever it is we think into action. That’s why they say be careful what you think about, because whatever is uppermost in your mind will be revealed in your actions. 

Now listen to this cerebral quote from Dallas Willard (1935-2013), American Philosopher, great spiritual thinker and writer. He says: ‘The ultimate freedom we have as human beings is the power to select what we allow our minds to dwell on.’  Selah! 

Yeh friends, ponder that for a minute nuh. We have total control over what we think about, but like everything else we need to practice it continuously, for the enemy is always around trying to put unholy and ungodly thoughts into our minds. But when we know who we are in Christ, and consciously take control, then we can fight tooth and nail to keep our minds in a Christ-like state. 

Our minds are like a garden; it must be carefully and continuously tended, otherwise like a normal garden, the weeds and other unwanted stuff will spring up and choke the good seed. And as Jesus says, that’s when ‘the care(s) of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful.’  (Matt.13:22b) 

Yeh mih people, if we want to be fruitful for Jesus, we have to stay attached to His vine and carefully tend the garden of our minds, otherwise we’re liable to lose whatever fruitfulness we might have. As I heard Cousin Bobby (Bobby Schuller) say the other day: ‘Good thoughts bear good fruit. Bad thoughts bear bad fruit.’ 

And that’s indisputable truth my brethren. So let’s try to keep good thoughts circulating in our minds nuh, so that we can bear good fruit for Jesus. Now here is another very important sister scripture to our Bit, this time from John’s first epistle. 

‘LOVE not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man LOVE the world, the LOVE of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.’ (1 John 2:15-17)  Oh friends, it couldn’t be stated any simpler, and yet as profound! 

Now hear the scholars: ‘2:15. LOVE not the world is a command implying that action now in progress must cease: “STOP LOVING THE WORLD!” There is, of course, one sense in which Christians should LOVE the world, since God Himself did and does (John 3:16). But in the sense of pledging personal loyalty and devotion to one’s whole being and means, Christians are to “LOVE” God first and foremost (Deut.6:5; Mark 12:30).’  

And all God’s people declared a loud and sincere ‘Amen!’ 

Now here is some more important info from the scholars re ‘Temptation.’ ‘2:16. Though all people are tempted differently according to their individual weaknesses, temptations follow patterns. They appeal to three fundamental areas of life: (1) the lust of the flesh (physical desires; (2) the lust of the eyes (personal desires); and (3) the pride of life (self-interests). 

Illustration: When Satan caused the fall of the race, he appealed to each of these areas of weakness (Gen. 3:6). He also appealed to them when he tempted Christ (Matt.4:1-11), who defied Satan’s temptations by relying on the authority of the Scriptures. Application: The Christian today should also depend on the Scriptures to defeat temptation. (First Ref. Gen 3:1-6; Primary Ref. 1 John 2:15-17; cf. Rom.5:12).’ 

And having taken in all of that, (smile) and we do have the God-given capacity, let’s go home proudly and sincerely declaring our Wednesday Wail, letting the world know that we’re on a long and wonderful journey with Christ. 

As one now: ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! I am halfway home. My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

Oh friends, let’s weep for joy that we are in Christ, and that He is in us! Much LOVE!

…to truly know Christ…is to be totally enamoured of Him…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 12 February 2016 Philippians 2:5‏‏‏‏

Philippians 2:5.    Let this mind be in you, which also was in Christ Jesus.

And then it was Friday… yes friends, the first Friday in Lent! But that doesn’t make that much difference to the ordinary Joe Blow, who’s all week been enduring work, the workplace and the problems to get to and from there. 

He’s still concerned with declaring: ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday and soon work shall be no more! The weekend is upon us and we can do whatever we want! Thank God for Fridays and some much needed respite from work!’ 

And who’s to say that worker nay eh? Our world and working lives are filled with so much stress and strain that we all look forward to some time off. However, the weekend is not necessarily for us to do as we please, but rather to get ourselves together for next week. 

Now let’s chant our Friday Chant, which gives us a better perspective on using the weekend. As one 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.’ 

Yes my fellow believers, that’s more the kind of attitude we need to adopt; rejuvenating ourselves, so that we can continue the process all over again, and hopefully in a more mature and Christ-like manner. 

Anyway, yesterday was certainly an interesting day in the ole fella’s life. After writing the Bit; yuh know that comes first, the duchess and I went out to do some shopping. But was it ever hot! Brother! 

It’s the first time that I’ve ever felt it so hot since I’m down here, although it’s possibly been just as hot all along, (smile) so by the time we got back home it was like moving from hell to heaven. Thank the Lord for some air conditioning yes! 

Then later in the evening I went to what I was told was a Bible Study, just a small group of about twenty adults with a handful of children in the lobby of an apartment building, though it evolved into a full fledged worship service. 

But was it ever good! And the West Indian flavour made it even better! It started out with some praise and worship, accompanied by the Pastor on an electronic keyboard. Then some prayers; then some testimonies. Obviously the ole fella had to get up and offer his two cents worth. 

But what surprised me most was when the leader introduced the pastor who was going to address us. She called a female name, and a young lady who had been sitting quietly by the door with a young child in her arms, gave the child to the male pastor and she got up and preached us a wonderful and powerful sermon on James 1, re the power of temptation and the joy that believers should find in it. Glory to God! 

The pair of them reminded me of Sister Joyce (Joyce Meyer) and her husband Dave, where she is the one who preaches and he listens and does behind the scenes work. But I enjoyed her preaching, like Sister Joyce, she spells it out loud and clear, the way it ought to be. 

As I keep saying, we need to put actions to our words, tell our practical testimonies, let our lights shine in the darkness of this corrupt and evil world, truly be the salt of the earth, like Jesus desires, for that’s the only way that the heathen and the unbelieving infidel will ever come to know and trust Him as their Lord and Saviour. 

But before all of that can happen, we first need to lay the basic foundation of what Christ is about, and we can only do that when we follow the wise and wonderful advice of our Bit. ‘Let this mind be in you, which also was in Christ Jesus.’ 

Oh friends, we can only truly be like Christ when we truly begin to think like Him. ‘It’s elementary my dear Watson!’ as the famous sleuth Sherlock Holmes is reputed to have said to his associate. Although I recently read somewhere that Sherlock never really said that in the books, but it was something that came up out of the movies or some such scenario. 

However, it is very appropriate to our talk today. We can’t be like somebody unless we know how they think because it all begins in the mind. And as Sister Joyce likes to call it, ‘The Battlefield of the mind.’ 

And that’s gospel truth friends, for the war begins and ends in our minds. That’s why Jesus had those twelve disciples hanging around Him; so they could learn His way of thinking and what ought to proceed from it. 

Now I had some scholarly info to share on the great verses we read yesterday. (Phil.2:6-8) I don’t know if space and time will allow it, because it’s pretty long, but as true believers, we should always have time for understanding God’s word, (smile) so here goes. 

‘2:6-8. These famous verses substantiate the assertion of verse 5b that Jesus did indeed have within Himself the same attitude of verses 2c-4, which the readers of Paul’s letters are also to maintain within themselves. 

Verses 6-8 may be translated as follows: “For He, though eternally possessing the divine nature, did not regard His existing-in-a-manner-equal-with-God; (i.e. His heavenly existence or divine lifestyle) as something to be (selfishly) maintained, but He emptied Himself in that He assumed a servant’s nature and appeared in the likeness of men; and having been recognized in outward form as a man, He humbled Himself in becoming obedient unto death, even death by crucifixion. 

Being in the form of God signifies that Christ has eternally possessed the very nature of God. To own the nature of God is to be God and to be equal with the other personalities of the Godhead (namely, the Father and the Spirit). 

Thought it not robbery to be equal with God means that Christ decided not to continue enjoying His heavenly existence; He enjoyed the same divine life-style in heaven that God enjoyed. Though the Son could have lawfully maintained this heavenly existence, He did not. Rather He assumed a servant’s position and appeared in the likeness of men. 

Consequently, being judged by His fashion (outward appearance) He was recognized by many people as a mere man. But He was much more than that – He was still the Son of God, who continued to possess the divine nature. 

Why did Jesus willingly give up His divine existence with all its benefits and advantages? Because He had within Himself the attitude of verses 2c-4: He regarded sinners as more important than Himself (v.3), and was just as concerned with their needs as with His own affairs (v.4). So the Philippians were to cultivate within themselves this same attitude and express it to one another.’ And we are supposed to do likewise! 

Oh my people, I know that it’s long and somewhat confusing, but as I keep saying, it’s time we learn to make time for God, expanding our concentration spans, and to start eating solid food, meat and potatoes, not baby milk and gruel, so that we can grow and mature in our faith. That’s what is expected of us as true believers. 

So please, today, let’s get together with the Lord and work out our problems nuh, our salvation, with Him on an individual basis, because that’s where it all begins. Much LOVE!

…it’s time for Christ’s church…to truly learn how He thinks…to start thinking in the same manner…and thus start behaving like Him…