Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 July 2019 Joshua 1:8.

Joshua 1:8.    ​This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.
 

Aye friends, today looks like it’s an ‘achy, breaky day!’ Yeh the ole back’s aching some, but I believe that’s just because I spent too much time in the bed last night. I went to bed fairly early, by my standards, (smile) that’s why I’m up so early. But just like the weather that seems somewhat gray and cloudy, with no sunshine yet, but will eventually morph into a beautiful day, my old bod will eventually get itself together and become the wonderful human creation that the Lord created it to be! 

Wow! What faith and belief! (smile) But what else can I declare eh and be truthful to what I preach? It’s like the man said, doctor, heal thyself! I keep talking about positivity and faith, so I have to show it, if I want anybody to believe me. Anyway, here is one of the first quotations that I ever posted on my office wall, many, many moons ago, and now hardly ever notice it. What else is new eh? (smile)  

But as I was coming down the stairs just now to begin writing, the Holy Spirit just dropped it into my mind to share today. Obviously I don’t know where I got it from, or who reputedly wrote it, I just know that it’s the awesome truth. ‘A man, or woman, who is self-reliant, positive, optimistic, and undertakes his or her work with the assurance of success, magnetizes their condition. They draw to themselves the creative powers of the universe!’ 

You can’t dispute that friends, simply because it’s true! Anytime you begin a project, you must believe that it will be successful, or most likely it won’t be. That’s not to say that when you believe its success that it will automatically happen. It’s just that God aligned the creative powers of the universe to be more attuned to positivity than negativity. So the first step to success always depends on your thinking positive, successful thoughts. And if you don’t believe me, try it. (smile) 

But when we talking about success my brethren, there is only ONE WAY to be truly assured of it! And that’s the age-old words of the Lord to his servant Joshua, when He assigned him to lead the Israelites after the death of Moses. ‘This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.’ 

Oh my people, the Lord didn’t mince words, He spoke it out loud and clear: to have true success you must live by His Word! And that hasn’t changed one iota since then. Jesus even came and strengthened it, when He admonished: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you.’ (Matt.6:33) 

So you see friends, true success comes not from struggling and fighting and being overworked, like the world thinks, but from simply living faithfully to God’s law. And I guess that’s why a lot of supposed Christians are not very successful, because we only give lip-service to God’s law and instead allow the bright, fancy baubles and worthless things of the world to distract us, even though we know better. 

Remember Jesus desired us to be in the world, but not a part of it. We can live comfortably in it, with His assistance, but we don’t have to do all that the world says or does! That’s the only way we will ever bring about any successful and sustainable change in this evil and ungodly world. But unfortunately too many of us believers are behaving exactly like the world wants us to. 

And sadly, oftimes, if you check out a crowd of people that supposedly contains Christians, you’d be very challenged to tell them from the unbelievers, because too many of them will be behaving like the heathen! And that’s just the reality of the situation; we talk a good talk, but don’t walk a good walk! That’s why the world is in such a terrible state. 

Can you imagine what a wonderful world we’d have if even a minority of believers would start truly behaving like believers? We’d turn the world upside down! We’d have Jesus’ LOVE Revolution running things, rather than Satan’s evil cabal that’s now in control. 

But friends, that all depends on believers working together and living by the Good Book. And unfortunately neither of those things seems to be happening at this time. There’s more division and disunity in Christ’s church than ever before, and the evil of the world is in the ascendance right now, and doesn’t seem to be going away any time soon. 

But let’s not give up hope my people! We can still make a big difference if we truly want to…and with Jesus as our guide and leader, remember, anything is possible. But we have to want to do it, and get together to do it, else it won’t happen! And that brings us right back to the Lord’s words to Joshua: ‘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 whithersoever thou goest.’ (Josh.1:9) 

Oh friends, I just LOVE that verse, because it reminds me of God’s faithful promises, and thus builds my faith, makes me feel strong and able to do whatever He calls me to do! So today, let’s all draw strength and faith from it nuh, and promise ourselves to live a better Christian life than we’re now living. And there’s no doubt that all of us can come up higher in Christ’s playbook. So having said all of that, let’s go home now declaring (right ho!) our Wednesday Wail, letting the whole world know our wonderful position in Christ. 

All together 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!’ 

And will it ever be glorious…just like Jesus promised! Much LOVE!

…the Lord God Jehovah created the world…through His Word…and He…will also have the Last Word…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 January 2018 2 Timothy 1:7.

2 Timothy 1:7.   For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of LOVE, and of a sound mind.

And then it was Saturday…somewhat late in the day though, and many of you won’t notice, because like the ole fella you also slept in some. (smile) But what’s life eh, if once in a while you can’t sleep in and not be run ragged by the busyness of this insane world? The Lord’s LOVE, mercy, grace and forgiveness will still be there when we get up. 

Oh how wonderful is the God we serve and worship my brethren! He is always thinking about our welfare, so we need to be very thankful and grateful as we walk arm in arm with Him. And remember too, that NO ONE can separate us from Him, but us. And such a move on our part would be rather foolish. Nuff said. 

Let’s see what our friend Anselm has to say on this bleak and gloomy Saturday morning. First off, he tells us that ‘Formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you a fortune.’ 

I have serious doubts about that yes, because in this society there are oodles of people right now with lots of formal education, who can’t even get a job, much less earn a living. And if and when they do get one, the wage is definitely not in line with their standard of education. It’s surprising that in this supposed first-world economy, the number of university grads who are making minimum wage. 

And in my province of Ontario, at the beginning of the year, the government raised the minimum wage from eleven something to fourteen something, and as expected all the business people are up in arms, threatening all sorts of retribution. 

Some Tim Horton’s franchises have already cut back paid breaks, tips and stuff, taking away what little the employees already had, in their greedy desire to keep their profit margins high. So who knows, self-education might just be the answer. 

And I like this next quote. ‘If we did all the things we are capable of, we would literally astound ourselves.’ That’s oh so true my fellow believers. I’m sure most of us have had that experience at some time(s) in our lives. 

Times when we actually buckled down and did stuff we had to do, and was surprised at the quality and quantity of work we accomplished because we had set our minds to it. Many of us never reach our full capability, because we’re either not challenged to, or we just settle for average results. 

That leads us to this quote. ‘Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value.’ And there’s much truth in that advice, especially in these modern times, where a lot of supposed successful people add li’l or no value to the society. Check out the celebrity culture that currently rules the world. 

How many of them add anything worthwhile to the society eh? Not many. That’s a big reason why the world is in such a mess. So friends, in our lives, please let’s concentrate on adding value to our lives and our society. Value usually means success in the real world, but not necessarily the other way around. 

And finally Anselm tells us that ‘Fearlessness is like a muscle. I know from my own life that the more I exercise it, the more natural it becomes to not let my fears run me.’ There is indeed substance to that remark, because the more we practice not being afraid, the more we will learn to conquer fear. 

But the basic foundation for conquering fear comes from our association with Jesus Christ. That’s who gives us the strength and wisdom to conquer fear. Oh friends, throughout the Good Book there are numerous warnings about fear. And one of the most powerful is that found in our Bit; Bruh Paul’s admonition to Timothy. ‘For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of LOVE, and of a sound mind.’ 

And that’s gospel truth friends! Our wonderful God has not given us a fearful spirit, we allow the enemy to put fear into our hearts. And all I want to do today is highlight a few scriptures where God warned us not to be afraid. And one of my favourites is the one He commanded Joshua, when He made him leader of the Israelites after Moses’ death. 

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 whithersoever thou goest.’ (Josh.1:9) Ah mih people, the Lord could not have been more explicit. 

Then in Isaiah, re the final restoration of Israel, He warns His people the same way. ‘Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be thou not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.’ (Is.41:10) 

Now hear one of the first ‘fear not’ instructions; that from Moses when the Israelites were preparing to leave Egypt. ‘And Moses said unto the people, Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation (deliverance) of the Lord, which he will show to you today: for the Egyptians whom ye have seen today, ye shall see them again no more for ever. The Lord shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace (be quiet).’ (Ex.14:13-14) 

And so said, so was it done. The Lord drowned the Egyptians in the closing of the Red sea. And we’ll end with these words of Jesus as He talked about care and anxiety and seeking God’s kingdom above all else. ‘Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.’ (Luke 12:32) 

And it is indeed the Lord’s desire to give us the kingdom, if we seek Him above all else. So friends, there is no need to fear man nor beast once we are walking hand in hand with our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

Please, let’s therefore rid ourselves of all the unwanted and unnecessary fear that is secreted in our hearts, by giving it to God. That’s wisdom of untold proportions! Much LOVE!

…fear can only be conquered by faith…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 September 2017 Luke 12:32.

Luke 12:32.   Fear not little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. 

And another one bites the dust…well possibly two! Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic have recently felt the wicked lash of hurricane Maria, and who knows where it’s going to land next. Meanwhile, they are still trying to come to terms with the earthquake in Mexico City… 

Ah mih people, these are certainly rough and tough, but also interesting times in the annals of mankind. How will we end up, what will our society look like after the devastation eh? 

Will it be more of the same evil, godlessness, or will a wiser, repentant and godlier society rise from the ashes of our calamity? Only God knows. And only time will tell. For all our sakes though, let’s hope our future is based sincerely on the latter option. 

But with all that misfortune going on, it still doesn’t stop the workingman from declaring his Friday anthem: ’TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday and the weekend is finally here! Regardless of what’s happening in the rest of the world, we going to party hearty…eat, drink and be merry! 

For who knows, tomorrow, or even today we shall die! So bring on the good times, especially in this extra summer weather we getting here! Let the waters flow…the food pile up…and the music blast out! Thank God is Friday and we done work for another week!’ 

Oh friends, that is exactly the kind of attitude we’re trying to counteract. There’s nothing wrong with celebrating the end of the workweek, but the limits to which we go is another story. The workingman’s definitely goes overboard. A more sober and constructive one would be like our Friday Chant. 

So let’s chant it with nuff enthusiasm nuh! ‘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.’ 

Yeh mih breddren, to many of the young folks that might sound too retro for them, but it’s the kind of thing that the Lord desires; we enjoy His blessings, but keep our feet on an even keel so the enemy doesn’t get any leeway into our lives. 

And quite rightly, though we are all concerned about what’s happening worldwide, and also close to home, if we are living with and for Jesus then we should not be disturbed or blatantly afraid. 

For as He said, if we seek God’s kingdom as our priority, the Lord will satisfy all our needs. And as a lagniappe, or extra encouragement, Jesus tells us in our Bit: ‘Fear not little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.’  

And if Jesus says it’s so, then it’s obviously so, for He has no reason whatsoever to lie or lead us astray. However, our natural sinful nature encourages fear much more than faith, so today we’re just going to concentrate on a few passages from God’s word on the subjects of fear and faith, beginning with this famous verse from Deuteronomy. 

‘Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee nor forsake thee.’ (Deut.31:6) Oh my faithful followers of Jesus, our God can’t say it in any plainer language than that. 

But in Isaiah, He unfailingly repeats the promise, the invitation to partner with Him. ‘Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.’ (Is.41:10) 

And friends, if we truly believe the Lord of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is the Creator and controller of the universe, then we should not have any problems believing His word. But my favourite verses on fear and faith come from God’s command to Joshua, when He made him leader of the Israelites after Moses’ death. 

‘This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shall meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success. 

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 whithersoever thou goest.’ (Josh.1:8-9) 

And if that doesn’t grab you right in your heart my people, then I don’t know what will. But we’ll end with these uplifting words from Ethan, the Ezrahite from Psalm 89 – God’s sure promises to David. 

‘Blessed is the people that know the joyful sound: they shall walk, O Lord, in the light of thy countenance. In thy name shall they rejoice all the day: and in thy righteousness shall they be exalted. For thou art the glory of their strength: and in thy favour our horn (strength) shall be exalted. For the Lord is our defense; and the Holy One of Israel is our king.’ (Ps.89:15-18) 

That’s for certain sure my fellow believers in Christ. Now let’s stand strong as soldiers of Christ, and fight the good fight of faith, as He desires of us nuh! Much LOVE!

…one can only stand strong…if one is bolstered by faith…and not debilitated by fear…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 May 2017 1 Peter 5:7.

1 Peter 5:7.      Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.

And then it was Sunday; that wonderful day of Sabbath and rest! And who says our great God doesn’t know how to organize life eh? Chuh! They obviously don’t know what they’re talking about, for look how He made the world in six days, then rested on the seventh and asks us to follow in His most knowledgeable footsteps. Glory to His great name! 

And on that seventh day, we also need to come together in fellowship, to sing and praise Him and receive His LOVING-kindness and confidence to handle the upcoming six days. Wow! What a wise God we serve my brethren! That’s why He says His ways and thoughts are greater than ours. (Is.55:8-9) And that’s the living truth, for if they weren’t, He wouldn’t be God, and we would have no need for Him! 

Now enough of all the rambling, (smile) let’s get to the heart of the matter, some praise and worship to glorify His holy name. And this morning our song is appropriately titled, ‘God will take of you;’ a sweet song of comfort and heavenly assurance. So with truthful and passionate hearts and loud, harmonious voices, let’s offer up our sacrifice of praise without further ado.  

‘Be not dismayed whate’er betide, God will take care of you; Beneath His wings of love abide, God will take care of you. (Refrain: God will take care of you, Through every day, o’er all the way; He will take care of you, God will take care of you.) Through days of toil when heart doth fail, God will take care of you; When dangers fierce your path assail, God will take care of you. (Refrain:) 

All you may need He will provide, God will take care of you; Nothing you ask will be denied, God will take care of you. (Refrain:) No matter what may be the test, God will take care of you; Lean, weary one, upon His breast, God will take care of you. (Refrain:) God will take care of you, Through every day, o’er all the way; He will take care of you, God will take care of you.’ 

And He certainly will my faithful friends and neighbours! Of that we can be sure. Once we are operating in accordance with His will, He will look after all our needs. How did Jesus say it so long ago? ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt.6:33)  And we know one thing for sure, that Jesus doesn’t lie, so if He says it’s so, then it is so!  

And the hymn, written by Civilla D Martin, was apparently based on our Bit. ‘Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.’ It couldn’t be anymore reassuring than that my people! Peter is making a statement of definite fact, of gospel truth, not alternative facts. (smile) 

But before we can cast our care upon our ever-merciful God, Peter tells us we first need to: ‘Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time. ‘ (1 Pet.5:6) Yeh friends, we definitely can’t go to God with a proud and haughty spirit, for that’s one of the things He especially despises, since it means you have no need for Him. 

That’s why James, in talking about worldliness and pride says: ‘God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace to the humble.’ (James 4:6) And Cousin Sol also tells us: ‘Surely he scorneth the scorners: but he giveth grace unto the lowly (humble). (Prov.3:34) And if you still don’t believe it, then listen to Cousin Sol again. ‘These six things doth the Lord hate; yea, seven are an abomination unto him: A proud look (haughty eyes…)’ (Prov.6:16-17) 

Ah mih breddren, the first thing Cousin Sol lists is pride, arrogance, haughtiness. Our God rejects those who deal in those things. And once we appreciate the Lord’s awesome position, have a reverential fear for him, then the author of Hebrews strongly advises: ‘Let us therefore come boldly (confidently) unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.’ (Heb.4:16) Now that’s wisdom of an everlasting nature! 

And the scholars tell us: ‘4:16. Only Christianity provides such boldness for sinful men before a holy God, and that boldness is possible only because of our High Priest (Jesus Christ). The figure of a throne suggests a place of authority and provision. It is the place to obtain God’s grace when it is especially needed.’ 

And I have to declare it again friends: ‘Oh what a wonderful God we serve and worship through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ!’ ONLY Christianity offers such confidence to approach a holy God! That just goes to prove what we are talking about; God does care for us. If not, we wouldn’t have the provision to call upon Him for mercy, succour, comfort and all the other wonderful things He offers. And above all, He would not have sent His sinless Son, Jesus to die for our abominable sins. 

That ought to seal the deal. So I simply can’t understand why more people aren’t rushing to take hold of Christianity, to embrace Jesus Christ as their Lord and Saviour. I can only guess that it’s partly because the things of the world has such a strong hold on our society, as well as we supposed believers don’t give the unbelievers enough of a good picture, for them to want what we claim to have. 

So with Jesus’ help, let’s try and turn it all around nuh mih people! We can, if we sincerely and diligently try. Much LOVE!

…belief in Jesus…breeds confidence in the promises of Almighty God…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 5 November 2016 Isaiah 41:10.

 Isaiah 41:10.    Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.

Well top o’ the morn to you my Scrip-Bit family! Hope this missive finds you alive and kicking on this lazy, hazy Saturday. (smile) Life is short so we might as well enjoy it. We know not when our time will be up, so here is the first of two quotes from our friend Anselm, who always aspires to inspire us to greater heights. 

And first off he tells us: ‘Make each day count. We don’t have all the time in the world. So focus on today and do the things you really want to do.’ That’s exactly what I was saying above. It is imperative that we make hay while the sun shines! 

And the second quote is also inspiring. ‘Reprogram your information intake. Program out negative and cynical thoughts from the media and society. Reduce your information intake. Then program in positive news and entertainment, more of your own thoughts and useful information such as personal growth tapes and books. Be selective and keep it positive.’ 

Ah friends, a lot of us certainly need to do that in this age of so much information and misinformation! Our world is going crazy with the wealth of information that’s now available. The problem though is that too much of it is negative and we can’t easily tell what is truth from prevarication to out and out lies. Therefore our minds are filled with lots of unnecessary and unproductive stuff, that’s why Anselm’s advice is so worthwhile. 

We desperately need to clean up our minds; purge what’s not useful and negative, and then replace it with only useful, positive, godly stuff. Give the television and social media a break; spend more time with God, your family and yourself.  That way we won’t be bombarded with all the nonsense that’s out there, seeking to invade our minds and spirits. 

And last but not least, seek to raise our faith and trust in the God of our fathers. Believe what our Bit says: ‘Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.’ 

Oh my people, why are so many of us supposed Christians still walking in deep fear of the world around us, when we have such awesome promises from our awesome God eh? We know He’s faithful to keep those promises and that He will work out everything for our good in the end, so why are we still so fickle and feckless? 

As Job says, we have to learn to take the good with the bad. (Job 2:10) We can’t be fearful of every little hiccup in our lives. And this morning I want to bombard us with some ‘Fear nots’ in the hope that it will encourage us to stand steadfast and strong in the power of God’s Word.  

Listen to Moses on the occasion of the biggest miracle of the time, when the departing Israelites were caught between the army of Pharaoh and the deep Red Sea.  ‘And Moses said unto the people, Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation (deliverance) of the Lord, which he will show to you today: for the Egyptians whom ye have seen today, ye shall see them again no more for ever.’ (Ex.14:13) 

And as promised, Moses stretched out his hand over the Red Sea which parted and allowed the Israelites to cross over on dry land, but when the Egyptians followed, the two halves came together again and drowned Pharaoh’s army. Now one would think that after such a mighty miracle, the Israelites would have been trusting and steadfast forever. Hn! But in the wilderness, three days later, at the bitter waters of Marah they were complaining, wanting to return to Egypt. 

Now hear Isaiah, as he talks about Israel being restored to Zion. ‘Say to them that are of a fearful heart, Be strong, fear not: behold your God will come with vengeance, even God with a recompense; he will come and save you.’ (Is.35:4) 

And now, listen to these words of Bruh David that we all know and claim to LOVE and believe. ‘The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. 

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the day so my life; and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.’ (Ps.23) 

Yeh mih people, if we believe all that Bruh David says there, then we should not be afraid of the vicissitudes of life. Then there’s Jesus to his disciples: ‘And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both body and soul….Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.’ (Matt.10:28,31)  

Yes friends, ONLY the Lord can destroy body and soul, and we are much too valuable in His sight, for Him to destroy us, that’s why He sent Jesus to save us. 

And we’ll close with a simple, but powerful statement of Jesus. ‘Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.’ (Luke 12:32)  

How much more do we need eh my brethren, before we can truly stand strong and steadfast on the solid foundation of God’s eternal LOVE and ever-faithful promises eh? Steups! God alone knows yes! Much LOVE!

…it’s high time for those of us who call ourselves Christians… to FEARLESSLY stand up and be counted….

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 November 2016 Isaiah 41:10.

Isaiah 41:10.   Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.

Ah friends, the working people as usual declaring their loud shouts of ‘TGIF! Thank God it’s Friday! Hurray! The weekend finally here and we going to live it up like there was no tomorrow. Thank God for Fridays and the weekend yes!’ 

But my heart really isn’t in the celebration nuh, because once again I turned on my computer this morning and received the sad news of the passing of one of my University mates, Selvin Goldson in Jamaica. 

Apparently he died of a heart attack while driving. That’s all I know. But…Chuh! This scenario is playing out too often these days yes! One day I might just turn on the computer and see news of my own demise. (smile) 

But seriously friends, each passing of our friends and associates makes us think more acutely about our own mortality. We know we all have to go over to the other side at some time or other, but for some reason or other we never seem prepared for it. It always seems to take us unawares. 

Anyhow, there’s not much we can do when the Grim Reaper comes a calling, and I’d like to extend sincere condolences to the Goldson family, and let them know that our thoughts and prayers are with them in their time of grief. 

Those of who remain though, have to keep diligently and faithfully plodding on in our work for Christ, and since today is Friday, let’s chant our Friday Chant with sincere appreciation for being blessed to see another glorious day on God’s great earth. 

All together now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. 

Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen.’ 

Yeh mih people, we need to handle our weekends differently than the majority of the world. We need to put a different perspective in place if we truly want to be followers of Christ. And our God is so wonderful that He gives us oodles of encouragement and security in these difficult times. 

Listen to our Bit: ‘Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.’ 

What awesome promises my brethren! The problem though is that God makes them, but we have to receive them, and that’s where we often fall down. Our faith sometimes doesn’t allow us to accept and believe them, since they seem contrary to what we’re facing in this evil world. 

But friends, by now we should all know that our wonderful God is also a faithful God! He never promises stuff that He can’t deliver. And since He’s the Creator and Controller of the universe, since He’s omnipotent, omniscient and omni-present, then there’s absolutely NOTHING He can’t do. 

That means the onus is on us to build our faith, to stand strong on His word. That’s why He also gave us His Holy Spirit; to help and comfort us in times of need and sorrow. And if we don’t find strength in our Bit, then listen to Isaiah a few verses later. 

‘For I the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee. Fear not, thou worm Jacob, and ye men of Israel; I will help thee, saith the Lord, and thy redeemer, the Holy One of Israel.’ (Is.41:13-14) 

How much more encouragement and assurance do we need eh my brethren? With all the Lord has done for us, the many miracles He’s wrought in our lives, our faith should be much stronger by now. 

And the scholars offer these insights on that section. ’41:10-20. In view of the judgement that is coming upon Israel, God reminds her, I am with thee…I am thy God. 

The designation thou worm Jacob is a reminder to Israel of her frailty and need for God who is pictured as her redeemer and the Holy One of Israel. The latter designation is Isaiah’s favourite expression for God and appears equally throughout both halves of the book…’ 

And friends, do we ever need God’s help in these end times. I believe we’re in even worse shape, even frailer than Israel back in those days, for godlessness is so rampant and widespread now that it’s unbelievable to us of the older generation. 

We have seen it go from being pretty good to being pretty bad in such a short time, that it boggles the imagination. But then again, a lot of the blame lies with us; we weren’t as strong and faithful as we ought to have been, therefore this generation doesn’t have the same godly upbringing that we had. 

But it’s not too late for us to try and recapture some of what we’ve lost, if we sincerely and diligently get in the groove with Jesus and work steadfastly towards it. 

Now let’s end with some help from Moses, as he passes on the mantle of leadership to Joshua. He tells him: ‘Be thou strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go before thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.’ (Deut.31:6) 

And that’s gospel truth precious people of God! Therefore, let’s wake up and smell the roses and try to make the world a better place than it currently is nuh. Not so much for us, but for our children, and our children’s children. That is wisdom for all time! Much LOVE!

…there is only one Power…and one Presence here…God the Good Omnipotent…!

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 November 2016 Isaiah 41:10.

Isaiah 41:10.   Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness. 

‘Oh rain, rain, go away, come again some other day!’ Aye mih people, how many of you remember that li’l ditty we sang so long ago, when the rain seemed to never stop falling? 

Well I think I’m singing it this morning yes, because the rain’s been falling through most of yesterday evening right into this morning. 

Obviously it’s dark and dreary out there, but believe me, the light of the Son, Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ is brilliantly shining like the noonday sun! Glory Be! 

Let’s remember that even though we may not see it, God’s light is always brilliantly shining in our hearts, minds, bodies and souls. 

Now listen to this devotion titled ‘When the Road Ahead is Short,’ from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional. I’ve shared it before, but I think we need to hear it again. 

Please pray with me. ‘O God, from the vantage point of today the road ahead looks very short. I sense that I am about to reach the end. Remind me that every time of ending is always a time of new beginning. Every time one door closes, another door opens. 

Every sunset is a move closer to a new sunrise. Death is always the prelude to resurrection. Help me to forgive myself for my imperfections and faults. I dishonour you when I disgrace myself by nursing regrets over my human shortcomings. 

Help me to honour you by recalling great accomplishments you’ve made possible through my life. So let me come to the end of the road with pride behind me, LOVE around me, and hope ahead of me – only to discover that what I thought was the end of the road is a bend in the road leading me into an exciting new world of opportunity or eternity. Amen.’ 

Yes friends, oftimes what we consider the end is merely a bend, and new opportunities flower and blossom before us, through new doors opened by our magnificent and magnanimous God. So we’re always to have hope, even, or rather, especially in the difficult times, for we never know what wonderful things our God is up to. 

And that prayer blends in quite nicely with our Bit for today; Isaiah’s prophecy on the final restoration of Israel. Listen, as our great God faithfully proclaims: ‘Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.’ 

Oh my fellow believers, our God doesn’t change, which means that promise is still valid even today! And brother, do we ever need the assurance and confirmation of God’s renewing and strengthening presence in our lives in these end times. 

Our world is swirling out of control with all sorts of war and strife, so we have to have something to keep us buoyed and strong enough to keep keeping on, though times look dark. And there’s nothing like the Word of God to do that. 

Listen to Isaiah again as he promises that our enemies will be vanquished. ‘For I the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee. Fear not, thou worm of Jacob, and ye men of Israel; I will help thee, saith the Lord, and thy redeemer, the Holy One of Israel.’ (Is.41:13-14) 

Ah mih people, how many times do we encounter those two blessed words ‘Fear not,’ in the Good Book eh? Numerous times! 

Our Redeemer keeps telling us not to be afraid, but we keep on being fearful, because our faith is lacking, and in the face of the world’s problems, we just can’t seem to settle down and take them in stride. 

But friends, if the One whom we worship and adore tells us not to be afraid, then why should we be eh? He is the Creator and Controller of the universe; the omnipotent, omniscient and omni-present Being, who sees and knows everything and is everywhere. 

As I said before, if we are still fearful with such a powerful, caring and compassionate Deity in our corner, then our faith is weak indeed. And remember the words of Hebrews: ‘But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.’ (Heb.11:6)

Oh precious people, I know it’s not easy in these trying times, but we do have the best of the best on our side; Almighty God. So there is no reason to fear or be anxious for anything, because with Him leading and guiding us through His Holy Spirit, which indwells us, we are certainly in the best of hands! 

Now let’s go home, full of assurance and confidence, boldly declaring our Thursday Blessings, for remember a blessing is not a blessing until it’s been spoken over someone. 

As one now: ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! 

I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection! I am blessed with a compassionate heart and a positive outlook on life! 

I declare that any curse or negative word that’s ever been spoken over me is broken right now in the name of Jesus! I declare that everything I put my hands to will prosper and succeed! I declare it today and everyday! Amen!’ 

Now let’s go out and put them all into action, as we sincerely and diligently work for Jesus. Much LOVE!

…faith can certainly move mountains…but it must be strong faith…

 

 

 

 

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