Today’s Scrip-Bit   11 October 2021 Philippians 4:6.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING CANADA!

Philippians 4:6.     Be careful (anxious) for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your request be made known unto God. 

Oh friends, is it ever good to awaken to another day, another Monday, another Thanksgiving Monday! And all God’s people said: ‘Thanks be to God, who keeps the breath of life flowing through our earthly bodies!’ And why does He do that? Because He has a plan and a purpose for our lives, which includes enjoyment of the day. That’s why we say: ‘This is the day the Lord hath made, we will rejoice and be glad in it!’ (Ps. 118:24) Yes, my brethren, that’s the only way to go! 

And on this Thanksgiving Day of 2021, where life is somewhat rough, and we can’t gather as carelessly as we’d like, we ought to be thankful that we can even gather at all. Remember last year Thanksgiving Day was a most dreary time. No set of food and family and good cheer, all because of the Pandemic situation. So, there’s oodles of thanks to be given for just being able to get together more than last year. But please, please be careful. This thing is not over yet – far from it – and we still need to take as many precautions as possible to minimize further problems. 

And to show our gratitude for that improvement, let’s intone the opening verses of Psalm 105, subtitled – God’s wondrous works in behalf of Israel. ‘O give thanks unto the Lord; call upon his name: make known his deeds among the people. Sing unto him, sing psalms unto him: talk ye of all his wondrous works. Glory ye in his holy name: let the heart of them rejoice that seek the Lord. Seek ye the Lord, and his strength: seek his face evermore.’ (Ps. 105:1-4) 

Now I am sure if we were doing that as much as we ought to, we would not be having half as many problems as we do! I am convinced that many of our problems stem from the fact that we don’t reverence and appreciate our Creator as we should. But this Thanksgiving time is the right occasion for us to turn back to Him, remembering all that He has done for us, and has promised to do. 

In the marvellous words of Bruh David: ‘Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits: Who forgiveth all thine iniquities, who healeth all thy diseases; Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with LOVING-kindness and tender mercies; Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle’s.’ (Ps. 103:2-5) And are we ever so glad that this Thanksgiving we have sufficient food to eat. But having said that, let’s not forget there are many of our fellow brethren out there who don’t have enough, possible nothing at all to eat, and it’s our bounden duty to provide for them as best we can. 

That recalls the glorious day when many of the children of Israel heard the word of the Lord for the first time as it was read to them, by Ezra and his associates. Then Nehemiah, the Governor, said unto them: ‘Go your way, eat the fat, and drink the sweet, and send portions unto them for whom nothing is prepared: for this day is holy unto our Lord: neither be ye sorry; for the joy of the Lord is your strength.’ (Neh. 1:8) 

And is it ever my fellow saints! That’s why the enemy does his best to steal our joy. He knows when he gets us sad and downcast, it’s much easier to have us do his evil bidding. But not today mih bredrin, for today is a day of exceeding joy, and a time to remember our biggest blessing, our greatest gift and benefit. Like Bruh David said: ‘who redeemeth thy life from destruction.’ And yes friends, God’s greatest gift, His biggest benefit is that of freedom from the bondage of sin, of salvation through His free gift of grace, earned through the finished work of Christ. 

As Jesus puts it: ‘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) Glory be my fellow believers! If we are not thankful for anything else, we should be exceedingly thankful for that, because it’s nothing that we earned, or could ever earn, but though God’s infinite grace and mercy, it was bestowed upon us. And all we have to do is to believe in His Son! But so many of us stubbornly refuse to do it because of foolish pride and belief in the world’s evil systems. But there will be consequences for that stubbornness. 

And let’s not think that just because we call today Thanksgiving Day, that this is the only day we should give thanks. Absolutely not! Bruh Paul reminds us of that in his epistle to the church at Philippi, when he says: ‘Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice. Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand. Be careful (anxious) for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your request be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep (guard) your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.’ (Phil. 4:4-7) 

Oh my fellow believers, we wonder why we don’t have peace? Well, the answer is right there. We don’t take our requests to God in prayer and supplication with thanksgiving. And there’s no better time than right now, for us to get wise and do just that. So, in sincere prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let’s make our requests known to Almighty God through our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. 

As one now: ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You this Monday morning for life and strong faith in Christ, despite the mass confusion in our world. We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously disobeyed Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, who has faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us wise guidance and direction to alleviate our problems. 

And Father, we pray that you will ease the pain of the many who are suffering from negative situations. Please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again, we say: Amen!’ 

Now, let’s go and keep the promises we just made, if we want to see positive answers to our prayers and supplications with thanksgiving. Much LOVE!

..in everything give thanks…for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus…concerning you… (1 Thess. 5:17)                                                                                                         

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 15 March 2020 Psalm 40:5.

Psalm 40:5.    ​Many, O Lord my God, are thy wonderful works which thou hast done, and thy thoughts which are to us-ward: they cannot be reckoned up (recounted) in order unto thee: if I would declare and speak of them, they are more than can be numbered.
 
Well since the physical church is closed because of the Covid-19 scare, and we can’t gather together in physical worship, it looks like our li’l service here on the Bit has become even more important. (smile) But we can’t allow the Lord’s Day to pass without some form of praise and worship and hearing of His marvellous and life-giving Word. So let’s have church, and we’ll begin with a most appropriate song of praise in these tumultuous, disastrous, scary and panicky times. 

It’s an old favourite written by Johnson Oatman Jr. (1856-1922), a New Jersey born and bred, pastor/cum businessman. The story goes that ‘his father was an excellent singer, and it always delighted the son to sit by his side and hear him sings songs of the church.’ And no doubt that was a most important factor in the young Oatman eventually writing over three thousand hymns; ‘so that no gospel song book is considered as being complete unless it contains some of his hymns.’ 

Wow! Over three thousand hymns! And I looked at a partial list and there are a few well known ones. And that’s just another example of how important it is to get the Lord and His Word into our children at an early age if we want them to grow right. And all God’s children said a loud ‘Amen!’ (smile) But enough suspense, the name of today’s praise song is ‘Count Your Blessings!’ And oh, if many more of us would just do that, our hope, our faith and our world would be so much less wishy-washy, evil and strife-filled! 

But let’s concentrate on the singing nuh. Therefore, as one strong, harmonious, soulful and sincere voice, let’s raise our sacrifice of praise to heaven, letting them know that we are indeed grateful for ALL our blessings, those we enjoy down here on earth, and those stored in heaven. ‘When upon life’s billows you are tempest tossed, When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost, Count your many blessings, name them one by one, And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done. (Refrain: Count your blessings, name them one by one; Count your blessings, see what God hath done; Count your blessings, name them one by one; Count your many blessings, see what God hath done.) 

Are you ever burdened with a load of care? Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear? Count your many blessings, ev’ry doubt will fly, And you will be singing as the days go by. [Refrain] When you look at others with their lands and gold, Think that Christ has promised you His wealth untold; Count your many blessings, money cannot buy Your reward in heaven, nor your home on high. [Refrain] So, amid the conflict, whether great or small, Do not be discouraged, God is over all; Count your many blessings, angels will attend, Help and comfort give you to your journey’s end. [Refrain] 2’ 

Oh my people, if we’d only stop a moment when times are rough, like they are now with the Corona virus, and count the many blessings with which we have been bestowed over the years of walking with Christ, as I said earlier, we won’t be as scared and panicked as we are. Yes, we will be concerned, but not thinking the worse! And I have some interesting words to share on the subject. First off, the basic meaning of Count Your Blessings. One dictionary puts it thus: ‘to be grateful for the good things in your life, often to stop yourself from becoming too unhappy about the bad things.’  

And is that ever so true; just like we ought to be doing right now so we can stop thinking about the bad things that are currently happening. Now hear this quote from the renowned African American Educator and Adviser, Author and Orator, Booker T Washington (1856-1915). ‘Those who are the happiest are those who do the most for others.’ And if you’re a true believer, then you know that’s gospel truth! Then there’s this from somebody, I’m not sure whom, (smile) but it certainly hits the nail on the head. ‘If you always find yourself numbering your troubles, you will never find time counting your blessings. There is no use becoming frustrated in your difficulties while you have all opportunities hiding in them for a turnover.’

 Oh friends, it’s time to stop counting our troubles and count our blessings instead, for within those same troubles are opportunities for us to overcome the troubles! And this last quote from the web site godtube. ‘God truly gives us so many blessings each and every single day. Some may even be so small that we might overlook them. The classic hymn ‘Count Your Blessings’ truly reminds us to stop and give thanks for all God has done in our lives. This is definitely a pause we all need to take. Amen.’ I couldn’t have put it any better my faithful brethren. 

And we find Bruh David doing it way back when in Psalm 40 – Praise for answered prayer, as he sincerely declares: ‘Many, O Lord my God, are thy wonderful works which thou hast done, and thy thoughts which are to us-ward: they cannot be reckoned up (recounted) in order unto thee: if I would declare and speak of them, they are more than can be numbered.’ How true my fellow believers. But sadly, we pay more attention to the problems rather than the blessings, that’s why our souls are always in so much turmoil. 

And please remember Bruh Paul’s marvellous words to the Ephesians re Spiritual blessings in Christ. ‘Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ.’ (Eph. 1:3) Yes friends, lots of spiritual blessings have been granted to us when we became believers, but are stored up in heaven and are ‘being progressively dispersed to us on earth in accord with our need and Christian growth.’ 

And we’ll end, most appropriately with these wonderful words of warning and encouragement from Bruh David from Psalm 103 – Thanksgiving for God’s mercy. ‘Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits…’ (Ps.103:2) Then he goes on to list a whole lot of benefits we enjoy when we walk with Jehovah God through His Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Oh friends, hopefully, today we’ll take these words seriously and diligently ponder them as we take account of our lives. Much LOVE!

…wisdom wisely cries out…count your blessings…not your troubles…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 5 March 2019 John 10:10.

John 10:10.   ​The thief 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.
 

And then it was the big day of mas, Carnival Tuesday! Wow! The day when all the big bands with their pretty costumes would fill the streets, while the pavements and them jam packed with sweaty bodies, everybody just wining down and jumping up in the hot sun as the music jamming, not so much D.J music as now, but with the big brass bands and them just raising ruckus in the heat of the day and the carnival atmosphere! Now that use to be mas! (smile) 

And for those of you who still missing it, as I said yesterday, just put it aside for this year, yuh can’t do anything about it now, and start saving yuh money and vacation time for next year. And if you don’t want to listen to me, then please listen to Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) as he leads us in this ‘Prayer for Change’ from his Hour of Power Devotional. I think it’s rather appropriate for these cold, dreary and tough times. 

So please pray with us: ‘O God, when a life has been so richly blessed as mine has been, it is not right for me not to be laughing! I confess that I am responsible for my moods. I have no right to selfishly indulge in negative feelings of self-pity. It’s time for me to change my mental dial, Lord. You are helping me. This will be the moment when the sun breaks through the parted clouds, and the springtime returns after winter. 

Thank you, Lord! The dreary, depressing, disconsolate mood disappears like the morning mist in the glowing sunshine of your LOVE! And joy moves in! And hope begins to build up within me! And a beautiful feeling of LOVE starts to surround me! Thank you, God, for the great things you are doing within me now in this moment of prayer. Amen!’ 

Mama Yo mih people! All yuh feel that sunshine of God’s LOVE? Ah hope so yes, because if you don’t then things real rough with you yes! Yuh bet yuh bottom dollar I feel it! And as Gramps Schuller declares (right ho) when that sunshine of God’s LOVE comes creeping in on you, all the negative feelings will disappear like the night time mist in the morning sun, the joy and hope and consequently the faith and LOVE, mercy and forgiveness, and all the wonderful attributes of our wonderful God begin to fill our sorrowful souls! 

Oh how great is prayer my people! And even greater is our God’s answer to it! For we have ALL been richly blessed through it! Praise His Holy Name; exalt Him and His wonderful, awesome and magnanimous doings to the entire world! Remember that’s the main reason He made us; to worship and glorify and have constant communication with Him! 

Awright…so the ole fella get carried away there…but that’s how it’s supposed to be! If sincere communication with our heavenly Father doesn’t enable and energize and raise up our spirits, then what’s the purpose of it eh? And I do like that li’l phrase of Gramps Schuller; ‘the sunshine of God’s LOVE!’ 

Because that’s exactly how God’s LOVE operates; it rises up like the brilliant morning sunshine out of the East. One moment there’s simply darkness, then gradually those depressing clouds begin to disappear as His LOVE filters into our souls…until suddenly it’s there…like the sun hovering over the eastern horizon…big and bright and beautiful! 

Oh friends, I’m sorry…NO, I’M NOT – for taking such enjoyment in the great and unconditional LOVE of our awesome and amazing God! I only wish that you could take the same pleasure with me, so that we don’t miss all the wonderful things that our wonderful God has in store for us, for those who LOVE Him, and are called according to His mighty purpose! 

It’s truly sad and unfortunate that so many supposed believers don’t really enjoy their faith, enjoy their Christian attributes that have been paid for at such great price by our Lord and Saviour, Leader and Good Shepherd, Jesus Christ. What’s the point in having them if you don’t enjoy them eh? NONE WHATSOEVER! 

Remember these moving and momentous words of Jesus? ‘The thief 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.’  So if He came to give us abundant life, why aren’t we enjoying it eh? Then His unimaginable sacrifice would simply have been a waste of time! 

Chuh mih people! Let’s not waste Christ’s selfless sacrifice on the cross for us nuh! Let’s be wise and enjoy the good things He offers and be obedient to His will. Remember it’s all for our benefit yes, not His! As Bruh David so candidly says: ‘Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits.’ (Ps.103:2) We’d be real foolish to do otherwise! 

And we can’t finish without hearing this next momentous statement of Jesus: ‘I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.’ (John 10:11) And friends, that’s exactly what our Saviour did for us on that old rugged cross of Calvary! He endured all the pain and shame and humiliation and burden of sin placed on His sinless soul and shoulders by the Father, so that we could be set free! So how could we now not be grateful and gladly follow Him eh? 

I can’t answer that question for you, you will have to answer it to the Father come the judgement day! Now let’s go home sincerely declaring (right ho) our Tuesday Mantra, joyfully letting the world know who and whose we are. In strong voice and heartfelt sincerity: ‘In God’s eyes, I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen!’ 

Now let’s go out and do just that nuh! Much LOVE!

…oh…how a believer’s soul is moved…is lifted up…when the sunshine of God’s LOVE…joyfully enters it…

P.S. I likes it…I truly do! And I enjoyed writing it too! Why? Perhaps because it reflects the sunshine of God’s LOVE! (smile) Much LOVE!