Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 October 2020 James 1:2.

James 1:2.     ​My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations (various trials);

Ah Lord eh people! Steups! The ole people was right yes: in this life, when is not one thing, is a blooming other yes! Chuh man! The devil get mih early this morning. I was coming downstairs a while ago, early to boot, (smile) to start writing the Bit when I had an unfortunate accident. Steups! So I had to waste valuable time, spend over half an hour cleaning up the spill and myself. Obviously I was annoyed, especially when I had argued in a lost cause for staying longer in bed. I guess the Lord really wanted to wake me up in a big way. (smile) 

And I had such a grand opening planned for today: And then it was Saturday; a day unlike the other days! One that does not follow the rules and regulations like the others. It’s a law unto itself; of the lazy, laidback, do it if and when you want it breed. No stuffy rules and regulations for Saturday. And I should have taken advantage of that lazy, laidback nature and stayed in bed! (smile) 

But we know that the Lord has a purpose for everything He allows to come our way, I just don’t know, or can’t see His purpose for allowing that accident this morning. But like the good believer I am, I’m just going to grin and bear it, and keep on keeping on. Someday I might know the reason…or I might just never. But that’s okay too, for the Lord is a good God and whatever He allows is always for my benefit, in my best interest. Sermon done! 

Now let’s see what quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week, as he aspired to inspire us for a better tomorrow. Listen to this first one, which is ever so appropriate for our world today. ‘Complacency is the forerunner of mediocrity. You can never work too hard on attitudes, effort and technique.’ And that’s the awesome truth. You can never work too hard on your life skills. But the most significant sign of a declining person and a society is its level of complacency, the level of its overall standards. When we stop building and just decide to relax on our fat fannies, dwell on our laurels or past achievements, that’s when our standards and everything else begin to fall. 

Life is a constant cycle; it’s always moving, and if you’re not moving along with it, to a reasonable extent, you’ll get left in its dust. And that’s why our society is now in freefall mode; our complacency is dragging us down; our standards are falling lower and lower every day. And that’s not me speaking, that’s history. Just look at all the old, great societies. Once they got fat and prosperous, they laid down and became complacent, and it was only a matter of time before they died. 

That’s why the next quote is important. ‘I don’t worry about maintaining the quality of my life, because every day I work on improving it.’ Yes friends, we need to constantly work on improving the quality of our lives, our standards. Now that doesn’t mean just running after material things and wealth of this world, but more about enjoying everyday life, having it more abundantly like what Jesus promised. (John 10:10) Please note one universal truth: if you run behind the material things of life, without judicial and godly wisdom, without common sense, then you’ll certainly pile them up, but you won’t be able to enjoy them, since you will always be too busy trying to attain more. 

So what’s the point of piling them up if you can’t enjoy them eh? None whatsoever! No wonder Bruh Paul advised us to use moderation in all things. (Phil. 4:5) The scholars’ term it ‘graciousness’ or ‘sweet reasonableness.’ I term it simple common sense! (smile) 

That brings us to this quote: ‘I’m never satisfied with what I do. I always think I can do a lot better.’ Now that can either be a bane or a blessing in our lives. We can either overdo it, by never being satisfied with what we’ve done, or we can be satisfied when we know we’ve done our best. 

Oh, we must always try to be excellent in whatever we do, for that’s what Christ expects of His followers, but at the same time He doesn’t want us to go overboard and be overly fussy. None of us is perfect, and some are just better at certain things because of the divine gifts they’ve been given. So please don’t compare yourself with others, that’s the surest way to bring unnecessary sorrow to your life. Just do your best and be satisfied. The Lord knows and sees your heart. 

Now there’s also the other side to that story, as this quote explains. ‘Too many of us are not living our dreams because we are living our fears.’ And that’s the living truth. Fear, or the devil’s work is too big a part in too many of our lives. So much so that we can’t get around to working on our dreams. Remember some of Jesus’ favourite words were:‘FEAR NOT!’ 

And that pertains to both the physical fear of danger and the spiritual and emotional fear of not being able to work on the dreams and desires of our hearts that the Lord bestowed on us. Again, that invokes godly wisdom and common sense, which can only be truly found when we put out trust in Jesus, read His Word and believe His promises. Remember, faith is the opposite of fear. And as they say, when fear knocks on your door, the best response is to send faith to answer that knock. 

So finally, we come to this last quote, which sort of encapsulates them all. ‘Pause and remember – Every single event in your life, especially the difficult lessons, have made you smarter, stronger, and wiser than you were yesterday. Be thankful!’ And all of God’s people said a loud and proud: ‘Glory Hallelujah!’ Yes, I’m being a li’l facetious there, because most of us don’t want to experience difficult times. But the truth is they do make us wiser and stronger than before we experienced them. 

For as James so wisely says, when talking about Christian living, faith and humility.‘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) 

And the scholars offer this interesting explanation. ‘1:2-3.In this epistle on Christian living, James opens with a most crucial topic: the trials of life. These verses describe the various testings – whether from the world and Satan, or from God – into which godly Christians fall (Gr. peripipto). These “negative” experiences are to be accepted with great joy, not for the sake of the trial itself but because of the positive work God can accomplish through the testing…’ 

Yes, I know it sounds somewhat harsh and unreasonable, but the truth of the matter is that we don’t grow unless we go through adversity. It’s only in the rough times that we grow and mature, both spiritually and emotionally, so if we want to grow, we have to learn to face adversity mano a- mano. And the scholars wisely add: ‘1:4.The natural response to adversity is to escape it. But God uses trouble to mature His people.’ 

And that’s the honest truth! So if you really want to grow in godliness, you just have to bite the bullet and find joy in your trials. Remember though, that the Lord has promised never to leave nor forsake us, and that He’ll work everything out for our good. That means He will ALWAYS be beside us in whatever trial we’re going through, holding our hands to bring us out safely and stronger on the other side. But in those trying times, like now, we have to remember the immortal words of Jesus; ‘FEAR NOT!’ Just relax in His awesome presence and allow Him to lead the way! That’s true wisdom! Much LOVE!

…fear can only be overcome…through trust and faith in Jesus… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 August 2019 2 Peter 1:8.

2 Peter 1:8.    For if these things be in you (are yours), and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
 

Sunny days are here again…Glory Hallelujah! Yeh, let’s hope that today is nothing like yesterday, with rain straight through until late afternoon. Got caught in it going to an appointment some distance from home, and would you believe it was terrible; traffic just crawling, with road construction like everywhere, and the rain itself one minute petering out to a light drizzle, then next picking back up steam again. Good thing that it had stopped by the time I was on my way back home. 

And we can’t have no rain today because this evening David Rudder (the Crown Prince of kaiso) is down in the Bandshell in the Ex. And that’s a totally open space. So please pray that David gets a good chance to share his beautiful kaiso (calypso) offerings later. (smile) 

Now here’s another prayer, this one from Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) from his Hour of Power Devotional. He calls it: ‘A Prayer for Success.’ Please pray with me: ‘As I become a success with your help, Lord, let me never forget that what I am is more than what I do. Faith stimulates success. Hope sustains success. LOVE sanctifies success. So I cannot and I dare not succeed without your power, peace, and pressure in my life, Jesus Christ. Amen!’ 

Oh friends, all of that is so true! In the first place we must realize that what we do is not the most important thing in our lives, but who we are; beloved children of God! And that alone gives us a great chance for success. But as Gramps Schuller says, we need these three untouchables and ‘unmeasurables’; faith, hope and LOVE, to even enter the ring of success, much less to achieve it. 

And Peter expounds on the subject nicely, and quite at length in his second epistle. Listen to Him as he greets his readers and reminds them of God’s provision for Christian living, past, present and future. ‘Grace and peace be multiplied unto you, through (in) the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord. 

According to his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue. Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.’ (2 Pet. 1:2-4) 

Oh my fellow believers, we see that our most magnanimous God has already given us all the power and grace and promises that we need to succeed in this life, but we have to now raise them up from our souls through the awesome power of the Holy Spirit. 

And Peter then continues, re growing in grace. ‘And beside this, (for this very reason), giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance (self-control); and to temperance patience (perseverance); and to patience godliness; and to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity (LOVE).’ (2 Pet.1:5-7) 

Ah mih people, that seems like a real rough row to hoe, but hoe it we must, if we want to succeed in this Christian walk of faith and LOVE! And the scholars offer this explanation: ‘1:5-7. In this section Peter urges his readers to grow to spiritual maturity. Add to your faith indicates the areas of growth that follow after salvation. Virtue is moral excellence. Knowledge is spiritual truth. Temperance is self-control. Patience is endurance. Godliness is God-likeness. 

Brotherly kindness (Gr. philadelphian) is brotherly LOVE. Charity (Gr. agapen) is volitional LOVE (making a choice or decision to LOVE). This process is a lifelong cycle of spiritual growth for all believers.’ And so indeed it is my fellow saints in Christ! And Peter reason thus for his advice: ‘For if these things be in you (are yours), and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.’ 

Glory be mih breddren! For there’s nothing better in this life than to have a good knowledge about Christ and produce good fruit in His image! And Peter further explains: ‘But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off (is shortsighted), and hath forgotten that he was purged (cleansed) from his old sins. 

Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall (stumble): For so an entrance shall be ministered (supplied) unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.’ (2 Pet.1:9-11) What a wonderful life is being set up in heaven for those of us who place Christ above all else and do our best to honour and obey Him! 

Hear how the scholars explain those last verses. ‘1:10-11. Ye shall never fall: The author is not referring to falling from salvation but to failure in Christian living. The everlasting kingdom refers to the eternal realm of God where Jesus is the undisputed Ruler. It is synonymous with heaven. Thus one who acquires the virtues of verses 5-7 will have a rich inheritance in heaven.’ 

Mama Mia! It couldn’t get any better than that my people! Therefore let’s go home now joyfully declaring (yeah!) our Wednesday Wail which let’s the whole world know of our serious position in Christ, since heaven is our ultimate home. 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 if you sincerely believe, then you’ll know that that future will indeed be glorious; so glorious that we cannot even imagine it! Wow! So let’s keep on hanging tight with Jesus nuh friends, for that is wisdom of the highest order! Much LOVE!

…success in anything…means learning and adhering to these three keys…hope…faith…and LOVE…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 13 March 2018 2 Peter 3:18.

2 Peter 3:18.   But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever.

And then it was a snowy Tuesday morning…not a whole lot of the white stuff, but certainly sufficient to cover everything and remind us that it’s still winter. Yeh, though we’ve been having some fairly mild temps recently, Ole Man Winter thought it necessary to remind us that spring has not yet sprung. (smile) 

And talking about winter; they say things happens in threes, and in the case of the North Eastern U.S. they are probably right, because for the third time in two weeks another winter storm is bludgeoning the area. Ah Lord eh! 

Let’s pray for them friends, and do whatever we can to help them otherwise, even if it’s just calling or texting or somehow communicating with those in the affected areas to find out how they are doing. For we never know when we’ll be affected by some disaster and need their help. 

And today I want to share something from our One Year Book of Bible Promises, with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin that points out some of the trauma and drama in our spiritual growth. It’s titled, ‘Worth the Waiting.’ 

Please read with me: ‘Growing spiritually is such a long, slow process! It’s painful too. Every day at the turn of the road I become acquainted with new pitfalls and heartaches. Sometimes the pain backs me into a corner. For example: There is a woman I know who is so sarcastic, so curt and unkind. Am I ever excused? Is forgiveness always a part of my growth? 

So often I feel like a spiritual midget while my husband and friends appear to be spiritual giants. I seem to shrink in my own home. Another thing: I confess I’m a coward about pain. Emotional pain. Physical pain. The pain of loneliness, the pain of grief. Yet, again and again it is true. 

What I must learn in my pain is that it’s leading to something positive, something beyond what I can see in the present darkness. I do want to grow! I want to become more and more like Jesus. Even though it takes so long, surely it is worth the waiting.’ 

And it is indeed worth the waiting my fellow believers! Oh my brethren, growing in anything at all takes time and can be an arduous process, but like it is with Jesus, the end will all be worth it. And I know many of us want to grow spiritually but are having a hard time wading through all the stuff that it entails. 

But take heart, everything we go through in being recreated in the image of Jesus has a purpose. God never throws away anything in our lives, even the negative, painful stuff, He always puts them to good, positive use. That’s why Bruh Paul writes this very reassuring scripture in the word: ‘And we know that all things work together for good to those that LOVE God, to them who are called according to his purpose.’ (Rom.8:28) 

Yeh friends, if we LOVE God and are called to do His work, then everything will work out good eventually. It’s God’s promise, and as a faithful believer, you are expected to accept it…without a grain of salt. (smile) And the Bible Promise for the reading above is also our Bit for today. But before we get to it, let’s hear what Peter says to the early believers who were living in the hope of the Lord’s coming. 

‘Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before (beforehand)…’ And he’s talking about the Lord’s Second Coming and how we’re looking for a new heaven, and all the stuff that Bruh Paul has written, some of which is hard to do. (2 Pet. 3:1-16) 

‘…beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own steadfastness. But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.’ (2 Pet. 3:17-18). 

Oh my people, Christianity is indeed a beautiful faith; the most beautiful, but it is also time consuming and calls for a lot of effort and sacrifice! But it’s all worth it! As the scholars explain: ‘Peter urges his readers to look beyond the present world to the new heavens and a new earth characterized by righteousness.’ 

And so should we be looking forward to coming in glory of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Remember this earth is not our home; we are merely strangers and sojourners here. Heaven is our real home. We should therefore look forward to it. 

But to do that we have to be strong and steadfast, like Bruh Paul warned the Ephesians in talking about the new life in Christ. ‘That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight (trickery) of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby thy lie in wait to deceive. But speaking the truth in LOVE, may grow up to him in all things, which is the head, even Christ.’ (Eph.4:14-15) 

Oh friends, to grow spiritually means we must stop being childlike and put in the effort to grow in all aspects of Christian living. And if we do so sincerely, God will give us the grace we need to become more like Christ, each and every day. 

Now let’s go home telling the world who and whose we are. Let’s shout out our Tuesday Mantra as though we really mean it. ‘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 action those things in Jesus’ name. Much LOVE!

…‘Christian maturity is attained in part…by thorough instruction…in sound doctrine…given in a LOVING manner…’

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 February 2017 Matthew 26:39.

Matthew 26:39.   And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.

And then it was Tuesday – a semi-cloudy, chilly day in my area, but it sure feels great to be alive! 

Yes friends, there’s nothing to beat waking up to a new God-given morn, regardless of all the problems you know await you, once you set your feet on the ground. I guess the only thing better would be waking up in heaven and seeing Jesus face to face! Wow! 

But we’re not ready for that just yet, (smile) and I don’t think He’s quite ready for us yet either, otherwise we we’d be reading our names in the obits this morning. 

So let’s give Him a great big shout of praise in a ‘Thank You Lord! We LOVE You and bless Your Holy Name, and will do our very best to walk in Your will this Tuesday morning! Amen!’ 

In addition to that, let me share a li’l prayer from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional. I believe I’ve shared it before, but like so many other prayers – it’s like forgiveness – (smile) one worthy of being shared again and again. 

Please pray with me. ‘Father, I turn these minutes over to you. Do something beautiful in my mind, in my heart, and in my life today. So I will look back and say: “I was caught up by an inspiring spirit of the eternal God in this moment of prayer.” In the name of Christ I pray. Amen.’ 

Oh friends, it’s so beautiful when the Holy Spirit inspires us! A wave of joy just spreads through our entire being, because we know that our heavenly Father has just communicated with us, and we are definitely on the right path, the straight and narrow one. Glory Hallelujah! 

I don’t know about you all nuh people, but my problem is not so much doing God’s will, but knowing what is His will? That’s why I ask for discernment and focus every day in my prayers. Once I know the path He wants me to tread, then I can usually set my mind to it. 

Too often I’ve thought that I knew His will, only to discover that it really wasn’t His will, but my own, which led to unfortunate circumstances. And the way the world is so flashy and insistent and persistent today, it’s very easy to get thoughts into our heads that seem to be God’s, when in actual fact they are our own longings and desires. 

So we have to be very careful in our discernment, otherwise we can be very easily led astray by the wiles and deceptions of the enemy. And my fellow believers, knowing the will of God, and pursuing it is one of the most important aspects of our faith. 

And we can see how important it was to our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, so it had to be even more important to us. At the time of His greatest anxiety, the night before His crucifixion, in the Garden of Gethsemane, what was His prayer eh? 

After telling Peter, James and John, the three disciples that were with Him: ‘My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry (stay, wait) ye here, and watch with me.  

And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.’ 

Ah mih breddren, Jesus was every bit as human as us, with all the aches and pains and fear of death. Now wouldn’t you be afraid if you not only knew the time of your death, but also the unimaginable cruelty and disgrace involved. 

However, Jesus knew that He was also born for that momentous, world-changing event, and as always put the Father’s will before everything else. So too should we my believing brethren. Listen to a couple of Jesus’ pronouncements on doing the Father’s will. 

After the episode of the Samaritan woman at Jacob’s well, (John 4), the disciples pleaded with Jesus to eat. ‘Jesus saith unto them, My meat (food) is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work.’ (John 4:34) 

Yuh see friends, He’s more interested in doing the Father’s will, than in physical food, which He needed to keep His body strong and healthy. How many of us are willing to make such a serious statement eh? 

Not too many. But that is exactly the kind of statement we Christians ought to be able to make, if we are to be successful in Jesus’ work here on earth. 

Now hear Jesus’ statement when the Jews tried to persecute Him after healing a lame man on the Sabbath. Here He is talking about the Son’s relationship with the Father. 

‘I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgement is just (righteous); because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.’ (John 6:30) 

So friends, just like Jesus, let’s seek to do the Lord’s will at all times nuh, because that is the secret of true Christian living. Now let’s go home loudly and proudly declaring our Tuesday Mantra as one body secure in Christ. 

‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am thebeloved 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!’ 

Oh Glory Hallelujah my people! Let’s go out now, fully clothed in the LOVE of God, and share it with all we come into contact with nuh, for that is the stated desire of our friend Jesus! Much LOVE!

…the Lord gives us LOVE…not only for ourselves…but also to share with others…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 May 2016 Joshua 24:14

Joshua 24:14.    Now therefore fear the Lord, and serve him in sincerity and truth: and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the flood (The Euphrates River), and in Egypt; and serve ye the Lord.

Oh my beautiful believers in Jesus Christ, it’s the first day of May, as well as the Lord’s Day, better known as Sunday! 

That means it’s time for church; time for praise and worship, for thanksgiving and fellowship, for rejuvenation of spirit, encouragement and steadfastness of purpose, plus all the other good things that our magnanimous God pours out on those who LOVE Him, diligently seek Him and obediently do His will! 

Now I’m not going to harangue or lecture us about going to church today. That shouldn’t be at all necessary, for if you’re a true believer, then you’ll know that’s your bounden duty, so I’ll just leave that up to you and your heavenly Father. (smile) 

What I’ve been guided to do though, is to share a prayer which I shared a long time back, so many of you would not have heard it, but it’s one of my favourite prayers. From the first time I found it in my mother’s Bible after she died, something about it just touched me, and I’ve prayed it almost every day after that.  

It’s a special prayer prepared by the Life Study Fellowship, Noroton, Connecticut.  It’s titled ‘Lord, Please Accept My Heartfelt Thanks!’ And the sub-title is ‘Praise the Lord for His Goodness.’  – Psalm 107:8’ 

Now please pray with me: ‘Dear Lord, You are so good to me! And I thank You sincerely for the many blessings You send me! I’m very glad to have You in my life day in and day out – whatever I do and wherever I go! You are the One who always does what is best for my happiness! 

How grateful I am to be able to turn to You for guidance and comfort when troubles come my way! If any situation arises that makes me feel discouraged, You let me know I can lean on You for support! And because of Your LOVE for me, somehow I seem to find the strength to keep going – even through the most difficult times! 

I’m grateful too, for peaceful moments like these when I’m all alone with You in prayer! Talking with You never fails to reassure and uplift me! Nothing I say to You goes unheard. You listen with great concern to everything I confide in You! For You truly care about me! 

As I look to 2016 (or whatever year) I pray that You will continue to watch over me – and grant me even more of Your wonderful blessings! And may I serve You well in my every word, my every deed! Be my Guide hour by hour; I pray! Amen.’  

Oh friends, I do hope that prayer touched you all! I guess what I like about it is that it covers all the bases, it’s so all encompassing, plus everything it says is true and relevant. Some of you may not like it, but that’s okay; it’s your choice. As they say, different strokes for different folks! (smile) Anyway, that’s my contribution for today. 

Now let’s turn to our new Bit, a part of Joshua’s farewell address to the Israelites. He had just finished reminding them about all the good things the Lord had done for them, giving them houses they didn’t build, vineyards they didn’t plant etc. 

Now therefore fear the Lord, and serve him in sincerity and truth: and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the flood (The Euphrates River), and in Egypt; and serve ye the Lord.’ 

Ah mih people, that verse is even more appropriate and relevant in this New World Order than it was thousands of years ago when Joshua spoke those fateful words. That’s because the worshipping of other gods, plus basic ungodliness is so rampant in our current society. 

Unfortunately, the ONE and ONLY TRUE and LIVING God; He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is not held in respect nor reverence by a rather large part of the world. Many people know of and about Him, but yet they steadfastly refuse to honour and obey Him. How sad that is my people, for our world could be truly such a beautiful place if more of us sincerely worshipped and revered the Most High God Jehovah. 

Now why the blatant refusal to accept the God of heaven eh? I believe there are two main reasons. First of all, the pull of the material, lustful and sinful world is rather strong. We feast our eyes on all the supposed glitz and glamour and possessions available, and our hearts clamour for them, and the evil one just makes it so easy for us to fall into his sinful trap.  

And the second reason is that we believers, supposed ambassadors and disciples of Jesus, who have been assigned the Great Commission (Matt.28:19-20) to teach and baptize and spread the wonderful gospel of Jesus all over the world, are not doing as good a job as we should. The hypocritical examples of our lives are turning people away from Jesus instead of drawing them closer to Him. 

So there we have it; Lucifer and his evil cronies are doing a good job on selling sin, while the followers of Jesus are not doing a good job of selling righteousness. No rocket science involved at all friends. 

So what are we doing, or going to do to change this rather unpalatable situation eh my believing breddren? All I can say is that we need to pull up our britches and do a better job of spreading the good news of Jesus, and backing it up with perfect, well not quite perfect, but much better examples of true Christian living. 

Remember friends, examples speak more forcibly than words, and we can talk all the talk in the world, if we don’t walk that talk, then it’s useless, just wasted talk. And we’ll close with these precious and fateful words of Joshua, declared after our Bit. 

‘And if it seems evil unto you to serve the Lord, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood (The Euphrates River), or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.’ (Josh.24:15) 

Yes friends, that’s the big and serious decision we all have to make. And like Joshua, I surely hope that we will all decide, with our families, to serve the Lord God Jehovah, for that is indeed the wisdom of the ages! Much LOVE!

…until more believers get truly serious about the Great Commission…both talking and living it…the good news of Jesus will be sadly lacking in this ungodly world…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 13 April 2016 Luke 9:23‏

Luke 9:23.   And he said to them all, If any man will (desires to) come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.

Well, well my people, it’s another bright, sunshiny day in the life! Let’s hope it’s at least a tad warmer than yesterday, as we hopefully move into true spring-like weather by the weekend. And all God’s people in the northern climes declared a loud ‘Glory Hallelujah!’ 

Yeh friends, the crazy weather fluctuations do begin to get frustrating after a while. However, the good news is that it’s Wednesday, and therefore we are bold to confess and declare our Wednesday Wail. So as one good wailer, let’s wail nuh mih breddren, with sincerity and a true sense of purpose. 

‘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, that was beautiful! I could hear the sincerity in our delivery. And why shouldn’t  there be sincerity eh? We’re alive and kicking, doing our best to be Christ-like and mature more and more in our Christian walk of faith each day. 

We know what Jesus has promised and what He’s already done for us, therefore we are standing strong and steadfast in His Word, doing His will and looking forward to the wonderful future He has planned for us, not only in the many mansions in heaven, but also down here on earth. 

And yes my people, as Bruh David said, he don’t know what he would have done, had he not expected to see God’s goodness and LOVING-kindness down here. And Jesus also declared that He had come that we might have life, and have it abundantly. 

So earthly living, though it can often be rough, is not meant to be a hell on earth, but more a heaven on earth! Therefore let’s get our minds focused on God’s goodness down here nuh, not simply on the rough spells we sometimes must go through. 

Remember, life might not be fair, but God is GOOD my people, and if we live sincerely for Him, He will pour our His blessings on us. 

And in light of all of that, it is imperative that we do as our Bit dictates. ‘And he said to them all, If any man will (desires to) come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.’ 

Oh precious people, I know that sounds somewhat harsh and laborious, but it really isn’t, because the essence of taking up one’s cross daily and following Jesus is simply living in His will; trying to do what’s right, reading the Bible, praying, fellowshipping, maturing, treating others as we want them to treat us. It’s just the everyday things of Christian living and discipleship. 

Now, no one says it’s easy, but with God’s help it is doable, and yuh better believe, it’s always interesting. So please, let’s not allow the idea of taking up our cross daily, yes daily, turn us off. The important thing is to put Jesus FIRST in ALL that we do and say. For as He said yesterday, whoever puts anything or anybody before Him, is not worthy of Him. (Matt.10:36-39) 

And today, He is telling the disciples to not be afraid of what man can do to them, because our heavenly father has us covered, so much so that even the hairs on our head are numbered. Sorry for those of you who have no hair. (smile) 

So with truth, sincerity and power, Jesus declares: ‘Fear them not therefore: for there is nothing covered (veiled), that shall not be revealed; and hid, that shall not be known. What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in light: and what ye hear in the air, that preach ye upon the housetops. 

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 soul and body in hell… 

Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt.10:26-28; 32-33) 

Ah mih people, it couldn’t be any clearer than that nuh. Don’t be afraid! Jesus said that numerous times to the disciples, and He’s still saying it to us today. But unfortunately we don’t seem to have the faith and belief and spunk that the disciples eventually gained, because we are not standing up as strong as we ought to for Jesus. 

We are allowing the evil and ungodly world to just dismantle all that our Christian forefathers spent their lives building without a serious fight. We need to put up friends, or simply shut up! 

And we’ll close with some interesting explanations from the scholars. ’10:32-37. Confess me means “Acknowledge that you belong to Me.” In reality, secret discipleship is a practical impossibility. Jesus constantly called for an open confession of Himself by His followers. 

That our confession is to be before men clearly indicates that a public confession of true Christian faith is a virtual necessity. The warning whosoever shall deny me is a comprehensive historical aorist (no limitation) tense, referring not to one moment of denial (such as Peter’s), but to an entire lifelong resistance to Christ. 

Therefore, a single act of denial does not make one unworthy of being a disciple, but a refusal to confess Christ at all, eliminates one from being a true follower of Jesus Christ.’ 

There we have it friends, in black and white! We cannot continually deny Jesus and expect to be His disciple. We must acknowledge Him without fear of reprisals. For He has promised to never leave nor forsake us, and to be a true believer, we must accept Him and His words as gospel truth. Otherwise, we’re just fooling ourselves, and that’s a real sad thing to do. Much LOVE!

…walking sincerely with Jesus is often a hard row to hoe…but hoe it we must…and with the Lord’s help…hoe it we will…  

P.S. Late though it be, it’s value is still priceless. (smile) Much LOVE!

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 March 2016 2 Peter 3:18‏

2 Peter 3:18.  But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.

Oh friends, the ole fella’s a mess; tired and out of sorts…but I am at home, my comfort level has been raised, because they say that home is where the heart is, and though I LOVE Tobago dearly, it’s in the cold North country that I am currently domiciled. 

Now yesterday was indeed a crazy day. I got up pretty early so that I could write the Bit then finish packing, and I don’t know how many of you realized the nonsense that I did. First of all I did not include the Wednesday Wail. I only realized that last night while sitting down listening to Uncle John (John Hagee) trying to get back into my old routine. 

Then just now, when I read the Bit I discovered that I had written it as though it were Tuesday, complete with the Tuesday Mantra and all. Ah Lord eh! And as I just looked back at Tuesday’s Bit, the Tuesday Mantra wasn’t included. 

What a mess up! Friends, you’ll just have to forgive the ole fella yes, because he’s just showing His age and human frailty. (smile) 

And I am somewhat annoyed with you all, because when I mess up so badly I expect somebody to let me know. That means you all are either not reading the Bit, or not paying serious attention to it, which isn’t very encouraging. 

Anyway, what I believe really happened is that I was so taken up with leaving sweet Tobago, the packing, the seeing of friends and family for the last time and the feeling of sadness that obviously crept in, my poor brain just could not function properly. All of that though is just the Lord’s way to test your Christian sense of forgiveness. (smile) And I know that I am forgiven. 

But it truly was a rough day yesterday. I don’t know how many times I packed and unpacked the numerous heavy bags we had; from the house to the car, then from the car to the check in. 

Luckily I got a porter to take them from the arrival lounge to the car outside, but I had to pack them in the house again when I got home. By then I had spent some 7 or eight hours en route, most of them cooped up in a li’l tin can plane with barely any leg room, like sardines, leaving T&T around 1 p.m T&T time, not arriving in T.O. until 6.30 p.m T.O time, which is an hour different. 

And believe you me, T.O has the worst, yes I said the worst wheelchair service at any airport. Yes the ole fella has to use the wheelchair service now because he can’t walk the long distances between the arrival and departure points any more, especially with heavy hand luggage. 

One poor lady who couldn’t walk at all, and who was using the service for the first time was totally taken aback at the number of hold ups we were forced to endure. There never seems to be enough people or wheelchairs to ferry the passengers in Toronto. 

And then their main concern is to get your boarding pass so that they can record it, to possibly show how many people they serviced. Don’t know if they get paid by the numbers or what, but at each level, that’s always the first requirement. And even though they have state of the art golf-carts to move you around some, the service is very poorly run. 

Apparently this lady had once been a social worker, and she was truly appalled at the inferior service. She expected it to be better than T& T’s, but it certainly isn’t. So by the time we got to immigration all the other two hundred and odd people on our plane had already gone through, and at the baggage carousel, only the few bags of the seven wheelchair passengers remained. 

You can just imagine the duchess’ reaction. Hn! Sadly, she always gets saddled with my slow process. But what can you do eh? As a concerned and caring wife, you have to stay and support your not so ambulatory husband. (smile) 

And then, wonder of wonder, we arrived in T.O to 17 degree Celsius temperature. Mama yo! 17 degrees in the middle of March? That is unheard off! Inside the house was colder than outside. I had to turn up the heat. 

And right now it’s about ten or eleven with rain. Thank the Lord! I’m certainly not complaining, because the warmer temps are helping me to reintegrate myself much more easily than if it had been bitterly cold as it usually is in early March. 

And that’s the story of my life. Let’s hope there are no more screw-ups. (smile) And please friends, if I do screw up, please let me know nuh. I’m only human, and can’t catch everything. Thank you. 

Now we can finally turn to our Bit. ‘But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.’ 

Well I certainly hope I did some of that yesterday, because my Christian behaviour was truly tested by the waiting and the many security checks and all the other nonsense that is involved in airplane travel these days. 

Again, the Lord puts us through these things to test us, to see if we can truly walk our talk. On the scale of 1 to 10, I must have been around a 7, which is not too bad, all things considered. I didn’t complain too much, and my patience was fair. I was encouraging others to be patient. Hn!

And as we saw yesterday from Bruh Paul’s writing on the new life in Christ to the Ephesians, as Christians we have to be strong and steadfast in our faith. We can’t afford to be childlike and swayed by every evil and cunning doctrine introduced by man. That means we have to become, and then continue to be spiritually mature. 

And we’ll end today with this explanation from the scholars on the subject. ‘4:14-15. Two results occur when Christians reach spiritual maturity. (1) Negatively, they will no longer be children, that is, immature believers easily deceived by every wind of (false) doctrine; and (2) positively, they will grow up into him, that is fully grown in all aspects of Christian living – doctrine, conduct, service and so on. 

But speaking the truth in LOVE, may grow up may be read “by LOVINGLY teaching the truth, we will grow up.” Christian maturity is attained, in part, by thorough instruction in sound doctrine giving in a LOVING manner.’ 

And that’s indisputable truth my brethren! So please, let’s go out today, and every day, and try to grow thus nuh, for that is indeed the wisdom of heaven! Much LOVE!

…as each day goes by…our Christian meat intake…ought to supplant at least a little of our milk diet…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 21 November 2014 2 Peter 1:7

2 Peter 1:7.    And to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness charity (LOVE).

And finally Friends, it was Friday…
 
And all around the world there were joyful shouts of ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday oui! This slaving for massa couldn’t done soon enough! The fun time, the weekend is just waiting to welcome us with open arms! Thank the Lord ever so much that it’s Friday!
 
My sentiments exactly Friends! But we need to be very careful that we don’t get carried away with the fun part of the weekend, that we also remember the rest part and the godly communication and fellowship aspects. And to help us do that, let’s get into our Friday Chant right off the top.
 
Sincerely, and 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 people, we have to find the right balance between fun, rest and time with God and other believers to refresh and rejuvenate ourselves, so that we can go back out on Monday and begin the whole workweek process all over again, take the battle to the heathen one more time.
 
That brings us to this quote, which I believe I might have shared before, but it’s so useful and wonderful that we need to be reminded of it every single day. It’s by George Elliston (1883-1946) a female American journalist, and it simply says: ‘How beautiful a day can be when kindness touches it.’
 
Mama Mia! And isn’t that the gospel, gospel truth my brethren? It surely, surely is!
 
There’s nothing in this whole wide world that touches us as much as kindness! But unfortunately it is something that’s so sadly lacking in our busy, selfish, evil, resentful and war mongering world. People look at you as though you’re crazy, mentally retarded, when you do an act of kindness. What sort of society are we living in eh?
 
The best thing that could ever happen is if everybody showered everybody else with kindness. Then we’d have the wonderful world we talk about so much!
 
And Peter, in his discussion on growing in grace reveals to us some of the touchstones, including our Bit, which we need to add to our lives for such growth.
 
‘And beside this (But also for this very reason), giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance (self-control); and to temperance patience (perseverance); and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity (LOVE).’ (2 Pet.1:5-7)
 
What a revelation my fellow believers! For a lot of us so-called believers don’t show the kindness that we ought to, even to fellow believers. Remember what Jesus tried to drive into the disciples’ heads: ‘This is my commandment; That ye LOVE one another, as I have LOVED you.’ (John 15:12)
 
And as Peter so wisely and rightly continues: ‘For if these things be in you (are yours), and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren (useless) nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
 
But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off (is shortsighted), and hath forgotten that he was purged (cleansed) from his old sins.
 
Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall (stumble): For so an entrance shall be ministered (supplied) unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.’ (2 Pet. 1:8-11)
 
Yes Friends, we need to bear all those fruits, if we desire to bring others to Jesus, and ensure that our rewards in heaven are also as great as they can be.
 
Now here are some explanations from the scholars’ on all of that. ‘1:5-7. In this section Peter urges his readers to grow to spiritual maturity. Add to your faith indicates the areas of growth that follow after salvation. Virtue is moral excellence.
 
Knowledge is spiritual truth. Temperance is self-control. Patience is endurance. Godliness is God-likeness. Brotherly kindness (Gr. philadelphian) is brotherly LOVE. Charity (Gr. agape) is volitional (of the will)) LOVE. This process is a lifelong cycle of spiritual growth for all believers
.’
 
And more explanations from the scholars’. ‘1:10-11. Ye shall never fall: The author is not referring to falling from salvation but to failure in Christian living.
 
The everlasting kingdom refers to the eternal realm of God where Jesus is the undisputed Ruler. It is synonymous with heaven. Thus, the one who acquires the virtues of verses 5-7 will have a rich inheritance in heaven
.’
 
And Friends, since I know that all of us desire to have a very rich inheritance in heaven, please, I implore us, please let’s go out and do those things that we ought to do as true believers nuh, the things which will ensure that we have a rich heavenly reward. That’s simple common sense, as well as heavenly wisdom!
Much LOVE!
 
…Jesus simply went out everyday…doing good…so should His followers…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 November 2013 Matthew 5:12

Matthew 5:12.   Rejoice and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.

Oh Friends, the church bells are tolling this beautiful Sunday morning! They’re tolling to invite us to fellowship and worship as the body of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ down here on earth! Wow! What a special benefit and honour to be numbered in that most august society!

Many of you may remember growing up with the church bells pealing every Sunday morning and evening, calling all the faithful to the house that Christ built. I remember them quite vividly, because I lived only a couple minutes walk away from St. Andrews Anglican in Scarborough, Tobago, and I’d use them as a time piece, listening for when the last bell begin to toll, then I’d hustle off to get there just in time.

There were either two or three tollings, I don’t remember, but back then, when the bells pealed, you knew that almost the whole community was getting ready to go to church, regardless of their denomination. Unfortunately though, church bells tolling as a means of inviting the faithful to worship is now a thing of the past, like prehistoric dinosaurs.

The youth of today don’t even know that church bells existed, for there are very few around now, and even fewer toll, and likewise, even fewer attend church regularly. But my brethren, going to church and fellowshipping with others of like faith, is exactly one of the things Jesus had in mind when He commanded us to ‘Rejoice and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.’

That’s because it’s much easier for believers to rejoice and be exceedingly happy, in spite of persecution, when they are gathered together worshipping and praising Almighty God, whether it be in a church, a house, a thatched hut, a cave or in the open air. Togetherness is the bedrock, the foundation of Christ’s body! No wonder we’re not making the progress we should, since that body is so fragmented, divisive, quarrelsome and resentful of each other.

But Friends, it’s virtually impossible for us to stand strong in the face of persecution when we’re not in sync with each other. That only gives the forces of evil an excellent opportunity to further divide and conquer us. For as logic declares, a group can usually stand stronger together against a common enemy, than a single individual.

And my people, coming together is one of the things we desperately need to concentrate on, if we’re to ever survive the challenges and persecution that the evil world powers are plotting against us. And even as a group, we can’t do it without the omnipotence of Jesus working in and amongst us. So please, let’s seriously concentrate on coming together, rather than drifting further apart nuh. That’s the only hope we have of strengthening and growing Jesus’ LOVE Revolution.

And I have the perfect quote for that from an article I read earlier on in the Anglican Newspaper, November 2013 edition. I copied it for use at some future time, but in God’s mysterious workings, (smile) that time seems to be now. It’s written by Bishop Patrick Yu, on the subject of inviting people to church.

He writes that ‘Growth is actually the sign of all living things, including a living faith and a living church!’ Now that’s gospel truth my people! If we’re not growing in faith and fellowship, then to all intents and purposes, we’re spiritually dead.

Anyway, enough sermonizing from me for today. (smile) Let’s get to the scriptures I faithfully promised you yesterday. And the first one deals with the first part of our Bit: ‘Rejoice and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven:’

Peter puts it this way: ‘Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: But rejoice, inasmuch as (to the extent that) ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.’ (1 Pet.4:12-13)

Yeh Friends, it’s definitely not an easy concept to grasp and then hold on tightly to, but we do need to believe that when we suffer for Jesus’ sake, we’re part of His suffering. Therefore, when He comes back in all His majestic glory, then we too shall participate in the overwhelming joy during those momentous times!

And James say 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.’  (James 1:2-3)

Short and sweet eh Friends! (smile) What a way we doing a lotta smiling today mih breddren! But that’s just the way it ought to be, if we’re exceedingly glad.

Now here’s what the scholars have to say: ‘1:2-3. In this epistle on Christian living, James opens with a most crucial topic: the trials of life. These verses describe the various testings – whether from the world and Satan, or from God – into which godly Christians fall (Gr. peripipto). These “negative” experiences are to be accepted with great joy, not for the sake of the trial itself but because of the positive work God can accomplish through the testing.

The words in verses 2 and 3 (temptations and trying) are often regarded as virtually synonymous. If this were true, then the trials themselves would produce spiritual maturity. But they do not. Often, testings make Christians bitter instead of better, with no spiritual growth occurring. The Greek word for “trying” (dokimion) might be better translated as “approving.”

It is not merely one’s presence in such trials but one’s victory over them that brings spiritual growth and maturity. Those Christians whom God can use the most are those whom God has bruised the most.’

And all God’s people said a low, unenthusiastic ‘Amen,’ because they know that’s the living truth, and it’s hard for the flesh to handle!

But enough for today Friends, I don’t want to stretch your intelligence and busy lives by running on too long. (smile) So let’s ponder all that we’ve said and heard, then make some good and godly decisions, in as many areas as we can, obviously with the help of Jesus. Much LOVE!

…for whom the bells toll…for all mankind…why…so that they can come to Christ…to acknowledge Him as Lord and Saviour…and receive the free…but oh so wonderful gifts of salvation and everlasting life…


 
 

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