Today’s Scrip-Bit 11 May 2019 Luke 9:23.

Luke 9:23.    ​If any man will  (desires to) come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.
 
Oh isn’t it great to be alive on a sunshiny morning my faithful brethren in Christ? It surely is! And though it’s still somewhat chilly in my area, life gets even better when we realize the treasure we have in Jesus Christ being our Lord and Saviour, our Leader and Guide, etc. etc! That’s just the cat’s pajamas; (smile) the best it can get, both in this world and the next! 

So let’s not murmur and complain about the problems we have nuh, instead, let’s give thanks and praise and glory to Almighty God for the great blessings He’s bestowed on us, especially that of His Son, Jesus Christ! And since it’s Saturday, let’s get right to the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this week, as he sincerely aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. 

Hear this first one: ‘Happiness is not the absence of problems, it’s the ability to deal with them.’ And is that ever so true. This earthly life is chocked full of problems, but we can’t allow them to get us down, otherwise we’d just lead a negative and depressed life. 

And remember Jesus said that He had overcome the world and we should cheer up, be glad, in spite of the tribulations we encounter. (John 16:33) So please, let’s not allow problems to ruin our happiness. With Jesus help, they are all conquerable! 

And listen to this quote: ‘Make improvements, not excuses. Seek respect, not attention.’ More truth there friends! Our society nowadays is one of excuses and casting blame everywhere else but on ourselves, where more often than not, it truly belongs! But let’s not play the blame game nuh, because it doesn’t help, just causes more confusion and bitterness and disunity. And above all, it doesn’t show the kind of people we ought to be as followers of Jesus. 

And I like this quote: ‘The past is a place of reference, not a place of residence; the past is a place of learning, not a place of living.’ Oh is that truth in spades my people! The past is very useful, but only as a guide to the future, to show you what mistakes you should not make again. But unfortunately too many of us live in the past, that’s why we’re so unhappy and unfulfilled. We let the past colour our present and future lives too much. 

Living in the past is the worst thing we can do to our present day lives. Therefore: ‘Do not let the memories of your past limit the potential of your future. There are no limits to what you can achieve on your journey through life, except in your mind!’ So true friends so true! All the past does is limit our future and hold us back from the awesome life that God has prepared for us. So please, let’s just learn from the past nuh, but not live there in squalor and hopelessness. (smile) 

And this last quote also aligns nicely with those gone before, sort of paraphrasing them. ‘Life is about accepting the challenges along the way, choosing to keep moving forward, and savoring the journey.’ And before we even talk about the challenges, let’s remember that life is a journey, one we ought to enjoy, one in which we grow from glory to glory, meeting the challenges that this evil and ungodly world constantly throws at us with the help of the Holy Spirit of God that dwells within us. 

Some of us believe that life is just something to muddle through and be constantly depressed and negative. But remember what Jesus said, that He came that we might have life, and have it in abundance! (John 10:10) Now does that sound like we should always be down in the dumps, beaten by the challenges of life? No! Exactly the opposite! 

We talk about how Jesus has conquered, hell, death and the grave, so if He’s conquered the evil forces of this world, why should we be mired in depression and negativity, anxiety and fear eh? The victory is already ours, we just have to live it out in confidence and assurance, if we truly believe in Jesus and all that He’s said. 

But yuh know what friends, for us to successfully do all that we’ve talked about above, we have to do one basic thing, sincerely take up our cross and follow Jesus! That’s the ONLY way our lives will ever be truly worthwhile! Jesus didn’t mince words when He said it. ‘If any man will  (desires to) come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.’ 

Oh my people, I know that many of us believe that taking up our cross and following Jesus is extremely difficult. And at times it is yes; like giving up our selfish desires to help others, facing up to challenges that we want to shy away from, going the extra mile and turning the other cheek, like Jesus desires of His followers. Yes, we are not supposed to be like the world, but show the world a different style. 

And I bypassed the most important word in Jesus’ statement on purpose; ‘daily.’ Now that’s the magic word friends. We don’t pick up our cross when we feel like, or when it’s convenient for us, but each and every day of our earthly lives, if we are truly sincere believers in Jesus! Yes, it’s hard. But nobody ever said that life would be easy. And just look at what Jesus suffered for us nuh. The least we can do is to show a li’l gratitude and gratefulness by picking up our cross and following Him daily. 

‘For whosoever will (desires to) save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose (loses) his life for my sake, the same shall save it. For what is a man advantaged (benefited), if he gain the whole world, and lose himself (is destroyed), or be cast away (lost)? For whosoever shall be ashamed of me and of my words, of him shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he shall come in his own glory, and in his Father’s, and of the holy angels.’ (Luke 9:24-26) 

Oh my people, it couldn’t be any plainer and clearer than that! So please, let’s wake up and smell the roses nuh, because Jesus can return at any time, and if you’re caught napping when He comes, then crapaud smoke yuh pipe! Much LOVE!

…to truly serve Jesus…one must take up one’s cross…DAILY…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 February 2019 Matthew 8:26.

Matthew 8:26.   ​And he saith unto them, Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea: and there was a great calm.
 

Well it’s Tuesday now, and the crazy wind storms and snow squalls that have harried us for the past couple days seem to have died down, but it’s still beastly cold, somewhere around –12 in my area. And I’m chuckling here because I know that during the inclement weather many of us were praying, trying to get God’s attention to stop it. Not me so much, because I was praying rather that He’d get me safely to where I was going, cause I got caught out in it a couple of times. 

But this time I don’t think Jesus was asleep in the back of the boat nuh, He was wide awake and just waiting to see how we’d behave. And we behaved just like the disciples did when the storm caught them going across the lake and Jesus was resting quietly, ostensibly without a care in the world, but the disciples panicked: 

‘And his disciples came to him, and awoke him, saying, Lord, save us: we perish. And he saith unto them, Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea: and there was a great calm. But the men marvelled, saying, What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him.’ (Matt.8:25-27) And that kind of behaviour from men who had been with Jesus for quite some time and seen Him do all sorts of miracles! 

The point I’m trying to make here this morning friends is that too many of us supposed believers are still too small in faith like the disciples, though we have seen Jesus do great and extraordinary things in our lives! We talk a good talk about faith, but when the occasions come for us to show that faith, we always seem to fall short. 

Why is that eh?  Don’t we truly believe…or are we just scared and afraid of whatever comes against us? No, it’s not easy, and Jesus promised that we’d have trials and tribulations in this world…’But be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’ (John 16:33) 

Yes, and even with that encouragement, He knows that it will be hard for us, but He expects that our faith, which is supposed to grow each and every day we draw breath, will strengthen us and see us through whatever difficulties we encounter down here on earth! 

And the sad part is that even before Jesus came, the Lord was dissatisfied with the faith of His people Israel, as outlined in the words of Moses’ song to the Israelites. ‘And he said, I will hide my face from them, I will see what their end shall be: for they are a very forward (perverse) generation, children in whom is no faith.’ (Deut.32:20) 

So I guess nothing much has changed sine way back then! And how many times did Jesus lambaste, castigate His people for not having the faith they should have eh? And there are several! Here are a couple of illustrations: In talking about nature versus Cousin Sol’s glory, nature won out every time. ‘Wherefore, if God so clothe(s) the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is cast into the oven, shall ye not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?’ (Matt.6:30) 

That means we ought not to worry and be anxious or fearful of what’s going to happen because we’re more important to our heavenly Father than nature, which He looks after so well. And when the Roman centurion came to Jesus, asking Him to heal his sick servant, and Jesus offered to go to his house and do so: 

‘The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed. For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, do this, and he doeth it. When Jesus heard it, he marvelled, and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in all Israel.’(Matt.8:8-10) 

Yeh friends, the servant was healed, not because of his own faith, but because of His master, the centurion’s faith. Jesus was just showing up there the foolishness of His Jewish people who refused to accept t Him for who and what He proclaimed to be, but this supposedly heretic Roman, had no problem with doing so! And He’s doing the same thing today my people; crying out to us to truly believe and have the faith that belief ought to instill in us, but which seems to be sadly lacking! 

Remember the words of the great psalm that we all like to quote: ‘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 days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.’ (Ps.23:1-6) 

Oh my people, how do you think all of that wonderful stuff, those mighty and awesome  promises are going to happen eh? They won’t just fall into our laps like manna from heaven nuh, but we’ve got to believe them and have the faith to expect and do our part to allow them to happen. 

So please my brethren, please let us improve our faith nuh, starting today, RIGHT NOW, both for our sakes and the sake of Jesus’ church, for if we don’t do better very soon, our world will surely fall apart with all the ungodliness and evil that’s currently being foisted upon it. 

And having said all of that, let’s go home declaring (right ho) our Tuesday Mantra, telling the world, loud and clear, who and whose we are. In strong and sincere faith now: ‘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!’ 

And the corollary to that is for us to now go out and share the friendship and LOVE of Jesus with those who don’t know Him, but desperately need to! Much LOVE!

…according to your faith…be it unto you… (Matt.9:29)

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 September 2018 Luke 9:23.

Luke 9:23.   And he (Jesus) 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.

Cooler days are here again! You can bet your bottom dollar on that friends! Come September, the cool weather just explodes on us. Although in these times of climate change who knows what will happen. Yesterday evening though, I noticed that some maple trees in my area have already begun turning brown in preparation for the long, dry, cold, winter months. 

Do they know something that we don’t know! It’s possible. But not to worry, once we’re walking hand in hand with Jesus, we can face anything that comes against us, remember we’re conquerors in His Name! Glory to God! 

And with it being Saturday, let’s take a look at some of the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. Hear this first one: ‘Throw kindness around like confetti.’ 

Mama Mia! And if you’re a sincere follower of Jesus, that is exactly what you ought to be doing, for kindness is, was, and always will be the hallmark of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, and if it’s not in your repertoire of attributes, then you’re not a sincere follower. 

And this next one says: ‘It is better to walk alone, than with a crowd going in the wrong direction.’ And that’s the gospel truth my brethren! You’re certainly better off alone than with the crowd going in the wrong direction. Some of us will remember being cautioned by our parents: ‘Don’t follow the crowd!’ And that’s usually wise advice, for the crowd is usually taking the easy way out, following Lucifer, and doing what they’re not supposed to do. 

So even if you get lonely treading that wise path that leads in the right direction, remember you’re NEVER really alone, because Jesus is ALWAYS with you, faithfully keeping His promises to never leave nor forsake you! Oh, our Jesus is so wonderful! How could we not LOVE Him eh! 

And this next quote reminds us to: ‘Remember, for everything you have lost, you have gained something else. Without the dark, you would never see the stars.’ Likewise friends, if we didn’t have rain, we would never appreciate the sun and its brilliant light. So please try to not focus so much on what you’ve lost, but on what you’ve gained through the loss. (smile) 

Now hear this tongue breaker: ‘One day it just clicks. You realize what’s important and what is not. You learn to care less about what other people think of you and more about what you think of yourself. You realize how far you’ve come and you remember when you thought things were such a mess that you would never recover. And you smile. You smile because you are truly proud of yourself and the person you’ve fought to become.’ 

Glory be for that day my brethren! That’s the day when we truly discover the Lord in our hearts! When we truly surrender our lives to Him and realize that He is ALL that really matters! Wow! What an enlightening day that usually is! 

And this last quote is the basis for our writing today: ‘Sometimes the right path is not the easiest one.’ And that’s no lie my fellow believers! The right path in this life is following Jesus, but hear what He says in our Bit for those who want to follow Him. ‘And he (Jesus) 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.’ 

Now that’s definitely not an easy row to hoe my people! That’s a daily denial of self! Note the young ruler who came to Jesus seeking eternal life. Note his sad, despondent reaction when Jesus told him eternal life would be his, if he sold his many possessions and gave to the poor, then came back and followed him. (Matt.19:16-22)

Unfortunately too many of us feel that way about our earthly possessions. But yuh see what Jesus went through on our behalf? It wasn’t easy for Him, even though He was God in human flesh. Now we most likely won’t go through as much ‘sufferation’ as He did, but we will definitely go through some, most likely more than we desire or care for. (smile) 

And Jesus didn’t mince words on the subject. He very clearly informed the disciples, and consequently all who came after, like us: ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace: In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’ (John 16:33) 

Wow! What reassuring words my breddren! Though He tells us very clearly that we will face trouble in this evil world, we’re not to worry about it, because He has overcome the world with His sacrificial death and resurrection. And even when trials come against us, if we’re sincerely walking with Him, we’ll find peace; the peace of God, which passes all human understanding, that shall keep (guard) our hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.’ (Phil.4:7) 

Yeh friends, that peace is so special, that only true believers in Christ can experience it. Hear how Jesus explains it. ‘Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.’ (John 14:27) Yeh friends, that peace is not of this world, but it comes from the Prince of Peace, so it’s a mighty tool in the lives of believers. 

And we’ll close with some more authoritative words of Jesus, re our Bit. ‘For whosoever will (desires to) save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose (loses) his life for my sake, the same shall save it. For what is a man advantaged (benefited), if he gain the whole world, and lose himself (is destroyed), or be cast away (lost)?’ (Luke 9:24-25) 

Now that’s a very good question friends? Do we want to have all the earthly wealth and lose our eternal soul, be separated from our Triune God in eternity? For all our sakes, I hope not. That means we have to seriously buckle down, and each and every day, pick up our cross and walk with it, the way Jesus did with His, in true obedience to His Father’s will. Much LOVE!

…earthly life might be difficult…but the rewards of eternity with God are certainly worth it…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 June 2018 Acts 12:5.

Acts 12:5.   Peter therefore was kept in prison: but prayer was made without ceasing of the church unto God for him.

Ah friends, an unusually late night produced and unusually late morning. It’s as simple as that! Oh, I was up at a fairly decent hour, but the ole bod screamed shrilly at me: ‘Sleep! I need more sleep!’ So what was I to do eh? Nothing but go back to bed and give the ole bod what it desired. Sometimes it’s wisest to do that, else it will not perform up to the level you need or want it to. 

And having said all of that, I do hope that you all are having a fine, upstanding, godly day. As for me, I’m not doing too badly, still caught up somewhat in the funk of being sick and tired a lot of the time. Oh, I know that this too shall pass with the passing of time, and I’m not overly worried about it, but it’s just handling the apparent slow passing of time. (smile) 

However when I think about the volcanic situations on Big Island in Hawaii, where the lava is slowly taking over, just razing homes to ash and rubble, and that in Guatemala, where the big bang happened all at once and many lives and much property have been lost, I consider myself blessed, in spite of my many problems; problems which pale before theirs. 

And those wildfires in Colorado and New Mexico seem to be still blazing away. So, please, let’s keep all these unfortunate people going through these unfortunate circumstances in our prayers. It’s the least we can do, as true believers. 

And in appropriate conjunction with that, here is a li’l tidbit from one of the Daily Bread Devotionals: ‘The best kind of friend is a praying friend.’ And is that ever so true my people! For since prayers are our basic means of communicating with God, it’s of the utmost importance to have someone else to talk to God on our behalf, especially when we don’t know or understand what’s happening in our own lives. 

And we have an excellent example of that in our Bit. ‘Peter therefore was kept in prison: but prayer was made without ceasing of the church unto God for him.’ 

Yeh friends, Herod killed James, the brother of John, and when he saw that that pleased the Jewish bigwigs, he then locked up Peter, intending to kill him after the Passover. But he did not reckon with the awesome and outstanding power of prayer, which the church unceasingly kept up on Peter’s behalf. 

The Good Book tells it thus: ‘And when Herod would have brought (was about to bring) him forth, the same night Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains: and the keepers (guards) before the door kept the prison. And behold, the angel of the Lord came upon (stood) by him, and a light shined in the prison: and he smote Peter on the side, and raised him up, saying, Arise up quickly. 

And his chains fell off from his hands. And the angel said unto him, Gird thyself, and bind on thy sandals. And so he did. And he saith unto him. Cast thy garment about thee, and follow me. And he went out, and followed him; and wist (knew) not that it was true (real) which was done by the angel; but thought he saw a vision.’ (Acts 12:6-9) 

Hn, hn! Imagine that nuh, Peter didn’t even realize what was really happening, he thought that he was seeing a vision, when he was actually walking out of the jail. And the Good Book continues: ‘When they were past the first and second ward (guard posts), they came unto the iron gate that leadeth into the city; which opened to them of his own accord: and they went out, and passed on through one street; and forthwith the angel departed from him.’ (Acts 2:10) 

Now the scholars offer an interesting explanation of that verse. ‘12:10. The text implies that the guards themselves unwittingly opened the first two gates for Peter, and then through the miraculous hand of God the last gate opened of its own accord (Gr. ‘automate’) or “automatically.” And who says our God is not mighty, powerful and faithful eh? 

And the story continues: ‘And when Peter was come to himself, he said, Now I know of a surety (for certain), that the Lord hath sent his angel, and hath delivered me out of the hand of Herod, and from all the expectation of the people of the Jews.’ (Acts 12:11) 

Yeh friends, Peter eventually realized that a great miracle had taken place, and no doubt such faithfulness of God raised his own faithfulness to an even higher level. What I want us to realize though fellow believers, is that God still does miracles in our lives today, everyday. Please look for, and pay attention to them. 

They might not be as big and spectacular as Peter’s, but miracles are miracles, be they big or small, and we need to notice them when they happen in our own lives, for they truly raise our faith and appreciation of God’s goodness to us. Now let’s go home giving thanks for the miracles of our Thursday Blessings, which God has so generously bestowed on us. 

With sincere thanks and powerful affirmation 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!’ 

And if you truly believe all of that, then the next move is to go out and share it with others, as Jesus so greatly desires. Much LOVE!

…faithfulness to God…brings miracles from God…

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 October 2017 Matthew 4:19.

Matthew 4:19.    And he saith unto them, follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.

Spananananana! Awake oh friends, the bugle calls reveille; time to be up and at them on this glorious Monday morn. (smile) True soldiers can’t afford to sleep in when the battle awaits. So let’s be up and about Jesus’ business! Let’s get in line as He arrays His troops in battle formation, so He can then go before us to reconitre the situation and lay the groundwork for today’s battle. 

What a wily General we follow my fellow believers. There’s NEVER been one like Him; neither will there EVER be another in His class. He is in a class all by Himself. That’s why we follow Him. And for those of us finding it difficult to get ourselves together, here is something to raise our spirits and help us find the energy we need to face the world. 

So in strong voice, let’s proclaim our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. ‘Oh Lord God Almighty, Creator of the universe and all therein! We, your humble servants, praise your Holy Name and thank you that this Monday morning we have jobs to go to; jobs we don’t like, jobs that are unfair, difficult and even dangerous, but which serve a useful purpose here on earth; keeping lives and families together. 

We also thank you Father for the renewed vitality and enthusiasm you’ve wrought in our weary souls over the last two days. It’s that rejuvenation of Spirit which allows us now to sally forth with confidence into the evil, ungodly world that surrounds us, to begin a new week of work, constantly buffeted and bombarded by the enemy’s wicked taunts, wiles and lies. 

But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour. We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle. 

Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’ 

Now we’re cooking friends! I can see us finally coming alive, as a strong sense of purpose rises up in our souls and spirits. That conversation with Jesus has miraculously put us over the top. Now we’re ready to go out and do battle against our evil foes, with Jesus fighting right beside us. 

Glory be, my brethren! What a leader we have! One who doesn’t just send us out to fight His battles, while He remains back at HQ, safe and comfortable, but a leader who fights right alongside of us, in the thick of the fray, all the day and all the way! 

Wow! No wonder we LOVE and admire and exalt Him so much! He is the kind of Leader who brings out the very best in us; truly inspires us to aspire to greater things, when we receive His magnanimous offer, His free gift of salvation and eternal life. What a giant is our Jesus! And a gentle and LOVING one at that too! That means we have everything we need in Him! We need No One or Nothing beside Him! Glory Hallelujah! 

Just look at the unnatural reaction those early disciples had to our Bit. ‘And he saith unto them, follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.’ Peter and his brother Andrew were fishermen and were casting their net into the sea when Jesus passed by and made that offer. And it’s truly interesting to see what happened immediately thereafter. The Good Book tells us: ‘And they straightway left their nets and followed him.’ (Matt.4:20) 

Now why would they just give up their livelihood to follow this, poor, itinerant Rabbi eh? Most of us would not have done something so drastic when there seemed to be no good reason for it. But that’s not the best part of the story. The Good Book continues: ‘And going on from thence, he (Jesus) saw two other brethren, James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, in a ship with Zebedee their father, mending their nets; and he called them. And they immediately left the ship and their father, and followed him.’ (Matt.4:21-22) 

And what would entice four grown men, of apparently sane and sound mind to just give up their successful fishing business to follow a man whom they knew nothing about eh? Who knows, they must have heard something in His voice, or saw something in His demeanour, His heavenly aura might even have overcome their spirits. Or, as the scholars say: ‘The statement in verse 22 that they immediately responded to His call gives us the perfect picture of true obedience to the lordship of Christ.’ 

Yes my fellow believers, our response to Jesus should be immediate. As Uncle Charles (Charles Stanley) likes to say: ‘Obedience is doing what Christ says, when He says and how He says.’ Anything else is disobedience, which will have negative consequences. However friends, in these godless and evil days, the majority of mankind doesn’t seem at all interested in being obedient or obeisant to their Creator. 

That’s obviously not a good sign, for as we said above, disobedience brings negative consequences. And I truly believe that the disasters, natural as well as man-made, that are currently besieging our world is God’s response to our bold-face disobedience. You might not believe me, but the only way to find out is for the majority of us to cease our evil and godless ways, repent, turn back to God and receive His wonderful offer of salvation and eternal life. Now that is wisdom to the nth degree! Much LOVE!

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

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 March 2017 Matthew 6:19.

Matthew 6:19.   Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves break through and steal.

Well a Happy St.Patrick’s Day to you my brethren! I do hope that you all enjoy the luck of the Irish in all that you do today, with your green clothes and green food and drink! (smile) 

And you know what? St. Paddy’s day could not have fallen on a better day than a Friday for the working populace because it gives them even more reason to sing: ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday! St. Paddy’s day to boot! Going to wear me green clothes and drink up me green beer and have a real good time this St. Paddy’s weekend! 

No slave driver to tell me what to do! Just me and mih shamrocks, and mih li’l leprechauns partying all weekend long! Who say we shouldn’t thank God for Fridays and weekends eh?’ 

Ah mih people, can you imagine the raucous behaviour today all over the world, and not only by the Irish diaspora, in celebration of St. Patrick, Ireland’s Patron Saint, credited with bringing Christianity to Ireland? 

What I mostly remember about St.Patrick’s Day growing up in T&T is that it was the one day during Lent we heard calypsos on the radio and you could eat and drink and party hearty. Otherwise, Lent was drink dry and calypso non-existent on the radio. 

I guess to a certain extent that’s why the binge drinking of alcohol is so popular on St. Paddy’s Day. Anyhow friends, regardless of what day it is, binge drinking is never a good idea. So let’s chant our Friday Chant and show them the kind of behaviour that’s most appropriate for the weekend nuh. 

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 mih people, the best way to handle the weekend is with ‘a modicum of circumspection,’ as Jeeves the Butler in the P.G. Wodehouse books would say. 

It’s obvious we can’t take the licentious behaviour to the limit every weekend or else we’d soon waste away and be good for nothing at all. 

But as true believers, we are expected to do God’s work here on earth, which means we cannot let our bodies and minds go to waste by carnal and lustful behaviour. 

That brings us to our Bit, Jesus’ words of everlasting wisdom from His Sermon on the Mount. ‘Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves break through and steal.’ 

But sadly friends, despite that serious warning of Jesus, a lot, too many of us, including Christians, still fall for the lure of worldly wealth and oftimes kill ourselves trying to accumulate it. 

That’s definitely not a wise path to follow my people, for it only leads to death and destruction. Yes my brethren, the purposeful accumulation of worldly wealth can sometimes lead to physical death, but it ALWAYS causes spiritual death, since we can’t serve God and mammon at the same time. 

Listen to these wise words of Cousin Sol from Proverbs. ‘Labour not (do not overwork) to be rich: cease from thine own wisdom. Wilt thou set thine eyes upon that which is not? For riches certainly make themselves wings; they fly away as an eagle toward heaven.’ (Prov.23:4-5) 

And that’s the gospel truth my brethren! It’s much easier to accumulate earthly wealth than to keep it. 

Now let’s look at the interaction between Jesus and a young, rich ruler. He came to Jesus and asked: ‘Good Master (Teacher) what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life? And he (Jesus) said unto him, why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt (want to) enter into life, keep the commandments.’ (Matt.19:16-17) 

The fellow asked Jesus which one? Then Jesus listed the Ten Commandments. ‘The young man saith unto him, all these things have I kept from my youth up: what lack I yet? 

Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be (want to be) perfect, go and sell all that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me. But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful: for he had great possessions.’ (Matt.19:20-21) 

Oh friends, don’t look down scornfully on the young man, because most of us would have behaved the same way. Just look at how much material wealth there is in our world today, but yet the great amount of need and poverty. 

If the rich would just give up a little of their wealth for the benefit of others, there’d be little or no poverty in our world. But the mantra of this world is ‘me, myself and I.’ Steups! It’s all first person singular! 

Anyway, that’s the sermon for today. (smile) But please, let’s ponder on all that we’ve discussed, then ask God for help to come up a little higher each day nuh. That’s the only way to improve our spiritual maturity. Much LOVE!

…be careful…earthly wealth can ruin your heavenly life…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 9 August 2016 Psalm 11:4.

Psalm 11:4.     The Lord is in his holy temple, the Lord’s throne is in heaven: his eyes behold, his eyelids try (test), the children of men.

Well friends, another bright, sunshiny, hot day has blossomed in my neck of the woods! Glory Be!

But the truth of the matter is that we do need some rain, haven’t seen any in ages. We were promised some over the weekend, but nary a drop of heavenly blessings has fallen on the dry, thirsty ground. 

Meanwhile, I understand that T&T is been flooded with heavenly water! Hn! But what to do eh?

Nothing but keep on hoping and praying and having faith that our great God who is in control and has a plan mapped out for the universe, knows what He is doing. He is the wisest of the wise, so it’s only reasonable to assume that He has the situation well in hand. 

Now listen to some inspirational words from a song by the Jamaican Reggae singer Luciano. I’ve always liked it, but I heard it yesterday and was guided to share it. 

‘I took a little trip, trying to find myself, journeying within my soul. It took a little time then to realize that something was not right. How many years are filled without? Guess I supplanted all my doubts. There was no one, no one for me. No one but His holy help for me. 

(Chorus) And I know that, as long as He is my friend, my soul will be secure until the end. And I know that, as long as He is my guide, under His wings of LOVE I will abide. 

My life was filled with thistles and thorns, from the day that I was born. With only my faith to carry me on, through the wind and the storm. He said if you will follow me, take up thy cross and come, forget thyself. Let’s journey into the beyond. 

And I know that, as long as He is my friend, my soul will be secure until the very end. And I know that, as long as He is my guide, under His wings of LOVE, I will survive.’ 

Oh friends, many of us can attest to the truth of that situation! We were lost, then went looking for something or someone to soothe our souls.

And glory hallelujah, we found the Lord God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in all His LOVING-kindness, who encouraged us to take up our cross and follow Him into the great beyond. 

However, one proviso was necessary to do that properly; forget our selves and concentrate on Him, make Him our first priority in this life. And for all of us who accepted that invitation, we’ve been sure and secure in His friendship and guidance ever since! 

And all God’s people declared a loud, proud, and grateful, ‘Praise the Lord for His unfailing kindness to the children of men!’ 

Now let’s back up and strengthen all we’ve said so far by declaring our Tuesday Mantra with heartfelt sincerity and overwhelming truth. 

As one now: ‘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!’ 

Beautiful, my people, beautiful! Now let’s make sure all of that is firmly embedded and entrenched in our souls, because that’s who we are, not what the world says about us! 

And all God’s children declared a loud and confident, ‘Sing Hallelujah to the Lord of all power and glory! For He is mighty within the universe!’ 

And to corroborate our contentions, let’s turn to our Bit, words of Bruh David from Psalm 11 – In the Lord I put my trust. ‘The Lord is in his holy temple, the Lord’s throne is in heaven: his eyes behold, his eyelids try (test), the children of men.’ 

Oh yes my brethren, the Father, the Creator of ALL, sits on His heavenly throne watching and testing us! There’s no way for us to escape His holy attention, to run and hide from His all-pervasive sight.

So what should we do eh? Like Luciano says in his song: forget ourselves, take up our cross and follow the Lord God Almighty into the great beyond! 

It sounds simple, but it’s not easy. It’s not for the weak and frail. But with God’s ever-generous help, even the weak and frail can accomplish it. That just shows the magnanimity of the great God we serve and worship! 

And the scholars comment thus on the matter. ‘Psalm 11. A vision of the Lord on His throne (v.4) is all the righteous need for security in the face of the threat of the wicked (v.2).’ 

Yeh friends, if we picture our great and wonderful God sitting on His heavenly throne, ruling the roost, we ought to feel safe and secure in our souls. Now let’s look at some scripture that detail God’s place in the heaven. Hear Isaiah, as he talks about Zion’s future hope. 

‘Thus saith the Lord, The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool: where is the house that ye build unto me? and where is the place of my rest?

 

For all those things hath mine hand made, and all those things have been (exist), saith the Lord: but to this man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth at my word.’ (Is.66:1-2) 

And the scholars offer this interesting explanation. ‘11:1-16. Isaiah’s final prophecy begins with the assertion, Thus saith the Lord. The passage points to the magnitude and immensity of God, who is greater than the heavens. Thus heaven is His throne and earth His footstool. He is not limited to any house (temple) made by man. 

The apostle John tells us that in eternity there is no need for a temple, “for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it.” (Rev.21:22).

God’s desire is to dwell in men and women who are of a poor and…contrite spirit. Thus Isaiah foresees the New Testament doctrine of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit in the temple of man’s body (1 Cor.6:19) 

Enough for now friends. Let’s ponder it all, as we walk with Jesus today and share his LOVE with the world, as he desires of us. Much LOVE!

…the LOVE of God…makes the world go round…

 

 

 

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