Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 November 2019 Matthew 5:16.

Matthew 5:16.    ​Let your light so shine before men, so that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
 

‘Monday…LOVE it or LEAVE it!’ That’s the advice from a recent panel of the comic strip ‘Mutts.’ And I would say that it’s very good advice, because what other sensible choices do we have eh? None that I can think of. I definitely won’t call the choice that too many of us make, being miserable and frustrated and tired on a Monday as being sensible, especially if you’re a true believer in, and a sincere follower of Christ Jesus, because He definitely gives us the parts, the wherewithal to LOVE Monday when we go to church on Sunday and praise and worship and glorify Him! 

Hn! I like that sentence. It sounds Bruh Paulian. (smile) Why yuh think He says to come to His house every first day of the week eh? It’s because He wants to rejuvenate and refresh us, so that we can go out and brazenly and confidently do His will starting bright and early on Monday, the second day! Ah, but since He created us, nobody knows better than Him how frail and weak we really are. That’s why He gave us the powerful communicating tool called prayer, so we can cry out to Him for help in times of need. And I know that many of us need help this Monday morning to get up and get out to labour. 

So let’s use that most useful and powerful tool named prayer, to inform the Lord of our desperate need for His help this morning nuh. Therefore, with one fervent and sincere voice, let’s float our Monday Morning Battle Hymn up to heaven in confident humility. 

‘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!’ 

And as always, before we’re even finished crying out for help, the Holy Spirit begins moving in our bodies and souls, strengthening and encouraging us, so that we can go out and fight valiantly for Jesus. And that all hinges on these motivating words of Jesus to His disciples. ‘Let your light so shine before men, so that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ Yes friends, it’s all about LOVING Jesus and doing works in His name so that our heavenly Father can be glorified. 

That was also Jesus’ purpose here on earth. Having foretold His betrayal at the Last Supper, and seen Judas go out to do his evil deed, Jesus declared to the other disciples: ‘Now is the Son of man glorified, and God is glorified in him.’ (John 13:31). He was referring there to His death, burial and resurrection, the plan the Father had sent Him to earth to accomplish. But let’s check out some advice from one of those who was there with Christ when He uttered those faithful words nuh. We talking about the stubborn and recalcitrant, hard to handle Peter, who later became such a tower of strength in the early church. 

Listen as he talks about living as servants of God. ‘Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul; Having your conversation (conduct) honest (honourable) among the Gentiles: that whereas they speak against you as evildoers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation.’ (1 Pet. 2:11-12) Oh friends, are the Gentiles seeing our good works in Jesus’ name and thus glorifying God? Not as much as they ought to. But let’s see if we can’t be encouraged to do better by listening to Peter again. 

Hear him talk about being good stewards of God’s grace. ‘ But the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer. And above all things have fervent charity (LOVE) among yourselves: for charity (LOVE) shall cover the multitude of sins. Use hospitality one to another without grudging (grumbling). As every man hath received the gift; even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles (utterances) of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in ALL THINGS may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.’ (1 Pet. 4:7-11) 

Oh my people, the last days are truly upon us, and our world is still in a terrible mess, so let’s use those wise words to  galvanize us to victory in Jesus today nuh! Much LOVE!

…God created the universe…for the express purpose …of His glory…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 18 November 2019 2 Thessalonians 3:3.

2 Thessalonians 3:3.    But the Lord is faithful, who shall stablish (establish) you, and keep you from evil (the evil one).
 

Here we go again friends, the beginning of another work week! I know sometimes we shake our heads, sigh, and wonder if they will ever end. (smile) But the sad truth is that they won’t. They will keep cropping up every seven days, until they drive us crazy and we end up in the loony bin, we just get tired and give up, which, as a believer is not a viable option, or we get too old for the work force and they put us out to pasture, or the last option; the Lord calls us home. Until one or all of those things happen my people, most Monday mornings we will have to arise, whether we like it or not, ofttimes in the dark and in the cold, and join the human throng unhappily headed for a place called work. 

And please remember Bruh Paul’s warning to the Thessalonians, that he who doesn’t work, shouldn’t eat? (2 Thess. 3:10) So I don’t know why we don’t try and plan for it properly, so we’re not disgruntled and frustrated come Monday morning. You know the human spirit can rise above anything  if it really wants to, and if you are a sincere follower of Jesus, He will enable you to get over these weekly Monday morning blues. But as always, just in case you stumble, (smile) we’re here to catch you with our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, the perfect antidote for your ailment. So let’s turn to the most powerful tool in the universe, prayer, to help get our day started right. 

All together now: ‘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!’ 

And yes, precious people of God, before we could even finish praying, the Holy Spirit had already begun working His miracles in our souls and spirits! Wow! What a magnificent and magnanimous God we serve and worship! Please give Him some much deserved thanks and praise because most of us are now ready and able to go out and join the tumultuous fray that’s the working world, on Jesus’ behalf! And the thing we so badly need to remember here friends is that our God is FAITHFUL! Whatever we ask for in sincere belief, He will provide, if it’s within His will or plan for our lives. 

And Bruh Paul reminds us of that most salient and important fact: ‘But the Lord is faithful, who shall stablish (establish) you, and keep you from evil (the evil one).’  No doubt whatsoever about that! And we’re just going to wind down with some scriptures on the Lord’s faithfulness. Bruh Paul mentioned it quite a few times. To the Thessalonians, he also said: ‘Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it.’ (1 Thess. 5:24) 

Then to the Corinthians: ‘God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.’ (1 Cor. 1:9) And also: “There hath no temptation taken (overtaken) you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear (endure) it.’ (1 Cor. 10:13) Then to Timothy: ‘If we believe not (are faithless), yet he abideth faithful: he cannot deny himself.’ (2 Tim. 2:13) 

And it’s most appropriate to close with this compelling verse from Isaiah, re, Israel, the Lord’s servant. ‘Thus saith the Lord, the Redeemer of Israel, and his (its) Holy One, to him whom man despiseth (the despised of soul), to him whom the nation abhorreth, to a servant of rulers, Kings shall see and arise, princess also shall worship, because of the Lord that is faithful, and the Holy One of Israel, and he shall choose (has chosen) thee.’ (Is.49:7). That was all about the coming of the Messiah, and we know that it was fulfilled with the coming of Jesus. 

Yes friends, our God is faithful; He will do whatever He’s promised, but in His own time. Look how long it took for the promised Messiah to come, centuries. But He did come…in God’s good time. I know His timing isn’t usually in concert with ours, but I can assure you, from personal experience, He’s NEVER late! Much LOVE!

…without faith…it is impossible to please…a faithful God…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 November 2018 Revelation 1:3.

Revelation 1:3.   ​Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand.
 
Well friends, it’s another day, and hopefully another dollar …(smile) but unfortunately it’ll be more like twenty-five cents, since the value of the dollar has fallen so much. Anyway, we’re alive and thankful for that glorious fact, regardless of our circumstances. 

 And as the old people would say, what ain’t meet you ain’t pass you nuh…but something interesting met me yesterday. I was already unhappy that I had to go into the city for a second day straight, and some anger coursed through my system as I saw Toronto’s concrete jungle skyline for the second day in a row.

But I reasoned that it was all for my benefit and went along quietly. I got to the hospital shortly after two, for a two thirty appointment, but didn’t leave there until minutes to six. 

But thankfully the Lord’s Spirit was with me and I didn’t get angry or frustrated by the wait. I just read quietly until the dragon lady ophthalmologist was ready to see me. She can be a bit abrasive at times, that’s why I call her that, but she’s really a sweet ole soul, takes a great interest in her work and she LOVES the ole fella everlasting. What’s not to LOVE eh? (smile) 

So I leave the hospital, get down to the train station, get on the six twenty-five, heading west, and everything goes well until three stations out, at Cooksville. Around seven o’clock, as the train is about to enter the station, it suddenly stops short of it. 

Nobody pays much attention to that because most of them are too wrapped up in their I-pads, laptops and smart-phones, with headphones in their ears – not the ole fella though because I don’t have any of those things – I just gaze out at the passing landscape. 

A minute later though, the conductor comes over the p.a. letting us know that a fatality has occurred on the train and we’ll be stopped there for at least two hours, until the coroner and the police have conducted their investigations. 

Well you can imagine the stir that announcement caused, because most of those people were on their way home from work, ostensibly to make the journey back to work the next day, and stealing two hours of their valuable time was like stealing their gold.

But as always, our good Canadian behaviour rose to the occasion! Yayyy! We all settled down and did whatever we could do and waited patiently. 

I’m sure if that had happened in some other countries there would have been a big uproar and possibly people pushing and shoving, trying to get off the train. But here they couldn’t even open the doors because we were on a live track, and who wanted to get off when wet snow was pouring down anyway. Eventually, we got moving some two and a half hours later, and the rest of the trip proceeded uneventfully – at least to my stop. 

And the moral of the story? If you have to ask that, then you’re certainly in bad shape. But I’ll tell you anyhow: It’s that the Grim Reaper can show up suddenly and unexpectedly, at any time, any place, for anyone of us! Therefore, it behooves us to be wise and have our houses in a state of continual readiness so that he won’t’ catch us by surprise and we end up in the wrong place. 

That’s why we have to pay special attention to the words of John in Revelation. ‘Who bare record of the word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and all things that he saw. Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand.’ (Rev.1:2-3) 

Ah friends, we simply refuse to believe that our time is near, nearer than we think. I sure hope that person whose time expired on the train yesterday evening was ready, else they’ll be in for a rude awakening when they end up in the lair of the prince of darkness instead of the light of heaven. 

Now hear the scholars, re those two verses: ‘1:2-3. Bare record: John was a witness of what he wrote. He saw the revelation and wrote what he saw. The blessing of verse 3 has a threefold condition: (1) read the book, (2) hear (understand it), and (3) keep (obey) it.

The essential nature of prophecy was the communication of new truth (divine revelation). God has given it to be obeyed, not simply to be discussed and debated. The time is at hand in the sense that nothing else now has to occur before the Rapture and the beginning of the Tribulation Period.’ 

Oh my people, please, please understand that anything can happen at anytime. And believe me, you’d much rather be amongst those that are Raptured, taken up in the twinkling of an eye, when the last trumpet sounds, (1 Cor.15:52) than those that are left behind to endure the time of serious tribulation! 

That means we have to accept Jesus NOW! For who knows when the Grim Reaper or the Rapture will show up? Nobody but our heavenly Father! And why Jesus? Because He said quite emphatically: ‘I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life: NO MAN cometh unto the Father, but by me.’ (John 14:6) 

Friends, it’s your decision to believe Him or not. But I can assure you of ONE thing; you’ll never darken heaven’s door, unless you accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! End of story! Now for those of us who have already wisely done that, let’s go home telling the world of our position in Christ nuh! In full voice and true sincerity of heart: 

‘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 my, my…just think about it nuh – the gloriousness of heaven…And it will be even more glorious than that! Much LOVE!

…I’m believing that there’s life after death…and putting my money…my hope,,,and my faith on Jesus…oh glory, glory…

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 September 2018 Ecclesiastes 3:12.

Ecclesiastes 3:12.    ​I know that there is no good in them (nothing better for them), but for a man to rejoice, and to do good in his life.

 

Whoever said that yesterday was going to be a ‘riney’ day eh? What a joke! By mid-morning the sun had come out, not in all its glory, but strong enough to make it a sunny day, all day. Luckily too, or rather blessedly, before going for those tests yesterday, I realized that I had done something which would have negated them, so I had to cancel them, and just spent a lazy, hazy fall day at home. (smile) 

Wow! Aren’t those types of days delicious? They surely are. But like everything else in life, we can’t have them too often else the sheen, the ‘delicioso’ will wear off and they’ll become routine and mundane. What words of wisdom my brethren! The ole fella’s waxing philosophical this morning. Hn! 

And here is an interesting li’l prayer I recently got from a Daily Bread Devotional. ‘Please pray with me: ‘Father in heaven, please help us to remember that anything that frightens us comes with an invitation to find the strength of knowing and trusting you.’ Now that’s a most important fact to remember friends! Whenever we’re afraid, we have an open invitation to run to our Father and cling to Him and thereby receive the strength and trust inherent in His awesome power! Glory to God! 

It’s just like when a young child is walking with his or her parents and anything along the way frightens them, they quickly run and grab on to one of their parents because they know that there is strength and security to be found in them. Our situation with our heavenly Father is no different. And we’d be extremely foolish not to use the amenities He’s provided for our well-being. 

So having said all of that, what’s next eh? I really don’t know. (smile) But as always, wisdom dictates; when in doubt, check the Good Book. Give me a minute to do that and see where the Lord leads us… 

And talk about faithfulness! Our God is truly ever-faithful! I randomly opened the Good Book a minute ago, and lo and behold it opened unto Ecclesiastes 3, the famous chapter where Cousin Sol, writing as the Preacher, talks about a time for everything. 

And there I saw this most inspiring and reassuring declaration. ‘I have seen the travail (task or endeavour) which God hath given to the sons of men to be exercised in it (with which to be occupied). He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath set the world (eternity) in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh (does) from the beginning to the end.’ (Eccl.3:10-11) 

And the scholars explain that last verse thus: ‘3:11: The world is better translated “eternity.” God has given man a desire for eternity and perpetuity; therefore man cannot be satisfied with what is merely temporal. Man’s quest for the eternal, however, is frustrated by his finite limitations.’ 

And that might very well be so my brethren, but nonetheless, as Cousin Sol acknowledges in our Bit: ‘I know that there is no good in them (nothing better for them), but for a man to rejoice, and to do good in his life.’ 

Yes friends, our God made us to enjoy the beauty and fulsomeness of his universe, not to suffer incessantly in an evil world. We do have to endure some suffering and some testing to build our faith, but overall the Lord wants His people to have joyful lives and earnest and wonderful communication with Him, else why would He make all that beautiful stuff in the universe eh? 

And Cousin Sol continues: ‘And also that every man should eat and drink, and enjoy the good of all his labour, it is the gift of God.’ (Eccl.3:13) And indeed enjoying the fruit of our labour is God’s gift to us. Note though, he said, ‘our labour,’ not someone else’s! (smile) 

That reminds us of Jesus statement that ‘I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.’ (John 10:10b) Yes my brethren, throughout the Good Book we see that the Lord fully intended for us to enjoy His universe, it’s just that our natural desire to embrace sin and its evil ways that has derailed us. 

And I want to point out an important point in our Bit; we are not only called to rejoice, but even more importantly to do good! It’s all a part of enjoying the fruit of our labour, and generally speaking, our labour won’t bear much good fruit if we don’t sprinkle it with good doings. 

Listen to this heartwarming story the apostles tell about Jesus. ‘How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power, who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.’ (Acts 10:38) 

Yes my faithful followers of Christ, God is also with us: we have His Holy Spirit dwelling within us, and also the power that Christ had, thus to be truly Christ-like, we also have to go out and do good. And why do you think we’ve been as extremely blessed as we are eh? It’s so that we can do good by sharing them. Now let’s go home declaring (spelled it right, glory to God!) our Thursday Blessings, showing the world what can also be theirs if they embrace Jesus. 

All together in strong voice, with sincere hearts: ‘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!’ 

What a blessed life we live my brethren! Now let’s go out and share it with the less fortunate, as Jesus desires of us. Much LOVE!

…half the joy in having blessings…lies in sharing them…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 September 2018 Lamentations 3:21.

Lamentations 3:21.   This I recall to mind, therefore have I hope.

Aye friends, yuh ever wake up in the morning and just feel tired, exasperated and frustrated with mankind? Well that’s the way I feel this morning. Before I begin writing the Bit, I usually take a gander at the news headlines to get some idea of what’s happening around the world…

And…oh Lord…it’s only strife, anger, war, resentment and hatred! Nothing uplifting! Unless the newsmongers don’t consider anything uplifting to be news! But it’s just so much confusion and ‘cantankerousness’ that it leaves the spirit longing for the day the Lord shuts it all down. 

But yuh know what? It’s Friday, and it’s the big-wigs who are causing all the heartache, but the workingman does have something to say that will bring a chuckle to the soul and lift the spirit some. ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday! And though the summer finish and school start back, and the long holiday weekends done for now, we still going to have a good time on the weekends! 

Why? Because that’s the only time we have to have a good time! The rest of the week we labouring for massa for piddling, can’t make ends meet wages. So when we get the chance, come hell or high water, we certainly going to party for so, and say, ‘In yuh face massa! Stop we now nuh! But he can’t! That’s why we have to say Thank God for Fridays and weekends yes!’ 

Ah friends, there’s a certain kind of earthiness in the workingman that you can’t beat. He just lays it out there bare, fair and square. Meanwhile we, the supposed intelligentsia, make such a fuss, have so many unnecessary hang-ups, that we make our own lives more difficult than they need to be. 

Yes, the workingman does tend to go too far out on the limb, but he wears his emotions on his sleeve. Hopefully, we believers are a li’l more cautious, but still capable of real and true emotion, and show it when it’s necessary. And right now is one of those times, as we declare our Friday Chant with as much enthusiasm as the workingman sang his song. 

All together now:  ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen!’ 

Yes friends, our intentions are different from the workingman, but our enthusiasm for the things of Jesus should be just as great, if not greater! And I’m chuckling here mih people, because I don’t know where all of this is leading to, but the Lord must have a purpose for it all. Let’s see if we can find it…

Glory to God, I found it! I just opened the Good Book and it opened right to the page with these immortal words of Jeremiah in his soulful Lamentations. ‘He hath filled me with bitterness, he hath made me drunken with wormwood. He hath also broken my teeth with gravel stones, he hath covered me with ashes. And thou hast removed my soul far off from peace: 

I forgat prosperity (good). And I said, My strength and my hope is perished from the Lord: Remembering mine affliction and my misery, the wormwood and the gall (bitterness). My soul hath them still in remembrance, and is humbled (bowed down) in me.’ (Lam.3:15-20) 

Ah mih breddren, Jeremiah did have a pretty rough time in trying to bring his people to the Lord. But yuh know what? In his reminiscence, he rightly and sagely concludes. ‘This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope. It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning; great is thy faithfulness. 

The Lord is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him. The Lord is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him. It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the Lord. It is good for a man that he bear the yoke in his youth.’ (Lam.3:21-28) 

And Jeremiah did bear the Lord’s yoke in his youth, as did many of us believers. So friends, even though we might be going through a pretty difficult time, there’s no reason to get discouraged and give up, because as Jerry says, the Lord is good to those who seek Him and wait on Him. 

And later on he further declares: ‘For the Lord will not cast off for ever: But though he cause grief, yet will he have compassion according to the multitude of his mercies. For he doth not afflict willingly (with delight), nor grieve the children of men.’ (Lam.3:31-33) Yeh, friends, though our God is a God of justice, He is also a God of great mercy; He does not take delight in afflicting us. He will punish us for our sins, but nowhere near what we deserve. 

So please, I implore us this Friday morning, to not give up, even though you may not see a way out of your troubles. Remember that our God is the Creator of the universe and He ALWAYS finds a way. So put your trust and hope in Him, hang in there, and eventually, in His time and manner, He will lift the burdens from your soul. He has done it for countless other saints. He will do it for you too…just have faith and hang in there. Much LOVE!

…if the Lord gave His Son’s sinless life for our sinful souls…why would he withhold anything else from us eh…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 December 2014 Matthew 6:24

Matthew 6:24. No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and LOVE the other; or else he will hold to (be loyal to) the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon (riches).

And once again we’ve come full circle to that blessed day called Monday! Oh what a joy!
 
No Friends, I’m not crazy. We might as well put a positive spin on things, especially since we can’t control nor change them, otherwise we’ll just drown ourselves in a cesspool of negativity. Being positive and proactive will at least allow us to get through the ordeal that Monday is for some of us, without too many fears and tears.
 
We have to get up and go out and labour, so we might as well do ourselves a favour by doing it with a positive mindset. The grumbling and complaining won’t help it anyway, just get us more anxious and frustrated.
 
So let’s get to our anthem right away nuh, let’s blast out our Monday Morning Battle Hymn on this cold, clear Monday, now known as Cyber Monday, targeting on-line sales. And I won’t even touch that one this morning, (smile) I’ve heard enough about Black Friday. As far as I’m concerned, Cyber Monday can go where it belongs, straight down to Hades, taking Black Friday with it! The consumerism is just getting to be a bit much.
 
So let’s come out with guns blazing as we burst into song. All together as one harmonious voice now: ‘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!’
 
Wonderful Friends, that was wonderful! Both heaven and earth were singing along with us. That ought to get us rocking and a rolling now, so that we can handle anything that comes against us.
 
And life is so full of surprises and miracles, what do you think I saw as soon as I turned on my computer? Hn, hn! A big sign advertising Cyber Monday! Ah Lord eh! I just had to laugh. What else could I do?
 
Enough of that though, let’s get to our Bit, which addresses that conundrum of consumerism versus Almighty God. ‘No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and LOVE the other; or else he will hold to (be loyal to) the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon (riches).
 
And have you noticed Friends, that this Bit came up just in time for all the sales and bargains nonsense? I guess the Lord was trying to tell us something; you can’t take such pleasure in material things and worship me at the same time.
 
And James addresses that question, quite simply and straightforwardly: ‘Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that friendship of (with) the world is enmity with God? Whosoever therefore will be (wants to be) a friend of the world, is the enemy (makes himself the enemy) of God.’ (James 4:4)
 
And the scholars explain that quite succinctly. ‘4:4. As Israel was a spiritual adulteress, unfaithful to God, so the church is a spiritual adulteress when she is the unfaithful bride of Christ (cf. Hos.2:5, 19-20, Matt.12:39). One cannot be both a LOVER of God and a LOVER of the world.’
 
And that’s exactly what we’ve been trying to say all along my brethren!
 
And we’ll end with these oh so important words of John on the subject, that of First LOVE. ‘I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one.
 
LOVE not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man LOVE the world, the LOVE of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth forever.’ (1 John 2:14-17) That’s all gospel truth my people!
 
Now hear some explanations from the scholars. ‘2:12-14. John addresses different groups and assures them of their steadfastness in the true faith, contrary to many of those with whom this letter must deal. Little children, fathers, young men, and so on, may refer to actual age groups. Or it may have reference to spiritual maturity or level of responsibility in the fellowship, for example, to new Christians being ‘children.’
 
‘2:15. LOVE not the world is a command implying that action now in progress must cease: “Stop LOVING the world!” There is, of course, one sense in which Christians should LOVE the world, since God Himself did and does (John 3:16). But in the sense of pledging personal loyalty and devotion of one’s whole being and means, Christians are to “LOVE” God first and foremost (Deut. 6:5; Mark 12:30.’
 
‘2:16. World for John signifies the evil desire and sin so much a part of human existence. Temptation: Though all people are tempted differently according to their individual weaknesses, temptations follow patterns. They appeal to three fundamental areas of life: (1) the lust of the flesh (physical desires). (2) The lust of the eyes (personal desires); and (3) the pride of life (self interests).
 
Illustration: When Satan caused the fall of the race, he appealed to each of those areas of weakness Gen.3:6). He also appealed to them when he tempted Christ (Matt.4:1-11), who defied Satan’s temptations by relying on the authority of the Scriptures.
 
Application: The Christian today should also depend on the Scriptures to defeat temptation. (First Reference, Gen.3:1-6; Primary Reference, 1 John 2:15-17; cf. Rom.5:12.)  
 
Oh Friends, for our own sakes, please lets take all of that stuff seriously nuh, else we’ll just get caught up in the pollution and ungodliness of the world, which will eventually cause us much heartache and pain. Much LOVE!
 
…the world should not be our idol…Jehovah God should reign first and foremost in our hearts… 
 
P.S. It’s somewhat long (smile) but very instructional and applicable to our lifestyles today. Much LOVE!

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 July 2014 John 21:22

John 21:22.   ‘Jesus saith unto him, If I will (desire) that he tarry (remain) till I come, what is that to thee? follow thou me.’  
 
‘Just one of those days, just one of those days…’

 
Yes Friends, it was just one of those days, or rather nights, when impulsively, and some may say foolishly, I was lured by the sweet song of the summer siren on to my front porch late last night, until after 1 a.m. And what was I doing out there at that late hour?
 
Why, simply enjoying the cool, fresh morning air, eating watermelon and playing games on the Duchess’ I-pad, watching the lightning flash around me, listening to the thunder roll ominously, communing with my wonderful God, until the rain finally began falling. Mama Mia! And I might have been out there even later if the rain hadn’t begun blowing in on me. (smile)
 
And when I did get to bed, this time lulled by the sweet song of the falling rain, I obviously didn’t have the parts to resist the temptation to sleep in until after six o’clock this morning. And that’s my story…and I’m sticking to it! (smile)
 
Yeh mih people, I’ve promised myself to enjoy this summer, come hell or high water, for who knows how many more I’ll see eh? And as far as I’m concerned the weather’s been most excellent; not too hot, with a cool breeze blowing most of the time, thus making the need for air conditioning unnecessary.
 
Although I’m not doing anything terribly exciting, simply enjoying the days as they pass by, with a deep peace in my soul, doing what I can and not worrying about what doesn’t get done, waiting with hungry hope and expectant faith, trusting the Lord to work everything out in His own time and in His own way.
 
And my fellow believers that is exactly where a lot of us fall down; we’re eager to do stuff, but we can’t wait for God’s timing. Unfortunately we fall for the world’s now for now folly, its need for constant busyness, and therefore rush to do whatever it is, outside of God’s timetable. Obviously our plans fail or falter, and then we get frustrated and miserable.
 
Trust me Friends, for I certainly know of wherewith I speak from loads of personal experience. (smile) There are all sorts of things that I’ve wanted to do, and thinking it was God’s will, set out to do them, only to realize that it wasn’t yet on His schedule. Now there are some that I’m still hoping to do, but am playing it, or trying to play it cool right now, expectantly watching and eagerly waiting to see how God’s plan for my life unfurls.
 
Oh Friends, there are too many good things He’s put in my heart, that never to allow them to come to fruition would be a total repudiation of His Word, re to give me the desires of my heart. And I know that our wonderful God will NEVER allow His word to be repudiated.
 
As He says in Isaiah: ‘So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void (without fruit), but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.’ (Is.55:11)
 
And all God’s children sang out with a loud, lusty and joyful, ‘Praise the Lord for His LOVING-kindness to the children of men!’ 
 
So my brethren, if today you find yourself in a similar spot, just rearing to go on some project that God’s placed in your heart, please be careful, talk to Him and make sure that it’s His time for it, because if it isn’t, you’ll only end up disappointed, and even begin doubting or struggling with your faith.
 
Now that doesn’t mean you have to go to the other extreme and rest on your fanny, conveniently using the excuse that it’s not God’s time. (smile) Don’t worry, I struggle with that too. Everyday I ask Him whether what I sometimes consider laziness or lethargy in not doing certain things is His will?
 
For whenever I plan to do some things which to me need doing, other things just seem to crop up and overshadow them, and I’m left wondering whether it was my fault, or simply God’s mysterious moving.
 
The important thing though my people, is not to worry. Be obviously concerned, and keep talking to God about whatever is happening, but never, never worry, for worrying won’t help, but often makes matters worse.
 
Ah mih breddren, regardless of what some may say, please be assured that our God is a great and wonderful God; most excellent in compassion, mercy, forgiveness and LOVE! He’ll never lead us astray, and above all, He keeps His promises!
 
So whatever He’s sincerely promised, He WILL deliver, He WILL fulfill, but we need to work in consort with Him, not He with us, for remember, He is the Boss, our Creator, Provider, Guide and Strong Tower.
 
And now that I’ve written all of that from the heart, guided by the Holy Spirit, let me go and find a Bit that will fit it. (smile) Soon come.
 
Oh Friends, I’m back in less than five minutes, with a Bit that fits. Now listen up closely. ‘Jesus saith unto him, If I will (desire) that he tarry (remain) till I come, what is that to thee? follow thou me.’
 
In other words, mind your own business. Don’t look too closely at what I’m doing in the lives of others, simply concentrate on what I’m trying to do through you.
 
That was just one of the many times that Jesus rebuked Peter. It occurred after He’d asked Peter three times, if he LOVED Him, got an affirmative reply each time, then each time told Peter to feed his sheep. (John 21:15-19)
 
The Good Book then informs us: ‘Then Peter, turning about, seeth the disciple whom Jesus LOVED, (John) following; which also leaned on his breast at supper, and said, Lord, which is he that betrayeth thee? Peter seeing him, saith to Jesus, Lord, and what shall this man do (what about this man)? Jesus saith unto him, If I will (desire) that he tarry (remain) till I come, what is that to thee? follow thou me.’ (John 21:20-22) 
 
But as is often the case, though we hear the same words, we often interpret them differently, for the Good Book continues: ‘Then went this saying abroad among the brethren, that that disciple should not die: yet Jesus said not unto him, He shall not die; but, If I will (desire) that he tarry (remain) till I come, what is that to thee? This is the disciple which testifieth of these things, and wrote these things: and we know that his testimony is true. (John 21:23-24)
 
Yuh see Friends, the amazing power of jealousy and envy and gossip? Apparently John was one of the few, if not the only one not to consider Jesus’ statement as meaning that He wouldn’t die.
 
And we’ll end with an interesting explanation from the scholars. ’21:20-23. Perhaps John added this account to counteract a commonly believed notion that Jesus had predicted that John would not die. He did outlive all of the other disciples. In fact, all of the others were probably dead by the time John wrote this beloved gospel in about A.D. 85’
 
Ah my fellow believers, it’s obvious to us today that Jesus never meant that John should never die, but in the simple, uneducated minds of those early disciples, especially after seeing all the miracles Jesus performed, that was certainly a possibility.
 
All Jesus was saying to Peter, and to us, is what 3 Canal so wisely and to the point say in their song: ‘Mind yuh business, mind yuh own business, seek your own interest, stop minding (other) people’s business… And if you ent have no business, well yuh better find a business, seek yuh own interest and stop minding people’s business, mind yuh own business…. Yuh too darm farse…’
 
Ah Friends, Jesus could not have put it any better. (smile) And if we’d only follow that wise formula, all our lives would be so much better; less frustrating, and not fraught with the envy, jealousy and resentment that now cloud them.
 
Those words, my people, slang-like though they may be, are indeed full of godly wisdom. Let’s follow them nuh… provided we want to live better lives. Much LOVE!
 
…the Lord has different plans for different lives…it’s not our job or purpose to question them…just to follow His plan for OUR LIFE…