Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 September 2018 Psalm 8:1.

Psalm 8:1.    O Lord our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth! who hast set thy glory above the heavens.
 

‘Monday, Monday! Oh how I LOVE thee! Let me count the ways!’ Ah friends, the ole fella’s not crazy, just somewhat eccentric. (smile) There’s just something I like about Mondays – it hints at new beginnings, new possibilities. Like you’ve wrapped up one section over the weekend, and another is about to start on Monday’s. 

Hn! The problem with some of us is that we don’t like new beginnings or possibilities, because they upset the status quo, and the human animal dislikes change, doesn’t want his or her life to be uprooted or turned topsy-turvy too often. 

On the other hand, Monday reminds some of us of the same old, same old; the same old work drudgery, endless traffic jams, crowded sidewalks and elevators, and slaving for never enough money to make ends meet, with little or no job security, and sometimes at more than one job too.

That obviously will not make you a happy camper, but you don’t have much choice, so you’ll just have to grin and bear it and hope that with time, and God’s help, it will improve…and substantially too.  

And that brings us to our mother, or father’s li’l helper (smile) our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. Ah friends, it’s only simple prayer; but remember that prayer is the most powerful force in the universe, and it’s also our main method of communicating with the Creator of that universe. So if we pray the right way, for the right things, under the right circumstances, we’re guaranteed that our prayers will be answered. 

And our Monday Morning Battle Hymn meets all of those conditions, that’s why it works…every time! So let’s get down to brass tacks here now nuh, and declare it in unison, with heartfelt sincerity. ‘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 I can see by the brightening of your countenance and the new spring in your step that our antidote for all Monday ills worked! Glory to our great God! That’s why Bruh David could shout out our Bit from Psalm 8: ‘O Lord our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth! who has set thy glory above the heavens.’ 

Ah friends, the Creator of our universe is indeed a mighty Deity, but also one overflowing with  tender LOVE! Listen to Bruh David later on in Psalm 8: ‘When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained; what is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest (pay attention to, or care for) him?

For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour. Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands; thou hast put all things under his feet.’ (Ps.8:3-6) 

And right in those few words my brethren, we have the basic essence of our universe: the great spiritual Being we call God created it for His pleasure, spoke it into being through the power of His words. Then He created us from the dust of the ground and His breath of life so that we could have sincere communion with Him. 

Note how important we are to Him, that He made us just a little lower than His heavenly host, but way above and in charge of all His other creations. And all He has done, is doing, and will do on our behalf stems from His great and wonderful, unconditional and never-ending LOVE for us! 

Consequently, the psalmist could declare that all creation ought to praise the Lord. ‘Praise the Lord from the earth, ye dragons (sea creatures), and all deeps: Fire, and hail; snow, and vapour; stormy wind fulfilling his word. Mountains, and all hills; fruitful trees, and all cedars: Beasts, and all cattle; creeping things, and flying fowl: Kings of the earth, and all people; princes, and all judges of the earth:

Both young men, and maidens; old men, and children: Let them praise the name of the Lord: for his name alone is excellent (exalted); his glory is above the earth and heaven. He also exalteth the horn (strength or dominion) of his people, the praise of all his saints; even the children of Israel, a people near unto him. Praise ye the Lord (shout Hallelujah!)’ (Ps.148:7-14) 

Yes friends, the entire universe ought to praise and exalt our gracious, merciful, mighty and LOVING God! Unfortunately my brethren, that’s not the way it is in our depraved world, so let’s go out and do our best to make it so nuh, because if we don’t, who else will eh? Much LOVE!

…O Lord our Lord…how excellent is thy name…in all the earth… (Ps.8:9)

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 September 2018 Hebrews 12:2.

Hebrews 12:2.​     …who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame…

I don’t understand it nuh people. I went to bed around one this morning feeling fairly decent, but got up at seven with pains raging through the ole bod. Steups! I thought sleep and rest were the panacea for such ills, not the ‘bringer on’ of them. (smile) But what can you do eh, but grin and bear it? I guess it’s all a part of our earthly faith walk. The Lord doesn’t want us to get too relaxed and contented, so He tests us as soon as we get up. 

And yuh know what mih breddren? We going to pass that test; pass it with flying colours to boot! And with the Lord’s help too! Because that’s the wonderful kind of God He is: He not only gives us the tests, but also gives us the wherewithal to pass them! Glory to our Most High God! There’s none other like Him! And it looks like the wicked windstorm that rampaged through Southern Ontario yesterday has now quietened down. 

Oh friends, all day yesterday, into the late hours of the night, the wind just raced through the place, causing damage and power outages in several areas. Up around the capital city of Ottawa, they even had a tornado. Hn! I sat down on my bed and watched the wind just tear through the poor trees all day long. Had them dancing a merry, tiresome jig. But the trees were strong. Many times I thought they would fall, but they stood up strong, and this morning they seem none the worse for wear. 

Now that’s the way we Christians ought to be my brethren; stand up strong and steadfast to all the adversity that comes against us, especially when we have the Creator’s faithful promise to stand with us through thick and thin! 

And since it’s Saturday, it means we have to look at the quotes sent to us this week by our friend Anselm, who sincerely aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. I don’t know what’s happening with him, but this week, we only got one quote from him again. However, it is an interesting quote, which says: ‘Shame hates to have words wrapped around it. If we talk about it, it loses its grip on us.’ And that’s generally true. 

But friends, shame is possibly the second biggest problem we believers face, except for fear. The enemy uses fear and shame to quench our brightly burning lights that are supposed to shine in God’s favour. And way too many Christians fall prey to the falsehood of shame. 

And here is a perfect example of it. I know a Christian family that is going through some relational problems. One member of the family is acting up, his addiction causing him to behave very wild and irrational. I went to visit them earlier this week, but unfortunately what I took away from the talk and the visit is that shame over the family member’s behaviour is overwhelming. 

And though they talk about praying and all the other believer’s tools, they are still in too much of a feeling sorry for themselves mood, thinking too much about what will happen to them. Their faith hasn’t risen to the top like it should. Oh I know you must consider those things, but your faith is supposed to help you come up over them. And yes, your family member is making a fool of himself, and you deeply regret it, and are concerned, but you didn’t do anything to be ashamed of. 

What others think seems to be of paramount importance. But who really cares what others think eh? They have the same problems and sometimes worse! I have always been somewhat irked at that behaviour. If I didn’t do something, why should I clothe myself in shame eh? It’s just the devil’s work! But hear the worst part of the story, in my opinion. 

Now I know they are short on money, and they know that I know that, but yet when I offered some to help tide them over, the mother refused it. And when I asked why, she claimed that it made her ashamed. And that with a disabled child to look after and only one family member working. Chuh! It hurt my heart. And though I argued some about it, with words like you can’t eat shame or pay your bills with it, I quickly realized that it was a matter best left alone. 

Oh my people, how can you turn down a few dollars from a close friend when you are in dire straits because of that foolish and senseless word called shame eh? I know what it is to be hungry and in need, and sometimes it’s an affront to refuse a friend’s help in those situations. But you can’t legislate the behaviour of other folks. 

And to end we’ll just highlight two instances where shame played a great role in the Good Book. The first is the first instance of it in the world, with Adam and Eve after they ate the forbidden fruit. ‘And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked, and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons (girding coverings).’ (Gen.3:7) Then when the Lord came looking for them later on, they were afraid and hid. Why? ‘…because I was naked…’ (Gen.3:10) 

Yuh see friends, before their eyes were opened, there was no shame, no reason to hide from God, but once the enemy intervened, they became ashamed of their nakedness. And then there is this magnificent verse from Hebrews containing our Bit: ‘Looking unto Jesus the author (originator) and finisher (perfector) of our faith: who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.’ (Heb.12:2) 

Yes friends, there couldn’t be anything more shameful to a Jewish man than being crucified butt naked in front of the whole world! If he had seriously considered the shame involved in His crucifixion, He wouldn’t have done it. But for our sake, and the wonderful rewards that awaited Him, Jesus threw out the thing called shame and went to the cross like it was nothing. 

Likewise friends, we ought to get rid of, overcome the twin deaths of fear and shame and take up our crosses as positively as Jesus did, and march on to victory in His awesome and holy name! That’s what being a true believer in, and follower of Christ means! Much LOVE!

…shame is just fear in disguise…

 

    

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 September 2018 1 Timothy 6:12.

1 Timothy 6:12. ​   Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast pro​fessed (confessed) a good profession (confession) before many witnesses.

 

One more time unto the breach, dear friends, one more time! Yeh, I’ve got another medical appointment this morning, that’s why the Bit is so early again. The good thing though is that I don’t have to go into Toronto, it’s just some diagnostic testing not too far down the street from me. 

But I do have to fast for it, and fasting, or rather forced fasting and I are not the best of friends. The ole stomach is here growling away on me, calling for food, but I still have a few hours to go until I can grant it its request. (smile) But as they say, it’s all for my benefit. So just suck it up, grin and bear it! 

That brings us to this bit of good advice attributed to James J Corbett (1866-1933), the American Heavyweight fighter, better known as ‘Gentleman Jim.’ He advises: ‘Fight one more round. When your feet are so tired you have to shuffle back to the centre of the ring, fight one more round.’ And that from someone who knows what He’s talking about through personal experience! 

Yes my brethren, that’s what we Christians are called to do; fight one more round, even though we feel at the point of exertion, be it physical, mental or emotional. Oh, I know many of us are tired, what with all our personal problems, including health, wealth and friendship matters, but as believers, we’re not supposed to give up. Giving up doesn’t exist in Jesus’ vocabulary. 

And further still, they say that the darkest hour is the one just before the dawn, so if you’re seeing what you consider a very dark hour, please believe that relief is right around the corner. Remember the mind is the most powerful tool in the world, and what we believe we can achieve. We have to use what resources we possess to our best advantage and keep on keeping on. 

As Bruh Paul cautioned Timothy in his first missive: ‘But thou, O man of God, flee these things (LOVE of money, hurtful lusts, material wealth.); and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, LOVE, patience, meekness. Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast pro​fessed (confessed) a good profession (confession) before many witnesses.’ 

And as the scholars say of our Bit: ‘6:12. The good fight concerns the daily struggle with sin in the Christian life, and the hardships and adversities in the ministry. A genuine believer demonstrates the reality of his faith by being engaged in this warfare. Lay hold on eternal life does not negate the fact that a believer now possess spiritual life (John 3:36); rather, it speaks of fully realizing or appropriating salvation as the believer matures.’ 

Ah mih breddren being a true believer in Jesus Christ is not easy, but since we have declared ourselves to be true believers, we have to just keep on keeping on. And it’s not like we don’t have ample resources and encouragement, assurance and help to fight our earthly battle. We do! Namely all the resources granted to us as believers in Jesus Christ; the biggest and most important ones being salvation and eternal life. 

As the Good Book declares: ‘He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth (remains) on him.’ (John 3:36) Oh friends, that provision alone ought to be enough to encourage us to stand strong and live and defend our faith. Which other faith has that sure promise eh…with the sacrifice, and resurrection of Christ to back it up eh? NONE! 

And then we have so many other promises of God, who has a good plan for every life, with a hope and good future. He’s also promised never to leave nor forsake us; to hear our prayers and pleas when we diligently and sincerely seek Him; to bring us out of the fire unscorched; to take us safely through the flood, and most of all grant us a Deliverer, a Messiah, one to sacrifice and atone for our sins, which He did through His only Son Jesus Christ becoming flesh and offering His sinless life upon the cross at Calvary so that our sins could be washed white as snow. 

Glory to God my people! For He has done all that He’s promised, and if we do what we’re supposed to do, then He will do the rest. The Lord will not do it all for us. He requires us to put in an effort on His behalf, since we’re partners in this New Covenant. So though life might be dark, dreary and difficult, we do have all the tools necessary to fight the good fight. 

And hopefully, at the end of our days, we’ll all be able to proudly say like Bruh Paul did to Timothy: ‘I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course (race), I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that LOVE his appearing.’ (2 Tim.4:7-8) 

Yes mih breddren, what a joyful day that will be! But until then, let’s keep fighting the good fight nuh, and as a promise of our faithful intentions, go home declaring our Wednesday Wail, letting the world know our current position in Christ. All together now, let’s wail: ‘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 the future will be even more glorious than our puny minds can imagine. So think on that nuh! Much LOVE!

…when life gets difficult…consider our rewards in heaven…and the glorious future promised us there…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 12 July 2018 Lamentations 3:22-23.

Lamentations 3:22-23.   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.

Ah friends, I thought when one went to bed, one was supposed to wake up feeling fresh and strong and revitalized? So why is it when I get up these days I’m tired and full of more pain than when I went to bed eh? Does that only happen to me? Chuh! It just defeats the purpose of going to bed. (smile) 

And I really don’t want to have to continually be taking painkillers, because they cause their own set of problems. So we’ll just have to grin and bear it and move along as best we can with the Lord’s help and daily compassion. Oh yes, it’s still compassion time! That’s the Lord’s decree, not mine! 

And Jeremiah said it best: ‘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.’ 

Ah mih breddren, I don’t know about you all nuh, but right now I’m waiting for some of that new compassion and mercy to kick in in my life, especially my ole bod, that will enable me to go about doing the Lord’s work with definitely more strength and enthusiasm than I now feel. But enough about me, let’s turn to the scriptures.  

And hear this first scripture for today on compassion. It deals with Jesus healing two blind men. As Jesus passed by, they cried out to Him; ‘Have mercy on us, O Lord, thou son of David. And the multitude rebuked them (told them to keep quiet), because they should hold their peace; but they cried out the more, saying, Have mercy on us, O Lord, thou son of David. 

And Jesus stood still, and called them, and said, What will ye that I shall do unto you? They say unto him, Lord, that our eyes may be opened. So Jesus had compassion on them, and touched their eyes: and immediately their eyes received sight, and they followed him.’ (Matt.20:30-34) 

Oh what a wonderful person is our Jesus! And friends, yuh see there another essential trait of Jesus: He was never too busy to stop and help others. It’s something that we modern day believers ought to acquire too. We claim we’re so busy nowadays, but half the time we’re busy doing nothing, or busy doing inconsequential stuff when more important stuff is there to be done. 

Now listen to Jude, Jesus’ half brother on the subject. ‘But ye beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying by the Holy Ghost. Keep yourselves in the LOVE of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life. And of some have compassion, making a difference (distinction) And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted (defiled) by the flesh.’ (Jude 20-23) 

And the scholars offer these explanations on those verses. ’20. The antidote for error is not simply to pull back from wrong but also to be built up in what is right, especially through clinging to God in prayer.’ 

’21. Here Jude stresses our role in being kept. In verse 1 he has already used a form of the same word ‘preserved’, most likely to denote God’s own role and ability in “keeping” His children in His grasp. Jude expects a literal return of Jesus.’ 

’22-23. An important factor in keeping one’s own faith active and vibrant is exercising it serving others. Even where there is danger or extreme immorality involved, God call on believers to mediate His LOVE for the fallen and share the gospel with the lost.’ 

Hope those explanations are helpful in understanding Jude’s words. And isn’t it interesting how Jesus’ two brothers, James and Jude did not believe Him while He was here on earth, but became faithful believers after He left. I guess that’s a most pertinent example of God’s saying through Zechariah: ‘Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the Lord.’ (Zech.4:6b) 

And this last scripture on compassion comes from Peter, as he talks about the behaviour of wives and husbands. ‘Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, LOVE as brethren, be pitiful (tenderhearted), be courteous: Not rendering evil for evil, or railing (reviling) for railing (reviling): but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing.’ (1 Pet.3:8-9) 

Yeh friends, it’s all about living in understanding, compassion and brotherly LOVE; not returning evil for evil, but rather consuming evil with good as God desires of us, knowing that in so doing, we will be well rewarded in due course of time. 

And yuh know what, the Lord hasn’t even waited till heaven comes to reward us, He’s had great compassion on us right down here on earth through the wonderful blessings that He’s already bestowed on us in our Thursday Blessings. Let’s declare them now in strong voice and 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!’ 

Yes mih people, ALL those blessings are ours, we just have to receive them, then go out and share them with others. That’s why they were given to us. Much LOVE!

…unless we show true compassion…we cannot be considered true believers…



Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 April 2018 Matthew 28:19.

Matthew 28:19.    Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.

And it’s just another day of winter weather! (smile) No, the rain and higher temps have not melted the ice and snow on the ground, so please be careful if you have to go out. Ah friends, what yuh going to do eh? If you want to live in the northern climes then you’ll just have to grin and bear it, obviously with the help of our heavenly Father. 

Now before we go any further let me share something from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr, Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional. I’ve shared it before, but it’s so important, especially in these rough and difficult times, that we need to hear it again. It comes from a message titled ‘God Needs Us.’ And so He does. Why? 

Because ‘Christ has no hands but our hands to do His work today. He has no feet but our feet to lead us on the way. He has no tongues but our tongues to tell us how he died. He has no help but our help to bring us to His side.’ And that’s the gospel truth my fellow believers! Christ has no one else to do His work and spread His wonderful word but us, His earthly ambassadors. 

And if we don’t do it, do it diligently and with excellence, then His church, His LOVE Revolution will fail, and much of the world will go to hell in a hand basket with Lucifer. Christ’s sacrificial death would also have been a waste of time, because He died that ALL people could have access to Him. And I’m sure we don’t want either of those things to happen. 

So that’s why we, as Christians, have to get really serious about our work for Christ and improve in all areas, with His help of course. Once we have contact with other human beings, Christ wants to use us, wherever we are, in whatever we do, to bring others to Him, so that they too can enjoy the free gift of grace that brings salvation and eternal life. Remember, He died so that sinners could be saved from their sins. 

As a man, Christ could only be in one place at one time, that’s why when He ascended to heaven, He sent His Holy Spirit to dwell in His disciples and all those others who would believe in Him, so that they could go out and perform the words of our Bit: the Great Commission. ‘Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.’ 

And that is what they did my people. And that’s also what we are expected to do. Christ can only work, and is working through His Holy Spirit in our minds and bodies so that we can get His message out, which is becoming more urgent with each passing day, as He prepares to return and take His rightful place as our Lord and King. And unfortunately, when He does return, all who are not then a part of His church will be left out forever. 

That’s not a very nice fate to suffer, so it’s imperative that we His disciples and followers ramp up our efforts to bring the numerous unbelievers out there to Him: ‘Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you.’ (Matt.28:20a) Yeh friends, we’re all teachers in some form or fashion, either by the words we speak or the lives we live. 

The spreading of the Word is not left to pastors and church elders only, but to ALL those who believe. We all have something important to impart to another human being on the topic of Jesus. Let’s remember that nuh and get serious about the way we live our lives and what we say to others, for we are representatives of Christ, and whatever image we portray is the image others will get of Him. 

Please note that much of the recent swelling of the rolls of the ungodly can be laid right at the feet of so-called believers. We have been too wishy-washy and hypocritical in our walk with Christ and others have seen it and therefore been put off of Christ. That’s a crying shame my brethren! Instead of turning OFF people from Christ, we ought to be turning them ON to Him. 

And there’s no need to be afraid or ashamed of our belief and faith in Christ, because at the end of the Commission He faithfully promised: ‘and, lo, I am with you always(s), even unto the end of the world.’ (Matt.28:20b) There you have it my people, Jesus’ promise to be with us ALL the time, even to the end of the world. 

So why are we afraid or ashamed of speaking out and living for Him eh? Remember, man can only kill the body, not the soul. However Almighty God can kill both, so if you choose to become a people pleaser instead of a God pleaser, then you’re in for big trouble. 

Oh my fellow believers, hear this explanation of the Great Commission from the scholars. ’28:18-20. The Great Commission brings the first Gospel to its grand finale. Christianity is not represented here as the mere reverential devotion of disappointed men who honoured their martyred leader. 

Here is a far different scene. The triumphant, living Lord sends forth His ambassadors to proclaim His gospel throughout all the world. The Great Commission is not just an order but a pronouncement of victory by the risen Saviour through His disciples.’ 

And so it is my fellow believers, so let’s treat it as such and do justice to Christ’s victory nuh. It’s the wisdom that’s been granted to us. Now let’s go home declaring to all the world who and whose we are in our Tuesday Mantra. 

Sincerely, loudly and proudly 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!’ 

More gospel truth friends! So let’s go out and diligently share it nuh, as we’re meant to.. Much LOVE!

…a wicked messenger falleth into mischief (trouble)…but a faithful ambassador is (brings) health…  (Prov.13:17)

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 January 2018 Mark 1:35.

Mark 1:35.   And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he (Jesus) went out, and departed into a solitary (deserted) place, and there prayed.

Ah friends, it’s one of those days when you start out behind the eight ball. I went to bed fairly early, but `woke up late with my back aching like crazy. I don’t understand it nuh. The body calls for rest, but when I rest the body for any decent length of time, I wake up with more aches and pains than I went to bed with. Chuh! It’s just not right! (smile) 

Then it looks like we’re going to have a bleak snowy day with temps in the minus something or other. Steups! And to make matters worse, I happened to glimpse the weather forecast for T&T and it was projected to be plus thirty. That’s where I ought to be! 

And I’m not worried, because I know that I’ll be there at some stage of the game, but right now, the Lord in His awesome wisdom has other plans for my life in the cold weather, so I’ll just have to grin and bear it, while keeping my eyes focused on the future promise. 

Enough of my bellyaching though, here are a couple of more important things for us to concentrate on. The first is a Daily Bread Thought for the day, which says: ‘Pray your way past the urge to do wrong.’ And the second comes from the great Christian writer, Oswald Chambers, who tells us that: ‘Prayer imparts the power to walk and not faint.’ 

Both those sayings are gospel truths my brethren and wisdom of enormous proportions. Why? Because prayer is the most powerful medium on God’s great earth! It’s the direct line of communication with the Creator of the universe! It couldn’t get any better than that. 

Our problem is that we either refuse to pray, are afraid to pray, or pray for the wrong things, and when we don’t get them, we get discouraged and curse God and give up on Him. But remember God never promised to answer every prayer right away. He answers them in His own time and if they fit the direction He wants us to go. 

Oh friends, prayer is possibly the most important aspect of a believer’s life. Because that’ how we communicate with Almighty God. Look at Jesus, who though He was God Himself, still chose to live His earthly life through strong and consistent communication with His heavenly Father. 

As the Good Book says in our Bit: ‘And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he (Jesus) went out, and departed into a solitary (deserted) place, and there prayed.’ He never made important decisions without consulting the Father. 

Apparently on that occasion He was considering whether to continue preaching the gospel as the focal point of His ministry, which wasn’t being received too well, or to focus on the miracles aspects, which the people were lapping up. But He never left the Father out of His deliberations. And most important He ALWAYS made time to do it. 

We claim to be too busy to talk our Creator, which in reality friends is nonsense.  We find or make time to do every other worldly thing that seems important to us though. Whether we make time or not, just goes to show how important we consider communicating with the Father is to us. 

But friends, if we want to have good communication with God, we have to make time to talk to Him, regardless of what else is happening in our lives. Look at Jesus again. After He fed the five thousand with the five loaves and two fishes, (Matt.14:15-21), He sent the disciples away on a ship over the lake. 

‘And when he had sent the multitudes away, he went up into a mountain apart (by himself) to pray: and when the evening was come, he was there alone.’ (Matt.14:23) Yuh see friends, Jesus MADE TIME to be with God. Look at this other example of Jesus’ full prayer life. This happened just before He chose the 12 disciples. 

‘And it came to pass in those days, that he (Jesus) went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God. And when it was day, he called unto him his disciples: and of them he chose twelve, whom he also named apostles.’ (Luke 6:12-13) Another example of Jesus consulting His Father before making big decisions. 

But friends, the Lord doesn’t only want us to communicate with Him on big decisions, but on ALL decisions, be they big or small. That means He desires to be an integral part of our everyday lives. Whatever we’re doing, He wants to be involved in it. 

That’s why Bruh Paul in his writings talks about praying always, (Eph.6:18); praying without ceasing (1 Thess.5:17); and praying everywhere (1 Tim.2:8) The Lord wants to be in constant contact with us, and prayer is how He does it. So let’s be wise and MAKE TIME to communicate with Him nuh. It’s for our benefit, not His. 

Now let’s go home declaring our Wednesday Wail, a prayer that shows how connected we are with our God, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. In one strong and sincere voice 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 yuh know what friends, our puny minds can’t even begin to comprehend the future that really awaits us. We know it’s going to be glorious, but just how glorious, we have no true idea. But hang in there, and we’ll find out eventually. Much LOVE!

…eye hath not seen…nor ear heard…neither have entered into the heart of man…the things which God hath prepared…for them that LOVE him… (1 Cor.2:9)

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 12 January 2018 John 14:6.

John 14:6.    I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

And as the freezing temperature rose, the pervasive snow melted. But then the rains came, and the temps dropped somewhat again, causing the evil demon called ice to form. 

Yeh friends, the last couple of days have been somewhat icy, causing numerous accidents, both on the roads and n the sidewalks. Ice is way more dangerous than snow, because it’s ever so slippery, and oftimes you can’t even see it.  

Now today we are expected to get more snow, as the temperature plummets below freezing again. What a bam bam eh! But short of moving out of the country, to somewhere around the equator, there’s not much we can do but grin and bear it and handle it the best we can. 

And what amazes me is that this unpleasant state of affairs doesn’t faze the ordinary workingman one bit. He is intent on enjoying his weekend despite any weather setbacks, as he so vociferously declares: ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday oui! And the weekend is here at last, especially since I had to work five, hard, long days this week. 

But neither snow, nor ice, nor sleet, nor heat is going to keep me from fully enjoying mih time off from massa slave labour! I’ve earned the right to celebrate, and that’s exactly what I’m going to do! Eat, drink and party fuh so! No holds barred baby! What else am I living for eh? Can’t take it with me when I go! So let’s thank God for Fridays and weekends, as we enjoy the good life!’ 

And what’s the good life eh friends? Feeding our carnal desires to the limit, with no real or sincere thoughts of Christ? I don’t think so. The good life must include Christ, otherwise it’s not good! Nothing’s wrong with eating, drinking and partying, but within decent limits: limits that don’t allow the enemy to get a toehold in our lives. 

That’s why our Friday Chant is a better gauge of what our weekends should be like. Let’s chant it now nuh, with sincerity and enthusiasm. ‘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.’ 

Now that takes Christ into account, in fact, places Him at the very heart of the matter. It all revolves around Him. And as true believers, that’s how our lives ought to be set up; around Jesus! And why is that you ask? It’s obvious, from the proclamation Jesus makes in our Bit. ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.’ 

Jesus had just told the disciples that He had to go away to prepare a place for them, and that He would come again to receive them unto Himself. ‘And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.’ (John 14: 4) But Thomas, ever the doubter declared: ‘Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way?’ (John 14:5) That’s when Jesus made the foundational proclamation in our Bit. 

Oh friends, are we amongst the doubting Thomases in these modern times? I certainly hope not. For if we are, we are lost before we’ve even begun. And the scholars’ offer and interesting statement here on our Bit. ’14:6. Jesus does not tell them about the way, nor does He show them the way. He does not even guide them along the way. He says He IS the way!’ 

And He showed that in spades by destroying the veil in the temple when He died, then rising from the dead, thus allowing any believing individual to come into the presence of God at any time, not only the High Priest once a year. And by shedding His blood on the cross, Jesus consequently made the sacrifice of animals for the forgiveness of sins of no more necessity. His blood was now the ONE and ONLY redeeming and atoning sacrifice! 

Oh glory to God my brethren! Listen to this scripture from Hebrews: ‘But Christ being come a high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building (creation). 

Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered once into the holy place (Most Holy Place), having obtained eternal redemption for us. For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of a heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth (sets apart, cleanses) to the purifying of the flesh. 

How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot (blemish) to God, purge (cleanse) your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?’ (Heb.9:11-14) 

Yeh friends, Jesus offered His sinless life to the Father so that we could receive remission of sins, and the Father accepted His sacrifice. That’s why He is the ONLY way to the Father! Much LOVE!

…there’s only ONE way to get to heaven…through Jesus…

P.S. Please excuse the lateness of the Bit. I was somewhat tardy myself this morning. (smile) Much LOVE!

 

 

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