Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 March 2021 Psalm 73:26.

Psalm 73:26.     ​My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength (the rock) of my heart, and my portion for ever.

Oh friends, it’s such a wonderful feeling to wake up and realize that our heavenly Father has given us another day of life, one filled with His awesome blessings and LOVE! Let’s not misuse such an unbelievable gift nuh, because if we don’t show the proper attitude and gratitude, one day He might just decide not to allow us to wake up to another beautiful day. You know He has the power to do it. And believe me, that would be to our detriment not His. 

So every morning that He’s kind enough to open our eyes to the world, evil though it may be, let’s give Him sincere thanks and praise for that awesome blessing, so that He may continue our earthly journey and empower us to do His work with excellence and powerful faith! And all God’s people said a loud and grateful ‘Amen!’ 

And today we’ll talk about something that’s of great concern to so many of us in these very trying times, where many of us are seeing our lives fall apart before our very eyes, and are thus terrified as we slowly and ofttimes with no apparent recourse, journey down the sorrowful path we call failure. Yes friends, the fear of failure in this pandemic time is very real. In fact, many have already suffered, succumbed that terrible indignity through no fault of their own. So how do we combat this real demon that’s stalking so many of us eh? 

To begin, let’s get a few facts about what constitutes failure or what we believe it is, from the writings of Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) from his Hour of Power Devotional. He says: ‘Failure doesn’t mean you are a failure…It does mean you haven’t succeeded yet. Failure doesn’t mean you have accomplished nothing…It does mean you have learned something. Failure doesn’t mean you have been a fool…It does mean you had a lot of faith. Failure doesn’t mean you have been disgraced…It does mean you were willing to try. 

Failure doesn’t mean you don’t have it…It does mean you have to do something in a different way. Failure doesn’t mean you are inferior…It does mean you are not perfect. Failure doesn’t mean you’ve wasted your life…It does mean you have a reason to start afresh. Failure doesn’t mean you should give up…It does mean you must try harder. Failure doesn’t mean you’ll never make it…It does mean it will take a little longer. Failure doesn’t mean God has abandoned you…It does mean God has a better idea.’ 

Oh my people, all those words of Gramps Schuller are gospel truth. What the world terms failure is nonsense, because failure only happens when we give up. But until then, we always have a chance to succeed. And if you’re a believer in Christ Jesus, then it automatically behooves you to NEVER GIVE UP, because there is NO GIVING UP in Jesus! 

When the world says that we’ve failed, all it really means is that we’ve got to start again, try again, for success very seldom comes with the first, second or even third try. Just ask people like Walt Disney, Henry Ford and Thomas Edison. All of them failed numerous times, but they kept on trying, and eventually succeeded. What’s the children’s song? ‘It’s a lesson all should heed, Try, try, try again; If at first you don’t succeed, Try, try, try again; Then your courage will appear, If you only persevere, You will conquer, never fear! Try, try, try again.’ 

That’s the awesome truth of the situation my brethren. Failure wants you to give up, but success calls for you to keep on trying, to persevere, to endure. And yes, many of us know all that stuff, but we have never gone through a time of worldwide sickness and strife like we are now experiencing, so there are no concrete examples to follow, and thus we are at a total loss at where to turn, when everything bad seems to be coming our way. 

‘Fear not,’ friends. Those were the words our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ continually used to those around Him when their faith was low or non-existent. He also said: ‘Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.’ (John 14:1) 

And the scholars explain that verse thus: ‘14:1. Let not your heart be troubled refers to Peter. Jesus having just told him of his imminent denial of his Lord (13:38). But the larger reference is to all the apostles, through whom Jesus is going to lay the foundation of the church. His comfort also includes instructions about His departure, the sending of the Holy Spirit, the promise of spiritual power, of answered prayer, and of peace, but especially the promise of His return.’ 

And yuh see what a difference the apostles made with only promises, several of which have long come true before our time – like the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, answered prayer, spiritual power and His awesome peace – and we now enjoy them as normal aspects of our Christian heritage. So friends, when we turn to Jesus, failure should not be a part of our makeup, because we know that He never gave up, He fought through all the shame and disgrace and persecution on our behalf, and expects the same of us. 

Remember, we are His ambassadors, and as such, we have to represent him properly. And my fellow believers, there are so many scriptures in the Good book that encourage us to not give up, to stand strong and endure. Let’s look at a couple nuh. Hear Cousin Sol from Proverbs. ‘For a just man faileth seven times, and riseth up again: but the wicked shall fall into mischief (stumble into calamity). (Prov. 24:16) Yuh see that people? The one who sincerely believes in Jehovah God keeps getting up EVERYTIME he falls. 

Now hear Asaph, the psalmist in his famous Psalm 73 – The mystery of prosperous wickedness, where he found himself envying the wicked their prosperity, until he went into God’s house and understood their end, and thankfully concluded. ‘My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength (the rock) of my heart, and my portion for ever. For, lo, they that are far from thee shall perish: thou hast destroyed all them that go a whoring from (are unfaithful to) thee. But it is good for me to draw near to God: I have put my trust in the Lord God, that I may declare (hn,hn) all thy works.’ (Ps. 73:26-28) 

Yes my fellow saints, it is indeed good and wise for us to draw near to God and put our trust in Him, for He’s the Creator and Controller of the universe and all therein, and our fate is in His hands. So now, for all of us who acknowledge that indisputable fact, let’s go home declaring (chuh man!) our Wednesday Wail, letting all and sundry know of our most excellent position in Christ Jesus. 

As one strong and sincere voice: ‘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 it’s a fact that if we endure to the end, that future will be even more glorious than we can ask or imagine. So let’s hold on tightly to Jesus my people! Much LOVE!

…keep looking to Jesus…and failure will not overtake you… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 January 2021 John 15:5b.

John 15:5b.     ​for without me ye can do nothing.

And then it was Saturday; the day for rest and laziness! (smile) Ah friends, it’s another good day in the life! And though life is not always the best it can be, we’re certain that the worst day with Christ, is better than the best day without Him! Oh glory be! 

That’s how important He is to us! Give Him thanks and praise my people, for without Him, we’d be in an even worse bind than we’re in now, and it’s only through Him that we can see a light shining in the darkness and a hope for a blessed tomorrow! Bless His holy name! 

And all God’s children said a loud, proud and grateful ‘Amen!’ Yes friends, as our great God proclaims, so let it be! 

And again, this past week I have received no quotes from our friend Anselm, so I can’t challenge my mind to come up with reasons and answers to his declarations. (smile) I have no idea why, but please, let’s pray that all is well with him. 

But not to worry, I still have some wonderful info for us, this time from Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H Schuller) from His Hour of Power Devotional. 

Oh mih people today we’re talking about that wonderful but ever so difficult to achieve word termed ‘Success.’ Yes, we all want it, so bad that some of us will even kill or die for it, while others refuse to put in the effort that success calls for…yet we want, and even crave it. 

And we not talking about what the world calls success, but what God considers success. And they are two radically different things, although they can both include some of the same parameters. But here are some ideas from Gramps Schuller about that marvellous thing called success. 

‘Success? It does not happen without total aliveness generated only by a revitalized imagination.’ Yes friends, as most other things, success begins in our minds! We first have to think the thoughts with a refreshed mind, one that is set on achieving a worthwhile goal. 

And then we have to keep our minds set on it, focused on the desired end, while we put in the necessary effort to make it all come true. No, it’s not always easy, but with faith, trust, and God’s divine help, we can achieve whatever we want to, once it’s within His will. 

And that’s one of the important things for believers; whatever we want to achieve must be within God’s will, or plan for our lives. And Gramps Schuller even offers us ‘A Prayer for Success.’ 

Please pray with me: ‘As I become a success with your help, Lord, let me never forget that what I am is more important than what I do. Faith stimulates success. Hope sustains success. LOVE sanctifies success. So I cannot and I dare not succeed without your power, peace, and pressure in my life, Jesus Christ. Amen.’ 

Yes precious people of Christ, only with Him churning mightily in us, can we ever hope to be truly successful. Oh, we can sell our souls to Beelzebub and achieve what the world terms success, but it won’t be as sweet and lasting as that acquired through the auspices of Almighty God. That’s for certain sure! 

And as an epilogue to his prayer for success, Gramps Schuller says: ‘Be open. Be humble. Correctable. Educable. Then you will hear God’s voice. You will see God’s plan. Grab onto it, give it all you’ve got, and you will inherit the earth!’ 

Wow! That’s the awesome truth friends, and the one true way to true success! God must be in our plans and lives for us to achieve worthwhile success! And it’s not me saying that, but the Good Book. Remember these awesome words of Jesus where He quite clearly spells it all out for us. 

‘Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. I am the vine, ye are the branches. He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.’ (John 15:4-5) 

Oh fellow saints of Christ, it couldn’t be any clearer than that! And don’t you just LOVE it that our Leader, our Lord and Saviour doesn’t mince words, doesn’t engage in spin and double-speak, but tells it exactly like it is, and if you don’t like it, then tough tits! (smile) 

I wish most of our other leaders in today’s world would be so open, even some of our church leaders, who have unfortunately adopted the speaking habits of the world. And Bruh Paul, who didn’t mince words either, (smile) said the same thing to the Corinthians. 

‘And such trust have we through Christ to God-ward: Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think anything as of ourselves: but our sufficiency is of God; Who also hath made us able (sufficient) ministers of the new testament (covenant); not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.’ (2 Cor. 3:4-6) 

Yes my brethren, without Christ in us we are so insufficient it isn’t funny. That’s why Bruh Paul explained his defection from the old tenets of Judaism, from the externalized Mosaic Law, to the internalized covenant with Jesus. 

The law did bring men to the end of themselves, but with condemnation, while the New Covenant of Christ did not condemn, only convict unto repentance and salvation. So what yuh say we gladly and tightly embrace that New Covenant to the very end eh, so that we can have life, eternal life? (smile) 

And we’ll end with some final words from Gramps Schuller on that most important, but oh so hard to achieve quality, success. ‘Success is never-ending and failure is never final to that person who knows how to revitalize and renew the God-given powers of creative imagination.’ And that’s the indisputable truth! 

So let’s NEVER give up on God, or on ourselves nuh, and keep renewing our creative imaginations by reading and studying His word, praying and being obedient to His will. That’s the way to true success! Much LOVE!

…stop trying…and you’re a failure…never quit…and you can be a success… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 September 2020 Matthew 8:10.

Matthew 8:10.     ​Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel.

And on this bright Tuesday morning in late September of 2020, this turbulent and overwhelming year, I do hope friends that we are all bright and thankful and ever so grateful that we’ve made this morning’s wake up list! Glory Be! That means the Lord has more stuff for us to accomplish down here on this confusing and disaster filled earth, else He would have taken us home last night. 

Mama Mia! One of the best things we can do every day is to peruse the obituaries and give much thanks that our name doesn’t appear there. (smile) Oh, one day it will, but until then, we have a sacred responsibility to pursue, with diligence and excellence, whatever plan our Creator, Almighty God has purposed for our earthly lives! And one thing is for sure; our great and wonderful God NEVER gives us a task to do without the underlying anointing and grace to do it, and to do it properly too. 

That’s why we have to take the bull by the horns each and every day and work our work in His holy name. And though things will get difficult and heartbreaking at times, we cannot afford to sit down and let life pass us by, and then in our later years be filled with regrets and ‘I should haves.’ That’s why I believe these words of Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) from His Hour of Power Devotional are so important and encouraging for us today. 

This devotion is titled ‘A Life of Regrets.’ And in it, Gramps Schuller says: ‘Suppose you have a great idea, but having surrendered to fear of failure, you let the golden opportunity pass you by. You remain safe from embarrassment but now you are bored. Boredom doesn’t build self-esteem. What does boredom do? It gives you loads of time to think, “It might have worked.” To quote John Greenleaf Whittier: “For of all sad words of tongue or pen, The saddest are these: “It might have been.” 

Yes friends, how often have we already said those sad words in our lives eh? Much too often, I believe. That’s why we can’t allow the fear of failure, or the embarrassment it often brings to keep us back from doing God’s great work! Here’s how Gramps Schuller characterizes it: ‘You grow old, collecting and nursing a multitude of regrets. Why didn’t I do this? Why didn’t I do that? Why didn’t I buy it when I had a chance? 

To further depress yourself, you may see someone else seizing the same opportunity. They are successful and you become jealous. The pangs of further jealousy will make you more bitter and inspire further negative thoughts and actions. Thus fear of failure does not protect your self respect – it prevents and aborts it. If you heed your fears you’ll die never knowing what a great person you might have been.’ 

And isn’t that the gospel truth my brethren? It surely is! When we let fear rule the roost, we abort whatever worthwhile job the Lord has tasked us with! And that certainly doesn’t do His kingdom, or us, any good! And that’s why the Good Book, the Lord’s Word constantly reminds to ‘FEAR NOT!’ No my people, if we want to be successful ambassadors of Christ, we cannot let fear be the uppermost factor in our lives. It has to be faith! One of Jesus’ favourite admonishments was, ‘O Ye of little faith!’ 

Remember his fateful words regarding the Roman Centurion who asked for healing for his servant, and when Christ wanted to go to his house, he said that it wasn’t necessary. ‘I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed.’ (Matt. 8:8) Now back then that was indeed a big step for a Roman army leader. So much so, that ’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 Israel.’ (Matt. 8:10) 

Now wasn’t that somewhat shameful, that a Roman soldier could show more faith than the Jews, the Chosen People of God, to whom Jesus was specifically sent to heal and to save? It surely was. But that’s how it was back then, and how it still is today. The ones we show special care and affection for are ofttimes the ones who show the least appreciation for it. But it never stopped Jesus from doing His God-given job, and neither should it stop us. We need to persevere and endure in the faith come what may. 

At the end of our time, our words ought to ring out as staunchly and faithfully as Bruh Paul’s last testament to Timothy. ‘For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure (death) is at hand. 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. 4:6-8) 

Yes my people, those are words we ought to be able to say at the end of our lives because we have sincerely kept the faith and diligently ran the race that God had set out for us. And the only way we can do that is by hunkering down in the word, in prayer and actioning all that’s set before us with LOVE, grace, mercy, forgiveness, kindness, gentleness, etc. etc. In other words, living our lives truly led by the Holy Spirit and bearing its good fruit.

As Bruh Paul said to the Colossians: ‘Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and long-suffering with joyfulness. Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet (qualified us) to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in (the) light .’ (Col. 1:11-12) 

Yes precious people of God, persevering through problems and difficulties, and forbearing and forgiving the faults and offences of others is the cross we’re called to bear, just like Jesus did it for us. That’s spiritual understanding which produces the necessary morality and happiness, and how we live in the light of His LOVE!

Now let’s go home declaring (yeahhh!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting all and sundry know who and whose we are. In strong voice, with sincere hearts: ‘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 now it’s time to put those words into godly action! Much LOVE!

…when fear comes a-calling…send faith to answer it… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 9 September 2020 Galatians 2:20.

Galatians 2:20.     ​I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of (in) the Son of God, who LOVED me, and gave himself for me.

And then it was Wednesday, the mid-week day, the day we finally feel like we’ve gotten over the hump… Monday and Tuesday are gone and Friday is right there in sight! Glory be! Yeh friends, what a game of musical days we play during those many years of our working life. And sadly, too many of us don’t ever come to terms with it and thus spend a life feeling frustrated about doing the same basic things on the same basic days, over and over. 

But that’s what life is all about! We can’t have fun and excitement every day, like some of us feel we ought to, we’d get bored and frustrated and tired of that too. So let’s get used to the humdrum, same ole, same ole way of life nuh, because that’s all we’re going to ever have…that is until we reach heaven. (smile) 

And besides that, our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ died that we might have and enjoy an abundant earthly life, and have it even more abundantly. (John 10:10) And that doesn’t mean just having plenty of earthly things, but also plenty of heavenly and spiritual things. And is only when we pursue those last two, seek the kingdom of God and His righteousness, that we really find, really discover the enjoyment that life has to offer. (Matt. 6:33) 

Bubba! What a day when we discover that, believe it, and truly put it into action! Our lives become so much more meaningful than they were previously, and we find that we have so much more to live for. That’s why the wisdom of heaven proclaims that ‘JESUS IS THE ANSWER!’ Yes my people, the name of Jesus is the name that’s above every other name, exalted by the Father because of His unfailing obedience and great sacrifice! He’s been made the Lord of Lords and King of Kings, to whom each knee must bow and every tongue confess that He is Lord to the glory of God the Father. (Phil. 2:9-11) 

And how do we accomplish all of that eh? Through just one word: ‘SURRENDER!’ Yes to really take advantage of all that God has provided for us, we need to completely surrender our lives to Him and His will. Hear these words on that subject nuh, from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional. 

He asks? ‘How are we guided? The answer is no secret. Surely God speaks to us through the Bible! Those who read it quietly and prayerfully find God’s guidance. And prayer is still the mysterious experience where we tune our minds to the celestial wavelength and ask God to guide us. In addition, there are thousands of people who will testify that in the quietness of worship God entered into their consciousness to illuminate them. But I would suggest that the real secret of receiving divine guidance is deeper than Bible reading, prayer, or worship. 

The key word is SURRENDER! Surrender your sins, your self-centred desires, and your life to Jesus Christ. surrender your mind to the Holy Spirit. Are you sure you want guidance? Would you take it if He gave it? Do you know how to catch a dove? It is interesting that in the New Testament the dove is the symbol of the Holy Spirit. And the Holy Spirit is God who enters into our mental consciousness. 

Hundreds of thousands of visitors to the San Juan Capistrano Mission in southern California try to catch the white doves that flock in the ancient mission. You may reach out with your hand, fingers open, and just as you are about to grasp the feet of the dove, it flaps its wings and flies away. So you try again. You reach out with your hand cautiously, slowly, furtively, and just as you are about to grab the bird, it escapes again. 

The secret is this: Simply extend your hand. Hold it out straight in front of you. Open your palm. Wait quietly. And the dove will come and rest right in the middle of your hand. Surrender your soul, your mind, your spirit that way to God, and He will take over your life and guide you.’ 

Mama Yo mih bredrin! What awesome words of wisdom from Gramps Schuller! That’s the only healthy, sensible and wise way to live this life! Anything else is going to get us nothing but a wasted life! And what does total surrender to God mean and include. Listen to this definition. ‘The word surrender in this sense is derived from the Greek word “paradidomi” which can mean yield up, transmit, and entrust. Surrendering all to God means to yield upward rather than to our current circumstances. God demands a “total cling” to Him—not anyone else.’ 

Peter talks about ‘Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you’ (1 Pet. 5:7) That means God wants us to cast ALL of our cares, anxieties and worries upon Him, surrender everything, entrust ALL we have to Him, make Him the trustee of our entire lives; finances, emotions, health, etc. etc. Now, ‘The key to entrusting is leaving the cares with God and allowing Him to remain the trustee. This can be an ongoing process.’ 

Yes my fellow saints in Christ, surrendering to God is not an overnight process, but a lifelong one. And I don’t think anyone exemplified this better than Bruh Paul when he wrote to the Galatians. ‘I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of (in) the Son of God, who LOVED me, and gave himself for me.’ (Gal. 2:20) 

Now that’s surrendering to God! Giving up all that you are to Him, living your life through the eyes of Christ, allowing Jesus to cultivate His desires, virtues, character and power in us. Living a life of faith, depending on Christ for our strength and ALL our necessities. That’s true surrender! So for those of us who are currently undergoing that surrender process, let’s go home now declaring (awright!) our Wednesday Wail, letting the world know of our unique and rather exciting position in Christ. 

All together now, in strong voice, with sincere hearts: ‘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 that means if we stay surrendered to the end, the future will be ever so glorious, more than we ask or imagine! Much LOVE!

…only in giving our ALL to Christ…can He give us His ALL to us… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 April 2020 Deuteronomy 30:19.

Deuteronomy 30:19.    I call heaven and earth to record this day (stand as witnesses) against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live.
 
Oh friends, oh friends, before beginning to write the Bit this Thursday morning in these very concerned Covod-19 times, I needed a touch of divine inspiration and so I turned to some praise and worship, music that truly moves me, Psalm 34 sung by the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir. And as always, it certainly did the job! There’s something about that version of that song that just gets me going! Thus, I invite you now to bless the Lord with me! Let’s magnify His name together! Let’s  exalt it together! 

There’s no better form of praise than to glorify His most holy name for ever and ever! For He surrounds His saints with divine protection and no one who calls on Him in sincerity and truth will ever be ashamed. He will hear their pleas and protect them from their enemies! Wow! What other faith can say that about their God eh? NONE! That’s why it’s ever so important to stay true to the God of our forefathers if we want to be delivered from the enemy and receive redemption and forgiveness and eventual salvation. 

But I know that’s not easy to do, even in normal times, much less in these very trying and uncertain ones. And the only way to do it is by keeping hope and faith alive through prayer and meditation and strong action. That’s why today I was guided to share a couple of passages from the Hour Of Power Devotional with writings by our dear, departed Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H. Schuller). Long time we haven’t turned to him for some wise advice, (smile)  but he does give some that’s very pertinent to our faith in these Covid-19 times. 

So please read with me, this first devotional he so wisely titles ‘Choose Hope.’ ‘Yes, I believe God is still alive. He knows where I am and how I got here. He’s way ahead of me, manoeuvring in the silence and the shadows. He really cares. I trust Him. The alternative is an unthinkable, unacceptable mental attitude that’s certain to lead me down a path of hopeless despair. Yes I am addicted to hope. That’s my decision. My hopes may not be completely fulfilled, but at least they’re keeping me alive and alert and pragmatic. 

Hope promises to generate and sustain life (and then does). Despair promises to generate and deliver depression and death (and then does). I’d rather choose HOPE (an emotional reaction that promises life but can’t guarantee that all of its promises will be fulfilled) than choose despair (an emotional reaction that guarantees that its promises of failure and death will surely be kept).’ 

Oh my people, all of that is oh so true and wise! Hope might not be able to guarantee everything it says, but at least it gives you a fighting chance. Despair and hopelessness on the other hand, does guarantee and provide death and failure. So as the Good Book says, ‘I call heaven and earth to record this day (stand as witnesses) against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may life.’  

Precious people of God, that’s wisdom from heaven itself, straight from the mouth of our great God and Creator! And He offers that wise advice because He knows what’s best for us. So please, I implore us to take that divine advice and choose life and not death in these scary times; a life that is only provided through hope, faith, trust and true surrender to Almighty God! And to help us do that, here’s the second passage from Gramps Schuller’s Hour of Power Devotional: ‘A Prayer for Hope.’ 

So please pray with me: ‘I have a strong, serene feeling that God is planning something good for me today. I cannot explain it, but I have a deep feeling that wonderful things are in store for me. I am expecting God to surprise me with His tender mercy. He will turn my hurts into halos. He is guiding my life in such a way that whatever happens to me will prove to be a beautiful blessing. Thank You Lord. Amen!’  

And I do hope that as we prayed that prayer a new and higher layer and level of hope, faith and trust rose up in us. Yes friends, we do need abundant and divine hope in these rough times. And the only way to get it is to believe that God is truly for us and will do all that He’s promised, and will work everything out for our good eventually. 

That’s why Sister Joyce (Joyce Meyer) likes to say: ‘Something good is going to happen to me today. And something good is going to happen through me today!’ And isn’t that the gospel truth! Remember, there is awesome power in the Word of God my people, for with it He created the world and all therein. So let’s use it to our advantage nuh. That’s why He gave it to us…to use – day and night! 

And who says good things aren’t happening to us today, right now eh? Lots of wonderful things are happening; we’re being showered with our Thursday Blessings! So let’s declare (yeahh!) them in strong voice and sincere hearts nuh, as we lift up our great and wonderful God, who’s provided us with such awesome blessings. 

‘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!’ 

Wowee, Wowee! How can we not LOVE and worship and reverence such an amazing and faithful God eh! But one word of reminder; those blessings are not to be selfishly hoarded, but to be generously shared with the less fortunate, just as the Lord generously shared them with us! Much LOVE!

…addiction to HOPE…is what we need right now…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 December 2019 John 3:16.

John 3:16.    ​For God so LOVED the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
 

And then it was Tuesday…Christmas Eve! Wow! One more day to the Big One! And the preparations are certainly in full swing now; the food is plentiful – too plentiful, the decorations are plentiful – too plentiful, with Christmas trees and stockings and all the other whatnots that show up at Christmas time. Yes, the house seems more congested than ever…too much stuff – not enough room for the people who are supposed to be celebrating. 

And NO, I’m not a grinch or some such negative Christmas person, but I think we tend to overdo the physical and worldly aspects of the season and don’t pay enough attention to the spiritual side. But that’s just my humble opinion… so who’s paying any attention to it eh? (smile) And to help us get a li’l more into the spiritual aspect of the season, let’s get into something interesting from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional. It’s aptly titled ‘A Christmas Prayer.’ 

Please pray with me: ‘You lead me, Jesus Christ, to thoughts of God. I see you in a manger (food trough) carved from a tree. I see you as a young man with hands that reach to touch hearts that hurt. Your caring reaches out like the strong and kind branches of a gentle tree reach out to invite road-weary and travel-worn wayfarers to quiet rest. I see you again hanging on a tree with outstretched arms taking in the whole world. From your cross, you show me that God will stop at nothing to save my soul. 

So, I celebrate God’s LOVE today as I celebrate your birth around a twinkling Christmas tree. I pray my life, like yours, O Lord, may be tall and upright as a pine tree pointing, reaching, sharing, sparkling, life-giving, solid, sturdy, strong-rooted in God’s LOVE, a beautiful soul, evergreen forever. Amen!’ Oh my fellow believers, what beautiful Christian sentiments, so appropriate for not only this festive Christmas season, but for all the year, for all our lives! 

And yuh know friends, the whole thing is so simple, but through our foolish pride and stupid disobedience we make it seem so complicated. Yes mih people, it’s all simply about LOVE; about the LOVE of God! And consequently our LOVE for Him and for our fellow man. And if you don’t believe me, let’s look at some relevant scripture that proves my point. First off is this momentous declaration (steups!) by none other than Jesus Himself, re the purpose and reason for His coming to earth as a man. ‘For God so LOVED the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.’ 

Oh my people, we all know that monumental scripture, and mouth it often, but do we ever take a moment to truly think about it, and how it ought to affect our lives? I don’t think so. Or if we do, not nearly enough, because it’s only the LOVE of God that caused Jesus to come to earth at Christmas, so He could eventually save our sinful souls by dying on Calvary’s sacrificial cross; nothing else but LOVE my brethren!  And how should this wonderful and marvellous emotion be played out in our own lives? 

Listen to Jesus again, as the foppish, hypocrite Pharisee lawyer asked Him: ‘Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt LOVE the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt LOVE thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.’ (Matt. 22:36-40) Yuh see mih breddren, EVERYTHING, from day One, right to the end of time, has to do with LOVE!  

And the apostle John puts it all so beautifully in his first epistle. ‘Beloved, let us LOVE one another: for LOVE is of God; and every one that LOVETH is born of God, and knoweth God. He that LOVETH not knoweth not God; for God is LOVE. In this was manifested the LOVE of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. Herein is LOVE, not that we LOVED God, but that he LOVED us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so LOVED us, we ought also to LOVE one another.’ (1 John 4:7-11) 

That’s it in a nutshell people! God first LOVED us, that’s why we’re celebrating the birth of Christ in this Christmas season. And furthermore, He requires His followers to both LOVE Him and our fellow human beings. That’s not a desire or a wish; it’s His command! So please, in this time of over-the-top celebrations, when there’s still so much, sickness, poverty, homelessness, hatred, strife and war in our rather prosperous world, please, I implore us, as true believers in Christ, let’s sincerely show the LOVE of God to those around us nuh, especially the less fortunate, for that’s when we’re most Christ-like. 

Now let’s go home this Christmas Eve day declaring (yeah!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the whole world know who and whose we are. Altogether now in strong voice, with sincere hearts: ‘In God’s eyes, I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world. Amen!’ Now let’s go out and walk that talk, like we ought to. Much LOVE!

…and now abideth…faith, hope, LOVE…these three…but the greatest of these is…LOVE… (1 Cor. 13:13)

Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 October 2019 Psalm 146:5.

Psalm 146:5.    ​Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the Lord God.

 

Welcome to another day in the life friends, as God’s great universe unfurls as it should! Yes, however He’s planned it to unfurl, that’s how it will! And it’s unfurling in my neighbourhood as a wet and cloudy morning. Oh, yesterday I saw the prettiest set of rain I’ve seen around here in a long while, powerful and persistent, for almost half an hour, and not the drizzly type of rainfall we’ve been recently getting. But early this morning it did it’s drizzly thing again. (smile) 

Anyhow, though we don’t have the sun, we do have the SON; and that’s even better, for He is always riding shotgun with us, if we allow Him to. And in the fateful words of Bruh Paul, may the grace and peace of our marvellous God be with all you precious saints of Christ! And all those saints said a loud and proud and grateful ‘Amen!’ 

And now to boost our mid-week confidence, let’s say this Prayer of Confidence as drawn up by Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) in his Hour of Power Devotional. Please pray with me. ‘It is flowing into me now, for my conscience is clear. I have made the right decisions. I am not afraid of problems. I will face challenges calmly and serenely. For God is behind me. He will help me. 

If I must go through difficult times, He will rescue me. I feel His spirit of confidence surging in my heart now. With Him I cannot possibly fail. “If God is for me who can be against me?” I have a strong feeling that everything is going to work out just beautifully. Thank You, God! Amen!’ 

And friends, if you said that sincerely, I know that a flow of confidence is now surging through your soul. All thanks be to our wonderful heavenly Father and His powerful Holy Spirit that dwells within us, and leads and guides us inALL situations for our good! And that’s why we can therefore acclaim: ‘Something good is going to happen to me today!’ As well as: ‘Something good is going to happen through me today!’ That’s the confidence we have in our omnipotent and magnanimous God! 

And today, all we want to do is to highlight some scriptures on confidence. First, we’ll begin with what we should not do. Hear the psalmist from Psalm 118 – Thanksgiving for the Lord’s salvation. ‘It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man. It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in princes.’ (Ps.118:8-9) And just for your info, the scholars tell us that verse 8 above is the middle verse of the Bible. 

And all of that flows smoothly into Psalm 146 – The blessedness of trusting God. ‘Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man (a human being), in whom there is no help (salvation). His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish. Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the Lord God.’ (Ps.146:3-5) And if you want to hear why the psalmist says so, please read the next five verses. (smile) 

Then Cousin Sol wisely tells us: ‘Be not afraid of sudden fear (terror), neither of the desolation (trouble) of the wicked, when it cometh. For the Lord shall be thy confidence, and shall keep thy foot from being taken (caught.) (Prov.3:25-26) What wonderful words of advice my people! 

And hear Cousin Sol again nuh: ‘In the fear of the Lord is strong confidence: and his children shall have a place of refuge.’ (Prov.14:26) Mama Mia! Does that ever boost one’s spirit! Yeh friends, true reverential awe of our great God imbues us with strong confidence! 

Meanwhile, the author of Hebrews puts it this way: ‘Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompense of reward. For ye have need of patience (endurance), that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise.’ (Heb.10:35-36) Yes my people, with God, patience and endurance mean a lot. We show our true colours, our confidence in Him when we do His will, then wait quietly and patiently for any reward that’s forthcoming. And usually there is. 

Now hear John from his epistle, re the children of God and righteousness. ‘And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence and not be ashamed before him at his coming. If ye know that he is righteous, ye know that every one that doeth (practices) righteousness is born of him.’ (1 John 2:28-29). 

And the scholars explain: ‘2:28. Wishing to please the Lord, and not be ashamed before him at his coming, ought to motivate believers to stand firm, to abide in him.’ And so it should be, my fellow believers! If we believe He is righteous and truthful, and will keep all His promises, then that certainly ought to motivate us to stand strong and steadfast in His word! 

And finally, more wise words from John. ‘These things I have written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God. And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask anything according to his will, he heareth us. And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired (asked) of him.’ (1 John 5:14-15) 

And the scholars tell us: ‘5:14-15. Assurance of salvation (vs.13) leads to confidence in petition. Effectual prayer isaccording to His will.’ And so it is my faithful brethren! If our prayers aren’t in accord with God’s will, we’re simply wasting our time praying them. But when we have the confidence that we’re doing His will…oh what a happy day it is! 

And today’s just such a day! So please let’s go home now declaring (yeh!) our Wednesday Wail, letting all and sundry know our position, our great confidence in the Lord Jesus Christ. With loud voice and sincere sincerity (smile): ‘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 yes, that eternal future with Christ will be more glorious than we can ever ask or imagine! Much LOVE!

…faith and confidence in Almighty God…is what allows us…to move mountains here on earth…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 September 2019 Psalm 34:4.

Psalm 34:4.    ​I sought the Lord, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.
 

Good news and bad news friends! The bad news first: My PSA level did not drop to ZERO, as I had desired! But the good news is that it did drop a fair amount, enough for the medics to decide I don’t have to do any more radiation therapy at this time! Wow! Praise His holy Name my people! We will just monitor it and see how it goes over the next few months. 

And in keeping with that fear that so many of us have today, about cancer or whatever else it is that threatens us, in this evil and ungodly world, I have some wonderful news and ideas for us to stay fear free. We’ll begin with this poem from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin, appropriately titled ‘Fear Not.’ 

Please pray with me: ‘Again and again, dear Lord I read Your words, “Fear Not.” Surely you would not say it so often If there were any reason to fear. Nor would you command it so explicitly If you could not keep me from fearing. God, You have given me a Fear not For every puzzling circumstance For every possible emergency For every trial and testing Real or imagined. 

Yet I confess wasted hours – Even days, dear Lord When fear clutches and clobbers me Until I am physically and emotionally spent. Lord, when David cried to You You delivered him from all his fears. On this gray-sky morning I kneel before You with David’s cry. O my father, I cannot believe You would be less kind to me Than you were to David.’  

And no my people, if you cry out to Him, He will not be less kind to you than He was to Bruh David! The important thing is to take it all to Him, cast all your care and fear upon Him, for He cares for you! As you can see He’s already provided all the ‘Fear Nots.’ Now it’s we who must make the next move and come to Him in heartfelt sincerity and truth, so that He can bless and restore us. 

And to add to all that, let’s listen to Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) from His Hour of Power Devotional as he talks about ‘Courage from Faith.’  He says: ‘The Bible is filled with commands to be courageous. Someone counted the “fear nots” in the Bible and discovered that there are 365 verses with this divine command – one for every day of the year! 

Verses such as: ‘Fear not…When you pass through the waters…they shall not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned…For I am the Lord you God. I will be with you.’ (Is.45:1-3) ‘Be strong and of a good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.’ (Josh.1:9) 

‘For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of LOVE and of a sound mind.’ (2 Tim.1:7) ‘If you have faith as a mustard seed you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.’ (Matt.17:20) …Observe now how faith is the force that sets you free to succeed.’ 

Yeh friends, FAITH is the great mover and shaker in a believer’s life! As the Good Book so wisely informs us: ‘But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.’ (Heb.11:6) 

Yeh mih people, it’s all about FAITH! And faith only comes through first believing, then surrendering one’s life to God, then trusting Him to take us through all the rough times we face successfully. Until we totally give up our lives to God, we’ll never be able to have much faith. He wants ALL of us, not bits and pieces that we choose to surrender. He can’t paint a proper picture, or build a perfect structure if we only give Him some of us. 

And even more importantly my people, faith is only built by going through hard times, when we have to buckle down and truly believe His words, ‘DO NOT FEAR!’ And like everything else we do in life, the more we do that, the better we become at it, and the stronger our faith grows! Glory Hallelujah! 

Now hear how Bruh David said it in Psalm 34 – The Lord hears the Righteous. ‘I sought the Lord, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears. They looked unto him, and were lightened (radiant): and their faces were not ashamed. This poor man cried, and the Lord heard him, and saved him out of all his troubles. 

The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear (reverence) him, and delivereth them. O taste and see that the Lord is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him. O fear (reverence) the Lord, ye his saints: for there is no want (lack) to them that fear him.’ (Ps.34:4-9) 

Mama Mia! What encouraging words! And remember friends, when Bruh David talks, he doesn’t talk from hearsay, but personal experience. So there is absolutely no reason why we shouldn’t believe his word and do as he says and did! And now that we’ve conquered our fears, (smile) by completely surrendering our lives to Almighty God, let’s go home declaring (yeah!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the whole world know who and whose we are. 

In strong voice and sincere hearts: ‘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!’ 

So having said it, let’s go out now and do it nuh my precious saints of Christ! Much LOVE!

…fear is Satan’s tool…while faith is Christ’s…and that’s undoubtedly the stronger one…

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Mama Mia! It couldn’t get any better than that my people! Therefore let’s go home now joyfully declaring (yeah!) our Wednesday Wail which let’s the whole world know of our serious position in Christ, since heaven is our ultimate home. All together now: ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! 

I am halfway home. My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

And if you sincerely believe, then you’ll know that that future will indeed be glorious; so glorious that we cannot even imagine it! Wow! So let’s keep on hanging tight with Jesus nuh friends, for that is wisdom of the highest order! Much LOVE!

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

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 August 2019 Matthew 7:14.

Matthew 7:14.    ​Because strait (how narrow) is the gate, and narrow (difficult or confined) is the way, which leadeth to life, and few there be that find it.
 

Well it’s the first of August, that means the summer is almost done, one more month, then any number can play. But that’s okay, we can handle it, with Jesus’ help. But today we going to get into a serious concoction in the Bit. Yuh know like in the olden days when you had a cold and fever and your mother just boiled up a whole lot of different bushes and made tea for you, bad, horrible tasting stuff…Ugh! 

And she also mixed up a whole lot of different medicines and rubbed your chest and back and forehead with them, and put some coconut oil in your head – will make the cold run down? Hn, hn! We didn’t like it, but it worked. Well that’s what we making here today: a concoction of scripture and good advice. And let’s hope that that will work for us today too. (smile) 

Now let’s begin with this most appropriate ingredient from one Joseph Addison (1672-1719), an English essayist, poet, playwright and politician. And he reputedly said that ‘There is nothing which we receive with so much reluctance as advice.’ And that’s gospel truth friends! For there is nothing we dislike more than advice because it suggests that we don’t know what we’re doing. 

And even when it’s given with the best interests at heart, and we know it’s the best advice we can get, something though still sticks in our craw, and we don’t really treasure it as we should. I guess though that’s just man’s independent nature showing up, where we don’t like anybody telling us what to do, even though it’s right. 

And the next choice ingredient comes from Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H. Schuller), from his Hour of Power Devotional, where he sincerely and wisely advises us to: ‘Choose the best, shun mediocrity. Mediocrity has a way of shrivelling up enthusiasm. But commitment to excellence taps an incredible source of energy. Elect the best, no matter what the price tag.’ Wow friends! Pure words of wisdom and mucho good advice and also what Jesus desires of His followers. 

But are we going to take it? Hn! Who knows? Because though it’s true and good and wise and of Jesus, there’s just something that sits wrong with us in taking advice. But then I’m only here to bring you wise words and wise, godly advice, so please don’t blame or get annoyed at me, for I’m only the messenger. (smile) 

And the last ingredient of our concoction comes from an old Devotional of Sister Joyce (Joyce Meyer) called ‘Starting Your Day Right.’ Could barely make out the name because it’s so old and faded, and the pages are falling apart, so I keep it together with a rubber band, (smile) because I like it’s simple, down to earth style. Can’t take all this new-fangled stuff. 

Anyhow, Sister Joyce gives this wonderful advice at the end of one of the devotionals. ‘The way to victory is a narrow path that requires discipline regardless of our feelings. Sometimes it may look too narrow to even squeeze through. But victory comes by obeying God’s Word to us, in spite of our feelings. Follow faith, not feelings today.’ 

Mama Mia!  What wonderful advice! What godly advice! And are we going to take it my brethren? I surely hope so, because as she so rightly says, we can only get victory by obeying God’s Word, and it takes a strong and sincere faith to do so, not wishy-washy feelings, like so many of us live by. 

And that’s why, Jesus, in His immortal wisdom, knowing that too many of us live by our wishy-washy feelings, directed us to ‘Enter ye in at the strait (narrow) gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat.’ (Matt.7:13) 

Oh my people, how true that is in these ungodly times. People are just ‘LOVERS of pleasure,’ as Bruh Paul told Timothy. (2 Tim.3:4) And like foolish sheep without a shepherd, are all blindly headed for the precipice of damnation! But thankfully precious people, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ is a good, kindly and caring shepherd and he takes wonderful care of His own. But His own also have to listen to His voice, else they too will go astray on the wide and destructive path. 

And He says to us: ‘Because strait (how narrow) is the gate, and narrow (difficult or confined) is the way, which leadeth to life, and few there be that find it.’ Yes friends, those are words we have to pay serious attention to, because if we want to live and work for Jesus and eventually gain eternal life with Him, then we can’t go the way of the world. We have to follow the straight and narrow path that calls for obedience, discipline and excellence. 

And we all know those are things against which our human flesh naturally rebel, which means calling forth a superhuman effort if we have to do it alone. But thankfully we don’t have to do it alone! Jesus Christ foresaw our problems and wisely gave us the Holy Spirit to lead and guide us in His ways! Glory to God! We’re not alone…will never be alone once we stay in Jesus’ fold! 

And let’s remember friends, that Jesus is both the way that leads to life, and also the life. As He said to doubting Thomas: ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.’ (John 14:6) Please my people, let’s write those words indelibly in our hearts, minds, bodies and souls, because they are ever so important for our life-long journey. 

Now let’s go home declaring (yeh!) those Thursday Blessings the Lord has so generously lavished on us nuh so we can do His work. In strong and sincere voice: ‘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!’ 

Oh my people, what a generous God we serve and worship! Now let’s go out and share those blessings with the less fortunate as Jesus intends for us to do, and not selfishly hoard them for ourselves. Yes, I’ve got to remind us, else we tend to forget. (smile) And let’s hope that the concoction we made up today also works, because we all need it badly! Much LOVE!

…the best way to live life…obey God…and leave all the consequences to Him… (Uncle Charles – Charles Stanley)

 

 

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