Today​’s Scrip-Bit 6 April 2019 Matthew 13:8-9.

Matthew 13:8-9.   But other fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some a hundredfold, some sixtyfold, some thirtyfold. He who has ears to hear, let him hear.
 
‘Hello…Hello in there! Anybody home?’ Hn! Like nobody wake up yet, everybody sleeping in this Saturday morning – everybody except the ole fella. I’ve been up since minutes to six, doing my own thing, even though I went to bed fairly late.

Chuh! I don’t like this thing that developing here nuh; going to bed late and getting up early, especially when I’m supposed to be on holidays! But one can’t do a lot if the body decides that it has had enough sleep. Might as well get up and make hay while the sun shines, or be like the early bird that catches the juiciest worms! (smile) 

But enough with the clichés, is Saturday morning so let’s see what quotes our friend Anselm sent us this week, as he sincerely aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And we have a full slate – and they long too. (smile) 

Check out this first one: ‘LIFE – is a four-letter word that is complicated enough that no one will ever decode its true meaning. Whether you were born into a wealthy family or a poor one, your life will be full of ups and downs. The goal in life is to minimize the down’s and live a happy and inspiring existence.’ 

And that’s certainly true! Whether we born rich or poor, we all have to face the vicissitudes of this crazy life; ups and downs, of sickness, financial problems, relationship problems, etc. etc. We all face adversity in this life, and the only way to be able to truly handle it is by being in a good relationship with Jesus! 

Remember what He said? ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’ (John 16:33) Glory be my people! So though the world throws it’s best shot at us, we can always be peaceful because Jesus lives and reigns in us! Give Him much thanks and praise nuh! 

Then there’s this one that fits in nicely with the first: ‘The only thing that you have control over is your mind and your body. Everything else is decided by a bunch of people and external conditions. If you are truly happy, no one else can snatch it from you.’

Again, there’s a lot of truth in that statement! We can only control what’s in our personal universe, namely our minds and bodies. But once we have serious control of them, nobody can take away our joy, especially if it’s based in Jesus, for the joy of the Lord is our strength! (Neh.8:10) Yes friends, when we are joyful in the Lord, nobody or nothing can take away that inner peace and contentment. More thanks to Christ again! 

Now hear this: ‘When you were a baby, you had to cry to get what you want. If you didn’t, your parents probably thought you didn’t want it. The same applies when you grow up, the world doesn’t just hand you what you want unless you ask and fight for it.’  So true my faithful brethren! The world takes pleasure in beating us down, and if we allow it, it will beat us down to the death! 

Yeh, the world is an advantageous entity, that knows no mercy! That’s why we have to stand up and fight, especially as true believers in Christ, because the world wants to beat down believers more than anybody else, since we go against its sinful and evil nature! No wonder Bruh Paul warned the Ephesians to ‘Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil…and having done all, to stand.’ (Eph.611, 13b) 

Yes my people, only when we are fully clothed with God’s armour, can we resist, rebuke and beat down the enemy, who’s greatest wish is to destroy us. So please try and stay fully armoured at all times! (smile)

So, considering all that we’ve already said, then this next quote makes a lot of sense. ‘You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough. — Why live a long and unhappy life?’ Good question! Especially in light of Jesus’ immortal words: ‘The thief cometh not, but for (except) to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it abundantly.’ (John 10:10) 

Yes friends, Jesus came to give us life, abundant life, both here on earth and throughout eternity with Him in heaven, so why spoil it eh, when we have such a good thing going eh? No reason whatsoever…unless we mental! (smile) And yes, I know some of us are mental enough to throw away, or not accept all that Jesus offers, but that’s not you or me! Glory to God! 

And then we come to this last quote: ‘Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds you plant.’ Now that’s something we believers are not very good at. We expect to reap a harvest as soon as we done sow a seed…and a big harvest at that. But as Uncle Charles (Charles Stanley) likes to say: ‘You reap what you sow, more than you sow and later than you sow!’ And that’s gospel truth! 

Moreover, the process of sowing and harvesting is a time thing; not now for now, like we want it to be! The seeds we sow, be they real or figurative seeds need time to germinate, to take root and grow. That process doesn’t happen overnight, and all of us know it from our association with the planting of seed in the soil and waiting for it to grow, so we can reap a harvest. 

The same applies to any figurative seed we sow in people’s hearts; it takes time to grow, and we should not be too concerned about how much harvest those seeds will produce, but rather about how many seeds we plant in Jesus’ name! And also about if the seeds that we plant are good, and the type of soil that we plant them in, for all of that has a bearing on the kind of harvest we’ll eventually reap. 

Remember Jesus’ words in the parable of the sower. (Matt.13:1-9) The sower sowed plenty seed, but they all fell on different kinds of soil and produced different amounts of harvest – even no harvest at all, because the soil they fell in wasn’t conducive to producing fruit. ‘But other fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some a hundredfold, some sixtyfold, some thirtyfold. He who has ears to hear, let him hear.’ 

Yes friends, it’s ever so important that we sow the seed of Jesus amongst the many lost of this world, but we also need to find the good soil and then water and nurture the seed so that it can grow good fruit. For as Jesus also said to His disciples: ‘The harvest truly is plenteous, but the labourers are few.’ (Matt.9:37) 

No doubt about it friends, there are many more unbelievers out there than believers, and it’s our bounden duty to harvest them before Jesus comes back, else they will be lost to hell fire and damnation for all eternity! And that’s not a very nice place to be. So let’s pull up our britches and go out and be more serious and concerned about planting seeds in good soil nuh, rather than the harvest those seeds are likely to bear. The Lord will reward us for the harvest later on. Much LOVE!

…I have planted…Apollos watered…but God gave the increase… (1 Cor.3:6)

 

Today​’s Scrip-Bit 19 March 2019 Matthew 6:19.

Matthew 6:19.   ​Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves break through and steal:
 
Ah friends, what a shock it is to the system when one gets up and sees your whole area clothed in white! Hn! Especially after the warm weather of the past week has conditioned one’s mind – falsely it would seem – to believe that all that white stuff business was a thing of the past and the distant future of next winter! But obviously that’s not so! 

And though it’s not a great amount of snow, no amount of snow at all is welcome! (smile) But since we’re such sturdy people, especially we believers, with plenty backbone and belly, we’ll just grin and move along as normal, what with the Lord providing ALL our needs through His riches in glory, through Jesus Christ our wonderful Lord and Saviour! 

And all God’s children loudly, proudly and gratefully declared (right ho): ‘All praise to the name of Jesus, the innocent Lamb of God who was slaughtered to pay for our abominable sins! Bless His holy name and worship sincerely at His cross!’ 

Oh my people, what would we have done without Jesus eh? I shudder at the very thought of not having all the wonderful stuff He has made available to us, and greatly desire to be able to make others understand what it all means; how if they don’t have Him in their lives, they’re totally lost, headed for hell and eternal damnation with the fallen evil angel Satan, and what that would mean for their eternal livelihood. 

But since the Lord in His eternal wisdom gave us free will, free will to choose whatever kind of life we want to live, it is an uphill battle to convince others to accept Jesus and leave the flashy, but empty and hell bent things of the world alone. 

Oh, it’s not that Jesus doesn’t want us to have nice things and to be prosperous, otherwise He wouldn’t have made this telling statement: ‘The thief cometh not but for (except) to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.’ (John 10:10) 

Yes friends, Jesus died so that we could have life, a full and prosperous one, wisely living it in full communion with Him. Otherwise, what would be the purpose of His dying eh? The problem though, is that with our natural sinful nature, we tend to gravitate to the sinful, lustful things and treasures of the world. 

But hear how Jesus classified that stuff nuh: ‘Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves break through and steal:’ 

Ah mih people, truer and more sensible words were never spoken! And it doesn’t take a genius mentality to see that. All the things of the earth that we treasure at some stage either rot or can be destroyed, or stolen, and to make matters worse, when we die we can’t carry any of them with us. So why spend our earthly lives foolishly trying to amass treasures of the world eh? 

Instead, as Jesus so wisely proclaims: ‘But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:’ (Matt.6:20) Glory be my people! The treasures we need to accumulate are the ones that will not rot or be destroyed by insects or stolen…and the only treasures of that kind are found in heavenly places! 

That means to be wise, we have to concentrate on accumulating the heavenly kind of treasure, for as Jesus also mentioned: ‘For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.’ Matt.6:21) And that’s the gospel truth my fellow believers! If we are concentrating on earthly treasures, then our hearts will be here on earth with them, but if heaven is our future destination, then out thoughts and efforts will be aligned with heavenly things. 

And it’s not like when we live for Jesus that we become poor and needy, but on the other hand all our needs are fulfilled. Listen to Jesus again: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt.6:33) 

Oh my people, our wise and wonderful God knows that we need food, clothes, money and houses to live and He has faithfully promised that if we live for Him, keep Him first place in our lives, that all those things will be provided for us. As Bruh David so rightly says in Psalm 27 – The Lord is my light and my salvation. ‘I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.’ (Ps.27:13) 

Yeh friends, what’s the purpose of believing in the Lord if you don’t expect to see the things He’s promised eh? None whatsoever! And if you still don’t believe that you can get all things through Christ, then please remember who is still regarded as the richest and wisest man who ever lived… Cousin Sol! 

And why and how? Because he believed sincerely in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and asked for wisdom to rule his people, not wealth and long life, but our God is so wonderful and so magnanimous, that He also gave him those things in abundance, just like how Jesus died so that we can have life in abundance. 

Wow! I just hope all this makes a difference to somebody today! (smile) But for those of us who already sincerely believe, let’s go home declaring (right ho) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the whole world know who and whose we are! In strong voice and deep sense of purpose: 

‘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 share it all with those who don’t believe for that’s what Jesus desires of us! Much LOVE!

…when you live for Jesus…you live for eternity in heaven with Him…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 5 March 2019 John 10:10.

John 10:10.   ​The thief cometh not, but for (except) to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
 

And then it was the big day of mas, Carnival Tuesday! Wow! The day when all the big bands with their pretty costumes would fill the streets, while the pavements and them jam packed with sweaty bodies, everybody just wining down and jumping up in the hot sun as the music jamming, not so much D.J music as now, but with the big brass bands and them just raising ruckus in the heat of the day and the carnival atmosphere! Now that use to be mas! (smile) 

And for those of you who still missing it, as I said yesterday, just put it aside for this year, yuh can’t do anything about it now, and start saving yuh money and vacation time for next year. And if you don’t want to listen to me, then please listen to Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) as he leads us in this ‘Prayer for Change’ from his Hour of Power Devotional. I think it’s rather appropriate for these cold, dreary and tough times. 

So please pray with us: ‘O God, when a life has been so richly blessed as mine has been, it is not right for me not to be laughing! I confess that I am responsible for my moods. I have no right to selfishly indulge in negative feelings of self-pity. It’s time for me to change my mental dial, Lord. You are helping me. This will be the moment when the sun breaks through the parted clouds, and the springtime returns after winter. 

Thank you, Lord! The dreary, depressing, disconsolate mood disappears like the morning mist in the glowing sunshine of your LOVE! And joy moves in! And hope begins to build up within me! And a beautiful feeling of LOVE starts to surround me! Thank you, God, for the great things you are doing within me now in this moment of prayer. Amen!’ 

Mama Yo mih people! All yuh feel that sunshine of God’s LOVE? Ah hope so yes, because if you don’t then things real rough with you yes! Yuh bet yuh bottom dollar I feel it! And as Gramps Schuller declares (right ho) when that sunshine of God’s LOVE comes creeping in on you, all the negative feelings will disappear like the night time mist in the morning sun, the joy and hope and consequently the faith and LOVE, mercy and forgiveness, and all the wonderful attributes of our wonderful God begin to fill our sorrowful souls! 

Oh how great is prayer my people! And even greater is our God’s answer to it! For we have ALL been richly blessed through it! Praise His Holy Name; exalt Him and His wonderful, awesome and magnanimous doings to the entire world! Remember that’s the main reason He made us; to worship and glorify and have constant communication with Him! 

Awright…so the ole fella get carried away there…but that’s how it’s supposed to be! If sincere communication with our heavenly Father doesn’t enable and energize and raise up our spirits, then what’s the purpose of it eh? And I do like that li’l phrase of Gramps Schuller; ‘the sunshine of God’s LOVE!’ 

Because that’s exactly how God’s LOVE operates; it rises up like the brilliant morning sunshine out of the East. One moment there’s simply darkness, then gradually those depressing clouds begin to disappear as His LOVE filters into our souls…until suddenly it’s there…like the sun hovering over the eastern horizon…big and bright and beautiful! 

Oh friends, I’m sorry…NO, I’M NOT – for taking such enjoyment in the great and unconditional LOVE of our awesome and amazing God! I only wish that you could take the same pleasure with me, so that we don’t miss all the wonderful things that our wonderful God has in store for us, for those who LOVE Him, and are called according to His mighty purpose! 

It’s truly sad and unfortunate that so many supposed believers don’t really enjoy their faith, enjoy their Christian attributes that have been paid for at such great price by our Lord and Saviour, Leader and Good Shepherd, Jesus Christ. What’s the point in having them if you don’t enjoy them eh? NONE WHATSOEVER! 

Remember these moving and momentous words of Jesus? ‘The thief cometh not, but for (except) to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.’  So if He came to give us abundant life, why aren’t we enjoying it eh? Then His unimaginable sacrifice would simply have been a waste of time! 

Chuh mih people! Let’s not waste Christ’s selfless sacrifice on the cross for us nuh! Let’s be wise and enjoy the good things He offers and be obedient to His will. Remember it’s all for our benefit yes, not His! As Bruh David so candidly says: ‘Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits.’ (Ps.103:2) We’d be real foolish to do otherwise! 

And we can’t finish without hearing this next momentous statement of Jesus: ‘I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.’ (John 10:11) And friends, that’s exactly what our Saviour did for us on that old rugged cross of Calvary! He endured all the pain and shame and humiliation and burden of sin placed on His sinless soul and shoulders by the Father, so that we could be set free! So how could we now not be grateful and gladly follow Him eh? 

I can’t answer that question for you, you will have to answer it to the Father come the judgement day! Now let’s go home sincerely declaring (right ho) our Tuesday Mantra, joyfully letting the world know who and whose we are. In strong voice and heartfelt sincerity: ‘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 do just that nuh! Much LOVE!

…oh…how a believer’s soul is moved…is lifted up…when the sunshine of God’s LOVE…joyfully enters it…

P.S. I likes it…I truly do! And I enjoyed writing it too! Why? Perhaps because it reflects the sunshine of God’s LOVE! (smile) Much LOVE!

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 8 December 2018 John 10:10.

John 10:10.   The thief cometh  not, but for (except) to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
 

Well it’s Saturday, that great sleep in day! And believe me, I tried to do so but I just couldn’t, got too many things to do today! Hn! How many I’ll do though is left to the Lord. I’ve got to go to an Ironman’s Breakfast at church for 9.30, which means I have to finish this before then. 

The Ironmen is a church group of manly men who get together every so often to do good deeds and feed our faces. The great thing about it is that I doubt anyone who comes regularly is under the age of sixty. Hn! Hn! And some are even over seventy! So I guess the ‘iron’ moniker is appropriate because of the length of time we’ve lived. (smile) 

Anyhow, we old Ironmen always have a good time whenever we get together. But since it’s Saturday, I guess we should look at some of the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And here is the first one: ‘Only I can change my life. No one can do it for me.’ 

Now that’s not totally true. You need to want to do it, but you can’t do it in your own strength, otherwise many of us would be living much better lives. That’s because only God, through His Son, our Lord and Saviour can really make any effective and long-lasting changes in our lives. Remember that! To change, we need to enlist God’s help!  

And the next three quotes basically allude to the same thing; enjoyment of life. ‘Smile in the mirror. Do that every morning and you’ll start to see a big difference in your life.’ That’s a perfectly good exercise to perform friends. It helps you to start liking and LOVING yourself, because the second big commandment says: ‘LOVE your neighbour as yourself,’ and if you don’t like or LOVE yourself, then you’ll never do the same for your neighbour. 

Now please note this is not an exercise in narcissism; you don’t have to go overboard with it and get so swollen up with pride that you’re even worse than before, LOVING yourself too much! (smile) 

Then there’s this one: ‘Lighten up, just enjoy life, smile more, laugh more, and don’t get so worked up about things.’ Gospel truth that my people! Laughter and an easygoing life are the best remedies for the stress and strain that’s so much a part of this too busy life. They say that laughter is the cheapest medicine you can buy, because it’s free. No lie! 

But to all of that I’d like to add, also peruse the word of God on a regular basis, and you won’t have to go to any shrink or mind doctor and pay a whole set of money for advice and medication that you can get for free in God’s free Health clinic! 

And all God’s people declared a loud and proud and grateful: ‘Praise the Lord, for His goodness and mercy to the undeserving children of men!’ Yes friends, the Good Book, and Dr. Jesus are mostly what you need in this life to combat a lot of your illnesses. He might send you to the human doctor for the diagnosis and medication, but Dr. Jesus is where we should always begin. 

And this last quote tells us: ‘Learn to enjoy every minute of your life. Be happy now. Don’t wait for something outside of yourself to make you happy in the future. Think how really precious is the time you have to spend, whether it’s at work or with your family. Every minute should be enjoyed and savored.’ 

Ah mih people, too many of us waste our short time here on earth waiting for stuff to happen before we can get happy and enjoy our lives. But that’s a fool’s wisdom! We have to stop allowing circumstances to make us happy. In fact just forget the word ‘happy’ and think more in terms of being joyful, which means that you’re peaceful and contented under whatever circumstances come against you. 

But then we need to have Jesus in our lives to do that. In particular we need to admit and take hold of this passage of scripture. ‘The thief cometh not, but for (except) to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.’ 

Oh friends what an important passage of scripture! Jesus came that we might have life; both physically and spiritually, and that we might enjoy them despite the negative tendencies of the enemy, and we need to embrace that with all our hearts, minds, bodies and souls if we intend to live a victorious life down here on earth. 

He didn’t only die to pay for our sins, but also that we might enjoy our earthly life, begin enjoying some of the lesser pleasures down here, so that we can truly appreciate the great ones that await us in heaven! But friends, we have to walk and live with the Lord to enjoy that kind of comfort! 

Now here are a couple of scriptures that I think might help us in the matter of enjoying our everyday lives. First listen to Moses in Psalm 90: ‘For all our days are passed away in thy wrath; we spend our years as a tale that is told (a sigh). The days of our years (lives) are threescore years and ten (70); and if by reason of strength they be fourscore years, yet is their strength (their boast only) labour and sorrow; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away… So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom (gain a heart of wisdom). (Ps.90:9-10,12)

Yeh friends, our lives are very short when taken into the totality of time. That’s why we have to be wise and live it in a joyful manner. And finally this gem from Bruh Paul to the Philippians in appreciation for their gift: 

‘Not that I speak in respect of want (regard of need): for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased (live humbly), and I know how to abound (live in prosperity): every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.’ (Phil.4:11-13) 

Yeh friends, only when we can attest to those things will be truly able to enjoy our earthly lives! Much LOVE!

…but godliness…with contentment…is great gain… (1 Tim.6:6)

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 November 2018 Galatians 5:22-23.

Galatians 5:22-23.  But the fruit of the Spirit is LOVE, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness (kindness), goodness, faith (faithfulness), Meekness, temperance (self-control): against such there is no law.
 

Another wet morning, without even a hopeful ray of sunshine! Steups! But thankfully, there’s no precipitation currently descending from on high! (smile) Ah friends, the gloom persists, but as believers and followers of Jesus Christ, we have all we need to handle it. And to boot, we can also truthfully declare: ‘This is the day the Lord has made, we WILL rejoice and be glad in it!’ (Ps.118:24) 

And we would indeed be foolish if we did not enjoy this extra day the Lord has granted us on His great earth. And yes, every day we’re here is an extra day, so be wise and enjoy it and live obediently for Christ, do the work God has entrusted to you!

For we each have a purpose and a plan of God for this earthly life. Our God doesn’t move vie-ke-vie; in a careless, unplanned manner, so each day we’re down here means we still have work to do under His awesome, gracious, merciful and LOVING plan. So let’s get to it nuh! 

And it being Saturday, we will take a look at some of the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And the first quote says: ‘The biggest adventure you can take is to live the life of your dreams.’

And that’s oh so true! But unfortunately very few of us ever get to truly live the life of our dreams, because life is such a series of ups and downs, and none of us ever experience any downs in our dream life. (smile) 

The fact is that most of us have unreasonable dreams, and even with the reasonable ones, we’re not willing to work towards them. Now dreams are important in this life, but until we’re willing to action them, they will always remain dreams. 

 And the next quote tells us: ‘Live life to the fullest, and focus on the positive.’ Now that ought to be motto of the Christian believer! Christ said: ‘I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.’ (John 10:10b) What’s the point of having abundant life and not enjoying it to the fullest eh? It would only make Christ’s sacrifice a waste down. 

But to enjoy our lives, we also have to focus on the positive aspects, especially of Christ’s teaching, because the negative aspects of the world only beat and break us down. 

And the last quote says: ‘Death is not the greatest loss in life. The greatest loss is what dies inside us while we live.’ Now that is gospel truth my brethren! In fact, death is not a loss of life at all, for believers it’s only a journey from one realm to the other, and even more importantly it’s from a short, finite and rough earthly life, to a long and glorious infinite eternal life. So we don’t suffer a loss of life at all, but move up to a higher, spiritual one. 

The problem is the stuff that dies inside of us while we’re living this earthly life. We’re talking about stuff like, hope, faith, joy, LOVE, mercy, forgiveness, empathy, self-control and self-discipline; the attributes of God we need to live a faithful and fruitful life; things we call the fruit of the Spirit.

Thus our Bit: ‘But the fruit of the Spirit is LOVE, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness (kindness), goodness, faith (faithfulness), Meekness, temperance (self-control): against such there is no law.’ 

Yes my believing brethren, those are the things we want alive and well in all of us, so that we can live the life Jesus died for us to have, and to do His work. Unless those things are reigning in our lives we’ll be unable to live good, Christian, fruitful lives like Jesus desires of us.

The Holy Spirit of God dwells in each believer, and is there for the express purpose of leading and guiding us in God-filled lives. That means we have to follow the Spirit’s direction if we want to live successful Christian lives. 

As Bruh Paul so astutely continues: ‘And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts (its passions). If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.’ (Gal.5:24-25) 

Now here are a few explanations from the scholars: ‘5:22-23. The word fruit is significant for three reasons (1) It means the result, product, outcome or effect produced by the Spirit in the believer’s life. (2) Unlike “the gifts of the Spirit” (plural), only some of which are given to a Christian, each believer is to have all nine virtues composing “the fruit of the Spirit” (singular). (3) As fruit on a tree takes time to grow and mature, so the spirit does not cultivate these virtues in the believer’s life overnight. 

LOVE is the willing, sacrificial giving of oneself for the benefit of another without thought of return. Joy is gladness of heart. Peace is tranquility of mind, freeing one from worry and fear. Long-suffering is patience with others, the opposite of a short temper, a disposition quietly bearing injury.

Gentleness is kindness. Goodness is generosity. Faith here is dependability. Meekness is gentleness, that is, courtesy and consideration in one’s relations with others. Temperance is self-control, that is, the ability to harness and control one’s passions and lusts.’ 

And there you have it friends, ‘the Fruit of the Spirit Lecture 101!’ (smile) Yes, I know it’s not easy to cultivate all those wonderful attributes, especially with the world on our back to do differently, but with the help of the Holy Spirit we can certainly work towards them and be fairly successful if we set our minds to it. 

Remember, as believers in Christ, we are done with carnal fleshly matters, and are supposed to live by the Spirit of Christ imbued in us. So let’s do that nuh, and consequently fulfill Bruh Paul’s desire: ‘Let us not be desirous of vain glory (conceited), provoking one another, envying one another.’ (Gal.5:26). Much LOVE!

…to grow good fruit…we have to sow good seed…

 

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

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

 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

All together in strong voice, with sincere hearts: ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! 

I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection! I am blessed with a compassionate heart and a positive outlook on life! I declare that any curse or negative word that’s ever been spoken over me is broken right now in the name of Jesus! I declare that everything I put my hands to will prosper and succeed! I declare it today and everyday! Amen!’ 

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

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

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 August 2018 John 10:10b-11.

John 10:10b-11.   I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.

Awright my believing brethren, what shall we say about this day eh? ‘This is the day the Lord has made we WILL rejoice and be glad in it!’ And what else? That this is the Lord’s Day and we WILL go to His sanctuary to give Him much praise and thanks, to celebrate our blessed lives and fellowship with others of the same belief! 

We shall also listen to His Word, let it seep into our hearts and souls, and consequently have our spirits refilled with God’s LOVE through His Holy Spirit, so that we can walk tall and strong, proud and confident, when we depart from His sanctuary! And all God’s people said a loud and grateful: ‘Praise the Lord!’ 

Yes friends, our God is indeed worthy to be praised! And there’s no better way to praise Him than in song: He enjoys it, and it brings the best out of us. And today’s song of praise is a favourite gospel song from a few years back, one we all know and LOVE; it’s simply but oh so meaningfully titled ‘Oh Happy Day!’ 

It was written by the gospel singer Edwin Hawkins, and first recorded by the Edwin Hawkins Singers. Unfortunately though, Edwin Hawkins died a few weeks ago, but in conjunction with his choir, he left the world a wonderful legacy in song. I also saw a wonderful rendition of it on You Tube by Ray Charles and the Voices of Jubilation choir. Oh, Ray was so worked up that on his way off the stage he stopped at least three times and did a Happy Day dance! 

So let’s open our hearts and mouths and allow our voices to soar to high heaven with these few simple but oh so meaningful words. Remember, half the beauty of the song is in its call and response style, so let’s call and respond in all sincerity and truth nuh, letting our magnificent and magnanimous God know how deep is our joy, in having the wonderful privilege of worshipping Him. Hn! I hope that makes sense. 

But anyway, enough talk, let’s sing: ‘Oh happy day (oh happy day) Oh happy day (oh happy day) When Jesus washed (when Jesus washed) When Jesus washed (when Jesus washed) When Jesus washed (when Jesus washed) He washed my sins away (oh happy day) 

Oh happy day (oh happy day) He taught me how to watch, fight and pray, fight and pray And live rejoicing every, everyday Oh happy day He taught me how to watch, fight and pray, fight and pray And live rejoicing every, everyday Oh happy day Oh happy day (oh happy day) Oh happy day (oh happy day).’ 

Oh my fellow believers, how could we not be ecstatic eh, when Jesus washed away our sins, cleansed us with the blood He shed on Calvary? He also taught us how to watch, to fight and pray and live rejoicing every day! Glory be! We’d be foolish and ungrateful if we didn’t appreciate His stellar and selfless efforts on our behalf. 

Just look at what our Bit says: ‘I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.’ And that’s exactly what Jesus did my brethren! He gave His life so that we could enjoy abundant living in concert with the Father; redeemed, made righteous once again, with salvation and eternal life the end benefits. 

That means Christians ought to be the happiest people on Planet Earth…and show it in our behaviour too. For why would anyone want to come to Jesus if we claim to have so much wonderful stuff when we believe in Him, but our attitudes and demeanour are sour and miserable and definitely don’t reflect the joy we talk about so much eh? 

If our everyday lives aren’t filled with hope, happiness and heavenly thoughts and longing then we’re not true believers and/or Jesus sacrificed His sinless life in vain. Please friends, let that not be the case, because it would break both the Father and Jesus’ hearts. 

So please let’s make every day a happy day nuh; watching for His promised return; fighting the many evil enemies who want to discredit Him and turn us away. But they don’t know that when we get on our knees, both literally and figuratively, and pray to the Father in His name that the battle is as good as won! Glory Hallelujah! 

And with all of that good stuff, the rejoicing just comes naturally. Ah mih people, we have so much to look forward to when we sincerely make Jesus our Lord and Saviour. And when our names are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life, then we’re sealed forever as a child of God, our bonds are so ironclad that nothing, or no one can ever break them. That’s how powerful association with the Lord and His heavenly host is. 

So today, let’s step right up to the plate and hit the devil right out of the park for a large home run. That’ll show him to mess with Jesus’ people! Much LOVE!

…as a believer in Jesus…we’re promised joy for ever more…now who in their right senses would refuse that eh…

 


 

 

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