Today’s Scrip-Bit   12 October 2021 Proverbs 6:6.

Proverbs 6:6.     Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise:

Well, it was indeed a beautiful Thanksgiving Day! The sun shone brightly for a change, and the skies were blue (smile) with temps in the mid to low twenties! Wow! We haven’t seen that type of day in my area for a while now. And I do hope that all of us gave much thanks for the many blessings we have in this blessed land. I know the celebrations were plentiful, what with the recent opening up of the lockdown conditions, and though my own celebration was fairly quiet, the food was over the top and unfortunately, I partook of it with a zest that I’ve not seen or experienced in recent times. (smile) 

And since West Indian food, though nourishing and strengthening is also fattening, consequently I am a couple pounds heavier this morning. But what to do eh? When you celebrate and give thanks these things will happen. (smile) The problem now is to keep up the attitude of thanksgiving while lowering the temptation to the celebration aspect. Remember, we can never give too much thanks, but we can always overdo the celebration part, which can get us in serious trouble when laziness, idleness, slothfulness and their fellow companions rear their ugly heads. 

Sadly though, a lot of that is now floating around in our current turbulent and unhinged society. That’s why right now is a good time to consider the marvellous advice of Cousin Sol from his writings in Proverbs, where he warns against laziness and falsehood. Please listen up closely to this wise and godly advice. ‘Give not sleep to thine eyes, nor slumber to thine eyelids. Deliver thyself as a roe (gazelle) from the hand of the hunter, and as a bird from the hand of the fowler (the bird trapper).’ (Prov. 6:4-5) 

Yes friends, we must not let the seeming beauty of sleep to capture us unawares, like a hunter captures a deer, or a fowler traps a bird in his snare. Sleep is necessary to reset our tired bodies and souls, but overdone, it can lead to very disastrous situations. And yuh better believe that sleep is one of the best traps the enemy uses to ensnare us and get us away from doing the Lord’s work. That’s why Cousin Sol in his advice directs us thus: ‘Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise:’ (Prov. 6:6) 

And you ask, what’s he talking about eh? How can you learn wisdom from the ways of the ant? Well then, he explains it by saying that the ant: ‘Which having no guide (leader), overseer, or ruler, Provideth her meat (food) in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest.’ (Prov. 6:7-8) Now isn’t that a wonderful example of self-reliance and wisdom? It surely is! Then Cousin Sol goes on to ask these most pertinent questions. ‘How long wilt thou sleep, O sluggard? When wilt thou arise out of thy sleep?’ (Prov. 6:9) 

Oh my people, those are questions that each of must seriously consider, especially in these dangerous and crazy times of sickness and dissatisfaction. And why is that you ask again? Cousin Sol also provides the answer to that question. ‘Yet a little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to sleep: So shall thy poverty come as one that travelleth (a prowler), and thy want (need) as an armed man.’ (Prov. 6:10-11) Yes mih bredrin, that’s how laziness, idleness and slothfulness bring us to our knees without our realizing it. Working too hard is not good, but not working hard enough is even worse. 

Now here are some explanations on the subject from the scholars. ‘6:6-11. The sluggard is the habitually lazy person. He is admonished to learn two important lessons from the ant: (1) the ant has no guide, overseer, or ruler (vs.7), meaning that the ant does not have to have a taskmaster standing over it to make it work; it is a self-starter. (2) The ant is wise enough to prepare for predictable circumstances (vs.8). Two questions about sleep are posed to the sluggard (vs.9).  His answer is given in verse 10: “Just a little more sleep!” The result of such laziness is dire poverty, which will come as suddenly and as decisively as a robber (vs.11).’ 

And yuh better believe that our society currently seems overwhelmed with laziness, or always seeking the easy way out, or just looking at today and not tomorrow. But we must also prepare for the future, for the hereafter. And yes, not many of us want to work, but it’s wise if we do… and don’t consume everything all at once either,  put aside something for the rainy day too. At least in earlier generations some of us had no choice whatsoever but to work, if we wanted to eat and a place to sleep. 

That brings to mind Bruh Paul’s directive to the Thessalonians: ‘For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat. For we hear that there are some which walk among you disorderly, working not at all, but are busybodies.’ (2 Thess. 3:10-11) And there are many like that in our current society! Meanwhile, the scholars explain: ‘3:10-12. Paul expounds his simple and straightforward ethic. If a person will not work, he should not eat! The Thessalonians’ diversion encouraged their meddlesome ways, demonstrating that ‘idle hands are the Devil’s workshop.’ 

And is that ever the truth! We get into trouble most often when we are not doing anything, or anything productive. And that is exactly what’s happening right now in our society. Too many people have nothing constructive to do, so they are engaging in a whole lot of negative and evil devices and schemes. And with so much government and charitable help around, it would be hard to implement a scheme of no work, no bread. On top of that, there just are not enough jobs so that everyone can be gainfully employed. 

So what do we do eh? The best we can. That’s working ourselves, showing forth the benefits of living for Jesus, and encouraging others to do something constructive, whatever it might be. Something that would benefit them and the society. Time to stop paying so much attention to the foolishness, lies and distractions on social media, and return to a fact and truth based society. That means depending on the Good Book, the Lord’s Word! It’s not an easy task, but if we work in concert with Jesus, we can certainly do it, because He gives us strength to do any and everything He needs us to do! Glory be! 

Now for those of us who are willing and able to work for our Saviour, let’s go home declaring (yesss!!!) our Tuesday Mantra, loudly and proudly proclaiming to the whole world, who and whose we are; in other words, to whom we belong! As one strong voice: ‘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 having said that, let’s go out now and share that amazing LOVE and friendship of Christ with others, so that they too can come to know and LOVE Him! Much LOVE!

…to fill the world with peace and LOVE…we must fill the world with Jesus…                                                                                                           

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 May 2016 Ecclesiastes 3:1

Ecclesiastes 3:1.   To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.

Summertime, Summertime, Summertime, Summertime! Thank God it’s Friday in the summertime! Mama yo! We leaving work early to beat the traffic, heading for the cottage to spend a marvellous weekend; eating, drinking, boating, swimming and fishing! Wow! The barbecues will be on fire, and the beer will be ice cold… Oh Lord, thank you for Fridays in the summertime!’ 

Yes friends, that’s the mantra of a lot of people on a Friday in the summertime, as they head for cottage country and their lakeside getaways. Consequently, many of them miss church and the wonderful fellowship and rejuvenation of spirit that comes with it. 

And then the boating accidents proliferate, because now they are drinking and driving on the water, just as they do on land. Every summer you hear of several mishaps on the water because of the brown girl in the bottle. Ah Lord eh! 

But for us few, who know how to spend a proper weekend, let’s chant our Friday Chant, so that we can get the right perspective. As one now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. 

Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen.’ 

Yes my brethren, that’s more like the focus we should have for the weekend; a nice balance of rest, recreation and fellowship. And today I want to share an interesting and important quote attributed to Lord Chesterfield, Philip Dormer Stanhope (1694-1773), 4th Earl of Chesterfield. I believe I’ve shared it before, but as they say, when it’s nice, you’ve got to play it at least twice. (smile) 

Lord Chesterfield is reputed to have said: ‘Know the true value of time; snatch, seize, and enjoy every moment of it. No idleness, no laziness, no procrastination, never put off till tomorrow what you can do today.’ 

And that my brethren is the god-awesome truth! We can’t afford to fool with, or waste time, because time waits on no one, it just goes along its own rollicking way, whether you decide to use it wisely or not. 

Remember the saying too that procrastination is the thief of time. More awesome truth! The more we put off, the less we get done and the less time we have left in our bank. Unfortunately we don’t know how much total time is in our account. 

So please, let’s learn to pay better and closer attention to our time because Almighty God has given us just enough to do whatever He desires, and if we waste it, we obviously won’t complete all that He has planned for us. End of sermon. (smile) 

That brings us to our Bit, the well-known verse of wisdom from Cousin Sol, writing as the preacher in Ecclesiastes. ‘To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.’ More indisputable truth my people, because as Christians, truth is all we ought to ever deal in. 

And after our Bit, Cousin Sol goes on to list a whole set of positive and negative things to which time have been apportioned. Like ‘a time to be born, a time to die… A time to weep, and a time to laugh…A time to LOVE, and a time to hate…’ Just read Ecclesiastes 3 and you’ll see how he has it all nicely laid out. 

Now here is some info from the scholars on that scripture. ‘3:1-8. As Solomon reflects on all of life, he expresses a beautiful poem of 14 pairs of opposite events that God has a sovereign design behind all events (cf. Rom.8:28). To gather stones (v.5) refers to the process of clearing land for planting or building. To hate (v.8) means to withdraw from intimacy and should not always be taken in an absolute sense (cf. Mal.1:2-3).’  

Yes friends, there’s no real time ever for the true sense of the word hating. It’s not supposed to exist in a Christian’s vocabulary. 

Now let’s look at a couple of other scriptures which deal with time in the life of man, starting with the words of Ethan the Ezrahite from Psalm 89 – God’s sure promises to David. ‘The days of his youth hast thou shortened: thou hast covered him with shame.   Selah.  

How long, Lord? Wilt thou hide thyself for ever? Shall thy wrath burn like fire? Remember how short my time is: wherefore hast thou made all men in vain (for what futility hast thou made all men)? What man is he that liveth and shall not see (experience) death? Shall he deliver his soul from the hand (power) of the grave?’ (Ps.89:44-48) 

Now listen to Moses from Psalm 90 – From everlasting to everlasting thou art God. ‘The days of our years are threescore years and ten (the span of our lives is seventy years); and if by reason of strength they be fourscore (80) years, yet is their strength labour and sorrow (their boast only labour); for it is soon cut off, and we fly away. 

Who knoweth the power of thine anger? Even according to thy fear, so is thy wrath. So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom (gain a heart of wisdom).’ (Ps.90:10-12) 

Yes my fellow believers, we know not how long our time on earth will be, so please let’s use whatever we have wisely nuh, meaning in the pursuit of the things of God and heaven, not those of the world and the evil one. Much LOVE!

…no one knows the time nor the hour…of their earthly demise…