Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 March 2021 Matthew 14:31b.

Matthew 14:31b.     ​O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?

And so we move on; another day older and closer to heaven! Can you imagine it friends? Some of us have lived so many days already that we don’t know what to do with ourselves. But be not afraid of what’s in your future, for our great and wonderful God has a distinct plan for every one of us, to be His disciple, His ambassador, agent, representative, call it what you like, and it does not end even when we take our last breath and go over the other side to His golden mansions for eternal rest. 

That’s because He expects the lives that we’ve lived down here, to speak to others, as a glowing example of faithfulness and LOVE, even after we have departed this earthly territory. That means what we do, how we behave, how we treat others, every day of our lives makes a difference. And that’s exactly what the Lord desires of us; that we make a positive difference in the land as we walk closely with Him. So the question now my friends is, are we making a positive difference on others, as we live this earthly life? 

Are we being good examples of the kind of life the Lord expects of His followers? I do hope that all of us can answer a resounding ‘Yes!’ to it, but I know that that’s certainly not the case, else our world would not be living the selfish, greedy, godless, dog eat dog kind of life we’re currently living. Oh my brethren, if we’re true to ourselves, we’ll all realize that we’re not living the best Christian life that we can, which means we have lots of room for improvement. 

And why aren’t we living the kind of Christian life we want to lead eh? I think if we look to Bruh Paul’s words and examples in Romans, when he talks about the struggles of two natures, we’ll get some insight into the problem. ‘For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal (fleshly), sold under sin. For that which I do I allow not (don’t understand): for what I would (want to do), that do I not; but what I hate, that I do.’ (Rom. 7:14-15) And we all have that same struggle between our flesh and the spiritual lives we want to live. 

The scholars however, offer an excellent explanation of our problem, re verse 14. ‘The law is spiritual: The law has characteristics of the Spirit and is consistent with the character of God. I am carnal: What follows is autobiographical and designed to reveal the real struggle the apostle experienced in the flesh. His experience is also exemplary, for it shows the problems all believers experience in their battle with sin.’ And yes, as we said above, we all experience personal struggles with sin, but that is no reason, no excuse not to do better than we’re doing, especially if we’re at a fairly high state of spiritual maturity. 

And I think that’s one of the many problems in the church, in Christ’s body today: the mature believers are not leading exemplary lives, and also are not taking enough interest in the less mature believers. But that’s just what Jesus desires of us, as we said at the outset; a life that makes a positive difference and sets a good example to others. And no, He does not expect us to be perfect, because He did not make us perfect, but He does expect us to do our best. As Uncle Charles (Charles Stanley) likes to say: ‘Look your best, do your best and be your best!’ And that’s all the Lord is asking of us. 

But too many of us are too immersed in the ways of the world, the fleshly, sinful carnal life. And how do we get out of that? Only one way friends; by keeping our eyes constantly fixed on Jesus. And we have a great example of that with this interaction between Jesus and Peter. It’s that time when Jesus fed five thousand men besides women and children with five loaves of bread and two fishes, and they took up twelve baskets of remnants afterwards. (Matt. 14:15-21) Then He sent the disciples away in a boat over the lake, the sea of Galilee, while He dismissed the crowd and went up into a mountain to pray. (Matt. 14:22-23a) 

Now the Good Book says: ‘And when the evening was come, he was there alone. But the ship (with the disciples) was now in the midst (middle) of the sea, tossed with waves: for the wind was contrary. And in the fourth watch of the night (from 3-6 a.m.) Jesus went unto them, walking on the sea. And when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, It is a spirit (a ghost); and they cried out for fear. But straightway Jesus spake unto them, saying, Be of good cheer (take courage); it is I; be not afraid. And Peter answered him and said, Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water. And he said, Come. 

And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus. But when he saw the wind boisterous (violent), he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me. And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand, and caught him, and said unto him, O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt? And when they were come into the ship, the wind ceased. Then they that were in the ship came and worshipped him, saying, Of a truth, thou art the Son of God.’ (Matt. 14:23b-33). 

And right in that li’l passage of scripture friends, we have our basic problem. We talk plenty about Jesus being the Son of God, but when the time comes for us to truly embrace it, we fail miserably. Peter was bold enough to step out of the boat, but when the wind got really strong, he took His eyes off Jesus, and doubt crept into his mind and made him afraid. And that’s what happens to too many of us; when troubles come, we stop looking to Jesus, forget the powerful being that He is, and all His faithful promises, and in fear, fall back on our own strength, which will never be enough to get us through this life. 

So friends, if we want to make a positive difference with our lives, we have to steadfastly keep looking to Jesus; don’t be too afraid, or lose our faith, or forget His promises, when troubles come, as they always will. And what better scripture to close with than these assuring words of our Lord and Saviour. ‘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) 

And for those of us in whom those words have taken solid root, let’s go home now declaring (yeahhh!) our Wednesday Wail, letting the whole world know of our wonderful 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 also reassuring to know that if we endure to the end, the promised future will be even more glorious than we can ask or imagine! So let’s keep on keeping on in Christ nuh my brethren! Much LOVE!

…steadfastly looking to Jesus…is the ONLY way…to handle our doubts and fears… 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 February 2020 John 10:10.

John 10:10.    ​The thief (Satan) 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.
 

 

HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY!

Happy  Valentine’s Day, my Scrip-Bit friends and family! It’s the Day of LOVE, or LOVE Day as celebrated by the world for consumerism purposes, to further enrich the coffers of the already wealthy! And yes, we know that a lot of it is not true LOVE, but once it has to do with treating people better, offering gifts and tender, compassionate feelings, then we ought to embrace it, especially since this is the ONLY day in the year truly dedicated to showing LOVING feelings. (smile) 

The flowers and the cards and the chocolates and other gifts will be rushing out of the stores today – I’ve got mine already – and the smiles on the owners faces will be huge as they hear those cash registers ring and ring – chhhring …chhhring…! But although it’s so commercialized, we still have to hold on to it, because it is a form of spreading LOVE…God’s most important character trait! 

And what better day for it to fall on than a Friday, when people are normally overjoyed to see their work week wind down and their time become their own for a couple of days. And no one is as enthused as the ordinary workingman, so let’s hear what he has to say nuh. And we can always depend on him for an interesting word, as he declares (yeah!): 

‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday oui! The week wasn’t too bad, as I’m learning my limitations, and not stressing out mihself on the work like before. Yeah! And is also Valentine’s Day to boot. A good weekend that! Going to get a baby-sitter for the children and take the wife out to dinner and a movie! I’ve already lavished her with flowers and chocolates! 

Valentine’s Day is one of our special times because that’s the day we had our first kiss, oh so long ago, behind the barn on her father’s farm out in the country! I could remember it like it was yesterday…one of the most tender moments we’ve ever shared. And I know she’s looking forward to this weekend, just like I am! Brother! We going to make some more good memories to add to those we already have! Mama Yo! Thank God for Fridays, weekends and Valentine’s Day yes!’  

Now don’t you just adore the workingman’s simple joy and enthusiasm? I certainly do! Perhaps that’s because I’m merely a simple workingman my self. (smile) But that’s what life is about friends, making good, godly memories with those we LOVE and care for. 

Remember Jesus’ immortal words regarding the sheep of His pasture, His followers: ‘The thief (Satan) 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.’ Glory be mih people! 

That means that Jesus didn’t come to earth to die, to sacrifice his sinless self so that we could live, miserable, unhappy lives. No way Jose! He came that we could enjoy life while doing His bidding! What’s the point of Him atoning for our sins and giving us His righteousness, and reconciling us to the Father and making us One with Him, if we had to be miserable and downtrodden doing it eh? We were already doing that before He came, so why come for us to do the same thing eh? 

And as Sister Joyce (Joyce Meyer) says, that’s why she calls her television programme ‘Enjoying Everyday Life,’ because that’s why Christ came to earth, so that He could release us from the bondage of sin and have down here on earth, a good, healthy and happy relationship with each other and ultimately the Father! 

Yuh see how all yuh get me carried away there! (smile) That’s because I hate to see miserable, slobbering, poe (poor) me one, like they on their last breath, no belly and backbone people calling themselves Christians! We have ALL the best blessings of God, like we declared in our Thursday Blessings yesterday, so why should we go around tired looking, fearful and miserable eh? 

We’re supposed to be the happiest, most joyful and most powerful people on the planet, because our heavenly father is the Creator of the Universe and the most important and powerful person therein! So please my fellow believers, let’s cut out this struggling appearance that we portray to the world nuh. Tell me, if Jesus had come to you with our poor me one attitude and a life of constant struggle and poverty, would you have embraced it and or Him? Definitely not! 

Likewise if we bring that kind of attitude to our fellow man as that which Jesus desires of His followers, you expect them to accept it? Not on yuh life! So it’s time we not only stand up strong in Christ, but also LOOK STRONG, for remember the world judges so much on outward appearance and we won’t ever entice them to have a look at Jesus if we look poor and downtrodden. As Uncle Charles (Charles Stanley ) likes to say: When you go out to represent Jesus, you must look your best, be your best and do your best! It couldn’t be any clearer or wiser than that friends! (smile) 

And no, I haven’t forgotten our Friday Chant, it’s just that you all threw me a curved ball about our less than appropriate way of living everyday life that led me into the unavoidable spiel… (smile) But that’s okay. I guess it needed to be said, to remind us of the privileged people we are, and that we ought to show it in our lifestyle. 

So all together now, let’s chant: ‘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!’ 

Yeh friends, we need to have our wits about us, but that doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy ourselves, once we stay within certain boundaries as outlined by Jesus. And contrary to popular opinion, there’s a lot of leeway in His rules and regulations, (smile) we just like to overdo it. We’re not happy unless we’re overdoing it. I guess that’s our natural sinful nature showing up there. Anyway, please have a Happy Valentine’s Day, spread the LOVE, the true LOVE, AGAPE LOVE, like Jesus wants and all will be fine! Much LOVE!

…what’s a day of LOVE…without joyful feelings ruling the roost…and the author of LOVE being celebrated…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 June 2019 2 Thessalonians 3:10.

2 Thessalonians  3:10.    For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat.
 

‘Another one’s down! Another one’s gone! Yes, another one bites the dust!’ Ah friends, one more of my university chums has departed this world for the next. And are they ever departing at a fairly speedy rate. Chuh! I don’t even want to count how many have departed in the last three or four years because it will get too depressing.  

But suffice it to say that Dr. Michael Dash Ph.D. language professor extraordinaire; (smile) has now given up his earthly body for just a spiritual one. I am not cognizant of all the facts, but I believe he was laid low by the current deadly scourge of mankind, cancer. Apparently the cancer had ravaged his body so much, that he ended up in a coma and never regained consciousness.  

Ah Michael mih brother, I haven’t seen you in many a year, but we certainly had some good times way back then on the University of the West Indies Campus in Mona, Jamaica, when we were young and carefree. So regardless of what has happened in between, those memories can never be erased. And that’s why we make memories; to remind us of what life was like in earlier times. The only problem is that we must endeavour to make good memories, because who wants to remember bad memories eh? 

Anyway, rest in peace Michael, and my sincere condolences go out to your family as they mourn and grieve your passing. The big problem with death though friends, is that the ones left behind have to go on, have to keep ploughing through the rough minefield that’s life as though nothing has happened. That means most of us still have to go out and labour on this Monday morning, which we’d still rather not do. (smile) 

That brings us to some very interesting and important words of advice, as well as of admonishment from Bruh Paul to the Thessalonians re general behaviour. ‘Now we command you brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly and not after the tradition which he received of us. For yourselves know how ye ought to follow us: for we behaved not ourselves disorderly among you; 

Neither did we eat any man’s bread for nought (free of charge); but wrought with labour (worked) and travail (toil) night and day, that we might not be chargeable (be a burden) to any of you. Not because we have not power (authority), but to make ourselves an example unto you to follow us. For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat.’ (2 Thess.3: 6-10) 

Now that’s a very strong and serious admonition! Something that still holds true today. We ought to disassociate ourselves from those who refuse to walk a style of life that conforms to God’s Word. And we all ought to work as best we can to make a living. And it’s not like Bruh Paul had to work – he was a tent maker – but he wanted to set a good example for the Thessalonians. Likewise, we ought to think seriously about setting good examples for those around us. 

And what a bam- bam it would be eh, if we ever introduced that rule about if you don’t work you don’t eat! (smile) Even more people would go hungry than are already going hungry for one reason or another.  But since we’re true believers in Christ, that’s not in our souls and spirits at all! (smile) Some of us just have a few problems getting motivated to go out each and every Monday morning after an enjoyable weekend. 

But not to worry, we have the right antidote for all those Monday blues, something called our Monday Morning Battle Hymn; sincere words of prayer, that we communicate to our heavenly Father, asking for His awesome help to get us moving. So let’s do that together now nuh, since when we agree in prayer, it makes our prayer more powerful. 

As one now: ‘Oh Lord God Almighty, Creator of the universe and all therein! We, your humble servants, praise your Holy Name and thank you that this Monday morning we have jobs to go to; jobs we don’t like, jobs that are unfair, difficult and even dangerous, but which serve a useful purpose here on earth; keeping lives and families together. 

We also thank you Father for the renewed vitality and enthusiasm you’ve wrought in our weary souls over the last two days. It’s that rejuvenation of Spirit which allows us now to sally forth with confidence into the evil, ungodly world that surrounds us, to begin a new week of work, constantly buffeted and bombarded by the enemy’s wicked taunts, wiles and lies. 

But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour. We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle. 

Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’ 

And our God is so wonderful my brethren, that before the words could even quite reach up to heaven, the Father had already instructed the angels to grant our wishes! Wow! That’s why now we all feel so refreshed and energized, with a spring in our step, a new light in our eyes and a desire to get out into the evil world and just work diligently and excellently for Jesus! 

So let’s go now and do just that nuh, so we can bring a smile to Jesus’ face and warm the cockles of His warm and oh so LOVING heart! Much LOVE!

…if you truly LOVE Jesus…and want to sincerely follow Him…then you need to…look your best…do your best…and be your best… (Uncle Charles –Charles Stanley)