Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 April 2021 Matthew 10:22.

Matthew 10:22.​     And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.

What a bizarre time we’re going through my people! One day we hear that the police are authorized to make random stops to find out where you’re going, but the police refuse to do it. So, next day, we hear that authority has been rescinded. The government and the medical people don’t seem to be on the same wavelength at all, as there are too many conflicting statements on how to best handle the pandemic situation. But there’s no way to fix it without a fair amount of consensus among all parties. And when you add all the controversy surrounding the vaccines the whole scene is one chaotic mess. 

But let me remind us, that as sincere believers in Christ Jesus, we always have Him to turn to in times of doubt and despair. Life will never be easy or comfortable, especially when we’re living for Jesus, but He has faithfully promised that whatever negative stuff we are experiencing in the world, we can always turn to Him and receive His awesome peace and comfort that are way better than what the world offers. So, with all the bickering and dispute that’s currently going on, now is definitely a time to turn to Him for solace, comfort and wise guidance. 

A time to remember His amazing words of promise, like these. ‘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) Yes friends, that’s sometimes hard to understand and accept when our whole world seems to be falling apart. But we need to keep speaking it, keep believing it, until it sinks into our very soul and becomes a natural tool for us to handle unpleasant situations. 

And what about this other warning of persecution. ‘Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless (innocent) as doves. But beware of men: for they will deliver you up to the councils, and they will scourge you in their synagogues…And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.’ (Matt. 10:17-18, 22). And as the scholars explain: ‘In the ancient Near East the serpent was commonly regarded as the wisest of beasts. A cautious wisdom was necessary in order to deal with the fierce opposition that the disciples would face.’ 

And up to this day, the situation has remained the same: believers have to be wise and cautious in their dealings with the world. In some places today, the persecution is just as bad as in the days of the early church, but you see what a huge difference the perseverance and strong belief of the disciples made in the world, despite the terrible odds they faced. 

And in our western world, we don’t even have an ounce of the persecution they faced, yet we’re whining and crying. That ought not to be so friends. We are supposed to be the salt of the earth and the light of the world. The ones to lead others to Christ and all the good benefits He has to offer. And please remember that nothing worthwhile is ever easy to accomplish. 

Now listen to some more inspirational words of Jesus nuh. ‘If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. If ye were of the world, the world would LOVE his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.’ (John 15:18-19) That’s something we too often forget my fellow saints; that we are IN the world, but not OF the world. So let’s stand up strong and face the world mano a mano nuh. Remember Jesus has already overcome it, and we only need to keep the victory going, with His help obviously. 

And in what is known in some circles, as the long version of the Lord’s Prayer (John 17) Jesus didn’t only pray for the disciples but also for us. ‘Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word. That they all may be one: as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.’ ( John 17:20-21) 

Yuh see that mih bredrin, Jesus knew that His plan would work, and that down through the ages people would believe in Him having not seen Him in person, and He wanted them to be separate, sanctified, living as one, not as the many warring denominations we now have. But as we say, while there is life, there’s always hope, and I believe these difficult times were meant to bring us together and back to God, so let’s do just that nuh, be as one, in sincere prayer, and offer up what we term our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. 

Altogether now: ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You that this Monday morning we’re alive and standing in faith despite the mass confusion that’s currently prevailing in our world. We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems; the pandemic of Covid -19, the racial, political, and religious strife that’s ignited worldwide, plus the many natural disasters that now seem more prevalent than ever. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously come short in obedience and compliance to Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, and You have faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us, ordinary folks, as well as our leaders, employers and medical personnel, wise guidance and direction to bring our problems under control. 

And for those who are currently suffering from the many negative situations, we pray that You will ease their suffering and heal them. Father, please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again we say: Amen!’ 

Now, having said all of that, we need to show true humility and sincere repentance, if we want God to affirmatively answer our plea. Much LOVE!

…bear patiently the slings of the world…and your reward will be great…both in heaven and on earth… 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 18 April 2021 Matthew 7:24.

Matthew 7:24.     ​Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a (the) rock.

So here we go again, another Sunday of virtual gathering. But the important thing is that we gather, not the how or where we do it. The Lord just wants us to gather however we can and celebrate His day, to give Him thanks and praise for all that He’s done for us this past week, and renew our confidence that He will keep on looking after us in the upcoming week. So, if the earthly powers that be say we can’t gather in large groups under one roof or mango tree, then, being the ingenious people we are, we will gather virtually. (smile) We can’t hug and kiss and shake hands, but we can do most of the other things necessary for worship. 

As always then, let’s begin with a song of praise, something to lively up both heaven and earth, this cloudy spring morning. (smile) Today’s hymn was written by British Baptist minister, Edward Mote (1797-1874) and it’s one of our favourites. Oh brother, do we have many favourites! And why not eh, since they are all celebrating the goodness and glory of our great God? 

Anyway, enough suspense, our hymn is titled ‘My Hope is built on nothing less.’ And is that ever the awesome truth friends! Our hope is indeed built on Christ Jesus and NO ONE, or nothing else. So let’s sing it like we truly mean it nuh, in harmony, loud and clear, at a nice up-tempo speed. 

Altogether now: ‘My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness. I dare not trust the sweetest frame but wholly lean on Jesus’ name. (Refrain: On Christ, the solid rock, I stand; all other ground is sinking sand, all other ground is sinking sand.) When darkness veils his lovely face I rest on His unchanging grace In every high and stormy gale My anchor holds within the veil. (Refrain) His oath, his covenant, his blood Supports me in the ‘whelming flood When all around my soul gives way He then is all my hope and stay. 

(Refrain) Not earth, nor hell, my soul can move; I rest upon unchanging LOVE. I trust his righteous character, his counsel, promise, and his pow’r. [Refrain] When he shall come with trumpet sound, oh, may I then in him be found, dressed in his righteousness alone, faultless to stand before the throne. [Refrain: On Christ, the solid rock, I stand; all other ground is sinking sand, all other ground is sinking sand.’ 

What a magnificent rendition my people! All heaven was singing along with us, including the Father. He’s usually the first to join in whenever anyone is singing praises to His awesome Son, for He’s a very proud Father! What makes me chuckle though, is how Jesus sits there on His throne, quietly tapping His feet and nodding His head to the music, with that shy, boyish smile on His handsome face, somewhat embarrassed by all the praise. 

But that’s why we LOVE and adore Him so much. Despite all the honour and glory the Father has bestowed on Him, all the accolades He’s received down through the ages, He’s still the same down to earth, unassuming person He’s always been. That doesn’t mean to say He’s a pushover, as the wicked will find out when He comes back the second time, but He’s like the real great men of earth who know their power and don’t need to flaunt it. 

And what was Brother Mote trying to tell or instill in us when he wrote those wonderful words so long ago eh? I think it’s basically that Jesus is the everlasting hope, the assurance, the refuge, the best place to find solace and comfort in this crazy, sinful world. And that’s the indisputable truth friends! Jesus is the ONLY ONE who can sincerely offer us the comfort that we so desperately need in these rather trying and difficult times. Remember His Great Invitation? ‘Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.’ (Matt. 11:28) Well He can truly do that! 

Furthermore, His selfless sacrifice on the cross of Calvary, paid the price for our sins, and thus puts us in His eternal debt. Oh friends, the blood of Jesus is ever so powerful, it enacted the New Covenant and made blood sacrifices obsolete. His death stopped us from being slaves to sin and Satan, and His resurrection caused us to have new life in the family of God. Yes friends, Jesus is the best foundation on which to build one’s life. Brother Mote said it nicely in our song: ‘Not earth, nor hell, my soul can move; I rest upon unchanging LOVE. I trust his righteous character, his counsel, promise, and his pow’r.’ What better foundation to build on eh my brethren? NONE! 

Jesus said it this way, when He spoke about the two foundations on which we can build our lives. ‘Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a (the) rock. And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a (the) rock. And everyone that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand. And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.’ (Matt. 7:24-27) 

And the scholars offer this explanation on those verses. ‘7:24-27. In drawing His concluding illustration of the two foundations, Jesus begins with the word Therefore. On the basis of all that He has taught and illustrated, He concluded that all who both hear and do His sayings shall be saved. As a great Master Counselor, Jesus reminded His listener that hearing this message alone will not change his life. He must both hear and do what Jesus has said. 

The elements of the closing illustration are drawn from the simplicity of nature itself, the rock, the rain, and the winds. The man whose house collapsed was at fault, not because he failed to labour, but because he did not lay the proper foundation. The shifting sand represents human opinion and the doctrines of men as opposed to “these sayings.” 

Now, we all know that the most important aspect of building anything is the foundation. If the foundation is strong, whatever edifice we erect will stand the test of time and nature. But if the foundation is not up to scratch, then the edifice will eventually tumble down when it comes up against powerful forces. Likewise, in life, there is no doubt that Christ is the best foundation for us to build our lives on, for He is strong and steady, steadfast and solid, impenetrable and immovable, like a rock; the rock of all ages! Much LOVE!

…what’s your foundation built on…the rock…or the shifting sand…  

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 16 April 2021 Isaiah 40:1.

Isaiah 40:1.     ​ Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God. 

Awright friends, a blessed morning to us all on this big day of Friday…or what used to be the big day of Friday, before the covid pandemic threw everything into a sustained state of disarray and confusion! But regardless of all that’s happening, my people, regardless of the unforeseen tragedies and the uncertainty that now surrounds our lives, it is still of the utmost importance that we enjoy our days and give thanks to the One who created us and still looks after us, having a most serious and unconditional LOVE for His sinful children. 

Please remember the golden words of the prophet Jeremiah: ‘It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.’ (Lam. 3:22-23) Yes friends, it’s because of the great compassion of God that we have not been already consigned to the fiery depths of Hades, for as the Good Book says, we have all sinned and come short of God’s glory, (Rom. 3:23) and the wages (penalty) for sin is death, (both physical and spiritual), but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.’ (Rom. 6:23) 

So it only makes sense, it’s true wisdom, to stay on God’s good side by revering Him and being obedient to His awesome Word, His amazing roadmap for earthly living! And it’s not like God hasn’t given us good and faithful promises all down through the ages if we keep Him first place in our lives. And I believe this promise made through Isaiah to the people of Israel long ago is rather appropriate for us right now. It’s called comfort through trust in the Lord. And so many of us know it, but still we refuse to put it into practice in our lives, refuse to follow the roadmap the Lord’s set out in His word. 

But hear the prophet Isaiah to his sinful and disobedient people nuh. ‘Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God.’ (Is. 40:1) Oh my faithful brethren, that’s exactly what the Lord is saying to us today, while we are immersed in the biggest controversy and most difficult time in our lives. And if He’s our Creator and Provider, why is that so difficult to accept eh? 

Listen as Isaiah continues. ‘Speak ye comfortably to Jerusalem, and cry unto her, that her warfare is accomplished (ended), that her iniquity is pardoned: for she hath received of the Lord’s hand double for all her sins. The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be exalted (lifted up), and every mountain and hill be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain (smooth). And the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it. (Is. 40:2-5) 

Oh precious people, what a wonderful God we serve and worship! For though the inhabitants of Judah were facing imminent captivity in Babylon, the prophet Isaiah saw a time of salvation coming in their future. And the scholars teach us thus: ‘Comfort ye means both “repent” and “console,” and implies that true repentance must precede divine consolation .My people refers to the people of God who are in a covenant relationship with Him. The voice that crieth in the wilderness is that of John the Baptist. By this voice calling from the desert, the people of Judah are called to make the crooked…straight and the rough places plain in preparation for the coming of the Messiah.’ 

And furthermore, the prophet Isaiah also decreed on the Lord’s behalf: ‘Behold, the Lord God, will come with strong hand (strength), and his arm shall rule for him: behold, his reward is with him, and his work (wage) before him. He shall feed his flock like a shepherd: he shall gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them gently in his bosom, and shall lead those that are with young.’ (Is. 40:10:11) And as the Lord has always done, He kept that promise with the coming of His Son Jesus Christ years later, to provide salvation for all the world, not just the people of Israel. 

So why are we now refusing to accept the salvation He so sacrificially provided through the death of His Son on the cross of Calvary eh? Remember what the scholars told us above, that comfort implies both repentance and consolation. So to get consolation, it implies that we first need repentance and obedience to God’s word. And what I can’t understand is why we so stubbornly refuse to acknowledge His power and glory and bow to him, when all our own efforts to run our lives successfully, and to solve our numerous current problems, are meeting with zero success. 

As I understand it, if one thing doesn’t work, then you try another. And living for Beelzebub and his evil deeds is certainly not working for our world. So friends, don’t you think it’s time to try the only other option available to us, that of the Lord God Almighty? I certainly do! How much longer are we going to hold on to the empty, deceitful and lying promises of Satan eh? No longer my brethren! It’s time to turn sincerely to Christ. So, in sincere prayer, with humble and repentant hearts, let’s do that today nuh, right now, through our Friday Chant. 

As one strong voice: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through this past week. Yuh know it’s been rough… what with all the anxiety, the confusion and havoc that the Covid-19 virus and the racial strife causing. We not accustomed to that kind of life Lord, and it really telling on us. And we know we can’t handle it on our own, that we desperately need your help. 

Oh heavenly Father, with your omnipotent help, and our trusting faith, we know that we can stand strong and steadfast and defeat both the virus and the unrest in our streets. So Lord, we sincerely ask you today to give the governments and those involved in the forefront of this serious and unexpected storm, the sure and wise guidance to handle the situation properly, with the least amount of loss to life and property as possible. And please help those of us who must go out to work amidst all the confusion, to be responsible and to stay safe, so that we can avoid any more serious setbacks. 

And Lord, we fervently pray that You’ll use this situation to also bring a lot of backsliders back to your fold, show them the error of their ways. It’s also a good opportunity to introduce a whole new flock, who will embrace your LOVE and compassion because of the way we, your faithful believers, handle the situation. Yes Lord, please use this pandemic and the unrest in the streets as a means of restoring faith in You, so that our sinful world can wake up and smell the coffee, sweet and strong! We pray this in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen!’ 

And the next move is now for us to display the characteristics that are found in trusting faith and faithful believers, if we want the Lord to answer our prayer in the affirmative .Much LOVE!

…it’s not wisdom…to follow the evil one who was demoted and destroyed…instead of the righteous One…who demoted and destroyed him… 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 11 April 2021 Luke 14:33.

Luke 14:33.     ​So therefore, any one of you who does not renounce all that he has cannot be my disciple.

It’s gathering time again friends! Time to gather, praise and worship our heavenly Father on this first Sunday after Easter, the greatest day in the Christian faith! Wow! Please, let’s always keep that awesome day of Christ’s triumphant resurrection at the forefront of our memories nuh, because without it, there would be no Christianity, forgiveness of sins or basic salvation and eternity in heaven with Christ our Lord and Saviour! Glory to God the Father, who gave His only Son as a living sacrifice to pay for our sins! 

So, as always, let’s open with a song of praise and worship. And the lyrics to today’s hymn is one of the many written by American hymn writer Judson Van De Venter (1855-1939), the tune composed by Winfield Weeden. The song was first published in 1896, and it’s still one of our favourites today. We know it as ‘All to Jesus I Surrender.’ Now, as we raise our voices in harmony, in sacrificial praise, let’s sincerely open our hearts, souls and minds and surrender our all to Jesus, our High Priest, Lord and Saviour, Advocate, Prince of Peace, Mighty Counsellor, and all the other titles He holds, because it is right proper for us to do so. 

In an up-tempo beat, because we’re celebrating, not mourning: ‘All to Jesus I surrender. All to Him I freely give; I will ever LOVE and trust Him, In His presence daily live. (Refrain: I surrender all, I surrender all; All to Thee, my blessed Saviour, I surrender all.) All to Jesus I surrender, Humbly at His feet I bow, Worldly pleasures all forsaken. Take me, Jesus, take me now. (Refrain: I surrender all..) All to Jesus I surrender, Make me, Saviour, wholly Thine; Let me feel the Holy Spirit, Truly know that Thou art mine. 

(Refrain: I surrender all…) All to Jesus I surrender, Lord, I give myself to Thee; Fill me with Thy LOVE and power, Let Thy blessing fall on me. (Refrain: I surrender all…) All to Jesus I surrender, Now I feel the sacred flame; Oh, the joy of full salvation! Glory, glory, to His name! (Refrain: I surrender all, I surrender all; All to Thee, my blessed Saviour, I surrender all…I surrender all, I surrender all; All to Thee, my blessed Saviour, I surrender all…’  

Yes friends, that was most excellent! And doesn’t it make you feel good, make you feel free and unburdened? Surrendering yourself to Jesus certainly does that! It lightens your load and puts some pep in your hitherto haunting step. So why are we so reluctant to surrender our all to Christ eh? We might surrender some, to Him, but too many refuse to surrender all. But that’s what He desires: ALL of us! As the old saying goes: All or nothing at all! 

And this explanation from the hymnary.org website puts it in an interesting manner. ‘It is human nature to seek power and accomplishment through conflict, hence the popularity of athletic contests. Defeat in a championship game is humiliating, and giving up is even more so. Nevertheless, Christ calls His followers to totally surrender themselves to Him. 

He described it this way: “Or what king, going out to encounter another king in war, will not sit down first and deliberate whether he is able with ten thousand to meet him who comes against him with twenty thousand? And if not, while the other is yet a great way off, he sends a delegation and asks for terms of peace. So therefore, any one of you who does not renounce all that he has cannot be my disciple.” (Luke 14:31-33 ESV) 

There’s no mincing of words in that statement my brethren. Remember the rich young ruler, who wanted to be perfect and had been faithfully keeping the commandments all His life? ‘Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be (want to be) perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven, and come and follow me. But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful: for he had great possessions.’ (Matt. 19:21-22) 

Then Jesus told the disciples about it being easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven, and they were all amazed, wondering then, just who could be saved. ‘But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this impossible, but with God, all things are possible. Then answered Peter and said unto him, Behold, we have forsaken all, and followed thee; what shall we have therefore?’ (Matt. 19:23-27) 

Oh friends, Jesus is not a hard task master, He just wants to see how faithful we are. In any case, when we give up earthly treasures on His behalf, He will repay us with even greater heavenly ones. Hear His answer to Peter’s question. ‘And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands (property), for my name’s sake, shall receive a hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life.’ (Matt. 19: 28-29) 

Yuh see people, sacrificing for Jesus here on earth will be handsomely rewarded in heaven. We’ve got to note though, Jesus’ last word on the subject. ‘But many that are first shall be last: and many that are last shall be first.’ (Matt. 19:30) Yes my fellow saints, the value system in heaven is very different to that here on earth. Not all that are important down here will be important in heaven. And likewise, not all that are despised and rejected will be so in heaven. 

As one commentator realistically puts it: ‘Don’t get caught up in the world’s way of ranking things; it’s too prone to error. Those who are first in the opinion of others (or first in their own opinion!) may be surprised to learn, on Judgment Day, they are last in God’s opinion.’ 

And I think that’s a very good note for us to end on today. Let’s remember it, so we don’t get any false opinions about our importance, be it here on earth, or up in heaven. Much LOVE!

…to get ALL that Jesus offers…we have to give Him ALL of us… 

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8             

Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 April 2021 Proverbs 23:7a.

Proverbs 23:7a.     ​‘For as he thinketh in his heart (mind), so is he.

Well, it’s another bright and sunshiny day in the life friends! Please thank our heavenly Father for that! But because it’s also Saturday, we’re going to add a touch of lateness and laziness to it! (smile) That makes it a bright, sunshiny, late and lazy Saturday! Praise the Lord! 

So though we’re lazing through the day, that doesn’t mean we are allowed to forget our great and wonderful God. On the contrary, today is one where we should gravitate towards Him and His Word since we couldn’t spend as much time as we wanted with him during the busy workweek. And now that we have some more time on our hands today, it’s only appropriate, and right, that we spend more unhurried time with Him; talking, praying, reading and meditating on His wise and awesome Word, so that we can get our souls and spirits renewed. 

And a note of caution here, please don’t think that we’re doing this for God nuh, but for ourselves, so that we can truly enjoy the many benefits He offers. And as we are doing that today, let’s remember to send up prayers for the safety and protection of our unfortunate friends and families on the Caribbean island of St. Vincent where the volcano La Soufriere (sulphur outlet) erupted yesterday after being dormant since 1979. People are being evacuated from the island, but like it’s doing everything else, the Corona virus is making it difficult to do efficiently and quickly. 

Let’s pray that the Lord will give my old university classmate, Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves and his associates wisdom and guidance to handle this most serious situation, as it will not affect only St. Vincent, but also the neighbouring islands, with the resultant ash clogging up the atmosphere, causing breathing problems and restricting air traffic. 

Now, as we do every Saturday, let’s turn to the quotes that our friend Anselm sent us this past week, as he aspires to inspire us to a better tomorrow. And the first quote tells us to ‘Learn to let go and be clear of where you really want to head for.’ And I have no dispute with that because it makes very good sense. We must learn to let go of, to drop all the baggage from our past that is keeping us back from our destiny. However, when we get rid of the baggage, we must also know, as clearly as possible, where we want or intend to go; what’s our eventual destination. 

And why is that important? Because, if you don’t know where you’re going, you will get lost, get distracted, and go in a direction that’s leading you away from your God-given destiny, which can also be very detrimental to your health, physically, spiritually and emotionally. That’s why you need to know where you want to go before you set out on your life’s journey. And it does help to discover your destination, if you also know where you are coming from. As they say, you can’t truly know your future until you know and understand your past. 

That brings us to this next quote: ‘Owning our story and LOVING ourselves through that process is the bravest thing that we’ll ever do.’ And that’s no lie friends! Taking responsibility for our lives and LOVING ourselves in the process, takes immense courage, especially in this hate and strife-filled world, where everybody tries to blame somebody else for their problems and consequent lack of happiness. Now, it’s true that circumstances can come against us, over which we have no say or hold, but we’re still always responsible for our attitude towards them. 

But as faithful believers in Christ Jesus, that means we must come up over those circumstances with a good attitude, although that may be extremely difficult to do. Right now, the bane of our human existence is the sad lack of responsibility in our society! Nobody wants to accept it, but we all want to prosper and succeed…how? Riding on the backs of others. But God’s economy doesn’t work like that my brethren, for we only reap what we sow. And if we sow no seed, or only negative ones, we will get no harvest, or a negative one. Please, please, let’s remember that nuh, and begin taking responsibility for our actions. 

And this next quote segues very nicely into our conversation. ‘Self-LOVE is not selfish; you cannot truly LOVE another until you know how to LOVE yourself.’ And that’s gospel truth. Remember Jesus’ words on the two greatest commandments. ‘And the second is like unto the first, thou shalt LOVE thy neighbour as thyself.’ (Matt. 22:39) 

Now, to keep that commandment, we obviously need to have a strong LOVE for ourselves, because as our quote says, we can’t LOVE anyone if we don’t know how to LOVE ourselves. But in that process, it’s of the utmost importance that LOVE for ourselves doesn’t turn into a selfish, arrogant, vain, inordinate fascination, unkind, ungodly, narcissistic attitude. That comes from the story of Narcissus in Greek Mythology, where he sees himself reflected in a pool of water and falls in LOVE with himself. But when he realizes that that LOVE can never be reciprocated, he tragically goes off and commits suicide. 

Not a nice story at all, but unfortunately many of us still fall to those low levels and make life difficult for ourselves and those around us. This last quote though, will open our eyes, if we’re serious about getting to our God-given destiny. It says: ‘You need to learn how to select your thoughts just the same way you select your clothes every day. This is a power you can cultivate. If you want to control things in your life so bad, work on the mind. That’s the only thing you should be trying to control.’ 

That’s the truth right there in spades my brethren! The first thing we ought to learn to control is our mind, because that’s where all the battles in our life both begin and end. In Proverbs 23, Cousin Sol talks about not eating with a man that has an evil eye (is a miser), for though he tells you to enjoy the delicacies, he’s not sincere. ‘For as he thinketh in his heart (mind), so is he.’ (Prov. 23:7) 

And that’s more truth friends, for you can’t think evil and do good on a regular basis. What’s really inside of you will eventually come out. As Jesus said about the things that defile. ‘Not that which goes into the mouth that defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man…For out of the heart (mind) proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies. These are the things which defile a man: but to eat with unwashen hands defileth not a man.’ (Matt. 15:11,19-20) 

Yes my fellow saints, we can’t deny it, evil begins in our minds. Mahatma Gandhi, the Indian philosopher, politician and peace maker, said it thus: ‘A man is but the product of his thoughts. What he thinks, he becomes.’ Oh my people, thoughts are extremely important in shaping our personality and attitude. They can be good or bad, constructive or destructive, and eventually make us who we are. And we need to make our minds positive and productive if we intend to sincerely live for Jesus. 

And how do we do that? Let Bruh Paul tell us as he told the church at Corinth. ‘Casting down imaginations (arguments), and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.’ (2 Cor. 10:5) 

Now that basically means taking control over your thoughts; over what you think about yourself and life. It’s not easy to do with all the evil stuff that’s coming against us, but God has provided us with a way to do it, through His word and will, through His Holy Spirit that indwells us. So let’s remember that our mind is a battlefield between good and evil nuh. And Christ wants us to ‘Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.’ (Rom. 12:21) And there’s no better time to start practicing that than today; right now! Much LOVE!

…control what you think about…and what you think about will control you… 

P.S. Yes, it’s long and late, but that’s okay. It’s Saturday. (smile) Much LOVE! 

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8            

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 April 2021 Matthew 22:39.

Matthew 22:39.     ​And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt LOVE thy neighbour as thyself.


Moving on…Moving on! Thank God we’re moving on! Yes friends, we’re moving on with Jesus through another marvellous day in the annals of our lives! Wow! And what a joy and pleasure it is to be moving through life with Jesus! A body couldn’t ask for a better companion, a better Lord and Saviour, a better friend, a better neighbour than Jesus! And it’s that last accolade, the topic of neighbours that I want to discuss with us today, because it’s a very important part of our faith, and I don’t think we are being as neighbourly as we ought to. 

So, I guess our first question should be, who is our neighbour? Now what did Jesus have to say about that eh? Remember when the foppish, arrogant lawyer tried to test Jesus by asking: ‘Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt LOVE 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 and the prophets.’ (Matt. 22:36-40) 

That’s Matthew’s version. However, Luke tells it thus. (smile) The lawyer asked Jesus, ‘Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life? He, (Jesus) said unto him, what is written in the law? how readest thou? And he answering said’ – exactly what Jesus said above. ‘And Jesus said unto him, Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live. But he (the lawyer), willing (wanting) to justify himself, said unto Jesus, And who is my neighbour? 

And Jesus answering’, told them the parable of the Good Samaritan, which we all know. At the end of the parable, Jesus asks the lawyer, ‘Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbour unto him that fell among thieves (robbers)? And he said, He that showed mercy on him. Then said Jesus unto him, Go and do likewise.’ (Luke 10:25-37) 

Yuh see that friends, being neighbourly is basically showing mercy, kindness, LOVE and all the other fruit of the spirit to those around us. But no, it’s not easy with all the negative, angry and cantankerous people that we encounter. But it does get a tad easier if we have the first commandment truly embedded in our hearts, since all LOVE flows from revering our heavenly Father. 

And I like how the scholars explain it. ‘10:37. The lawyer cannot even bring himself to say “the Samaritan.” That’s because of the deep racial hatred between the two groups, although they were related by blood; the Samaritans being Jews who intermarried with Gentiles. ‘However, Jesus shows that racial considerations are utterly transcended by God’s commands to LOVE Him, and thus to LOVE others as He does, without prejudice or partiality.’ Hn! I truly wish that somebody or bodies could get that message across to our world right now yes; a world that’s so inundated with prejudice and partiality, that it’s behind almost every action we take! 

Now, before we get to the meat of our topic, I want to point out one other important aspect of being neighbourly, and that’s Jesus’ warning on the way His Father’s kingdom works. ‘Judge (condemn) not, that ye be not judged (condemned). For with what judgement (condemnation) ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete (use), it shall be measured to you again.’ (Matt. 7:1-2) That’s just to remind us that what we sow we will reap, or as Uncle Charles (Charles Stanley) likes to say: ‘You reap what you sow, more than you sow and later than you sow.’ That means we can’t sow negative seed and expect to reap a positive harvest. 

And all of that finally brings us to the wise and wonderful words of Cousin Sol on the treatment of neighbours from Proverbs. Just a bit more practical advice to help us handle all the cerebral stuff we’ve been talking about. (smile) Cousin Sol begins thus: ‘Withhold not good from them to whom it is due (the owners), when it is in the power of thine hand to do it. Say not unto thy neighbour, Go, and come again, and tomorrow I will give; when thou hast it by thee.’ (Prov. 3:27-28) Oh my people, how often do we do that eh! Holding on to what rightfully belongs to others, until we are good and ready to give it to them is ever so rampant in our current society; which means selfishness and greed are too prevalent. 

And Cousin Sol continues: ‘Devise not evil against thy neighbour, seeing he dwelleth securely by (in safety with) thee. Strive not with a man without cause, if he have done thee no harm.’ (Prov. 3:30-31) And I don’t know if our world has ever seen such unnecessary animosity and strife between people who live close to each other, even between families and so-called friends, as we are seeing today. The petty squabbles that occur over unimportant things is mind blowing, And the courts are full of foolish litigation over petty peeves. The divorce rate is sky high, possibly higher than it’s ever been! We’ve become so adversarial and antagonistic to each other that it’s causing our world to fall apart. 

But listen further to Cousin Sol. ‘Envy thou not the oppressor, and choose none of his ways. For the froward (the perverse person) is abomination to the Lord: but his secret (secret council) is with the righteous. The curse of the Lord is in the house of the wicked: but he blesseth the habitation (dwelling) of the just. Surely he scorneth the scorners: but he giveth grace unto the lowly (humble).’ (Prov. 3:31-34) 

Yes friends, I know we all envy the prosperous wicked some, but it’s unwise to follow in their footsteps, for it’s said in so many places of the Good Book that the wicked and their evil deeds will eventually be destroyed and what they have given to the righteous. So please, please, let’s not live merely for today’s pleasures and aggrandizement nuh, but seriously contemplate what will most profit us in the long run, what will put us in good stead with Jesus. 

And this last word of warning from Cousin Sol is indeed precious. ‘The wise shall inherit glory: but shame shall be the promotion (the legacy) of fools.’ (Prov. 3:35) And the scholars break it all down this way. ‘3:27-35. The needy neighbour is to be helped (vs. 27-28); the innocent neighbour is to be respected and left alone (vs. 29-30); and the wicked neighbour is not to be envied (vs. 31-35).’ That makes it oh so simple my brethren! So please let’s be wise nuh, so that we can inherit the glory that’s Jesus! 

And for those of us who have made that momentous and wise decision, let’s go home now proclaiming our Wednesday Wail, letting all and sundry know of our wonderful position in Christ Jesus. 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 in these tough and trying times, we need to be reminded that if we endure to the end, our future will be even more glorious than we can ask or imagine! Wow! What an awesome promise mih people! So let’s hang in there till the end nuh! Much LOVE!

…it is much better to give…than to receive…wise men seek to give…but fools crave to receive… 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 April 2021 Psalm 42:5b.

Psalm 42:5b.​       Hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance (presence).

Welcome to Easter Tuesday friends! And the in-crowd place to meet today is in the town of Buccoo, in sweet Tobago, where Goat Races are the featured event of the day…and has been for many, many years! It’s become so big, that they even built a stadium just to hold it! Awesome! But who knows if it’s going to be happening in this pandemic time, with the lockdown that’s currently in place? 

However, given the ingenuity of my people, I wouldn’t vote against it happening, though in some reduced form and fashion, especially since I understand that Tobago is now the new playground for Trinidad, as the citizens can’t go further afield. Yes people, when it comes to partying, you can’t beat a Trinbagonian to find unique ways and means to bring it to fruition! 

But what we all need, so much more than partying is to cultivate an intense longing for Almighty God, our Maker, Controller. Deliverer and Provider! That’s because He’s so awesome, so LOVING and compassionate, so protective of His people, hides us from the rain, heals us when we’re broken…! What else do I need to point out for us to understand that our God is great and greatly to be praised eh? And that the number one purpose for which we were created is to praise and worship Him, to have a most excellent communication between the Creator and the created! 

Wow! My God is awesome! He’s the giver of salvation, author and finisher of our faith, high priest of our church…and so many other wonderful things! And instead of partying in the evil sense of the word, we ought to be rejoicing in the righteous way that speaks of Jesus; of His most awesome deliverance of sinful man in this Easter Season! No one else could do the miraculous deeds that He’s done. So we ought to celebrate His mercy, holiness, His forgiveness, grace and wonderful, unconditional LOVE for us, instead of bowing to the evil fool Satan and desiring to enjoy the pleasures of sin, instead of the righteousness of God! 

So what we should be doing, as I said earlier on, is cultivating an intense longing for our awesome God! In these trying and troubled times of worldwide sickness and strife, only a return to God in true and sincere repentance can solve them! Yes my brethren, like the Sons of Korah sing in Psalm 42 – An intense longing for God – let’s do the same nuh, let’s celebrate and worship our graceful, merciful and awe-inspiring God. So let’s lift our hands, as we lift our voices in prayer. 

‘As the hart panteth after (the deer longs for) the water brooks, so panteth (longs) my soul after thee, O God. My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God: when shall I come and appear before God? My tears have been my meat (food) day and night, while they continually say to me, Where is thy God? When I remember these things, I pour out my soul in me: for I had gone with the multitude, I went with them to the house of God, with the voice of joy and praise, with a multitude that kept holyday (a pilgrim feast).’ (Ps. 42:1-4) 

Yes friends, in earlier times we would go to the Lord’s sanctuary and praise His holy name in song and prayer. But then, as we became successful and prosperous, we began moving away from the very source of our success and prosperity. We forgot that it is the Lord who allows us to get wealth and prosperity, and instead began trying to turf Him out of our society. And now that immense strife and sickness have befallen us, we’re wondering what happened, how such a plague befell us? And the simple answer is that we turned away from God and began praising the devil instead. So now that we can’t find remedies for our awful predicament, we’re wondering what to do. 

But like the sons of Korah asked so long ago: ‘Why art thou cast (bowed) down, O my soul? And why art thou disquieted with me?’ (Ps. 42:5a) Today friends, the correct answer to the problem is still: ‘Hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance (presence).’ (Ps. 42:5b) Yes my people, that’s the only sensible answer there is to our current troubles…hope in the God of our forefathers! 

Hear the sons of Korah continue with their praise nuh. ‘O my God, my soul is cast down within me: therefore will I remember thee from the land of Jordan, and of the Hermonites, from the hill (the mount of) Mizar. Deep calleth unto deep at the noise of thy waterspouts (waterfalls): all thy waves and thy billows are gone over me. 

Yet the Lord will command his LOVING-kindness in the daytime, and in the night his song shall be with me, and my prayer unto the God of my life. I will say unto God my rock, why hast thou forgotten me? Why go I mourning because of the oppression of the enemy? As with a sword in my bones (the shattering of my bones), mine enemies reproach (revile) me; while they say daily (all day long) unto me, Where is thy God?’ (Ps. 42:6-10) 

And yes, my fellow believers, the heathen are at our throats every day with that question. And that then leads us to ask ourselves: ‘Why art thou cast down, O my soul? And why art thou disquieted within me?’ And what’s our reply? ‘Hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance (my giver of salvation) and my God.’ (Ps. 42:11) Oh friends, let’s praise His holy name! Let’s look back over our lives and see where the Lord has brought us from, the mighty and magnificent things He’s done for us, and realize that He can, and will do the same things for us, once we are obedient to His word and will! 

And I like this explanation from the scholars about the overall effects of psalms 42 and 43, which in some Hebrew texts are joined together. ‘Using the refrain Hope thou in God as a marker, the poem yields three stanzas. First, the psalmist expresses his deep longing for God (42:1-5); second, his sad lament and dejection before God (42: 6-11); finally, his sure confidence in God (43:1-5). The three stanzas reveal the changing moods of the psalmist: from longing and regret to perplexity, then to trust and assurance. If only every downcast soul could end up in that third stanza!’ 

And there’s no real reason why all of us can’t find true trust and reassurance in our great and mighty God! We all know His amazing, omnipotent power, and have all experienced some good and awesome benefits while walking in strong tandem with him. So why shouldn’t He do it again, if we sincerely seek Him and His awesome will for our lives? No reason whatsoever! So, for those of us who sincerely believe and diligently try to live for God, let’s go home now declaring (oh yeahhh!) our Tuesday Mantra, proclaiming to the whole world, 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!’ 

And the obvious corollary to that is for us to now go out into the confused and godless world and gladly share Jesus’ awesome LOVE and friendship, so that we can overcome our ever so pressing problems! Much LOVE!

…our problems will diminish…in direct proportion…to our sincere longing for God…  

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 April 2021 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.

So friends, we have at last come to that sorrowful day of mourning in the lives of Christ’s followers! A day that we contrarily call Good Friday. But the truth is, that day, two thousand years ago, was one in which a most horrific crime was committed, the inhumane abuse and eventual crucifixion of Jesus Christ on an old, rugged cross on the hill of Calvary on the outskirts of Jerusalem. And the unbelievable thing is that this took place, less than a week after they had welcomed Him in such a wonderful manner on Palm Sunday, hailing Him as their Saviour, their Immanuel, with Hosannas to the Son of David! 

And it’s not so much the crucifixion itself that was most hurtful, but the shameful manner in which the dastardly act was perpetrated. As the song, ‘The Old Rugged Cross’ puts it, that Cross was and still is ‘the emblem of suffering and shame.’ But the most important point of that day is the purpose behind Christ’s crucifixion, why He allowed Himself to be so abused and demeaned. Hear His fateful words on the subject as He talks about there being one fold and one shepherd in His kingdom. 

‘Therefore doth my Father LOVE me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it up again. No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father.’ (John 10:17-18) Yes friends, as Jesus said, they didn’t take His life from Him, He gave it to them, willingly, so that a world of lost sinners could be saved, so that our horrible sins could be forgiven by a just and righteous God the Father, otherwise we would be heading directly to eternal damnation! 

But Christ’s sacrifice on that old, rugged cross gave us another option, a most wonderful one, that of reconciliation with our Creator! And all God’s children declared a loud and grateful: ‘All praise to Jesus and His atoning death on our behalf!’ And what’s so great about Jesus’ sacrifice, is that the Father didn’t force Him to do it, but He did it willingly, because of His LOVE for the Father, and knowing the Father’s great LOVE for us! And that’s why we call it Good Friday, because the good of salvation, of atonement, of sin debt relief in full was embedded in, and born of that fateful act! 

Oh, glory be mih people! What a mighty and unselfish act! And that’s why we cherish that old, rugged cross, though it’s the ‘emblem of suffering and shame,’ the manifestation of an act that could only be described as ‘sufferation!’ And yuh know what friends? We ‘LOVE that old cross with the dearest and best, for a world of lost sinners were saved.’ And we’ll keep cherishing that old, rugged cross ‘till my trophies at last I lay down. I will cling to the old, rugged cross, and exchange it some day for a crown.’ 

Oh my fellow saints, what a wonderful Saviour Christ is! Who else would have spilled His divine blood on a rugged, man-made cross for a bunch of ungrateful sinners eh? NOBODY! In fact, nobody else possessed the ability to pay for the sins of a lost and fallen world, just the sinless Son of God. And God LOVED us so much, despite the bunch of disobedient ingrates we had become, that He broke His own heart and sent His Son to earth to sacrifice His life on our behalf, so that we could have an opportunity to be reconciled to Him. Now if that isn’t real, true LOVE,I don’t what is nuh. 

As Jesus so graciously puts it. ‘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.’ (John 3:16) Yes precious people, all we need to do is believe in Christ, and we become saved, sanctified, justified, forgiven, indwelt by His Holy Spirit, with our name written in the Lamb’s Book of Life, that means eternal life with Christ! Now what could ever be better than that eh? Absolutely NOTHING! 

So those of us who simply refuse to accept Jesus as Lord and Saviour are just fooling ourselves, laying down a most unwelcome path to eternal damnation with that ole fool Satan, when we could have a most excellent journey through eternity with Christ. But as the saying goes, you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink. And that’s the same way with us hard-headed, stubborn sinners, who believe in the now pleasures of sin, and don’t think of the serious then consequences of our ungodly behaviour. 

Oh yes, there are always consequences to sin, because our righteous and just God can’t stand sin, can’t stand disobedience, and the pleasures of sin only last for a fleeting moment, while the consequences can last a lifetime, even an eternity. So my people, there’s no better day to embrace Christ and all that He stands for, than on this Good Friday, when He selflessly gave His life, His all for us, so that we could be filled with new and eternal life. 

And do we ever need His saving grace in this time of pandemic and strife that’s engulfing our entire world. So please, let’s go to Him in prayer nuh, the medium that He’s set out to communicate with us. So as one strong, sincere, but humble voice, let’s offer up our Friday Chant. ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through this past week. Yuh know it’s been rough… what with all the anxiety, the confusion and havoc that the Covid-19 virus and the racial strife causing. We not accustomed to that kind of life Lord, and it really telling on us. And we know we can’t handle it on our own, that we desperately need your help. 

Oh heavenly Father, with your omnipotent help, and our trusting faith, we know that we can stand strong and steadfast and defeat both the virus and the unrest in our streets. So Lord, we sincerely ask you today to give the governments and those involved in the forefront of this serious and unexpected storm, the sure and wise guidance to handle the situation properly, with the least amount of loss to life and property as possible. And please help those of us who must go out to work amidst all the confusion, to be responsible and to stay safe, so that we can avoid any more serious setbacks. 

And Lord, we fervently pray that You’ll use this situation to also bring a lot of backsliders back to your fold, show them the error of their ways. It’s also a good opportunity to introduce a whole new flock, who will embrace your LOVE and compassion because of the way we, your faithful believers, handle the situation. Yes Lord, please use this pandemic and the unrest in the streets as a means of restoring faith in You, so that our sinful world can wake up and smell the coffee, sweet and strong! We pray this in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen!’ 

Now let’s go out and show the Lord that we are indeed faithful believers nuh, by handling the situation in a godly manner! Much LOVE!

…weeping may endure for a night…but joy comes in the morning…Easter Sunday soon come…

P.S. I didn’t forget the ordinary workingman’s spiel, but he was so angry today because the province wide lockdown that starts tomorrow, has cancelled his long awaited return to work, and he bluntly refused to talk to us. Them’s the breaks! (smile) Much LOVE!

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8              

Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 March 2021 Psalm 145:3.

Psalm 145:3.     ​Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised;and his greatness is unsearchable.

Oh my people, the Lord has blessed us with another wonderful day down here on earth so we can go about and do His marvellous work! Oh what a wonderful privilege that is: working on behalf of Almighty God to bring others to His glory! And it is not a task given to everybody willy-nilly. You have to first believe in and put your sincere trust in his Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. 

And that’s not something we ought to take lightly, because it could mean the eternal salvation or damnation of other folks. So it’s a big responsibility. That means, as we go out today to do His work, we do it with diligence and excellence, with LOVE, joy, forgiveness, mercy and the wise guidance of his Holy Spirit. 

We allow the deep-seated joy of the Lord to be our strength and give us the endurance and perseverance we so badly need to do a good job in His name and bring glory to His kingdom. Consequently, let’s hope that our day begins with LOVE and ends with beautiful memories, so that we will be further encouraged to do the Lord’s bidding. 

And with all of that, I do believe this poem from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin is rather appropriate for us to consider today. Yes, it is also most appropriately titled ‘Celebration!’ And isn’t that something we ought to be consistently doing while we are in the Lord’s service? Of course! For we have so much to celebrate when we live and work for the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, Christ Jesus! 

So please declare with me: ‘When I think of Your lavish goodness The longings You’ve satisfied The forgiveness You’ve granted The promises You’ve kept When I think of Your irresistible LOVE Your ceaseless care Your unfailing protection… O Lord God I want to raise flags And fly banners And sound bugles. I want to run with lighted torches And praise You From the mountaintop. I want to write symphonies And shout for joy. I want to throw a festive party For ten thousand guests. I want to celebrate with streamers and bright lights And an elaborate banquet.’ 

What a majestic and worthy celebration that conjures up my faithful brethren! But the best part of it all is the Lord’s answer to our suggestion… ‘Fine, dear child. I’m ready.’ Oh, what a wonderful God we serve and worship my friends! There’s no one who LOVES a celebration like our God, and it’s only right that we should be constantly and consistently celebrating His awesome goodness to the undeserving children of men! 

And can you imagine how big the celebration was in heaven when Christ rose from the dead this upcoming Easter weekend, with the most joyful celebrant being the Father, who got back His first born as well as His most precious but long-lost creation – the sons of man. That’s why praise and joy with celebration is ever so important to believers in Christ Jesus! And the Bible Promise for that poem makes that quite clear. It comes from the wise and praiseful words of Bruh David in Psalm 145 – The Lord is gracious. 

And it reads thus: ‘I will extol (exalt) thee, my God, O king; and I will bless thy name for ever and ever. Every day will I bless thee; and I will praise thy name for ever and ever. Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised; and his greatness is unsearchable.’ (Ps. 145:1-3) What indisputable truth my fellow saints! Our God is certainly great and greatly to be praised, because there’s NO ONE else like Him! 

And if you’re wondering why that is so, just ask yourself these questions. Who gives you the breath of life and keeps you alive every day? Who allows you to get food and wealth and all the necessities of life? And then promises a great life eternal with Him in heaven if you believe in His Son Jesus Christ? It’s definitely not Satan! For Satan has no power to do much of anything but evil, especially since Christ took away the keys of hell death and the grave from him when He arose victorious on that first Easter morn! 

That means Satan has nothing to offer but hell and eternal damnation. So why do we keep on giving him power over us by doing his evil bidding and not God’s good work eh? I guess because our natural nature is sinful and evil, and it takes more of an effort to do good than to do evil. But friends, if we sincerely want to do good, our heavenly Father will indeed give us the wherewithal to do so, we just have to ask Him in all sincerity and truth, and then stick to the message! It’s not always easy, especially in this increasingly evil world, but remember that God is the Creator and Controller and nothing is impossible to Him. That means the problem(s) most often lies with us. 

But here are some encouraging words from Bruh David on the subject from Psalm 145. ‘The Lord is gracious, and full of compassion; slow to anger, and of great mercy. The Lord is good to all: and his tender mercies are over all his works… The Lord upholdeth all that fall, and raiseth up all those that be bowed down. The eyes of all wait upon thee (look expectantly to you); and thou givest them their meat (food) in due season. 

Thou openest thine hand, and satisfiest the desire of every living thing. The Lord is righteous in all his ways, and holy (gracious) in all his works. The Lord is nigh (near) unto all them that call upon him, to all that call upon him in truth. He will fulfill the desire of them that fear him: he also will hear their cry, and will save them. The Lord preserveth all that LOVE him: but all the wicked will he destroy.’ (Ps. 145: 8-9; 14-20) 

Oh people, I don’t know how we can get any more encouragement than that from a created being nuh. And please remember that Bruh David didn’t talk from hearsay, but from real life experience with God, so there is power and truth in his words. Therefore, this last verse of Psalm 145 is also very important. ‘My mouth shall speak the praise of the Lord: and let all flesh bless his holy name for ever and ever.’ (Ps. 145:21) 

And that’s exactly what we have been created to do my people; praise and worship and bring glory to our great God! So let’s go home doing that nuh, as we declare our Tuesday Mantra. 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!’ 

It now behooves us to go out and share that awesome LOVE and friendship of Christ with the rest of the world! Much LOVE!

…wisdom dictates that one praise and worship…the Great Creator…not the anemic, imbecile destroyer… 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 March 2021 Proverbs 3:1.

Proverbs 3:1.     ​My son, forget not my law; but let thine heart keep my commandments:

So it’s another brand new day! However, this one isn’t as bright and sunshiny as the last several ones have been. No, it’s wet and rainy, but it’s still beautiful, because we need the rain as well as the sun to keep nature refreshed and clean and growing like the Lord God intended. And since it’s springtime, which means a rebirth of things green and beautiful to the eyes, that means heavenly showers of blessings are necessary to accomplish such a feat, especially after all the cold, dryness of winter. 

So let’s still be bright and grateful and obedient in spirit to our great God nuh, the One who made us and knows exactly what we each need to have a wonderful day and a glorious life walking with Him and His awesome Son, Jesus Christ, through the amazing guidance of the Holy Spirit! 

Wow! Isn’t that a mouthful! But a beautiful mouthful indeed! (smile) And it’s also going to be a good day, because the ordinary workingman has something to say today. There seems to be a resurgence in his spirit, as he declares (steups!), though still not with his old fervour: ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday and there’s a li’l light at the end of the tunnel! The boss called couple days ago and said a few of us, the senior ones, could come back to work Monday, at least for a couple days a week, according to how much business it have! 

Oh brother! I don’t even know if I remember how to do the blooming work nuh, it’s been so long. But it is a start, and it gets me out of the old house…Glory be! I’ve never stayed cooped up so long in all mih life, and it was really starting to get on mih nerves. Couldn’t go to work, so no real money was coming in, couldn’t go down to the pub and drink a few pints with the boys, because the pub closed down. Couldn’t do all the things I like to do… Ah Lord eh! 

Let’s hope this is the start of a new day yes, because I really couldn’t take much more of this lockdown business nuh. But ah not holding mih breath, because people still behaving stupid out there, not wearing masks and partying plenty together, and in spite of the vaccine, a setta people still catching the bloody virus. So leh we keep on praying yes…and if you weren’t praying before, yuh better had start now, because is only with God’s help we going to see a brighter day oui!’ 

And that friends, is the awesome, gospel, indisputable truth! Without sincere prayer, repentance and obedience to God’s word, our world will never return to some semblance of normalcy, call it the new normal or whatever, but there will never be a sense of security and a lack of the fear that has settled over us during the past year. And the scripture that seems to best fit our situation comes from Cousin Sol, from his wise words in Proverbs, as he exhorts us to obedience to God. 

So please listen up: ‘My son, forget not my law; but let thine heart keep my commandments: For length of days, and long life, and peace, shall they add to thee.’ (Prov. 3:1-2) Yuh see that friends, we don’t need to go far to find out the benefits of obedience to God’s laws; it lengthens our lives and brings us peace. But that isn’t all, it’s just the beginning. Hear Cousin Sol continue: ‘Let not mercy (LOVING-kindness) and truth forsake thee: bind them about thy neck; write them upon the table of thine heart: So shalt thou find favour and good understanding (high esteem) in the sight of God and man.’ (Prov. 3:3-4) 

Oh my people, what’s there not to understand in those simple and self-explanatory verses eh? If we embrace mercy and truth, keep them close to us like a piece of jewelry that adorns our bodies, and write them on the table of our hearts, our minds, we’ll find favour with both God and man. Now isn’t that something to be earnestly desired? It surely is! 

And Cousin Sol’s not done yet: ‘Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct (make smooth) thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the Lord, and depart from evil. It shall be health to thy navel (body), and marrow (strength) to thy bones. Honour the Lord with thy substance (possessions), and with the first fruits of all thine increase: so shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses (vats) shall burst out with new wine.’ (Prov. 3:5-10) 

Mama Mia! What awesome words of wisdom! And yuh notice that when God’s chosen people Israel followed those simple rules they prospered in all aspects of their lives. But when they got too high and mighty, too big for their tight britches, they suffered tremendously. And it’s the same scene that’s playing out in our sick, confused and strife-filled world right now. For we have also gotten too big for our britches, believed that our prosperity was our doing, and not the Lord’s, as it actually is, so we have turned away from Him, doing all we can to remove Him from our society. 

But friends, if we have learned anything from history, is that the Lord always prevails in the end. Look at how many super societies fell upon hard times and eventual ruin when they despised God and turned away from Him. And simple common sense, which unfortunately doesn’t seem to exist today, tells us, that if we’ve tried all of our own remedies and they haven’t worked, then we should at least turn to God in prayer. Not that it should be the last thing we try, but rather, the first. 

In any case, be it first or last, not turning to him in prayer is utter stupidity; stemming from foolish pride and baseless arrogance. So let’s do the wise thing now and turn to Almighty God for help nuh. In sincere, humble, but also confident voice, let’s call out to Him for divine help, through our Friday Chant. 

‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through this past week. Yuh know it’s been rough… what with all the anxiety, the confusion and havoc that the Covid-19 virus and the racial strife causing. We not accustomed to that kind of life Lord, and it really telling on us. And we know we can’t handle it on our own, that we desperately need your help. 

Oh heavenly Father, with your omnipotent help, and our trusting faith, we know that we can stand strong and steadfast and defeat both the virus and the unrest in our streets. So Lord, we sincerely ask you today to give the governments and those involved in the forefront of this serious and unexpected storm, the sure and wise guidance to handle the situation properly, with the least amount of loss to life and property as possible. And please help those of us who must go out to work amidst all the confusion, to be responsible and to stay safe, so that we can avoid any more serious setbacks. 

And Lord, we fervently pray that You’ll use this situation to also bring a lot of backsliders back to your fold, show them the error of their ways. It’s also a good opportunity to introduce a whole new flock, who will embrace your LOVE and compassion because of the way we, your faithful believers, handle the situation. Yes Lord, please use this pandemic and the unrest in the streets as a means of restoring faith in You, so that our sinful world can wake up and smell the coffee, sweet and strong! We pray this in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen!’  

And now, if we were sincere and serious, then we’ll handle the situation properly, with repentance and obedience. Otherwise, we’re just making a mockery, a sad and sorry spectacle of ourselves! Much LOVE!

…OBEDIENCE…the ONLY way we will ever satisfy God’s demands… 

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