Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 April 2020 Mark 6:50b.

Mark 6:50b.    Be of good cheer (take courage); it is I; be not afraid.
 
And the world keeps turning, like the Lord planned it to: it’s pages quietly and unconcernedly rolling along from one day to the next, regardless of what happens from one day to the next! (smile) And it’s finally rolled around to this Saturday in what’s supposed to be spring time, but we haven’t seen any rain in such a long time that the old adage ‘April showers bring May flowers’ is in danger of not being true this year of the Coronavirus. But what else is new eh? Cousin Sol said long ago that there’s nothing new under the sun. Yes: ‘The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.’ (Eccl. 1:9) 

And yuh know, if the wisest man ever said that, then it ought to be so. (smile) But it also shows up in our age old cliché that ‘History repeats itself.’ And that is oh so true. If we look back we can see every powerful society that ever walked the earth making the same mistake of getting too full of themselves, too big for their britches, replacing God with man made idols as they obtained some basic knowledge of life, and then getting fat and lazy off of their prosperity, which meant they stopped growing and began falling behind into eventual oblivion. 

And the same thing is happening in our current society, and our current worldwide trouble is simply a reflection of our stubbornness, hard heartedness and highly egotistical nature. It’s a wake up call from the Creator to the created, warning that we’re on the edge of a terrible precipice, and if we don’t heed the warning and repent and turn back to Him, a whole lot more damage will be done to our world. He who has ears to hear, let him hear! End of sermon! And friends I’m chuckling here, because I never came out to preach this morning, but that’s where I was led, so please take it easy on the ole fella nuh. 

But moving right along, since it’s Saturday, that lazy, late wake up day – most days are like that now though – let’s see what interesting quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week, as he aspires to inspire us for a brighter tomorrow…and do we ever need one! And he seems to have been on progress kick this past week. Hear this first quote: ‘Delay is the enemy of progress.’ And so it is! Laziness and procrastination, and anything else that keeps us from doing what we have to do, is in fact delaying our progress. We can’t progress unless we get up off our fat fannies and do what we need to do! 

And the next quote also declares a great truth: ‘Comfort is the enemy of progress.’ Yes my people, as we said above, that’s why most societies eventually die. We start out by working hard and making progress, then when we reach a certain point of prosperity, we believe we can now rest on our laurels and enjoy what we have. But the sad fact of the matter is that continued prosperity depends on continued hard work, and resting comfortable on one’s laurels only eats away at said prosperity. 

It’s like your savings in the bank. The more you put in the more you will have, but when you stop putting in and only withdraw, then it will wither away li’l by li’l until it runs out. Well it’s the same way with progress and prosperity. Unless you keep building, working and saving, you will stop making progress and eventually fall. 

Now hear this one: ‘Some quit due to slow progress. Never grasping the fact that slow progress is progress.’ That’s more gospel truth my brethren! Good progress is usually a creeping thing that includes some failure in between. We don’t just begin something today, if it’s a worthwhile project, put in a li’l elbow grease and declare victory or significant progress tomorrow. No friends, progress is a time consuming thing, and ofttimes needs a lot of blood, sweat and tears before it can be significantly achieved. 

And that’s a major problem for this generation. We the parents have not taught the children sufficiently about waiting and working and being satisfied or contented with a little, that’s why they’re all going crazy, feeling entitled to everything while not wanting to work for or make a sacrifice for anything! That thing called true progress is ever so slow my people that sometimes you can’t even see it, although you know you’re making it. So let’s not quit when it looks like positive things are not happening for us nuh. It just means that the Lord is working in the background, doing the hard and dirty work that’s necessary to move us forward. 

In light of all that, it is therefore necessary for us to quickly befriend this next quote and hold on to it tightly, as our very lives may depend on it. ‘Courage means to keep making forward progress while you still feel afraid.’ And isn’t that the living truth! All of us feel afraid at some time or other in our lives, so it’s not a matter of never being afraid, or never having fear, for fear is a natural aspect of human life. But the important thing there is like Sister Joyce (Joyce Meyer) puts it: ‘doing it afraid.’ That’s what courage is really all about; doing what we need to despite the fear or anxiety we might feel. 

And the only thing that really conquers fear is faith! That’s why the most used command or warning in the Good Book is ‘Fear not! Do not be afraid!’ Moses said it thus to the Israelites when they were leaving Egypt and the massive Egyptian army was hot on their heels: ‘Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation (deliverance) of the Lord, which he will show to you today: for the Egyptians whom ye have seen today, ye shall see them again no more for ever.’ (Ex. 14:13) And that promise did come true in spades as the entire Egyptian army was drowned in the Red Sea when the Lord closed it back up. 

And the psalmist gives us this small but everlasting treasure: ‘The Lord is on my side, I will not fear: what can man do unto me?’ (Ps.118:6) Yes friends, if the Lord is on our side, man cannot prevail over us. And Isaiah drives it home on the Lord’s behalf. ‘Say to them that are of a fearful heart, be strong, fear not: behold your God will come with vengeance, even God with a recompense: he will come and save you.’ (Is. 35:4) And he did exactly that through His Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. 

And when Jesus walked on water towards His disciples and they were afraid, His comforting words were simply: ‘Be of good cheer (take courage); it is I; be not afraid.’  Yes my people, simple, but oh so reassuring words from our Master. That’s the beauty of His philosophy and words! 

And we’ll end with this most important warning from Bruh Paul to Timothy in his tough times, which we all ought to know by now, even if we didn’t know it before Covid-19. (smile) ‘For God hath not given us a spirit of fear; but of power (His Holy Spirit), and of LOVE, and of a sound (disciplined) mind.’ (2 Tim. 1:7) Now let’s go out and use those marvellous gifts in His work nuh! Much LOVE!

…fear and courage…two sides of the same coin…

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

In strong voice and sincere hearts: ‘In God’s eyes, I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen!’ 

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

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 June 2019 Isaiah 26:3.

Isaiah 26:3.   ​Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on (sustained by) thee: because he trusteth in thee.
 

Oh, it was a pretty good official beginning of summer yesterday! It wasn’t hot, hot, hot, (smile) but it was sunny and a decent temperature, somewhere in the low twenties. But according to the weatherman, it’s going to be warm and rainy the next week or so, even with some thunderstorms thrown in for good measure! But that’s nothing new! It’s been the norm for the last li’l while. (smile) 

So we can handle it with great aplomb, just like we handle everything else the enemy throws at us, with Jesus’ help of course, as we confidently declare. Chuh man! It looks like I can’t spell the word ‘declare’ and it’s various parts even if my life depended upon it! But I spelt it right there though! Glory be! So let’s declare then (right ho!). ‘I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me!’ (Phil.4:13) 

Now that’s the only reason why we are able to handle life and all its complexities with great aplomb; because of the presence of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ in our lives, operating as the Holy Spirit. Glory to God for his wonderful doings in the lives of the children of men! But enough suh-so suh-so, (smile) some people are waiting this glorious looking Saturday morning to hear what our friend Anselm had to say in his quotes this past week, as he sincerely aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. 

Hear this first one: ‘When you assume negative intent, you’re angry. If you take away that anger and assume positive intent, you will be amazed. Your emotional quotient goes up because you are no longer almost random in your response.’ Now that’s mostly true. I think though that the first line should read: ‘When you’re angry, you assume negative intent,’ because when you’re negative it doesn’t always mean that you’re angry. You can certainly be negative without being angry. But making a decision when you’re angry is the worst thing you can do. The only decision to make then is to decide to make none at all! 

Then there’s this one that fits into the same category as the last. ‘People deal too much with the negative, with what is wrong. Why not try and see positive things, to just touch those things and make them bloom.’ For sure! Our society certainly focuses too much on what’s wrong, rather than on what’s right, on what we’ve lost, rather than on what we still have! That only leads us to being perpetrators of an overall doom and gloom attitude, which just drives us further down into the mire of life. 

We need to be as positive as we can in this life, and Christians should be the most positive people on the planet because we have the best life, both here on earth and in the future going for us with Jesus Christ at the helm! But unfortunately, in too many instances, Christians turn out to be some of the most negative and feeling sorry for themselves people on the planet. 

But here is a practical circumstance that many of us fall into because of our wallowing in negative thinking. ‘Stop allowing yourself to focus on depressing life circumstances – including focusing on being depressed about your weight. All this negative focus will only lead you to feeling bummed and wanting to pig out. Instead, consciously focus on happy life circumstances you enjoy doing, and create more of them.’ 

Now this sense of weight insecurity is rampant in our society today, and granted many of us need to lose a lot of weight because there are definitely too many overweight and obese people in our society. But the right way to go about it is not to get overly worried and negative since that attitude will only make matters worse. The most important thing there is to first accept the fact that you are overweight and seriously decide to do something about it, without putting yourself down. 

Because, here’s what happens when we give into the negative circumstances in life: ‘Worry and reasoning are two of Satan’s most successful tools. He’ll get us started with one negative thought and then sit back and watch us finish ourselves off.’ And isn’t that the gospel truth my people! Remember the battlefield for our souls is our minds, and once the enemy is able to inject one false or negative thought there, then it’s downhill all the way after that! 

And that’s why Isaiah so rightly and wisely proclaimed in his hymn of praise: ‘Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on (sustained by) thee: because he trusteth in thee.’ Yeh friends, when we keep our focus on God, He keeps our minds in good, positive and godly functioning. 

That’s also why Jesus recommended to the throng during the Sermon on the Mount: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things will be added unto you.’ (Matt.6:33) The Lord knows what we need and want before we even do, and He’s sincerely and faithfully promised that if we keep Him first in our lives, make Him the Number ONE priority, then He will look after us in spades! 

Likewise, Bruh Paul told the Philippians thus: ‘Be careful (anxious) for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God which passeth all understanding, shall keep (guard) your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.’ (Phil.4:6-7) And that my friends is wisdom of the utmost proportions! 

And we’ll close with these marvellous words of truth from Bruh Paul to Timothy. ‘For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of LOVE, and of a sound mind.’ (2 Tim.1:7) Please my people, let’s use that sound mind that God has given us nuh! Much LOVE!

…for ALL anxiety…the antidote is…simply prayer with thanksgiving…

 

 

Todays Scrip-Bit 15 November 2018 Proverbs 3:25.

Proverbs 3:25.   Be not afraid of sudden fear (terror), neither of the desolation of (trouble from) the wicked, when it cometh.
 
Ah friends, I was just wondering what we should write about this morning, because I had nothing whatsoever in mind. But as always, I asked the Lord for some guidance, then opened the Good Book and shortly thereafter found something that He pointed me to. All Glory be to our great and wonderful God! 

Friends, you all wouldn’t know the pressure there could be in having to write the Bit everyday, but thankfully I don’t feel any because of the Lord’s great mercy and faithfulness. All I have to do is remember to get up and write it, and I’ve been doing it for so long now it’s come like a second nature. 

And if there is one thing I can testify to is the Lord’s ever-faithful faithfulness! (smile) He’s never let me down one day yet in the eleven years I’ve been writing the Bit. Granted, some days it might take a little longer than others to discover what He wants me to write about, but He always comes through – in His time! Bless His Holy name. 

That’s why I can testify to the fact that He never gives us a task and then not help us to accomplish it! So whatever He’s asked you to do today, instead of hemming and hawing, simply go to Him in all sincerity and ask for His help, He will only be too glad to give it. 

Now let’s see what He desires to share with us today from His word. More wise words from Cousin Sol: ‘Be not afraid of sudden fear (terror), neither of the desolation of (trouble from) the wicked, when it cometh.’ What words of strength and reassurance my brethren! 

And for those of you who are wondering why Cousin Sol gave that assurance. Here’s why: ‘For the Lord shall be thy confidence, and shall keep thy foot from being taken (caught).’ (Prov.3:26) Oh give our great and wonderful God some thanks and praise my believing brethren for his mercy and LOVING-kindness to we undeserving children of men! 

So many times in His word He assures us that we should not be afraid of what the wicked can do to us…Let’s hear some of them nuh to revitalize our faith. And I guess we can begin with this one from Bruh Paul to Timothy, which so many of us quote, but don’t seem to live by. 

‘For God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of LOVE, and of a sound mind.’ (2 Tim.1:7) Yes friends, that power to resist fear has been planted in every believer, it‘s then left up to each of us to water and nourish and nurture it so that it can grow into a strong and mature faith. 

Now hear the psalmist as he exalts the fearsome power of our God to all who sincerely trust and take refuge in Him: ‘He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust (take refuge): his truth shall be thy shield and buckler (a small shield). Thou shalt not be afraid for (of) the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day; 

Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth (lays waste) at noonday. A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come near thee…Because thou hast made the Lord, which is my refuge, even the Most High, thy habitation (dwelling place).’ (Ps.91:4-7,9) 

Yes my people, what security we have when we place our sincere trust in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob! And Peter puts it this way: ‘And who is he that will harm you, if ye be followers of that which is good? But and if ye suffer for righteousness sake, happy (blessed) are ye: and be not afraid of their terror (threats) neither be troubled; 

But sanctify (set apart) the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer (a defense) to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear (reverential awe):

Having a good conscience; that, whereas they speak evil of you, as of evildoers, they may be ashamed that falsely accuse your good conversation (conduct) in Christ. For it is better, if the will of God be so, that ye suffer for well doing than for evil doing.’ (1 Pet.3:13-17). 

Ah friends, I know that’s a mouthful, (smile) but all it’s basically saying is that if we are accosted about our faith, we should have a sincere and reverential answer for the hope we have in Christ, and to give it without offense. No need to get into any heated arguments. 

And if we do suffer at the hands of the wicked, better it be for doing good than doing bad, and sometimes we are asked to suffer under those circumstances as a testimony to others.

However, the Lord will eventually reward us for any ‘sufferation’ we undergo in His name. So let’s not be afraid to stand strong and steadfast in the faith and assurance of our Lord God, the Creator and Controller of this great universe, for whatsoever He has promised, He will deliver! Amen! 

And now it’s time to declare our Thursday Blessings; blessings that our most magnanimous God has so generously bestowed on us. And please remember that a blessing is not a blessing until it’s declared over someone or something.

So altogether now, in strong voice and sincerity of heart: ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! 

I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection!

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

And those blessings were not meant for us to selfishly hoard, but to also generously dole out to others like the Lord has generously doled them out to us. Much LOVE!

…we all need strong faith…but unfortunately…a strong faith can only be acquired through some ‘sufferation’…