Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 January 2020 Hebrews 12:1.

Hebrews 12:1.    ​Wherefore seeing (since) we also are compassed about with (surrounded by) so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset (ensnare) us, and let us run with patience (endurance) the race that is set before us.
 

Greetings and salutations this dreary looking Tuesday morning my Scrip-Bit friends and families! And as Bruh Paul liked to say in his letters to the New Testament churches: ‘Grace be to you and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ. who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world (age), according to the will of God and our Father: To whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen!’ (Gal. 1:3-5) Yes my faithful brethren, EVERY DAY, we ought to remember the Father and the wonderful things He’s done for us through Christ Jesus and give Him the necessary praise and thanksgiving! 

And please don’t tell me it’s too difficult, or you’re too busy and you don’t have time…Make time! You make time for other not so important stuff, but you can’t make time for God, the most important thing, being and element in your life? Steups! Just take a moment and consider your state if He had not shown His amazing LOVE and compassion through the incomparable gift of His Son! You’d be headed straight for hell and the eternal company of Lucifer, the fallen angel and now the deceitful, lying devil! 

But through Christ, He’s offered us another option, much better than what we had – eternal life with Him and Christ in heaven – and yuh boldfaced enough to tell me that you can’t make time to spend a few minutes with Him every day! Chuh! Pure foolishness that mih breddren! Anyway, here’s a most appropriate writing for this time of year and our current winter affliction; SAD – Seasonal Affective Disorder – from our One Year Book of Bible Promises, with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin. And it’s also appropriately titled ‘January.’ 

Please pray with me: ‘It’s January, Lord – The drab, dreary middle – And my thoughts are as drab As the miserable month. Does everybody hit a January slump Or am I the only one? The first week wasn’t too bad: There were Christmas thank-yous to write A few resolutions to store away The huddle of year-end sales. But thank-you notes bring no returns And resolutions are quickly broken and marked-down trinkets fast lose appeal. When You said “Behold I make all things new” Did You forget January, Lord? Or in January do I sometimes forget You?’ 

Ah friends, I think the correct answer is more like the last one – we forget the Lord, because He’s promised NEVER to leave nor forsake us, and He always keep His promises. That we know for a fact. So if any forgetting goes on, it’s most surely on our side of the equation. And the strange thing is that the drearier and more downcast the weather and our souls are, the more we need to find consolation in God, not forget or move further away from Him. It’s like when you’re sick, that’s when you certainly need a doctor, and the worse you get, the more you need the medic! You run to Him more than ever then, not away from him. 

And it’s the same with our great God; we need Him more than ever when things are not going so good. So let’s think on that some today nuh, and see if we’re falling into that common rut. And we should also think on the Bible Promise from the poem, which is our Bit for today. ‘Wherefore seeing (since) we also are compassed about with (surrounded by) so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset (ensnare) us, and let us run with patience (endurance) the race that is set before us.’ 

Yes friends, we have so many heavenly witnesses looking on at our race of faith, who earlier ran the same race and testified to the LOVE and faithfulness of God, that we need to get serious and put aside any and everything that will hinder us in our own faith walk. And please remember that our race of faith is not a sprint, but a long-distance race, a marathon; one that requires lots of endurance and energy, not merely simple patience. As Bruh Paul said to the Roman church: ‘Rejoicing in hope; patient (persevering) in tribulation; continuing instant (steadfastly) in prayer.’ (Rom.12:12) 

That’s the kind of belly and backbone we need to run our race friends! And though we have plenty of other believers to look at as examples, the best and brightest is as the Good Book says: ‘Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher (originator and perfector) of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.’ (Heb. 12:2) 

Oh my people, how can there ever be a better example than our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ eh? NEVER! For He is the One who blazed the trail, made the way, didn’t consider the shame or rejection or all the other negative stuff thrown at Him, and finished the race in steadfast and enduring faith! Wow! What a giant is our Jesus! That’s why the Father exalted Him to sit at His right hand of His throne ‘and given Him a name which is above every other name. That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of (those) things in heaven, and (those) things in earth, and (those) things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.’ (Phil.2:9-11) 

And likewise my brethren, if we are faithful and run our race with an abundance of the necessary Christian elements, then we too will also be rewarded at the end. As Peter calls it: ‘a crown of glory that fadeth not away.’ (1 Pet. 5:4) So let’s up the ante this cold and dreary-looking winter’s day nuh – and even if you’re in the blazing sunshine too! (smile) Let’s raise the level of our faith so that we can witness for Jesus, like the true salt and light we’re meant to be. 

And we can begin doing that by declaring (yeah!) our Tuesday Mantra with strong voice and sincere hearts. As one now: ‘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!’ 

Then the next move is to actually go out and share Jesus’ wonderful LOVE and amazing friendship! Much LOVE!

…the race of life…the hardest to run…but the most rewarding to win…

Today​’s Scrip-Bit 1 April 2019 Ephesians 5:20.

Ephesians 5:20.   ​   Giving thanks ALWAYS for ALL things unto God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
 

And so we continue round the merry go round of our work life once again, as Monday has blazoned into our consciousness on this beautiful and sunny day in sweet Tobago! Glory to God! I’m truly sorry to hear that you all had snow in my area in the northern climes yesterday, but them’s the breaks, that’s what the northern climes are all about! (smile) 

Hope you didn’t have to trudge and drive through any snow to get to work this morning while I blessedly sit here writing on the porch, listening to the birds chirp their sweet songs of thanksgiving, admire the beautiful flora and listen to the sea lap gently and playfully on the rocky shore line. No, don’t be jealous! Let your Christian nature take hold and be glad for me, seeing that I have not enjoyed such blessings in a number of years! (smile) 

Oh don’t worry, I know it’s hard not to be envious when one of your associates is enjoying fair weather while you are experiencing the foul kind! But wherever we are in this fine universe of God’s, it’s Monday and we need to get out and labour to provide the necessities of life for our families and ourselves. And regardless of how hard we try, somehow we still always get fouled up by Monday’s. I guess it’s just the nature of the beast. 

But thankfully we have an antidote for all of our Monday morning ailments, called the Monday Morning Battle Hymn, and it just chases away all those dark and cloudy Monday skies. So let’s raise our voices and declare it (chuh- wrong again!) in sincere faith, with as much enthusiasm as we can muster: 

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

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

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

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

Ah friends, what a quick and pleasant change sincere prayer can make in our sad and miserable spirits eh! It’s simply the awesome power of God! The amazing solution that He has developed to right our spirits; those who believe in Him and His Son Jesus Christ! For if you don’t believe in them, then NONE of what we’re talking about will work! 

As this quote from a Daily Bread Devotional so truly declares (right ho!) ‘Grateful praise satisfies us and pleases God!’ Yes my people, both parties are satisfied with words uttered in praise and thanksgiving; it corrects our spirits, and it pleases God, who made us most of all to be a source of vital communication, through praise and thanksgiving. 

No wonder Bruh Paul informed the Ephesian church thus: ‘Giving thanks ALWAYS for ALL things unto God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.’ And there are no truer words than those to be found in our faith my people! And Bruh Paul said the same basic thing to the Colossians: ‘And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father by him. (Col.3:17) 

 And the scholars have this to say about that verse: ‘3:17. The beneficial influence produced by the indwelling word of Christ is not only to affect public and private worship (vs.16), but it is also to control ALL areas of a Christian’s life.’ Yuh see that friends, thanks and praise and the Word of God are to be the mainstays in a believer’s life! 

You can’t be running around crazily with and longing for the things of the world, ignoring Almighty God, your Creator and Provider and expect to flourish, either in this life or the one to come! And you’ll notice too that even Jesus, the Son of God gave thanks. Check out when He fed the four thousand with seven loaves of bread and a few fishes: ‘And he took the seven loaves and the fishes, and gave thanks…’ (Matt.15:36) 

And He did the same thing when He fed the five thousand men with five loaves of bread and two fishes. ‘Then he took the five loaves and the two fishes, and looking up to heaven, he blessed them, and brake, and gave to the disciples to set before the multitude.’ (Luke 9:16) Yes friends, Jesus knew where His bread was buttered; in heaven, at the Father’s throne, and the only reason He could do those miracles is because He looked to the Father and also gave thanks! 

And if Jesus needed to do that, then how much more we mere sinful mortals need to come to the throne of grace in humility and thanksgiving eh? Even when Jesus initiated the holy act of communion in His remembrance; ‘He took bread and blessed it…And He took the cup, and gave thanks…’ (Matt.26:26-27) 

Not much more to say friends, except to add Bruh Paul’s directive to the Thessalonians: ‘Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.’ (1 Thess.5:16-18) Now as obedient children of God, let’s go out and do exactly that today nuh! Much LOVE!

…continue in prayer…and watch in the same…with thanksgiving…

Today​’s Scrip-Bit 28 March 2019 Galatians 5:16.

Galatians 5:16.   ​This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.
 
Ah friends, in the wonderful words of Bruh Paul: ‘Grace be to you and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ. Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world (age), according to the will of God and our Father; To whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.’ (Gal.1:3-4) 

Yes my faithful brethren, greetings in the name of our most amazing and magnanimous God and His awesome Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, on this dry but somewhat chilly Thursday morning! And please don’t marvel at how early the Bit is because it’s just an anomaly. I simply have to go out of town early this morning and so decided to write it before I go, rather than when I reach my destination, which could be fairly late. 

So please don’t go getting any weird ideas about receiving it at this hour every morning. (smile) Tomorrow, God willing, we’ll be back at the usual time. And today, on a most practical level we’ll talk about this quote from a Daily Bread Devotional: ‘Our lives speak louder than our words!’ 

And isn’t that the gospel truth my people! Those around us pay more attention to how we live than what we say. They quickly forget what we say, but quite easily remember the things we do. That’s why we can’t talk one thing and then do something else in our daily walk with the Lord. 

And that’s what a lot of us supposed believers do, no wonder so much of the world consider us to be such hypocrites, whitewashed tombs, like Jesus called the hypocritical and overbearing Pharisees of His day. Yes, there are still a lot of Pharisees in our midst today, and please don’t go passing too much judgement, like they did, because you never know, you might just be numbered amongst that sorry lot. (smile) 

So how do we get our lives to speak louder than our words eh? As Bruh Paul says, to do that, we need to walk and live in the Spirit; the Holy Spirit of God! ‘This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.’ (Gal.5:16-17) 

And the scholars offer these interesting and useful explanations. ‘5:16. Walk in the Spirit (i.e., “live by the Spirit”). Christians are to live with the Spirit’s help. How does one “live by the Spirit”? (1) The Christian must believe that the Spirit is with him, having been sent by God into his heart (4.6). (2) In every spiritual confrontation the believer must yield to the Spirit, that is, submit his own desires to those of the Spirit. 

(3) One must depend on the Spirit for help, enabling him to live a God-pleasing life (v.5). (4) The believer should anticipate the effects of the Spirit’s help in his daily life. The believer who “lives by the Spirit” will not fulfill (accomplish, carry out) the lust (strong desires) of the flesh (sinful nature).’ 

Yes mih people, it’s all about our living this earthly life in strong association with the Holy Spirit of God, who was sent by the Father to live within us when we believed on His Son, to help us live a holy and sanctified life. But if we don’t acquiesce to the Spirit’s desires, then we make a mockery of the whole thing. 

For as the scholars explain: ‘5:17. One’s sinful human nature (flesh) and the Holy Spirit lusteth against one another, that is, they have desires and yearnings that are contrary to one another. The Christian, then, is a battlefield, having desires to do good and evil. The outcome is that ye cannot do the things that ye would: the flesh seeks to thwart the Spirit, who, in turn, attempts to frustrate the flesh’s evil desires.’ 

Yes friends, it’s a constant tug of war between our flesh and our Spirit. And it’s only with a constant effort and the help of the Spirit, that we can overcome the evil desires our flesh. The Spirit will guide us, but we have to accept it’s guidance, otherwise it will be all for nought. And we won’t bother to list the sinful desires of the flesh because we all know them, (smile) and it’s the fruit of the Spirit that we really want to show in our lives, so that we can practice what we preach. 

So here is what Bruh Paul says constitutes the fruit of the Spirit. ‘But the fruit of the spirit is LOVE, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness (kindness), goodness, faith (faithfulness), Meekness, temperance (self-control): against such there is no law.’ (Gal.5:22-23) And that’s how we make our lives speak louder than our words my fellow believers; by letting the fruit of the Spirit proceed from us, rather than the evil desires of the flesh! 

Now let’s go home declaring (right ho) our Thursday Blessings, those most generous and magnanimous blessings that our great God has poured down on us as sincere believers. In strong voice and heartfelt sense of purpose: ‘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 please don’t forget that those blessings were not given so we can hoard them, but to share them just as generously with others less fortunate than us. So let’s go out and do just that nuh! Much LOVE!

…Jesus said of His followers…by their fruit ye shall know them…

 

 

 

Today​’s Scrip-Bit 18 March 2019 2 Corinthians 1:4.

2 Corinthians 1:4.   Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble (tribulation), by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.

Oh my friends and Scrip-Bit family members, in the immortal and reassuring words of Bruh Paul to the Galatians, I greet you similarly this Monday morning: ‘Grace be to you and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ. Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world (age), according to the will of God, and our Father: To whom be glory for ever and ever.’ (Gal.1:3-5) 

Ah mih people, he say’s so much in just one mouthful. But we need to remember those very basic but oh so fundamental facts of our faith if we are to grow strong and mature in it from glory to glory. But I know that some of us are shaking it somewhat rough this morning, especially those who have just come back from a March Break vacation in some warm, exotic locale and now have to immediately go back to work in the cold weather. But that’s life! 

Remember that Jesus said we’d surely face adversity in this world, but we ought to be cheerful about it, because He had already overcome the world. (John 16:33) Yes, He has indeed defeated hell, death and grave, but it’s not always easy to just grin and bear our adversity, that’s why we have antidotes for times like this one, it’s called our Monday Morning Battle Hymn! And for it to help us we have to declare (right ho) it together in all sincerity and humility. 

So let’s send our heartfelt prayers up to heaven nuh, as one strong, unified and harmonious voice. ‘Oh Lord God Almighty, Creator of the universe and all therein! We, your humble servants, praise your Holy Name and thank you that this Monday morning we have jobs to go to; jobs we don’t like, jobs that are unfair, difficult and even dangerous, but which serve a useful purpose here on earth; keeping lives and families together. 

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

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

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

And we know our prayer was heard and answered by our wonderful heavenly Father because we can already feel our spirits lifting and the adrenaline beginning to flow through our mortal bodies as his Holy Spirit works its miracle powers in our souls! Praise His holy and faithful name my people! 

That brings us to some more of Bruh Paul’s memorable words, this time to the Corinthians: ‘Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort. Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble (tribulation), by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.’ (2 Cor.1:3-4) 

Mama Yo! What a wonderful God we serve and worship my brethren! And the scholars offer this explanation. ‘1:3-4. Blessed (Gr. eulogetos –well spoken of) is used in the New Testament of God (e.g. Eph.1:3). It is a term of adoration and praise. The Father of mercies: The mercies in view here include everything here from deliverance from the world, sin, and Satan, to participation in sonship, light and life. But the force is even more than this. The stress is that the Father is characterized by mercy (cf. Ps. 86:5; Dan.9:9; Mic.7:18).’  

Yes friends, those mercies of the Father run the whole gamut of our human and spiritual existence in both the now and the hereafter! That’s what makes Him such a wonderful Deity; He has provided for us in all situations! We don’t have to worry about a thing; just believe sincerely in His Son and be obedient to His will! And I strongly advise you all to take a moment and look up those scriptures suggested by the scholars. I just did, and they are indeed beautiful and useful ones. 

But my favourite of those two verses is our Bit. Bruh Paul says that our God is also the God of all comfort, and I like how He uses that attribute; to comfort us, so that we can also comfort others who are facing adversity. Chuh! What a wonderful plan! Only our God could think up something like that! (smile) 

And the prophet Isaiah says it thus of our God when proclaiming that the faithful will be comforted. ‘I, even I, am he that comforteth you: who art thou, that thou shouldest be afraid of a (mortal) man that shall die, and of the son of man which shall be made as grass.’ (Is.51:12) And again, when talking about Zion’s future hope, Isaiah reminds us that God will not forsake us, but ‘As one when his mother comforteth, so will I comfort you; and ye shall be comforted in Jerusalem.’ (Is.66:13) 

Ah my fellow believers in Jesus Christ, there’s not much more for me to say because the scripture says it all! So let’s be wise and faithful and look to God for mercy and comfort nuh, so that we can share them with others, as He so desperately desires of us in these sad and woeful times. That’s Christianity 101! (smile)Much LOVE!

…from our heavenly Father comes…all that we have…and all that we are…so to whom then should we pay reverential homage…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 May 2018 1 Peter 1:3.

1 Peter 1:3.   Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively (living) hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.

Well friends, it’s somewhat cloudy outside on this Saturday morning, but that’s no reason to think we won’t eventually have another glorious day. Technically it’s spring, but does it ever feel like summer. Last night I had to get up and change my T. shirt because I woke up with it soaking wet, even though my bedroom window was wide open. Please note, I’m not complaining, just making a point (smile). I will take that situation over the winter cold any day. 

Unfortunately though, the Big Island of Hawaii is experiencing more heat than an ordinary summer because the volcano just keeps bubbling and releasing lava down its slopes. Houses have now been swallowed up by the molten rock and people are being evacuated, as it doesn’t seem to be easing up. 

I guess the good thing is that it hasn’t erupted with full force spewing its molten guts all over the place. At least this way there is time to evacuate residents who are in immediate danger. Let’s keep on praying for them. 

And today being Saturday, let’s turn to some quotes that we received from our friend Anselm this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And this first one is certainly amusing. ‘If you think Education is expensive, try ignorance.’ But nonetheless it’s true! At least with education you have some idea what it’s all about, but with ignorance, you’re completely lost. 

Now here is an important one. ‘No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.’ And is that ever true friends! Inferiority is something we allow or bring on ourselves. No matter how much someone else may think they are better than us, because of their wealth, power, or social position, it only holds true if we believe it too. 

So please stop thinking you’re inferior to ANYONE! NO child of God is inferior to any other! We were all made the same way and for the same purpose by Almighty God and He LOVES us all unconditionally, regardless of our circumstances or behaviour! 

And the next quote wisely advises: ‘Never give up. Today is hard, tomorrow will be worse, but the day after tomorrow will be sunshine.’ Ah mih people, the first sentence is paramount: ‘Never give up.’ As followers of Jesus we are not supposed to do that because giving up does not exist in His vocabulary. 

He sacrificed His sinless life on the cross at Calvary so that we could be saved, our sins forgiven, and that we’d be imbued through the work of His Holy Spirit with whatever we need to face the rigours of this world. 

And Jesus didn’t mince words, He told us that we’d face persecution and tough times simply because we believed in Him, but that He had already overcome the world, so we had no need to fear or worry, just keep on keeping on in His name! That means to keep on hoping, which makes our last quote invaluable: 

‘Hope is the most exciting thing there is in life!’ Glory to God my people, that is gospel truth! Without hope we have nothing to look forward to. But with hope, we have everything to look forward to and dream about! With hope in our hearts, ANYTHING is possible, especially if we are believers in Jesus, the ONE who can do ANYTHING! 

And there are a couple of expressions about hope that I just LOVE: ‘the first talks about ‘hungry hope, and the second, about ‘prisoners of hope.’ Mama Mia! And as true followers of Jesus we need to possess the first and be one of the latter, if we want to lead a successful earthly life working for Jesus. And the thing about hope friends is its power to bring expectancy, joyful expectancy to our lives. 

And there are so many passages of scripture that deal with hope that we only have time and space for a few. First, check out our Bit: ‘Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively (living) hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.’ 

Oh my fellow believers that’s the greatest hope we can ever have; to spend eternity with Christ, because He rose from the dead, we too shall rise to life eternal! 

And then there is this famous passage from Bruh Paul to the Roman church, which we all know. ‘For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for it? But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience (perseverance) wait (eagerly) for it.’ (Rom.8:24-25) That’s the power of hope friends, believing without seeing, then keeping on in eager expectation of its eventual arrival. 

And we’ll close with these encouraging words of Bruh David from Psalm 16. ‘I have set the Lord always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth: my flesh also shall rest (dwell securely) in hope.’ (Ps.16:8-9) 

Oh my faithful brethren, this Saturday morning, I implore us, if the Lord is at our right hand, then let’s be filled with hungry hope and be strong prisoners of hope nuh! And consequently, let our hearts be glad and rejoice in the glory of our great God, and rest, dwell securely in His hope. That’s wisdom of everlasting proportions! Much LOVE!

…the world says…seeing is believing…but God says…hoping and believing is true seeing…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 March 2018 Ephesians 5:20.

Ephesians 5:20.    Giving thanks always for ALL things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Well a Happy St. Patrick’s Day to all my Irish friends and family! Please don’t get too immersed in the green stuff, especially the many different libations of the day. (smile) 

Yeh, St. Patrick’s Day (March 17) is the time the Irish celebrate their culture and religion, the legend being that the missionary St. Patrick introduced Christianity to Ireland somewhere around the fourth century, and eventually drove out all the snakes from Ireland. 

Whatever the truth be though, the 17th of March has become a traditional festival of Irish culture all over the world, especially the imbibing part, with all things green being highlighted. 

What I remember most about St. Patrick’s Day is that as a young boy growing up in T&T, that was the only day you heard a Calypso on the radio, or you could have a party during the season of Lent. Now that state of affairs might have been somewhat stringent, but what happens now is downright ridiculous, with no serious or sincere observance of the Lenten season. 

Anyway, it’s Saturday, so let’s turn our attention to the quotes we got from our friend Anselm this week, as he sincerely aspires to inspire us for a brighter tomorrow. And our friend certainly had some interesting quotes this week, conveniently all tied up together. (smile) 

Listen to this first one: ‘Reflect upon your present blessings, of which every man has plenty; not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.’ Now that’s wisdom of untold proportions! As Christians, we’re instructed to count our blessings, and concentrate on them, for they will always add up to more than our misfortunes and keep us happy and contented in the Lord. 

And the second quote declares: ‘When I started counting my blessings, my whole life turned around.’ Oh glory to God my people! That is the gospel truth! Whenever we concentrate on our blessings rather than our misfortunes, our lives suddenly turn around in such dramatic fashion! I don’t understand why more of us aren’t counting the blessings and forgetting the misfortunes. 

And then there’s this invaluable quote: ‘Cultivate the habit of being grateful.’  What wise and wonderful advice my faithful followers of Christ! Everyday we preach that! There’s nothing that affects our lives as being grateful for all that we have, and which has been sent to us from our magnanimous God. 

But then I like this associate quote: ‘Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.’ Yeh, what is the point of being grateful if you don’t show it eh? Then no one knows that you’re grateful. It’s like saying you LOVE someone, but not showing them that LOVE. It’s simply wasted. All talk and no play. Gratitude is one of those words that can only be appreciated through our actions. 

And as always, I’ve left the best for last. ‘Thank you’ is the best prayer that anyone could say. I say that one a lot. ‘Thank you’ expresses extreme gratitude, humility, and understanding.’ Oh my people, if only we’d say more ‘thank you’s’ to each other, and to our awesome God, what a wonderful world this would be! 

You know, being grateful, counting our blessings and saying ‘thank you’ are the basic foundation stones of our Christian faith, because they all display LOVE in action! And that’s what Jesus’ people are all about: LOVE in action! 

And our Bit is one of the most encompassing scriptures in the Good Book, on the three topics we’ve covered today. It’s Bruh Paul’s direction to the Ephesians: ‘Giving thanks always for ALL things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.’ 

Ah mih people, it’s something we continually hear, and know deep down in our hearts that we should do, but yet we don’t do it half as much as we should. We ought to be thanking our magnificent and magnanimous God, almost every minute of everyday for all that He’s done for us, especially when we don’t deserve ANY of it! 

Just the mere fact that His wonderful and amazing breath of life is currently coursing through our mortal bodies of dust and clay is sufficient reason to be everlastingly grateful and shout out a whole load of thanks to Him! But what to do eh? Mankind, being the only thinking creation, has always been the most ungrateful creation of the Lord. (smile) 

However, let’s see if we can change that some nuh, by going home declaring these wonderful words of Bruh David from Psalm 34 – The Lord hears the righteous. ‘I will bless the Lord at ALL times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth. My soul shall make her boast in the Lord: the humble shall hear thereof, and be glad. O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together.’ (Ps.34:1-3) 

Ah friends, there’s nothing better that we can do than magnify and exalt our great God! So let’s get ourselves together and begin doing it much more nuh. It’s basic common sense and wisdom to the nth degree! Much LOVE!

…there’s nothing that lifts our spirits…and warms the cockles of God’s heart…like His people showing gratitude…and giving sincere thanks…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 11 February 2018 Psalm 33:1.

Psalm 33:1.   Rejoice in the Lord, O ye righteous: for praise is comely (beautiful) for the upright.

And as the first day of the week rolls around again, let us gladly make our weekly pilgrimage to the House of God! There to meet in joyful fellowship, with praise and thanksgiving flowing from our lips and hearts, as we listen to His holy word and renew His Spirit within us. As I said the other day, there’s nothing as moving and monumental as a group of true believers gathering to offer up thanks and praise to our heavenly Father. 

Now please don’t allow the snow, rain, or other physical circumstances to stop you from going to the Lord’s sanctuary, for you will miss a great time, where believers encourage each other and the Spirit of the Lord is in the house rejuvenating everyone. So let’s get the praise and worship going by singing another old faithful, ‘Abide with Me.’ 

Apparently it was written by an eccentric curate, Henry Francis Lyte (1793-1847) ‘haunted by the phrase, repeatedly muttered by his close friend, William Le Hunte, as he lay dying.’ Lyte wrote the hymn to its own tune, but it is now sung to the tune of ‘Eventide,’ a composition of the organist William Monk. 

It’s supposedly based on the scripture Luke 24:29, where the two disciples met Jesus on the road to Emmaus but did not recognize Him, and as the daylight was drawing to a close, and they came to where they would spend the night, they constrained, petitioned, Jesus: ‘Abide with us: for it is toward evening, and the day is far spent. And he went in to tarry with them.’ 

Now let us, in our own way, invite Jesus to stay with us until time everlasting. In strong voice and humble hearts let’s offer up the sacrifice of praise that our Lord enjoys hearing so much. ‘Abide with me: fast falls the eventide; the darkness deepens; Lord, with me abide. When other helpers fail and comforts flee, Help of the helpless, O abide with me. 

Swift to its close ebbs out life’s little day; earth’s joys grow dim, its glories pass away. Change and decay in all around I see. O Lord who changes not, abide with me. I need your presence every passing hour. What but your grace can foil the tempter’s power? Who like yourself my guide and strength can be? Through cloud and sunshine, O abide with me. 

I fear no foe with you at hand to bless, though ills have weight, and tears their bitterness. Where is death’s sting? Where, grave, your victory? I triumph still, if you abide with me. Hold now your Word before my closing eyes. Shine through the gloom and point me to the skies. Heaven’s morning breaks and earth’s vain shadows flee; in life, in death, O Lord, abide with me.’ 

And there is no one better to undertake that task than our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Now here are a couple of interesting comments on the hymn. One Erik Routley calls it a hymn that “looks death in the face” and embodies the human craving for companionship in extremis.’ So what of that eh? Though we know that all of us must face death, it’s till the hardest thing for us to come to terms with. 

So if we have something that gives us comfort under the circumstances, why not cling to it? And besides, God made man to fellowship with Him and each other, so there is a built in need for companionship. (smile)  

It’s also been noted that ‘the change to the singular pronoun is what gives the hymn its comforting emotional intimacy.’ That means the change from the disciples ‘abide with US,’ to the hymn’s ‘abide with ME.’ Whatever makes it more comforting yes! 

And all of the above dovetails very nicely with our Bit. ‘Rejoice in the Lord, O ye righteous: for praise is comely (beautiful) for the upright.’ Ah friends, that is exactly what our Sunday gatherings are about: rejoicing in the Lord, giving Him beautiful and comely praise in His house.  

Now that doesn’t mean to say that it’s only in a building with several people is rejoicing and praise possible. Shoot no! Praise can be done anywhere, at any time, by at least one person! Our God doesn’t care so much about when, where and by how many He gets His praise, once He gets it on a regular basis from His children. 

That’s why Bruh Paul warned the Ephesians, and by extension modern day believers: ‘And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess (dissipation), but be filled with the Spirit; Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.’ (Eph.5:18-21) 

Yeh mih people, as true believers, we ought always to have a song of joy in our hearts towards our wonderful heavenly Father! And it’s only fitting that we end with some more of the Psalm from which our Bit is taken. ‘Praise the Lord with harp: sing unto him with the psaltery and an instrument of ten strings. Sing unto him a new song; play skillfully with a loud noise (shout of joy). The word of the Lord is right; and all his works are done in truth. He LOVETH righteousness and judgement (justice): the earth is full of the goodness (LOVING-kindness) of the Lord.’ (Ps.33:2-5) 

And isn’t that the gospel truth my brethren! Wow! That’s why we ought to rejoice and give thanks as much as possible! So as we go to the sanctuary today, or worship wherever, let’s try and keep that joy, that rejoicing in the Lord’s goodness actively bubbling in our hearts nuh. For remember, the joy of the Lord is our strength. Much LOVE!

…if you’re not giving God regular and sincere praise and thanks…then you’re not a true believer…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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