Today’s Scrip-Bit 30 November 2019 Matthew 28:19.

Matthew 28:19.    ​Go ye therefore, and teach (make disciples) of ALL nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
 

And hopefully we’ve made it through Black Friday in one piece… not having spent too much unnecessary money, or gotten into too much unnecessary debt! (smile) And hopefully there weren’t any violent episodes to endure. Haven’t heard of any so far, but man’s nature being what it is, I’m sure there were some tete a tetes! Couldn’t get the accentuation right. (smile) But you know what I mean; some close encounters of the human kind, literally head to heads. Anyway, Black Friday is history now, so let’s concentrate on Saturday, whatever colour it may be. That means turning to some of the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this past week, as he sincerely aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. 

And I like this first one: ‘If I cannot do great things, I can do small things in a great way.’ We’ve got to realize that not all of us can be doers of great things; that’s left for only a small percentage. But if we’re not included in that august lot, it doesn’t mean we can’t be great. We just need to do the small things that come our way in a great and excellent manner! That’s what Jesus asks of His followers; diligence and excellence in all we do! And believe me, the greatness that the world thrusts upon us is not all it’s really cracked up to be; for once it’s found our Achilles heel, with even greater speed than it lifted us, the world can tear us back down again. But when Jesus lifts us up in our small doings, it’s for keeps! 

Then there’s this: ‘Don’t wait. The time will never be just right.’ And is that often ever so true! Like we were saying earlier in the week ‘Someday we will…!’ But if we keep putting things off, someday might never come. We do have to check out the Lord’s take on the situation before jumping in though; that’s what they call wisdom, (smile) and if He doesn’t set up any obvious roadblocks, then it should be all engines full ahead! Remember what they say about procrastination: it is the thief of time. And time is not something we have an inordinate or never-ending amount of. So ofttimes we just have to go for it! 

And that’s the text of our next quote: ‘You don’t always need a plan. Sometimes you just need to breathe, trust, let go, and see what happens.’ Now that’s true too. But one word of caution; please, please make sure you check it out with the Lord first; it only takes a few seconds to do that! Have no fear. If it’s totally wrong, He’ll let you know. And if He doesn’t say anything, it might just be that He has a lesson for you to learn. (smile) And we can paraphrase all of those quotes with this one: ‘Never limit yourself because of others’ limited imagination; never limit others because of your own limited imagination.’ 

Sadly though people that’s a major failure and fault of our current world; we’re always telling each other what they can and can’t do from our puny and limited human imaginations. Just think of all the great strides we’ve made in our society, I’m sure that many of them were unthinkable until some brave, gifted and daring soul decided to seriously knuckle down and do them despite the negative voices of the doubting Thomas’s shouting ‘you can’t do that’ in their ears. But you know the One we limit the most, it’s our great God! 

We claim that He is omnipotent, omniscient, and omni-present; meaning that He is all-powerful, all-knowing, and ever-present, but the truth is that our faith is still sadly lacking when we need Him to do big, seemingly impossible things for us. Remember Jesus said that ALL things were possible with the Father! And if we’re true believers, then we ought to let that show up in our everyday lives, through faith in His power and grace and mercy, through belief in miracles! Yes, He still does those; not necessarily as big as He once did, but I know He does many small ones in each and every life, we’re just not looking for them, or thinking of them as such. 

How yuh think we woke up this morning eh? Just by chance? Certainly not! It was the Lord’s compassion and mercy; His miracle that kept us alive through the night and then opened our eyes to a beautiful day. So please let’s stop selling ourselves and our great God short. Remember we can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens us! 

And as always, we try to save the best for last. (smile) ‘No matter what people tell you, words and ideas can change the world.’ And that’s gospel truth friends! We just have to look at all the different types of societies that exist, or once existed in our world; communism, democracy, socialism, dictatorship. All of them began as ideas and were reinforced by words until they became reality. But the greatest change ever brought about by ideas and words is our own Christian faith. 

Mama Yo! Just look at what the words and ideas of Jesus wrought in our world nuh! Hear Him to the disciples before He went back to heaven: ‘Go ye therefore, and teach (make disciples) of ALL nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.’ (Matt.28:19-20) 

Wow mih people! What a splash that Great Commission has made in our world! Twelve men believed; took Jesus’ words and commission to heart and went out and changed the world! That’s the sterling power of words and ideas. And as true believers in Christ, we’ve also been given that Great Commission, for the WHOLE WORLD has not yet been converted, or heard of Him. So please let’s take the baton, the flaming torch from those who have gone before us, and go out and help change the world! That’s our Great Commission too! Much LOVE!

…Jesus doesn’t want to come back…until EVERY living soul on earth…has had a chance to hear His words and ideas…and be saved…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 August 2016 Philippians 4:11.

Philippians 4:11.   Not that I speak in respect of want (in regard of need): for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.

Ah friends, it’s Saturday, which spells sleeping in and rest for some, while for the unlucky others, household chores will take up most of their day. But not to worry it’s all good. (smile) 

Yeh, tell that to the mothers who are up and busy while the fathers lay about in bed or slouch on the living room couch in front of the t.v watching some sporting event like the Olympics.  Hn! To each his own; the important thing is that you’re well-rested, bright and fresh to go back out on Monday morning and do the work thing all over again. 

In the meantime let’s check out some quotes from our friend Anselm, who always aspires to inspire us. Now this week it was kind of hard to pick just two, so I chose the easy way out and picked three. (smile) They are short anyway, so they won’t take up much space. 

The first one says: ‘Life is raw material. We are artisans. We can sculpt our existence into something beautiful, or debase it into ugliness. It’s in our hands.’ 

And that’s very true, for we basically hold the canvas of our lives in our own hands and to a great extent can make of it whatever we desire. We have the ability to paint a beautiful picture with our lives or just make it dark and ugly. Oh there will be problems and roadblocks, whatever path we choose, but technically speaking, our lives are ours to build as we see fit. 

And the second of Anselm’s quotes tells us: ‘One of the things I learned the hard way was that it doesn’t pay to get discouraged. Keeping busy and making optimism a way of life can restore your faith in yourself.’ 

Now that’s definitely gospel truth my people! Life is not easy and there are many pitfalls, etc. that can get us down and discouraged, but that’s never the wise or smart way to go, especially if you are a believer in Jesus Christ. Now optimism doesn’t necessarily mean that everything will work out the way you want, but at least you’ll be able to handle the negative situations in a positive manner; staying encouraged, not giving up, leaning on and looking to Jesus for His faithful promise of help in rough times.  

And last but not least, Anselm declares: ‘If you keep on saying things are going to be bad, you have a good chance of being a prophet.’ That also rings out with truth my brethren because our words have power, awesome power, and whatever we keep saying, be it positive or negative, usually comes to pass. And somehow or other, the negatives in our speech seem to come to pass more than the positives. So it’s extremely important that we stick to positive speech. 

That brings us to our Bit, some positive speech from Bruh Paul the Philippians. ‘Not that I speak in respect of want (in regard of need): for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.’ Yes friends, that is a very necessary lesson for every Christian to learn. 

Then Bruh Paul goes on to make one of the immortal statements in the Bible. ‘I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.’ (Phil.4:13) And that’s the basis on which he is able to be contented in whatever situation he finds himself. 

Hear the scholars: ‘4:13. The apostle’s ability of knowing how to live skillfully on little or in prosperity does not mean that he is a spiritual superman. The reason that he can live in such extremes is not owing to his own ability. Rather he can do all things through Christ who strengtheneth him, thus enabling him to adapt to his various, ever-changing circumstances. God orders Paul’s various situations, and God gives him the strength to be content in them all, trying and perplexing though they may be.’ 

And nobody went through as many harrowing and dangerous experiences as Bruh Paul. Oh my fellow believers, the same thing applies to all of us! God sets us where He wants us and then gives us the wherewithal to stand; to stand strong and steadfast regardless of the circumstances. That’s why we Christians are able to bear up under pressure that non-believers can’t handle: our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ enables us to handle it through the help of His Helper, the Holy Spirit. 

So though times might look dark and disturbing, you are exactly where the heavenly Father desires you to be, and if you stick to Him like glue, (smile) He will enable you to bear whatever adversity you are currently encountering. 

Now let’s check out some scriptures that jive with our Bit. Listen to Bruh Paul again, this time to Timothy in his warning against false teachers. ‘But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment (clothing) let us therewith be content.’ (1 Tim.6:6-8) 

Hear the scholars. 8:8. This verse prevents the wrong understanding of verse 7, that material possessions have no place in the Christian’s life. By figure of speech food and raiment stand for all of life’s basic necessities. These are all the believer needs, and having these he can be content.’ 

Let’s turn to the words of Agur now in Proverbs as he talks to God ‘Two things have I required (requested of thee); deny me them not (deprive me not) before I die. Remove far from me vanity (falsehood) and lies; give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with food convenient (you prescribe) for me. Lest I be full, and deny thee, and say, Who is the Lord? or lest I be poor, and steal, and take (profane) the name of the Lord in vain.’ (Prov.30:7-9)  

And we’ll end with these interesting words from the scholars. ’30:7-9. Agur’s prayer is for a convenient and lifelong integrity, accompanied by a rejection of lies and riches. His resting in God’s provision for him (v.8) anticipates the words of our Lord. (Matt.6:11).’ 

What more can I say eh friends, except that that is a worthwhile and godly way to live. So let’s emanate him if we can nuh. Much LOVE!

…give us this day our daily bread… (Matt.6:11)

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 July 2014 Mark 5:36b

Mark 5:36b.  Be not afraid, only believe.

And then it was Saturday; a bright, vibrant, radiant day, made by Almighty God so that His people could rejoice and be glad in it! And all God’s children declared a loud and grateful, ‘Thank you Father!’
 
Oh my people, can you believe that we’re more than halfway through July already, and also this year of 2014? I swear that the days are running faster than they usually do. And most of you will no doubt agree, because your lives also seem to be moving at breakneck speed, where one day just morphs into the other, without any apparent break.
 
And though I don’t remind us as often as I should about our New Year’s resolution of following Jesus more closely, I do hope that you are faithfully adhering to it. And you can tell me what you will, but the Father will read the truth in your hearts.
 
Anyway mih lovelies, this morning I want to share with you the opening couple of lines of the poem Endymion by the English Romantic Poet, John Keats (1795-1821) It reads: ‘A thing of beauty is a joy forever: Its loveliness increases; it will never pass to nothingness.’
 
Now we all know that the value of art usually increases with age, but so too do people. As the days go by on our earthly journey, we get more mature and grace-filled, so that increased knowledge, experience and wisdom make us more valuable. The only problem is that unlike the physical works of art, we pass away to nothingness.
 
But that’s just our physical bodies. Our spiritual beings are still alive and kicking, especially in the LOVED ones that we have left behind. They continue to hold dear the traditions, the respect, the care and the LOVE that we lavished on them when we were alive. So all that and any other physical heirlooms we might have bequeathed to those around us will continue to live on, to survive, as they pass those things to others down through the ages.
 
So in essence, like the physical art, we too never pass into nothingness either. And here’s the end quote on the subject from the One More Day Devotional, Daily Meditations for People with Chronic Illness. It bravely declares: ‘I am comforted by the traditions of family and faith and by the meaningfulness they add to my life.’
 
And that’s how it ought to be my brethren, for when we approach death’s door, it’s usually family we want to see, and faith we hold on to, so we can easily transition from this life to the next.
 
And it all boils down to one word: ‘BELIEF!’ We live a life guided by our beliefs. Hopefully the major belief is that in Jesus Christ, for it is the best belief to build your life around.
 
And I just LOVE how Jesus puts things so simple and straightforward, as He says to Jairus in our Bit: ‘Be not afraid, only believe.’
 
Nothing to it Friends, just believe. And it is truly that simple, we just like to make a fuss over it. We believe the nonsense, the lies that the advertisers tell us in their forked tongued messages without batting an eyelash. Hn! But when it comes to believing in Jesus, the most important belief in our lives, the one that will either separate us from God forever, or keep us on the inside looking out, we get all hot and bothered, ask a whole lot of questions and put up a whole lot of roadblocks. Why eh, my people?
 
I think that it’s generally because we’re afraid. It seems to be such a big decision to make, for it deals with our lives in the hereafter, something we don’t want to think about just yet, plus the worldly artifacts are so beautiful to look at and possess, and we erroneously believe that believing in Jesus means we can’t enjoy the good things of earthly life. But that’s a fool’s wisdom Friends, for Jesus said He came so that we could have life, and have it more abundantly. (John 10:10)
 
The problem is that we don’t want any borders, any boundaries placed on our activities and behaviour, but yuh see what that desire is causing all over our world; strife and destruction. But my people, this life can only be lived in prosperity and safety if we adhere to certain strict guidelines. Anything else will only bring anarchy, as we’re seeing in so many places nowadays.
 
However Friends, I’m running out of space and time, so let’s get to some scriptures where Jesus highlighted belief in God. And there’s none better than the story of Him raising His friend Lazarus from the dead.
 
Jesus was out of town when he got the message from the sisters, Martha and Mary, saying ‘Lord behold he whom thou LOVEST is sick.’ (John 11:3) But despite His great LOVE for Lazarus and his sisters Jesus remained a further two days before He went to Bethany where they lived. By the time He got there Lazarus was already dead for four days.
 
When Martha heard that Jesus was coming she ran to meet Him and rebuked Him, saying, ‘Lord if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died. But I know, that even now, whatsoever thou wilt ask of God, God will give it thee.’ (John 11:21-22)
 
Now is that strong belief, great faith or what my people! She just knows that whatever Jesus asks of God, God will grant. How many of us are even willing to say that today, much less believe it eh, even though we have much more info and insight than Martha did?
 
The Good Book continues: the conversation: ‘Jesus saith unto her, Thy brother shall rise again. Martha saith unto him, I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day.
 
Jesus saith unto her, I am the resurrection and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead (may die), yet shall he live: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believeth thou this?
 
She saith unto him, Yea Lord: I believe that thou art the Christ, the Son of God, which should come into the world.’ (John 11:23-27)
 
What a powerful passage of scripture my brethren! Note the interplay between Jesus and Martha: He claiming to be the giver of eternal life, and she believing without missing a beat! That’s how it ought to be in all believers’ lives my Friends!
 
So today, please let’s sit and consider our personal response to Jesus’ question; ‘Believest thou this?’ And hopefully, we shall all blurt out without hesitation: ‘Yes Lord: I BELIEVE!’ Much LOVE!

…it all begins with…believing…and it all ends with…believing…only believe…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 February 2013 Psalm 21:6

Psalm 21:6.     For thou hast made him most blessed for ever: thou hast made him exceeding glad with thy countenance.

Oh Friends, it’s now the hour just before the dawn, long celebrated as the darkest hour of the night. But contrary to that statement, my area right now (4.30 a.m) is bright and beautiful, as everything is covered in a dazzling display of virgin snow. Even the leafless trees are shrouded in white, as the strong wind has them doing an uptempo dance to its unrelenting beat. The housetops, roads and cars parked there are also covered with the white stuff. It won’t stay beautiful for much longer though, as mankind begins to traverse his difficult and unruly way through it. As promised by the weather forecasters, it began in the early evening. When I went out for a few minutes around 7.30 p.m. it was merely wet snow. However, by 10 p.m. everything and everywhere was completely covered in white, looking beautiful, but in reality ever so treacherous and deceitful, like so many other beautiful things …and people… in our tumultuous world. And I certainly know who’s not going out there today! (smile) Don’t want to risk another unfortunate experience like the one I suffered in the last big snowfall a few weeks ago. Yes Friends, no more slipping and sliding, damaging my old car, getting stuck in my driveway and the lane. No siree! Oh Brother, I forgot that today is Wednesday; Bible Study day! But we’ll see how the weather and road cleaning shape up by Bible Study time in the evening. Anyway mih people, despite all the roadblocks that are put in our way in this earthly pilgrimage, we still need to live the life that Jesus desires of us. It’s only when we write His Word deep in our hearts, minds and souls, then live it out in our actions, that we can confidently say we are true believers in and followers of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. And here I’ll share a li’l poem about that, by Eva Rose York (1858-1935), editor, teacher, organist and composer in western Ontario. It simply says: ‘I will not pass this way again; Then let me now relieve some pain, remove some barrier from the road, or brighten (lighten) someone’s heavy load.’ Oh Friends, it’s so touching in its simplicity, but yet so poignant with its message to Christians, as it encapsulates our Christian beliefs in those few words…show you care and help somebody. It can be a sort of mantra for us my brethren. I believe I’ve shared it before, but it’s says so much about us, that I felt compelled to share it again, especially in these rough times when we believers are less caring and action oriented that we ought to be. That brings us to our Bit, grateful words of Bruh David from Psalm 21, superscripted; Praise for victory. ‘For thou hast made him most blessed for ever: thou hast made him exceeding glad (joyful with gladness) with thy countenance (presence).’ Oh Friends, that state of thankfulness comes with the territory; surrendering one’s life to the Lord, putting your absolute hope, trust and faith in the ONE who created us. It shows maturity and true wisdom; a stage that as true believers we should all be striving for. Hear how Bruh David continues after our Bit: ‘For the king trusteth in the Lord, and through the mercy of the Most High he shall not be moved (shaken).’ (Ps.21:7) Awesome words of truth, my brethren! Oh how I desperately wish our leaders and those in power could gain such wisdom and the amazing power, grace and mercy that go with dedicating one’s life to walking with Jesus! What a wonderful place our world would be! But unfortunately the powers of darkness and the evildoers who currently rule the roost will not bow out or give up the fight very easily. But that’s why Bruh David is also confident that: ‘Thine hand shall find out all thine enemies: thy right hand shall find out those that hate thee. Thou shalt make them as a fiery oven in the time of thine anger; the Lord shall swallow them up in his wrath, and the fire shall devour them.’ (Ps.21:8-9) Yes Friends, when we walk sincerely with God, our enemies are defeated, either exterminated or brought low as our footstools. (Heb.10:13) With that also go these words from Psalm 45; A psalm for the king’s marriage. ‘Thou LOVEST righteousness, and hatest wickedness: therefore God, thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above they fellows (companions).’ (Ps.45:7) Ah mih people, our God blesses us intentionally when we keep Him uppermost in all we do, especially if we’re people of privilege and power. And we’ll end with another verse of truth and wisdom from Bruh David, from Psalm 16, where he seeks preservation and blessing. ‘Thou wilt show me the path of life: in thy presence is fullness of joy: at thy right hand there pleasures for evermore.’ (Ps.16:11) Yes my fellow believers, all those things are entwined and embedded in our lives when we choose to walk with Almighty God, our wonderful Creator and Caretaker! Today, let’s raise our level of involvement with Him nuh, as true wisdom dictates. Much LOVE!…only when we associate closely with God…will our wrongs be made right…and our enemies be defeated…forever…  P.S. This weather is really crazy yes! Would you believe it’s raining now (6 a.m) turning the snow to slush. Let’s hope it washes away everything before the temp falls later and it all turns to ice. Please be careful all of you who have to go out there. And if you don’t have to go, don’t go! (smile) Much LOVE!