Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 March 2019 Matthew 6:33.

Matthew 6:33.   ​But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
 

And then it was Friday; the day so many of us look forward to because it signals the end of our hardy workweek in these rather trying times of humanity, where prosperity abounds in general, but poverty, sickness, strife and homelessness are more the order of the day. 

And to help us combat the greed and evil and selfishness that’s currently so prevalent in our world, listen to these winsome and wonderful words from a poem by one of Canada’s first female writers and composers; Eva Rose York (nee Fitch), composer, organist, editor, teacher (born 22 December 1858 in Norwich, Ontario; died 6 February in Toronto, Ontario.) 

In the third verse of her epic poem ‘I shall not pass this way again,’ she summarily declares (right ho) in a beautiful, humane, and very timely message to all humanity: ‘I shall not pass this way again; Then let me now relieve some pain, Remove some barrier from the road, Or brighten someone’s heavy load. A helping hand to this one lend, Then turn some other to befriend.’ 

Yes friends, it’s our duty to help each other, both as members of the human race and the Christian organization; the church of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ!  He set the glorious example for all mankind to follow when He selflessly sacrificed His life on that old rugged cross at Calvary for sinful man. 

It behooves us therefore to carry on His work in our time by helping the less fortunate, of which there are so many in our current society, although this is one of the most prosperous and advanced periods in man’s history! And if we’d only put out a li’l effort to do that, then Christ’s church, and our world, would take on a much different hue, a much more enlightened and godly complexion. End of sermon! (smile) 

Yes my brethren, that’s what the Lord put in my to heart share with you this cold, winter’s Friday, the first day of March 2019. However, I know that since this Friday, many of you are more interested in hearing the workingman’s Friday song, as it tends more to our sinful and lustful nature. (smile) Well, I won’t disappoint you. Here’s what he’s singing this morning: 

 ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday oui! But like this blooming cold weather not planning to go away anytime soon nuh! Brother! But wasn’t that a stellar snowfall earlier this week eh? I couldn’t even walk properly in the so many inches of snow…fell down in it numerous times…but just had to laugh and roll over and remember how we would play in it as young children growing up in the poor areas of Toronto! 

Yes, them was good days! We didn’t have a care in the world! Had food and everything ready for me by mother and father! Didn’t know where it came from, or how hard it was to earn it. Hn! But now I am mother and father and have to get out there everyday, come rain, snow or shine, and earn a pittance to support my brood…

And I’m doing it…without too much complaints too… But believe me, nothing, or nobody is going to take away my party time come Fridays and the weekends. I give all I have during the week, but the weekend is mine! And who doh like it, yuh know what they could do with it yes! Thank God for Fridays and weekends oui!’ 

Yes, the workingman was in full voice, but he certainly surprised us this morning nuh. (smile) It wasn’t all about partying, but more sensible stuff which all of us need to take very seriously in today’s crazy and misguided world. And to add to the seriousness of the workingman’s song, let’s chant our Friday Chant that’s somewhat more restrictive, but does not stop us from having fun and enjoying good times with friends and family. 

All together now: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen!’ 

Yeh friends, instead of concentrating on the partying aspect of our lives, as believers we focus on the furthering of God’s kingdom! Glory to our great God! As Jesus so straightforwardly put it in the Sermon on the Mount: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow (do not worry about tomorrow): for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil (trouble) thereof.’ (Matt.6:33-34) 

There it is right in a nutshell friends and fellow believers! God must be our NUMBER ONE PRIORITY! And if we do that, then things will be fine with us, we won’t lack anything, the Lord will take of all our earthly needs. Now listen to some explanations from the scholars: 

‘The disciples who have pledged their allegiance to the King must continue seeking the kingdom and it’s righteousness…The contrast between the spiritual and material is again emphasized. The believer is to seek first the righteousness that is characteristic of God’s kingdom and then all these things (material things) shall be added to him. When our priority is spiritual, God will take care of the material, for where God guides, He provides. (Now that’s gospel truth!) 

We need not even worry about tomorrow, for sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof. This means that each day has its own troubles and challenges to be responsibly handled, without worrying about the hypothetical problems that could arise tomorrow.’ 

So friends, having now heard this message for the umpteenth time (smile) let’s go out and see if we can’t put it into better action than we’ve done so far nuh? For Jesus’ sake nuh? And with God’s help we can certainly do it! Much LOVE!

…just think about what Jesus did for us…how then can we not want to do for others eh…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 February 2019 Matthew 6:34.

Matthew 6:34.   Take therefore no thought for the morrow (don’t worry about tomorrow): for the morrow shall take thought for (worry about) the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil (trouble) thereof.

 

Awright friends, it’s Sunday, that great first day of the week that we all know and LOVE! Some of us just like it because we can laze around in it, conveniently using the biblical contention that it’s supposed to be a day of rest. (smile) Meanwhile, to others, it is also a day to get together with fellow believers and celebrate God’s goodness, give Him praise and thanks and exalt His holy name in return for all that’s He done for us! 

And that’s what I’d suggest we all do on this cold Sunday in February; hie thee hither to the Lord’s sanctuary and worship and sing praises to our omnipotent and magnanimous God, hear His awesome Word, and receive His healing power and confidence to face the upcoming week! Now that’s what a Sunday should be all about! 

And as always, we open the proceedings with a song of praise and thanksgiving. Today’s song will be a popular gospel tune written I believe somewhere in the 1970’s by Marijohn Wilkins and Kris Kristofferson; a heartfelt plea to be granted mercy and grace, forgiveness and all that’s necessary to live a righteous life ‘One Day at a Time Sweet Jesus!’ 

So let’s raise the roof of the sanctuary- if there is one – (smile) as we raise our voices to heaven, humbly imploring our heavenly Father to grant our heart’s desire. As one body in Christ now:  (Chorus: One day at a time, sweet Jesus That’s all I’m asking of You Just give me the strength to do every day What I have to do Yesterday’s gone, sweet Jesus And tomorrow may never be mine Lord, help me today Show me the way One day at a time) 

I’m only human, I’m just a woman (man) Help me believe in what I could be And all that I am Show me the stairway That I have to climb Lord, for my sake, teach me to take One day at a time. (Chorus) Oh, do you remember When You walked among men Well, Jesus, You know If You’re looking below It’s worse now, than then, Cheating and stealing, violence and crime So for my sake, teach me to take One day at a time 

(Chorus: One day at a time, sweet Jesus That’s all I’m asking of You Just give me the strength to do every day What I have to do Oh, yesterday’s gone, sweet Jesus And tomorrow may never be mine Lord, help me today Show me the way One day at a time Lord, help me today Show me the way One day at a time One day at a time.’ 

Yeh friends, fortunately or unfortunately, one day at a time is the only way we can live this earthly life and we do need God’s provision to do so successfully. And He is only too eager to provide them for us every day! Remember what Jeremiah says in his Lamentations? ‘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) 

 That’s a crucial bit of scripture friends, something we should all pay serious attention to, for just consider what our state would be if the Lord didn’t provide us with new mercies and compassion and LOVE each and every day nuh? Putting it simple and straightforward; crapaud smoke we pipe! That’s for sure! 

But even more important than God’s mercies being available new every morning, is the inescapable fact that we have to do our part to get, to receive them. They just don’t fall in our laps like manna from heaven. Each day that we draw the breath of life, we need to be actively engaged in God’s work and try to live right, to let His will be our top priority. 

And Jesus, who knows best, because that’s exactly what He did in His earthly life – draw inspiration and strength from the Father each and every day through prayer and thanksgiving – gives us this serious and wise advice during His famous Sermon on the Mount. 

‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow (don’t worry about tomorrow): for the morrow shall take thought for (worry about) the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil (trouble) thereof.’ (Matt.6:33-34) 

 And if we’d only follow those words of wisdom from our High Priest, our Lord and Saviour, our lives would be so much better. It doesn’t mean we shouldn’t make some plans for the future, but today should bear most of our concentration, for we don’t know what will happen tomorrow, we might not even be around, and most likely it will have its own troubles. 

I like how the scholars put it: ‘When our priority is spiritual, God will take care of the material, for where God guides, He provides. We need not even worry about tomorrow, for sufficient unto the day is the evil (trouble) thereof. This means that each day has its own troubles and challenges to be responsibly handled, without worrying about the hypothetical problems that could arise tomorrow.’ 

So friends, it’s not like we don’t know what we’re supposed to do, but we either don’t believe it, are afraid to do it, or our faith just isn’t strong enough. But whatever the reason why we aren’t making God and today our primary focuses, let’s promise ourselves to change it nuh. 

Let’s go to the source of ALL help, our heavenly Father Himself and pour out our hearts, just like we did in the song above. Remember, He will NEVER turn away anyone who sincerely and humbly comes to Him for help! Much LOVE!

…Lord help me today…show me the way…one day at a time…only one day at a time…