Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 June 2019 Hebrews 13:5a.

Hebrews 13:5a.    ​I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.
 

Ah mih people, life is as changeable as the weather! Yuh remember yesterday I complained that it was going to be another ‘riney’ day? Well, lo and behold, by mid-day, it had turned into a perfectly beautiful warm and sunshiny day, lots of blue skies and cool breezes! Shorts and shirtsleeves weather! 

Well it’s the same way our lives can change rather abruptly, with no warnings at all. One moment you might be going through a perfect period of peace and calm, then all of a sudden calamity and adversity strike and you feel lost and out of your element. Or the opposite can happen; you’ll be going through a real rough time, and then for no apparent reason, the storm, the winds and the seas just suddenly become calm and you find yourself sailing along in perfect peace! 

Wow! That’s what we call life! Unpredictable, unreliable and unforeseeable! (smile) Consequently, too many of us struggle to maintain our equilibrium in the sudden and scary ups and down of life. But there is a most positive antidote, a positive and productive way to handle life…His name is Jesus! 

Yes friends, Jesus is the ONLY ONE who can help us successfully handle and navigate through the vicissitudes of life! Without Him, we are at the very mercy of life’s ever-changing circumstances. And that’s the gospel truth! But more on that later, because the workingman is just dying to bellow out his song this bright and sunshiny morning. (smile) So let’s give him a listen nuh. 

‘Woyoyo! At long last I can shout TGIF! Thank God is Friday! The weekend, the weekend, it’s here, alive and in blazing sunshine too! Let’s just hope it stays so yes. We’ve been disappointed too often in the last few weeks. And I’m all ready to get out there in mih short shots and tank top and grill a few steaks, dogs and burgers, while sipping some cold brewskis! It’s June now, a week into it, so is high time we could go out there and do that sorta thing without any worries about cold weather! 

Steups! Wuh happen, we living in the North Pole or something, that the weather so blooming cold and miserable? And if yuh check it out, up there right now they must be having long, hot bright days, enjoying a good summer already, while we down here having this expletive deleted kinda weather! 

But is not much we could really do about it nuh, so let me stop complaining and just have a positive mindset and get mih self ready to get out there this evening when ah get home and do mih own thing. Mama Yo! Thank God for Fridays and weekends yes, at long last, ah chance to get away from the slave driver and them work…and party hearty too! I’ll be in mih essence then!  

Yeh friends, the workingman surely tells it like he sees it. And generally speaking, nothing’s wrong with that, it’s just sometimes he goes overboard, or crosses over the line that we believers in Christ Jesus can’t afford to cross over, for fear of having the enemy infiltrate our already less than strong and mature souls. (smile) 

And there’s no shame in that, it’s just common sense to shy away from danger before it hits you…and believe me the enemy we’re fighting is pretty dangerous when we give him a chance. On his own, he’s harmless, a toothless tiger, but once we open the door, brother, he’s all over us with his evil self like white on rice! (smile) That’s why our Friday Chant is not as expansive and expressive as the workingman’s song. So let’s chant it now nuh, in full voice and strong sense of purpose. 

‘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.’ 

Yes brothers and sisters in Christ, ours is a dedicated life that requires some borders and fences so that we don’t cross over into enemy territory. But that’s the beauty of living for Jesus…He gives us the wherewithal to handle ALL that comes against us, as well as constantly being by our side. And furthermore, He’s made an everlasting and ever faithful promise: ‘I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.’ 

Wow! What an awesome promise! And we know He’ll keep it, because that’s the kind of Lord and Saviour He is. And it’s not like it’s something He just said the other day; He’s been saying it for ages now! Listen to how He said it to Joshua when He assigned him leadership of the Israelites after Moses’ death. ‘There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life: as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.’ (Josh.1:5) 

And we know that the Lord kept that promise to Joshua in spades! But even before that, the Lord had made the same promise to the Israelites through Moses, when He brought them out of bondage in Egypt, leading them towards the Promised Land. Hear this encouraging and reassuring part of Moses’ last speech to the Israelites: ‘Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.’ (Deut.31:6) 

So friends, that’s definitely not a new promise, and every time the Lord made it, He kept it, so why should it be any different now with us eh? No reason whatsoever! The Lord our God never changes, so His promises last for a lifetime. That’s why we need to embrace His Son, Jesus Christ RIGHT NOW, and gratefully and humbly accept all that’s He’s already done, as well as all He’s promised to do for us. 

That’s because there’s no one, or nothing else that can give us that kind of reliable, steady and steadfast life, through each and any situation, through calm and storm, through adversity and peace, like Jesus can! He is the ONE and ONLY ONE friends! So please, let’s be wise and come to Him in all sincerity nuh, and then hold on to Him for dear life, because He is indeed the Way, the Truth and the Life…as well as the Light! Much LOVE!

…to LOVE and LIVE for Jesus…Wow!…it’s the most wonderful thing…in God’s great universe…

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 12 February 2019 Psalm 107:29.

Psalm 107:29.   ​He maketh the storm a calm, so that the waves thereof are still.
 

‘When the storms of life rage all around me, I have no cause to fear, because I have Jesus, the storm-calmer walking beside me. And if He chooses not to calm the storms when I desire, He calms my fears, so that I can ride out the storms with a peaceful soul. Praise His Holy name!’ 

Yes friends, more stormy weather is forecasted for these parts today, but as we said above, that we believers can face any storm because we have the great storm-calmer Jesus Christ, living within us and working for us. So though we may be physically discombobulated, our souls stay calm and free, evermore praising His holy name. 

But nonetheless my brethren, this weather see-saw is ridiculous yes. And not only in terms of the weather itself, but more so of my having to put up with all of it. Brother! I promised the Duchess that we’re not spending a whole winter up here again, because the weather is just too crazy, and being locked up inside for long periods of time is definitely unhealthy for us old folks. (smile) 

And despite whatever ailments I have or doctor’s appointments, from next year we’ll spend some time out of this inhumane climate, getting the sea, salt, sand and sunshine we need to brighten our latter years. (smile) And since we’ve been talking about storms all morning, we might as well continue on the topic with some encouraging words from the Good Book. 

Listen to these wonderful words from Psalm 107 – God’s wonderful works to the children of men. ‘They that go down to the sea in ships, that do business in great waters; They see the works of the Lord, and his wonders in the deep. For he commandeth, and raiseth the stormy wind, which lifteth up the waves thereof. 

They mount up to the heaven, they go down again to the depths: their soul is melted because of trouble. They reel to and fro, and stagger like a drunken man, and are at their wit’s end (all their wisdom is swallowed up). Then they cry unto the Lord in their trouble, and he bringeth them out of their distresses. He maketh the storm a calm, so that the waves thereof are still. Then are they glad because they be quiet; so he bringeth them unto their desired haven.’ (Ps.107:23-30) 

Yeh friends, that is exactly how it is! I can tell you from personal experience about riding those stormy waves in a li’l boat out on Lake Ontario many years aback. I can personally attest to the mounting up to heaven on the big waves, then being dashed down in to the deep. I always used to read about the trembling, the shivering of the timbers, well that day I discovered what it really meant. 

When the boat dropped from the top of the high wave and landed splat on the bottom, you could feel everything just shake like an earthquake. And on board that day were drunken men, thankfully I wasn’t one of them, but they prayed, possibly like never before in their lives, and the Lord eventually brought us through to calm waters. 

So I know what the psalmist is talking about, and so do many of you, that’s why I’m amazed that we don’t do as he recommends: ‘Oh that men would praise (give thanks to) the Lord for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men! Let them exalt him also in the congregation of the people, and praise him in the assembly of the elders.’ (Ps.107:31-32) 

That is only common sense my people, if we agree that God is the Creator and Controller of this universe. But we look real foolish when we spout that info, then go against all that the Lord stands for! We ought to be praising and exalting Him, with all our hearts, minds, bodies and souls, because that is the major reason we were created in the first place! Not to doubt and ridicule and blaspheme His holy name! 

Now listen to how Isaiah puts it in the song of praise by the redeemed. ‘Therefore shall the strong people glorify thee, the city of the terrible (ruthless) nations shall fear thee. For thou hast been a strength to the poor, a strength to the needy in his distress, a refuge from the storm, a shadow from the heat, when the blast of the terrible ones is as a storm against the wall.’ (Is.25:3-4) 

Oh my people, we are the redeemed! That means we’re supposed to be strong and glorify the Lord who caused us to be redeemed through the sacrifice of His son Jesus Christ on the cross at Calvary! So why aren’t we doing better eh? Why are we allowing Satan and his evil cohorts to take over and rule our souls eh, when Jesus paid such a high price for us? 

And I guess the answer can only be found in the immortal words of Jesus, when the disciples in their fear and terror during a stormy ship crossing, awoke Jesus sleeping quietly in the back of the boat, ‘saying, Lord, save us, we perish. And he saith unto them, Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm. But the men marvelled, saying, What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him!’ (Matt.8:25-27) 

And that after being with Jesus for so long and seeing all the miracles He performed! But we’re doing the same thing today, so we can’t really judge them. Anyway friends, for those of us who are trying to be faithful and true, let’s go home today declaring (phew! wrong again) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the whole wide world know who and whose we are. 

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

And the next step is to go out and share that trusting friendship and awesome LOVE with the folks who don’t know or have it. Much LOVE!

…in the time of storm…ONLY Jesus can bring a sense of calm…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 29 January 2018 Psalm 107:29.

Psalm 107:29.    He maketh the storm a calm, so that the waves thereof are still.

Oh mih people, I know that this Monday morning as many of us are struggling to get up and go to work under difficult circumstances, we are also asking; ‘Wherefore art thou sweet Jesus?’ You can include me in that lot. (smile) That’s because we expect Jesus to solve our every problem without any suffering on our part, or at least a minor amount. 

But He never promised that there wouldn’t be rough times. In fact, He told us to expect them, even if it’s only because we believe in Him. What He did promise is that He would see us through the storms of life, hold our hands, and bring us out safely on the other side. 

So let’s not get all up in arms against our Lord and Saviour if we are experiencing trying times this morning. Instead let’s put all our confidence in Him, in His faithful promises. For if He gave up His sinless life for us, why wouldn’t He help us through our dark times eh? And to help boost our spirits, let’s declare our Monday Morning Battle Hymn with strong voice and nuff sincerity. 

As one 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!’ 

Oh friends, it never ceases to amaze me how that prayer can cause the adrenaline to flow and our spirits to be lifted! So let’s be wise and ride it out nuh, do our thing for Jesus, whatever it may be, and stay strong under His protection and guidance, for He is the ONLY One who can truly protect us from the storms of life. 

Hear this telling and truthful scripture from Psalm 107 – God’s wonderful works to the children of men – that includes our Bit. ‘They that go down to the sea in ships, that do business in great waters; These see the works of the Lord, and his wonders in the deep. 

For he commandeth, and raiseth the stormy wind, which lifteth up the waves thereof. They mount up to the heaven, they go down again to the depths: their soul is melted because of trouble. They reel to and fro, and stagger like a drunken man, and are at their wit’s end (all their wisdom is swallowed up). 

Then they cry unto the Lord in their trouble, and he bringeth them out of their distresses. He maketh the storm a calm, so that the waves thereof are still. Then are they glad because they be quiet: so he bringeth them unto their desired haven.’ (Ps.107:23-30) 

Yuh see friends, the seafarers knew exactly what the psalmist was talking about, because they experienced it all the time. And I too can testify to that scripture, as I got caught out on the stormy Lake Ontario some years ago, and believe me, it was indeed a frightening scene. 

Out in the middle of the lake in a relatively small boat, surrounded by four scared, drunken men. Only the skipper and I were sober, as the boat dangled up and down between the great waves. But obviously the Lord calmed the stormy waves, and I am still here to tell the story. 

I thought I had seen bad storms on the ocean, but that one on Lake Ontario took the cake. As I’ve said before, I’d read about the shivering of timbers on a boat in a storm, but that fateful day I experienced it in living colour. And let me tell you, it wasn’t one I’d like to experience again. 

And the best way to end today’s Bit is with this actual story of Jesus as he crossed the Sea of Galilee in a boat with His disciples. On the way over a violent storm arose, but Jesus didn’t budge, he remained asleep. However, the disciples were scared out of their minds and ‘came to him, and awoke him, saying, Lord, save us: we perish. 

And he saith unto them, why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm. But the men marvelled, saying, What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him!’ (Matthew 8:25-27) 

Oh my fellow believers, we shouldn’t have to ask that question because we ought to know whom Jesus is – The Son of Almighty God, who made the universe and all therein, therefore He has control over it all. Consequently, He can also quiet the storms in our lives, if we would just let Him. Much LOVE!

…let God be God…in your life…that’s the only wise way to live…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 January 2018 Isaiah 25:4.

Isaiah 25:4.   For thou hast been a strength to the poor, a strength to the needy in his distress, a refuge from the storm, a shadow from the heat, when the blast of the terrible ones is as a storm against the wall. 

Ah friends, we’re sailing on the good ship Sunday, towards the sanctuary of God, where we will fall on our knees and praise and worship Him, give Him innumerable thanks, exalt His holy name and glorify Him without ceasing! 

Wow! What a time we will have in the sanctuary as we fellowship with each other, encourage each other, hear God’s word and bury it deep in our hearts, and souls, and eventually leave the sanctuary fortified with His strength and confidence, able to withstand whatever comes against us. And please remember the immortal words of the psalmist; this is the day the Lord hath made, let us all rejoice and be glad in it! That’s both wisdom and common sense friends! 

And as always, we’ll open the proceedings with worship in sweet song. This morning we’ll sing a Christian Gospel tune titled ‘The Anchor Holds.’ It was originally written by a pastor, songwriter called Lawrence Chewning. Apparently the year of 1992 became known as the year of sorrows for him and his family. 

One sorrow after another hit them and finally Lawrence, depressed and discouraged, was left burnt out, so he took a six month sabbatical from his pastoring duties and during that time began playing the piano more, in an attempt to get closer to God. In this sorrowful time he read stuff about the long dark night of the soul, when it seems you just can’t find God anywhere, and also experienced that emptiness for a while. 

Then, one day, in his many hours of playing the piano, he discovered that he was writing a song, a song that was coming from deep down in his soul. It was so touching that it provided him with therapeutic help in his depression and discouragement. But the song was some ten minutes long. However, a couple of years later, he offered the song to his friend, Christian singer songwriter, Ray Boltz, who edited and recorded it and made it a hit. 

Ah friends, ‘The Anchor Holds’ is one of my favourite Gospel songs because I can testify to the truth of those immortal words. And if you’re a true believer, so too can you. So let’s offer it up through the sacrifice of our lips now nuh, with appropriate reverence and heartfelt sincerity. In glorious harmony: ‘I have journeyed Through the long dark night Out on the open sea By faith alone Sight unknown And yet His eyes were watching me (Chorus: The anchor holds Though the ship is battered The anchor holds Though the sails are torn) 

I have fallen on my knees As I faced the raging seas The anchor holds In spite of the storm I’ve had visions I’ve had dreams I’ve even held them in my hand But I never knew They would slip right through Like they were only grains of sand (Chorus) I have been young But I am older now And there has been beauty these eyes have seen But it was in the night Through the storms of my life Oh that’s where God proved His LOVE to me. 

(Chorus: The anchor holds Though the ship is battered The anchor holds Though the sails are torn. Ohhh yes, The anchor holds Though the ship is battered The anchor holds Though the sails are torn).’ 

Ah mih people what words of truth and encouragement! And it’s only when we are going through a stormy period in life that we can write such heartfelt words. You’ll notice too, that it’s during the storm that God proves His wonderful and unconditional LOVE to us, more so than when the seas are calm and quiet. 

Because that’s when we need Him the most, when we discover that our efforts are too puny to withstand the storm that’s bruising and battering us. And only when we take refuge in His safe harbour, when we allow Him to anchor our hearts and souls in the sheltered bay that’s His awesome LOVE and grace that we truly find rest and rejuvenation for our troubled, storm-filled lives. 

Oh what a wonderful God is our God! No wonder in Isaiah’s song of praise by the redeemed the survivors of the Great Tribulation exalt the Lord, lift their voices in praise to God for His protection. ‘O Lord, thou art my God: I will exalt thee, I will praise thy name; for thou hast done wonderful things; thy counsels of old are faithfulness and truth. For thou hast made of a city an heap (a ruin); of a defensed (fortified) city a ruin: a palace of strangers to be no city; it shall never be built (rebuilt). 

Therefore shall the strong people glorify thee, the city of the terrible (ruthless) nations shall fear thee. For thou hast been a strength to the poor, a strength to the needy in his distress, a refuge from the storm, a shadow from the heat, when the blast of the terrible ones is as a storm against the wall.’ (Is.25:1-4) 

Yeh friends, our God runs things; He controls it all. So in your time of need, who are you going to call eh, who are you going to run to for refuge? Almighty God, if you are wise! As the old reggae song says, ‘You’ll run to the rock for rescue, but there will be no rock.’ But if you run to the Creator of the universe, you’ll find Him ready, willing and able to offer help. 

As Isaiah prophesies about Jerusalem’s glorious future. ‘And there shall be a tabernacle for a shadow (shade) in the daytime from the heat, and for a place of refuge, and for a covert (shelter) from the storm and from rain.’ (Is.4:6) 

Oh friends, there’s no better place to hunker down in stormy times than under the wings of our heavenly Father, just like chicks hide under the mother hen’s wings when it rains, for under there we are guaranteed safe passage through the storms of life. Much LOVE!

…through the heartache…through the storm…take my hand precious Lord…lead me on…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 April 2017 Psalm 97:10.

Psalm 97:10.   Ye that LOVE the Lord, hate evil: he preserveth the souls of his saints; he delivereth them out of the hand of the wicked.

Oh mih people, it’s Wednesday! So jump and sing and shout! Shout praise and thanks to Almighty God for giving us one more blessed day on His great planet earth! Wow! We’re alive and kicking for another big day! Isn’t our God wonderful? He surely is! 

But don’t forget that we’ve been allowed to see today not only to enjoy it, but also to do whatever work or plan our heavenly Father has in mind for us, for there’s ALWAYS something our God wants to do through us. 

So let’s find out today’s task, then do it diligently, and also with excellence, because that’s the hallmark of a true follower of Christ; diligent excellence! (smile) 

Now here’s an interesting poem from our One Year Book of Bible Promises, with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin, it’s titled ‘My Personal Rainbow.’ 

Please pray with me: ‘Lord, right now I struggle with clutching fear. Waves of agony pour over me As I face the darkest moments In my life’s history. But my conviction still stands firm: You are my God! 

And though I cannot predict my future Or even tomorrow I am sustained by the reminder That the longest storm the world has ever known… And the worst… Came to an end one clear-sky morning. It was true for Noah It will be true for me. Though as yet I see no deliverance I watch I wait I expect My personal rainbow.’ 

Yeh friends, each of us will have our own personal rainbow if we continue to have such strong and far-reaching faith! 

I know that many of us are going through some very stormy times right now, but the answer to it all is to just put those problems in God’s hands, allow Him to be your pilot through the storm, and you will be guaranteed a safe haven eventually. 

Now it won’t necessarily be easy, but with God as your pilot, NO ONE, or NOTHING can defeat you! We just have to stay in faith, standing strong and walking tall for Jesus! Remember all the other times that God has bailed us out of trouble and sincerely declare that if He could do it then, He can also do it now! 

And very appropriately, the Bible promise for that poem is one we know and dearly LOVE, Bruh Paul’s admonition to the Roman church: ‘And we know that all things work together for good to them that LOVE God, to them who are called according to his purpose. (Rom.8:28)  Glory to God! 

And if we believe that, then there should be no cause for worry. For concern, yes, but not worry, for everything is in the mighty hand of our omnipotent, omniscient and omni-present God! Glory Hallelujah! Give Him the praise and thanks that He so assuredly deserves my people! 

Now let’s turn to our wonderful Bit for the last time; a Bit that also lifts us up and warms the cockles of our hearts because of our God’s great promises contained therein. ‘Ye that LOVE the Lord, hate evil: he preserveth the souls of his saints; he delivereth them out of the hand of the wicked.’ And that’s the immortal truth my brethren! 

And we’ll finish this series of messages with some corroborating scripture on the last part of our Bit: ‘he delivereth them out of the hand of the wicked.’ Listen to Bruh David tell it like it is from Psalm 37 – The true state of the wicked. 

‘The steps of a good man are ordered (established) by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the Lord upholdeth him with his hand. I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread. 

He is ever merciful (merciful all the day), and lendedth: and his seed (descendants) are blessed. Depart from evil, and do good; and dwell for evermore. For the Lord LOVETH judgement (justice), and forsaketh not his saints; they are preserved for ever: but the seed of the wicked shall be cut off.’ (Ps.37:23-28) 

Ah friends, what powerful and faithful promises from our great God! And remember that Bruh David wasn’t talking from hearsay nuh, but from personal experience, which means that all he’s saying is also possible in our lives if we are obedient to God’s will. 

And to add more wood to the already blazing fire, (smile) hear how he ends the psalm. ‘But the transgressors shall be destroyed together: the end of the wicked shall be cut off. But the salvation of the righteous is of the Lord: he is their strength in the time of trouble. And the Lord shall help them, and deliver them from the wicked, and save them, because they trust in him.’ (Ps.37:38-40) 

Yes mih breddren, more words of indisputable, gospel and immortal truth! And if you believe it, then please declare with me our Wednesday Wail which celebrates it all. 

‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! I am halfway home. 

My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

Now let’s keep our hands fixed on that plough, while looking straight ahead to that glorious future with Jesus! Much LOVE!

…faithfully LOVING and trusting God…should be as easy as pumpkin pie…given all His faithful promises…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 13 March 2017 Psalm 107:29.

Psalm 107:29.   He maketh the storm a calm, so that the waves thereof are still.

And then it was Monday; that dreaded day of the workingman! But as we keep saying friends, if you want to eat, then you have to work. And if you want to work without too many problems, then you have to live a decent lifestyle. 

You can’t expect to be carnal and licentious and lustful all weekend, then get up bright and early and perky on Monday morning and head out. But many of us still do it, somehow expecting to make the same mistake and see an improved result. Sorry friends, it just doesn’t happen that way. 

But we have some help for you; it’s called our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. It wakes you up, rejuvenates you, and gets you ready to hit the road, refreshed and energetic. So let’s sing it now nuh, with plenty enthusiasm and verve and chutzpah and all those other good things which enhance a song. 

In strong voice and perfect harmony: ‘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!’ 

Now that was good friends; a li’l bit raucous and rough, but certainly not lacking in enthusiasm! And most importantly, it brought a chuckle to Jesus, our choirmaster’s spirit. He appreciated the energy we put into it. So now we’re ready to go out and do battle with the infidel in Jesus’ name, because it’s only in His name are we ever going to be victorious! 

And today my brethren, we have a very interesting, truthful and awesome Bit, but before we get to it, let’s hear it in context. It comes from Psalm 107 – God’s wonderful works to the children of men. 

The psalmist writes: They that go down to the sea in ships, that do business in the great waters; These see the works of the Lord, and his wonders in the deep. For he commandeth, and raiseth the stormy wind, which lifteth up the waves thereof. They mount up to the heaven, they go down again to the depths: their soul is melted because of trouble. 

They reel to and fro, and stagger like a drunken man, and are at their wit’s end. Then they cry unto the Lord in their trouble, and he bringeth them out of their distresses. He maketh the storm a calm, so that the waves thereof are still. Then they are glad because they be quiet; so he bringeth them unto their desired heaven.’ (Ps.107:23-30) 

Oh friends, what an omnipotent but merciful and magnanimous God we serve and worship! He has power to cause storms both on the seas and also in our lives, but He also has the awesome power to still, to calm those same raging storms! 

The important thing to note is that when the storms rage around us, and we stagger and reel like drunks, we need to call out to Him for help and mercy. And you’ll notice that’s exactly what we’ve done in our opening this morning. 

We’re faced by a storm of not wanting to get up to go to work, but we know we have to, so we cried out to Him in our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, and He mercifully gave us the grace and strength to go out and do His will. How awesome is that eh my people? 

There’s NO OTHER GOD LIKE OURS! In fact our GOD, IS THE ONLY GOD THERE IS!  Matter fix! (smile) 

So please, let’s not allow the storms, the trials and tribulations of life to get us down, or rather keep us down, for we have the most powerful Being in the universe as our God to turn to, and He has faithfully promised never to leave nor forsake us, once we stay under the protection and safety of His mighty wings. 

And if you don’t believe me, listen to Ethan the Ezrahite, as he talks about God’s sure promises to David from Psalm 89. ‘O Lord God of hosts, who is a strong Lord like unto thee? or to thy faithfulness round about thee? Thou rulest the raging of the sea: when the waves thereof arise, thou stillest them.’ (Ps.89:8-9) 

Yes my brethren, the universe is the Lord’s and all therein! Let us never forget that and like true and wise believers, act accordingly during the storms of life that we all must face. Much LOVE!

…when storms rage…let Jesus take the helm…for He is the best sailor there is…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 October 2016 Isaiah 53:7.

Isaiah 53:7.   He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought (was led) as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth. 

Aye mih people, is Sunday, that special day of praise, worship and fellowship, where we raise our hearts and voices to high heaven and glorify our most wonderful God Jehovah! 

And we’re going to start out the right way, with some praise and worship. That’s to soften us up, reduce the fear, tension, anger, resentment, whatever is negative in our stone cold hearts, and thus make us more receptive and amenable to receiving the Word. Remember, hearing of the word is very important in our Christian faith. 

As Bruh Paul told the church at Rome. ‘How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? …So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.’ (Rom.10:14, 17) 

Yes friends, the oral communication of the gospel of Christ is essential in a believer’s life, and there’s nothing I enjoy more than hearing the word preached. 

Anyway, enough talk, we suppose to be offering up sacrifices of thanks and praise with our mouths. So let’s do that nuh, because there’s nothing nicer than getting into some good praise and worship before you hear the word. 

So let’s raise up a storm in the Lord’s house, show Him that we are truly His beloved children, and we sincerely LOVE Him with all of our hearts, minds, bodies and souls. Please sing with me, this wonderful song of faith, ‘The anchor holds.’ 

As one heavenly choir now: ‘I have journeyed through the long dark night, Out on the open sea, by faith alone, Sight unknown; and yet his eyes were watching me. The anchor holds, Though the ship’s been battered. The anchor holds, Though the sails are torn. I have fallen on my knees as I face the raging seas. The anchor holds in spite of the storm. 

I’ve had visions, I’ve had dreams; I’ve even held them in my hand. But I never knew they would slip right through, Like they were only grains of sand. The anchor holds, Though the ship’s been battered. The anchor holds, Though the sails are torn. 

I have fallen on my knees as I face the raging seas. The anchor holds in spite of the storm. I have been young but I’m older now. And there has been beauty these eyes have seen. But it was in the night, through the storms of my life, Oh, that’s where God proved His LOVE for me. 

The anchor holds, Though the ship’s been battered.  The anchor holds, Though the sails are torn. I have fallen on my knees as I face the raging seas. The anchor holds in spite of the storm. I have fallen on my knees as I face the raging seas. The anchor holds in spite of the storm.’ 

Oh my people, my people, truer words have never been spoken! Our omnipotent God, our great anchor, holds us together and keeps us from floundering, from being thrown on the rocky shores, even in the most catastrophic of life’s storms! 

And I like the line where the songwriter declares that it was in the night of the storms of life when God proved His LOVE for Him. And isn’t that the indisputable truth friends? It’s usually in our nights of misery, of fear, of loneliness and of despair, that our wonderful God shows how much He truly LOVES and cares for us, by standing faithful and strong alongside us and bringing us safely through! 

Oh glory to God my people! And why wouldn’t He eh, after sending His beloved Son, Jesus Christ to die for us, suffering such agony, shame and rejection, but forever standing strong in His God-given task as expressed in our Bit. ‘He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought (was led) as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.’ 

What stoicism and strength of purpose my faithful brethren! Now let’s hear the word that precedes our Bit, from Isaiah’s great prophecy, re the suffering servant, Jesus Christ. Hope our hearts are soft enough to joyfully receive it. 

‘Who hath believed our report? And to whom is the arm (power) of the Lord revealed? For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no (stately) form nor comeliness (splendour); and when we shall see him, there is no beauty (elegance) that we should desire him. 

He is despised and rejected of (forsaken by) men; a man of sorrows (great pains), and acquainted with grief (sickness, injuries): and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he hath borne our griefs (sickness), and carried our sorrows (pains): yet we did esteem (reckon) him stricken, smitten of (struck down by) God, and afflicted. 

But he was wounded (pierced through) for our transgressions, he was bruised (crushed) for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.’ (Is;53:1-6) 

Yes friends, that’s the scripture lesson for this Sunday morning, and I do hope that it struck a tender and most grateful note in our hearts, as we heard the of the ‘sufferation’ that our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ went through for us, so that we could be reconciled to Almighty God and don’t end up in dreaded Hades forevermore with the evil one, Lucifer. 

Please, let’s ponder the goodness of our magnificent and magnanimous God today, so that we can find the strength and wherewithal to handle the storms of life that we all experience, for that is the wisdom of heaven. Much LOVE!

…without the anchor that’s God in our lives…we will certainly be dashed to pieces… on the dreadful and unforgiving rocks of sin…

 

 

 

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