Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 July 2021 Galatians 5:16.

Galatians 5:16.     This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.

And now it’s Thursday…getting close to the end of July, and the end of summer too…what li’l true summer weather we’ve had so far. Some people claim that the days of this pandemic are moving too slowly, but I feel they are moving too fast! Look, we just celebrated Canada Day and the Fourth of July, and yet the month is almost finished. And everybody else seems so busy with stuff to do…except me. (smile) 

Oh, I have lots of things I would like to do, but, for whatever reason, I’m just not doing as much as I would like to do. I don’t know if I simply want to do too much, or that laziness and procrastination are holding sway over my life. Most likely though, it’s a combination of all three. That brings to mind Bruh Paul’s predicament that he wrote about to the Roman church. ‘For that which I do I allow not (don’t understand): for what I would (want to do), that I do not; but what I hate, that I do.’ (Rom. 7:15) 

Ah friends, I’m sure that many of us have that same problem, especially in these pandemic times, these unforeseen or unexpected times, when the world seems to be falling apart, going to hell in a hand basket. And I know that Bruh Paul blames it mostly on sin. ‘If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law (I agree) that it is good. Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.’ (Rom. 7:16-17) And yes my brethren, sin does play a large part in our lives, but we can’t blame everything on it, or Satan, as so many of us like to do. 

Listen as Bruh Paul talks to the Galatians, re walking in the Spirit. ‘This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.’ (Gal. 5:16) The Lord gave us the Holy Spirit to lead and guide us in the way we should walk. Therefore, it is our responsibility to follow it. We can’t be making excuses and blaming other things and people for our poor choices, as we like to do. 

Hear the scholars’ explanation of that verse. ‘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 (vs. 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).’ 

I could not explain it any better my people. But for good measure, I am going to spoon feed us with those couple of verses mentioned in the explanation above, because I know most of us won’t bother to look them up, although we don’t know them. (smile) And the first one that deals with God sending His Spirit into the believer’s heart says: ‘And because we are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.’ (Gal. 4:6) 

That’s because ‘Every child of God was divinely given the Holy Spirit the moment he was adopted by God. Abba is an Aramaic domestic term by which the father was called in the affectionate intimacy of the family. It corresponds to our “daddy” or “papa.” The Spirit gives us an awareness that God is our Father.’ 

And the next verse to which they refer is Gal. 5:5, which says: ‘For we through the Spirit (eagerly) wait for the hope of righteousness by faith.’ And ‘Through the Spirit means that by the Holy Spirit’s help, which is obtained by faith, believers wait for the hope of righteousness, that is live the Christian life awaiting the consummation of their salvation.’ 

And now that we understand it all, (smile) let’s move back to Bruh Paul’s writing on walking in the Spirit. ‘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, 5:17) 

And 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.’ 

Therefore, Bruh Paul continues: ‘But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law.’ (Gal. 5:18) And the scholars have this to say about that. (smile) ‘5:18. Verse 17 may leave the impression of a believer being caught in a hopeless tug-of-war between the flesh and the Spirit. This is not the case. The Christian is led of (by) the Spirit, when yielding to Him, to turn away from the flesh’s evil yearnings, thus putting sin out of his daily life. The verb “led” indicates voluntary submission; the believer decides by whom he will be led – either by his flesh or by the Spirit. The Spirit-led person is not under the law. The Christian does not need the restraints of the law because his moral life is governed by the Spirit.’ 

Mamacita! That tells us like it is my fellow saints in Christ! It’s time to stop blaming everything and everybody else for our problems and begin looking at the real heart of the problem – ourselves. For we have all the tools necessary to live a decent Christian life, we just have to put our hands to the plough and stick to the Lord’s plan for our lives. And we can’t doubt our God’s goodness, either, for not only has He given us the Holy Spirit to lead and guide us, but also all these wonderful tools that we call our Thursday Blessings to do His earthly work. So let’s go home reminding ourselves of them now nuh. 

As one strong voice. ‘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 every day! Amen!’ 

Now there’s no more we can ask for. It’s our bounden duty to now go out and share those blessings just as generously with others, as the Lord shared them with us. Much LOVE!

…time for Christians to stop playing the blame game…and take responsibility for their own actions…                                                                                               

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8            

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 July 2021 1 Thessalonians 6:17.

1 Thessalonians 6:17.     Pray without ceasing.

It’s Thursday…the first day of July! That means it’s Canada Day! Our Independence Day! And celebrations are in order. Unfortunately though, the problems of the pandemic and racial problems, plus the recent discoveries of several unmarked, unknown burial sites of Indigenous children has marred the celebratory attitude. Many are calling for a boycott of the celebrations, but that won’t change the past, and we all know that every country in the world has some very unpleasant skeletons from terrible atrocities hidden in its closet, that’s just the nature of nation building followed by mankind down through the ages. 

Canada is still one of the best countries in the world, and if we try to tear down all the other good things we’ve built, there will be no going forward, just backward. We need to temper the harshness with some wisdom and common sense, using education and reconciliation and truth to handle this unpleasant news. 

So, despite the heaviness that’s currently sitting on the conscience of our country, I’m wishing us a Happy Canada Day! Celebrate with a modicum of reservation, appreciating the hurt that many others are experiencing today. Right now, our world is such an angry and negative place with so little positivity and compassion that we don’t need any more to drag it further down into the mire. And while looking through our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin, I came upon this poem which I believe typifies our lives, and thus the current state of our world. It’s rather appropriately titled ‘The Reason.’ 

Please pray with me. ‘God, why am I so often defeated? Why am I so full of dread and anxiety? Why am I so lamentably weak – So perilously susceptible to temptation? Why am I often inhospitable So intolerant of the needs of others? Why am I so undisciplined So restless and dissatisfied? Why do I protest so violently? Above all. God Why do I so frequently lose The sense of Your shining Presence? God, why? Why? — Because you pray so little.’ 

And isn’t that an awesomely accurate portrait of so many of us, and consequently our world in these trying times, in these last days? It certainly is! There is indeed much more negativity than LOVE and compassion! The prince of darkness has our world in the palm of His hand and is trying to squeeze the very life blood out of it. And one of the reasons why that’s possible is because we supposed believers in Jesus Christ don’t pray enough, therefore we are not divinely inspired enough to get up and fight, to beat back the enemy. 

So what’s the answer eh? Obviously, we have to begin by praying more, by sincerely seeking Jesus more, giving Him a bigger space and place in our lives than we’re currently doing. Remember, He’s the answer to ALL our prayers, the calm in the storm, our refuge and fortress, and all those other good things! But if we don’t communicate with him, pray and acknowledge His power and presence, we won’t be able to handle the enemy who’s so intent on coming against us. And the Bible verse that’s used as the promise for our poem are the simple but very powerful words of Bruh Paul to the Thessalonians. ‘Pray without ceasing.’ (1 Thess. 5:17) 

It could not be any simpler or clearer than that my fellow saints in Christ! Prayer is the ultimate means of communication with our heavenly Father, and just as we don’t get much from our earthly fathers if we don’t talk or communicate with them, likewise, lack of communication with God, does little or nothing for us. Bruh Paul said it thus to the Ephesians, when he told them about putting on the armour of God to fight the enemy. ‘Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.’ (Eph. 6:18) 

Yes friends, even with God’s powerful armour encasing our souls, prayer is still necessary to make it all work. And if you still don’t believe that prayer is absolutely necessary, then listen to these words of Jesus as He rebukes His inner circle in the Garden of Gethsemane when He, Himself went to pray at the most anguished time of His earthly life, the night before His crucifixion. They were supposed to be watching with him, but had fallen asleep. ‘He saith unto Peter, What, could ye not watch with me one hour? Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.’ (Matt. 26: 40-41) 

And we know that’s the gospel truth friends! Our flesh is by nature weak and sinful, so we need the power of the Spirit, the grace of God to be truly strong. Now one last word from Jesus on the subject of prayer. Luke opens chapter 18 with these telling words. ‘And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint (lose heart).’ (Luke 18:1) He could not be more definitive than that my brethren! And we all know that prayer was Jesus’ most powerful passion. As Mark immortalizes it in his gospel. ‘And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed.’ (Mark 1:35) 

So friends, if the Son of God found it necessary to pray often, to have close communication with His heavenly Father, why would we, mere mortals, finite creations, not have the same expectation and desire eh? I’ll leave that question for each of us to answer in our own way and time. (smile) In the meanwhile, for those of us who are sincerely trying to make a difference, let’s go home declaring (yeahhh!!) our Thursday Blessings, that the Lord has so generously bestowed on us to do His earthly work. 

Altogether now: ‘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 every day! Amen!’  

Now it’s time for us to go out and share those blessings just as generously with those we meet on our earthly journey. Much LOVE!

…prayer…the most important tool…in a Christian’s tool kit…                                                                                    

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8                   

Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 June 2021 Luke 10:41.

Luke 10:41.     Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful (worried) and troubled about many things:

Praise the Lord my people! He’s given us another brand new day to enjoy! One with everything that’s new and shiny, like He always does! So let’s be glad and rejoice in it nuh, like we ought to. Oh, I know some of us are going to say, ‘I’m too busy to enjoy this day yes! Too many things to do, people to see and places to go!’ But yuh know what, I have a good remedy for that busyness; this poem from our One Year Book of Bible promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin. It’s titled, most appropriately ‘Busy Day.’ 

So please pray with me: ‘Lord, this is one of the days I must ask you to preserve my sanity In the midst of turmoil. I’m so pressed by commitments – Plus a thousand trivial tasks – That I can scarcely see over my head. So I plead for enough wisdom To sort my priorities carefully. Regardless of my frenzied schedule May I keep my sense of humour And even enjoy a chuckle or two. 

Calm my quivering nerves With mental flashes from Your Word. Help me to maintain At least a semblance Of Mary – Martha balance. And tonight when we’re together again Should my husband confront me with ‘What have you been doing today?’ May my answer be genuine and gentle: ‘Part of the time, darling I’ve thanked God for you.’ 

Now isn’t that a beautiful prayer my people? It surely is! And it does not apply to women only but to all genders, since nowadays we seem to have more than the two the Lord created. But seriously though friends, our lives today can get so hectic and busy that ofttimes we don’t know whether we’re coming or going. And it’s nice, and also wise, to ask the Father to help us set some priorities in our lives, so that we don’t get too overwhelmed and feel like we are in over our heads. Of course, He must always be our number ONE priority, and there’s no one better to help us set good and reachable goals. 

And the Bible verse for our poem today comes from the story of Martha and Mary, the sisters of Lazarus, Jesus’ friend. One day, it happened that Jesus visited their house in the village of Bethany, and while Martha was busying preparing a meal for Him, Mary sat at Jesus’ feet listening to Him expound on whatever He was expounding on. (smile) And the Good Book tells us: ‘But Martha was cumbered about (distracted with) much serving, and came to him, and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me.’ (Luke 10:40) 

And isn’t that the way it often is with us? We feel like we’re doing all the work, while others who should be helping, are relaxing and enjoying what we can’t enjoy. So Martha felt burdened by all the work with no help from her sister and complained to Jesus. But before we hear Jesus’ answer, here is an interesting explanation from the scholars on that particular verse. ‘10:40. Cumbered means that Martha was distracted by matters that, in light of Jesus’ visit, should have been secondary.’ 

Now, if we look back at our own behaviour, I’m sure that we will find times when we have also become distracted by things that should have been secondary to visits by our friends and families, which meant we did not get to enjoy them as much as should have. Yes, we always seem to put the actual entertaining before the enjoyment of the company. Anyway, to Martha’s question: ‘Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful (worried) and troubled about many things: But one thing is needful; and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.’ (Luke 10:41-42) 

Ah friends, we all know the story, and I’m sure Marth did not expect Jesus to rebuke her, but to tell Mary to get up and help her. But we don’t always get the answers we seek to the questions we ask. And no doubt Martha was much disappointed. Now here are some explanations from the scholars on those verses. ‘10:41. The repetition of her name (Martha, Martha) denotes a gentle and sympathetic reply. Careful (see 1 Cor. 7:32-35) often indicates a this-worldly, unbelieving attitude that hinders proper attention to the things of God; that is, to be unduly concerned about secondary matters.’ 

No doubt that also happens to us in this busy and crazy world we live in. Now to the next verse. ‘10:42. One thing: This can be explained in two ways here. Jesus may be saying that only one simple dish is required for the meal; Martha can handle the preparations without Mary’s help. In this case Martha is being primarily rebuked. Or Jesus may by one thing refer to the spiritual nourishment craved by Mary. In this case Jesus is implying that Martha, too, should leave her housework for a time and concentrate on the more urgent matter.’ 

And I like the idea of two possible explanations to Jesus words, because all I’ve ever heard is Jesus rebuking Martha for not being spiritual like Mary, and thus she is ‘remembered for her impatience and excessive concern for mundane matters, whereas Mary is remembered for her spiritual desire and discernment.’ Sometimes I think we give Martha a bad rap for being too worldly, and Mary too many pips for spirituality. (smile) 

Anyway friends, the lesson for us to learn today is that spirituality, or the things of God, ought to take first place in our lives. As Bruh David so rightly says in Psalm 27 – The Lord is my light and my salvation. ‘One thing have I desired of the Lord, that I will seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty (delightfulness) of the Lord, and to inquire in his temple.’ (Ps. 27:4) Oh my fellow saints in Christ, we can never go wrong with such a God-inspired attitude! And in these perilous and troubled times that is exactly the kind of attitude we need to see us through them successfully. 

Now let’s go home declaring (steups!) our Thursday Blessings which the Lord has generously poured out on us to do His work down here on earth. In strong voice with sincere hearts. ‘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 every day! Amen!’  

And seeing that we’ve been so generously gifted, our duty now is to go out and share those blessings just as generously with others, so that they too may come to know Christ and be also blessed! Much LOVE!

…one can ONLY be godly in an ungodly world…when God is Number One in your life…                                                                         

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8         

Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 January 2021 John 15:5b.

John 15:5b.     ​for without me ye can do nothing.

And then it was Saturday; the day for rest and laziness! (smile) Ah friends, it’s another good day in the life! And though life is not always the best it can be, we’re certain that the worst day with Christ, is better than the best day without Him! Oh glory be! 

That’s how important He is to us! Give Him thanks and praise my people, for without Him, we’d be in an even worse bind than we’re in now, and it’s only through Him that we can see a light shining in the darkness and a hope for a blessed tomorrow! Bless His holy name! 

And all God’s children said a loud, proud and grateful ‘Amen!’ Yes friends, as our great God proclaims, so let it be! 

And again, this past week I have received no quotes from our friend Anselm, so I can’t challenge my mind to come up with reasons and answers to his declarations. (smile) I have no idea why, but please, let’s pray that all is well with him. 

But not to worry, I still have some wonderful info for us, this time from Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H Schuller) from His Hour of Power Devotional. 

Oh mih people today we’re talking about that wonderful but ever so difficult to achieve word termed ‘Success.’ Yes, we all want it, so bad that some of us will even kill or die for it, while others refuse to put in the effort that success calls for…yet we want, and even crave it. 

And we not talking about what the world calls success, but what God considers success. And they are two radically different things, although they can both include some of the same parameters. But here are some ideas from Gramps Schuller about that marvellous thing called success. 

‘Success? It does not happen without total aliveness generated only by a revitalized imagination.’ Yes friends, as most other things, success begins in our minds! We first have to think the thoughts with a refreshed mind, one that is set on achieving a worthwhile goal. 

And then we have to keep our minds set on it, focused on the desired end, while we put in the necessary effort to make it all come true. No, it’s not always easy, but with faith, trust, and God’s divine help, we can achieve whatever we want to, once it’s within His will. 

And that’s one of the important things for believers; whatever we want to achieve must be within God’s will, or plan for our lives. And Gramps Schuller even offers us ‘A Prayer for Success.’ 

Please pray with me: ‘As I become a success with your help, Lord, let me never forget that what I am is more important than what I do. Faith stimulates success. Hope sustains success. LOVE sanctifies success. So I cannot and I dare not succeed without your power, peace, and pressure in my life, Jesus Christ. Amen.’ 

Yes precious people of Christ, only with Him churning mightily in us, can we ever hope to be truly successful. Oh, we can sell our souls to Beelzebub and achieve what the world terms success, but it won’t be as sweet and lasting as that acquired through the auspices of Almighty God. That’s for certain sure! 

And as an epilogue to his prayer for success, Gramps Schuller says: ‘Be open. Be humble. Correctable. Educable. Then you will hear God’s voice. You will see God’s plan. Grab onto it, give it all you’ve got, and you will inherit the earth!’ 

Wow! That’s the awesome truth friends, and the one true way to true success! God must be in our plans and lives for us to achieve worthwhile success! And it’s not me saying that, but the Good Book. Remember these awesome words of Jesus where He quite clearly spells it all out for us. 

‘Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. I am the vine, ye are the branches. He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.’ (John 15:4-5) 

Oh fellow saints of Christ, it couldn’t be any clearer than that! And don’t you just LOVE it that our Leader, our Lord and Saviour doesn’t mince words, doesn’t engage in spin and double-speak, but tells it exactly like it is, and if you don’t like it, then tough tits! (smile) 

I wish most of our other leaders in today’s world would be so open, even some of our church leaders, who have unfortunately adopted the speaking habits of the world. And Bruh Paul, who didn’t mince words either, (smile) said the same thing to the Corinthians. 

‘And such trust have we through Christ to God-ward: Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think anything as of ourselves: but our sufficiency is of God; Who also hath made us able (sufficient) ministers of the new testament (covenant); not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.’ (2 Cor. 3:4-6) 

Yes my brethren, without Christ in us we are so insufficient it isn’t funny. That’s why Bruh Paul explained his defection from the old tenets of Judaism, from the externalized Mosaic Law, to the internalized covenant with Jesus. 

The law did bring men to the end of themselves, but with condemnation, while the New Covenant of Christ did not condemn, only convict unto repentance and salvation. So what yuh say we gladly and tightly embrace that New Covenant to the very end eh, so that we can have life, eternal life? (smile) 

And we’ll end with some final words from Gramps Schuller on that most important, but oh so hard to achieve quality, success. ‘Success is never-ending and failure is never final to that person who knows how to revitalize and renew the God-given powers of creative imagination.’ And that’s the indisputable truth! 

So let’s NEVER give up on God, or on ourselves nuh, and keep renewing our creative imaginations by reading and studying His word, praying and being obedient to His will. That’s the way to true success! Much LOVE!

…stop trying…and you’re a failure…never quit…and you can be a success… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 January 2021 Psalm 119:75.

Psalm 119:75.     ​I know, O Lord, that thy judgements are right (righteous), and that thou in faithfulness hast afflicted me.

Brother! I thought that 2020 went fast, but like this new year planning on going even faster! Is already Thursday the 7th, and the year just started. (smile) Just wish our calamities were going away as quickly. But what to do eh? We brought most of them on ourselves, and we’re not behaving in a manner that will encourage them to leave as quickly as they came. 

What a blessing to have Jesus on our side! The Good Book plainly and truthfully states it: ‘I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.’ (Phil. 4:13) That means, with His help, His awesome grace, mercy and strength, we can handle anything that comes against us, even if it is of our making. And furthermore, we’re also told: ‘But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory through Christ Jesus.’ (Phil. 4:19) 

Yes mih bredrin, if Christ will strengthen me and cause the Lord to provide all my needs, who or what else do I need eh? NOTHING, or NOBODY! For Christ is sufficient in and of Himself! That’s why He instructed us to ‘seek first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt. 6:34) 

Oh friends, when we put Jesus Christ first and foremost in our lives, He will provide all that we need to live an abundant life. And that doesn’t necessarily mean rich in personal possessions, but certainly rich in spiritual things, maturity in spirituality, a good example of Christian living. So I don’t understand how so many of us refuse to follow Jesus, or only give Him lip-service and are not truly faithful to and in sync with Him. 

 I’m guessing that’s partly because living for Jesus is not easy. As His ambassadors, His earthly representatives, He expects a lot of us. He expects us to grow tremendously and shine brightly on His behalf, and that is ofttimes a difficult row to hoe. But as the ole people would say, ‘no pain, no gain.’ And that’s certainly highlighted in this poem from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin. It’s appropriately titled ‘The Pain of Growth.’ 

So please pray with me. ‘O God Growth is a painful process. I frankly confess I am a coward about pain. I don’t like it, Lord I never pray for it Or get excited over it. In fact, I often resist it: The pain of emotional trauma So overwhelming So baffling and crushing. The deep-cutting pain Of a broken relationship. Physical pain that goes on and on Until my entire body screams. The pain of cruel cutting words. The pain of loneliness, rejection Or financial ruin. The pain of being misunderstood. 

Lord, the very thought of pain Frightens and unnerves me. Yet it is true – Again and again it is true: My greatest spiritual growth Has come through pain. Through heartache and anguish. And very often in my suffering when I sadly thought You were doing absolutely nothing At that very moment You were doing more within me Than I ever dreamed or hoped.’ 

And that calls for a big ‘AMEN!’ my brethren. For it’s definitely through pain and somewhat uncomfortable circumstances that the Lord grows and matures us in His economy. And there’s nothing in that list of painful things above that Jesus never suffered on our behalf during His earthly sojourn. That’s why He can empathize with our suffering now. 

That’s why the author of Hebrews could confidently proclaim: ‘Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession (confession of faith). For we have not a high priest which cannot be touched (empathize) with the feeling of our infirmities (our weaknesses); but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly (confidently) unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.’ (Heb. 4:14-16) 

Yes my fellow saints in Christ, our Lord and Saviour, our venerable Leader felt every pain and suffering that we’ve ever felt…and more than any of us have ever felt to boot! And in Isaiah 53, Christ suffering is laid out, so much so that He’s known as ‘a man of sorrows.’ (Is. 53:3) And I like how the website www.gotquestions.org explains it. ‘Jesus is called “a man of sorrows” because of how much suffering He had to endure. He suffered first by leaving the glories of heaven and entering the human race as a man. Then He suffered all the things that humanity suffers, and then finally He suffered the wrath of God as the sin-bearer.’ 

So when He asks us to undergo a spot of suffering on His behalf, we ought to just shut our blooming mouths and do it without the hemming and hawing we’re so famous for. What would have happened if He hemmed and hawed about going to the cross for us eh? When Jesus asks us to jump, the correct answer is simply, ‘How high Lord?’ 

And before we run out of time and space, let’s look at the Bible Promise that was used for the poem above. It comes from the great psalm 119: ‘I know, O Lord, that thy judgements are right (righteous), and that thou in faithfulness hast afflicted me. Let I pray thee, thy merciful kindness be for my comfort, according to thy word unto thy servant.’ (Ps. 119:75-76) 

Yes people, the psalmist realized that God in His righteousness and justice would not afflict Him without a good reason. And furthermore, His LOVING-kindness, His unfailing LOVE, would comfort him during his trails, just like He promised. 

So please, if we want to be known as true and serious followers of Jesus, let’s cut out the foolishness nuh, and grow up, stop being selfish, petty and afraid and stand up to anything that comes against, because He’s faithfully promised to bring us safely and stronger through our trials and tribulation. And if you can’t believe His promise, what’s the point in being His follower eh? 

So for those of us who are willing to undergo the troubles of the world without too much complaining, let’s go home now sincerely declaring (oh yeahhh!) our Thursday Blessings, those magnificent blessings the Lord has so generously bestowed on us to do His earthly work. Wow! 

Altogether now: ‘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 remember, those blessings are not to be selfishly hoarded, but generously shared, just like the Lord generously shared them with us! Much LOVE!

…for whom the Lord LOVETH…He chasteneth… (Heb. 12:6) 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 November 2020 Matthew 3:17.

Matthew 3:17.     ​And lo, a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

Awright, so we running a li’l long and late this cloudy Thursday morning… so what else is new eh? (smile) But that was just due to a rather late bedtime. I am trying to reform, to change my nocturnal habits, but even with the Lord’s help it is proving to be a somewhat formidable task. And I guess it would, if deep down you don’t really want to change. (smile) 

And have you ever noticed that when yuh running late that the enemy always manages to insert his obnoxious self into your business to try and make you even later? Well, just now, as I was coming down the basement stairs with my cup of java, the basement door knocked the elbow of my hand that held the cup and spilled some of it on the steps. Steups! Thus I had to stop and clean up the strong, sweet java wasted on the floor. And those are all my excuses this morning…and I am sticking to them because they are the indisputable truth! 

So what shall we talk about today eh friends? Well the Good Book opened today on an interesting subject, the temptation of Jesus, so I assume that’s what the Lord wants us to talk about. (smile) Anyway, after Jesus’ public baptism by John in the Jordan River, where John felt unworthy to baptize His awesome cousin, since He needed no repentance for sin, saying to Him: ‘I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me?’ (Matt.3:14) But Jesus reasoned thus with him: ‘Suffer (allow) it to be so now: for thus it becometh us (is fitting for us) to fulfill all righteousness. Then he suffered him.’ (Matt.3:15) 

And the scholars explain: ‘3:15. Suffer it to be so means allow it to be or let it happen. Jesus sought this outward identification with John’s ministry to fulfill all righteousness. By identifying Himself with those He came to redeem, Jesus inaugurated His public ministry as the Messiah. In regard to the Jewish religious observances, such as synagogue worship, attendance at feasts, and payment of temple tax, Jesus always met the duties of a faithful Jew.’ And we all know what happened when Jesus was baptized by John. As a young boy, it used to be one of my favourite passages of scripture. 

Hear how the Good Book describes it nuh: ‘And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: And lo, a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.’ (Matt. 3:16-17) Wow! Can you imagine being on the banks of the Jordan that day and experiencing that momentous experience! Unless is John alone who saw and heard it. 

And again we have some interesting info from the scholars: ‘3:16-17. In the process of His baptism Jesus went up…out of the water, the prepositions suggesting that He was completely in the water and came up out from it, again indicating immersion. The descending of the Spirit of God fulfilled the predicted sign to John in order to indicate the true Messiah (cf. John 1:33, Is. 11:2). The dove was a symbol of innocence and purity (cf. 10:16) and served as an ideal symbolic representation of the Holy Spirit. 

The voice from heaven is that of the Father (see also 17:5 where He speaks at the Transfiguration and just prior to the Crucifixion), giving His verbal approval to the ministry of His beloved Son. There can be no doubt that all three persons of the Trinity are actively involved here as distinct persons of the Godhead. The Father speaks, the Spirit descends, and the Son is baptized.’ 

Only our great God can do such things you say! And you are right! No other supposed deity can manage a task like that! And I’m chuckling here friends because I’m realizing that we are not talking about Jesus’ temptation but His baptism. And yuh think we God easy…not at all nuh, because that is what first came to my mind to talk about, but I figured that it was easier to get my mind around the temptation situation than the baptism. But the Lord, in His awesomeness, slyly guided me back to where He wanted me to go! 

Mama Mia! How can I not LOVE Him plenty plenty eh, because He is so faithful, and never gives me a task without giving me the enabling, grace, power, mercy and strength to perform it. Even when I shy away, He is wonderful enough to draw me back to where He wants me to be. And since we in Christ’s baptism, I guess it’s only right to check out the sign that John the Baptist was given for knowing the Messiah. Hear the Good Book from the gospel of John. 

One day while John the Baptist was baptizing by the Jordan, the Pharisees sent some messengers to find out who he was. And when John admitted that he was neither Christ, Elijah, nor Isaiah they wondered aloud why then was he baptizing if he was none of those three? (John 1:19-25) 

‘John answered them saying, I baptize with water: but there standeth one among you, whom ye know not; He it is, who coming after me is preferred before me (ranks higher than me), whose shoe’s latchet I am not worthy to unloose. These things were done in Bethabara beyond Jordan where John was baptizing. The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world. This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me (ranks higher than I): for he was before me. And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water. 

And John bare record (witness) saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode (remained) on him. And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost. And I saw, and bare record (witness) that this is the Son of God.’ (John 1:26-34) 

Now doesn’t our God work in wonderful ways! And I’ve always wondered about John the Baptist and Christ’s relationship, seeing that they were cousins. But the scholars answered my question. They explain that ‘Before Jesus’ baptism, John knew Jesus only as a good cousin, not as the Lamb of God. Not until he saw the Holy Spirit descending on Jesus did John realize that He was the Son of God.’ Our God does move in mysterious ways, way beyond our level of thinking, so anything’s possible. (smile) And to avoid any controversy and confusion between the gospels of Matthew and John, I guess ‘the next day’ John talks about is the day after Christ was baptized. 

And now that we’re all up to date on Jesus’ baptism and not His temptation, let’s go home declaring (yeahhh!) our Thursday Blessings, that have been so magnanimously bestowed on us by our most magnificent and magnanimous heavenly Father. Altogether now: ‘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!’ 

It’s now our bounden duty to go out, or stay in, in these Covid-19 times, and share them just as generously as they were shared with us. Much LOVE!

…except a man be born…of water and of the Spirit…he cannot enter into the kingdom of God… (John 3:5) 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 12 November 2020 Psalm 56:3.

Psalm 56:3.     ​What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee.

Glory to God mih people! The sun’s shining brightly! And yes, as some killjoy notes, (smile) it’s somewhat chilly because our summery days are over possibly until next year. But in the broad scheme of things that doesn’t really matter because we ALWAYS have the One True Bright Light, Jesus, shining on us anyway! Give Him some thanks and praise for being so faithful in His light giving! 

And to cement our contention there, I just opened the Good Book to Psalm 56, Bruh David’s confident prayer for help, and these magnificent and reassuring words jumped out at me: ‘What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee. In God I will praise his word, in God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me.’ (Ps. 56:3-4) 

Wow mih bredrin! What surety in Bruh David’s words eh! That was his prayer, his contemplation when the Philistines took hm in Gath. Can you imagine us being in the midst of such a horrible, wicked enemy and declaring (yeahhh!) our unbreakable trust in God? It’s what we ought to be doing though. 

And remember that other time when the Amalekites burned Bruh David’s city in exile Ziklag and took all their families hostage, and his men were so grieved and eventually wanted to stone Bruh David because they blamed him, as though his family wasn’t taken hostage too? Remember what he did? The Good Book says it thus: ‘…but David encouraged himself in the Lord his God.’ (1 Sam. 30:6) 

Yes friends, that’s where Bruh David found his strength and his support, and why despite all his ungodly deeds, the Lord could still call him a friend and a man after His own heart. That’s simply because he always held the Lord in true reverence and adoration. The Lord knew that he was imperfect, but his heart was usually in the right place. And so should our hearts be my people, despite our sprinkling of evil and evil deeds. 

We should know that God is our major refuge and retreat, our stronghold and fortress, the only place that we can be sure to obtain succour in time of need. And this pandemic and strife-filled season is one of those times when we need to be totally God-centred, to turn to Him like no other time in our lives, because without Him we don’t stand a chance, like a snowball in hell, our goose is cooked! 

We desperately need to return to the times when these words of Bruh David from Psalm 55 – A cry against deceitful friends – stood true of our society. ‘As for me, I will call upon God; and the Lord shall save me. Evening and morning, and at noon, will I pray, and cry aloud: and he shall hear my voice… Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer (permit) the righteous to be moved (shaken).’ (Ps. 55:16-17; 22)

And that’s the gospel truth my people! If we call on the Lord in all sincerity, and live by His will and word, then He will never allow us to suffer want or need, because He has promised that! Remember this awesome promise? ‘If my people, who are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.’ (2 Chr. 7:14) 

All I’m trying to say friends is that our world is in such a terrible state because it’s so fraught with sin and evil, and the only way we’re ever going to come out of this desperate and deadly state is by sincerely turning back to the Lord God Jehovah like our forefathers did! And if we don’t, then crapaud smoke we pipe! So it’s our choice. Do we give up the foolishness of Satan and this evil world and turn to the goodness of God? Or do we stay as we are and suffer the terrible consequences inherent in that decision? 

And just for argument sake, let’s hear these immortal and faithful words of Jesus concerning the subject nuh. ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt. 6:33) That’s it plain and simple my brethren! You seek God first, make Him and His kingdom your Number One Priority, and He will meet all of your needs! 

Like Bruh David said in his most famous writing, Psalm 23: ‘The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters (waters of rest). He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.’ (Ps. 23:1-4) 

And Bruh David could write that stuff friends because he lived, he experienced them. It’s not to say that our lives will always be rosy and without problems, since we live in a fallen, evil world, but if we hang with the Lord, we will come out on top most of the time, and we won’t have to walk around in constant fear, but will be assured and comforted even in the tough times like now. But all I can do is talk, or write – I’m done now – (smile), but everyone has to make their own decision as to the path they are going to follow, and my job is to encourage us to follow Christ, the Lord and Saviour of this world. End of spiel. 

And am I ever surprised at the intensity I sometimes feel as the words pour out quicker than I can write them. But I guess that’s because I’m sincere about what I write. (smile) Anyway, for those of us who feel the same way, let’s go home now declaring (awright!) our Thursday Blessings, letting all and sundry know how blessed we are in Christ our Lord. 

Altogether now: ‘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 if the Lord thought so much of us that He could give us those blessings undeservedly, then we can think the same of others and share them just as generously. Much LOVE!

…it stands to reason…that only the God who made this world…can save it… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 8 October 2020 John 14:6.

John 14:6.     ​I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

Aye friends, a fine, upstanding and blessed morning to you all! Yuh know, yesterday I made a significant discovery, yeah, a mind boggling one – life is like the weather. Wow! And I guess you’re wondering how I came to such a significant conclusion eh? Well here’s the genesis and revelation of it all. (smile) Remember yesterday I moaned that it was a wet and dreary day and hoped the weather would be better by afternoon because I had to go out and run some errands? Well, fortunately, by noon time the place was dry and the sun was shining brightly under clear blue skies! 

That lead me to think that our lives often behave the same way, one minute we’re sad and sorrowful, for whatever reason – sometimes even for no reason at all – and then we’re back to being bright, cheerful and happy again, for whatever reason – ofttimes no reason at all. (smile) But to further complicate the situation, though the day turned bright and sunshiny, a strong wind also came along and kicked up an unholy rumpus, causing stuff to be blowing all over the place and the trees to be just a hopping and jumping in its fearsome wake. (smile) 

To top it all, at one stage, I looked out into my neighbour’s backyard that has a big tree growing there, and right now it’s as luverly as it can be; the leaves are mostly a bright russet -brown with some in-between yellows and golds, and I saw the tree dancing a strenuous jig each time the wind blew. But I also noticed that not one of the leaves blew off, despite the wind’s strength and the time for leaves to fall is here. That’s because the leaves and the tree were strong and withstood the wind, boldly letting it know that they weren’t ready to fall as yet. Their time hadn’t yet come, and until it did, they would refuse to bow to it. 

And I saw just how comparable our lives are to the refusal of that tree to bow to the pressure of the wind. It’s the same way that life itself and the enemy brings stuff against us, that we need to stand strong against, not simply give into because it seems stronger than us. We find ourselves in that kind of situation every single day, because that’s just the way life is, but we can only stand real strong and steadfast against the bully-boy that’s life if we have the strength and peace and LOVE of Jesus flowing through our mortal coils. 

Yes friends, only when we have Jesus in us, and we are in Him, that we are strong enough to repudiate or repel anything and anyone that comes against us. And I did go out to do my errands yesterday afternoon in dry and sunny, but extremely windy weather. So as they say, two out of three wasn’t bad! (smile) And it’s the very same way that life operates; we seldom have it all smooth and calm and sunshiny, but there’s always some wrinkle or thorn or problem trying to upset our applecart. 

However, the Lord made us of stern stuff, able to withstand a lot of life’s ups and downs, and when we have the added protection of Jesus and His Holy Spirit dwelling within us…oh my people, we’re then nigh invincible! That’s what Jesus brings to the table as our Lord and Saviour – the ability to fight off all that comes against us. In other words: with Jesus as the guide and pilot of our lives we can do anything because He strengthens us! Glory Hallelujah! Where else, or from whom else can we get that kinda power eh mih bredrin? 

From nowhere or NO ONE else but Jesus! Because He’s the light of the world, our Redeemer, our Saviour, the ONE who sacrificed His sinless life on that old wooden cross at Calvary so that our sins could be forgiven, so that we could be reconciled to the Father and be considered righteous instead of downright sinful, like we truly are! He took ALL our sins and the punishment necessary to forgive and forget them on His back, because the Father LOVED us so much, and He LOVED the Father so much, that He obeyed Him even unto the death of the cross! 

Now why would you refuse to follow such a magnificent and magnanimous Deity eh? Because we’re too proud and foolish and full of ourselves, and desire the flaky, corruptible, destructible things of the world, rather than the everlasting, incorruptible, indestructible things of heaven. Plus the fact that we need to come to Jesus, and stay with him by faith, and not by sight, which is what too many of us desire. Jesus was the LIGHT of the world! 

John the apostle differentiated him from John the Baptist depicting Him thus: ‘There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. The same came to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe. He (John) was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. He came unto his own, and his own received him not. (John 1:6-11) 

What a sad tale friends. The Creator of the world came to the world He created, but that world did not know or even acknowledge him, when he made Himself known to it. Chuh! How foolish eh! Nonetheless, as John declares (yeah!) in Jesus’ LOVING-kindness and mercy: ‘But as many as received him, to them gave he power (the right) to become the sons (children) of God, even to them that believe on his name: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.’ (John 1:12-13) 

And Jesus Himself said it out loud and clear to Nicodemus: ‘Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.’ (John 3:3) And when Nicodemus didn’t understand Jesus explained. ‘Except a man be born of water and of the spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.’ (John 3:5) So friends, it’s as simple as that: if we want to see the kingdom of God, then we have to be born again of water and the Spirit. In other words, be baptized by water and the blood and believe in Jesus. 

For as He also said: ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.’ (John 14:6) Matter fix! No ifs ands and buts about it. And for those of us who have accepted him as Lord and Saviour, let’s go home now declaring (awright) our Thursday Blessings that have been magnanimously showered down on us so we can do His awesome work. 

All together now: ‘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 as Jesus desires, it’s now our bounden duty to go out and generously share those blessings, just like He generously shared them with us. Much LOVE!

…you can’t get to heaven…unless you go through Jesus… 

P.S. And if you don’t believe that life can be contrary like the weather, hear this. Yesterday when I came back from running my errands, the duchess told me that my heart doctor wanted to see me this morning in his office. I had expected a simple phone call like all the other doctors are doing. But he had to be different. Chuh! Now I have to go and get myself together and go down the street. But that’s life! (smile) Much LOVE! 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 12 September 2020 Matthew 6:19.

Matthew 6:19.     ​Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves break through and steal:

So it’s Saturday! What’s new with the world eh? Nothing nuh! Just more of the same old, same old; overwhelming evil, violence, hate and strife, with not enough peace, LOVE, forgiveness and godly attitudes to quell those negative enemy traits. But if there’s one thing we believers know, is that there’s a righteous, graceful and merciful God sitting on His throne in the high heavens watching down on us, and contrary to popular opinion He IS in control of ALL things, and in His time, in His own inimitable style, will right ALL that’s wrong with this world, working ALL things out for good to those who LOVE Him! 

And that’s the gospel truth friends, so let’s just hang in there in strong faith and blessed assurance, knowing that ALL promises will be fulfilled in due course of time. Now let’s see what goodies our friend Anselm sent us this week nuh, as he sincerely aspires to inspire us to a better tomorrow. Hear this first one, which is simple logic. ‘If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got.’ Now that’s obvious isn’t it. As Sister Joyce (Joyce Meyer) likes to say, ‘You can’t do the same thing all the time and expect to get a different result.’ 

But that’s exactly what a lot of us do. We keep going round the same mountain with the same attitudes, but expect things to change. That’s impossible friends! And it leads us nicely into this next quote: ‘Most people spend more time and energy going around problems than in trying to solve them.’ And isn’t that the unfortunate truth! That’s why we keep going around the same old mountain, with the same old results. Things will only change when we fess up to our problems, face them squarely in the face and get to work on them! 

Good example is the Israelites wandering in the wilderness for forty years because they were afraid to go into the Promised Land when the Lord told them to. And when they said they were ready, He said no, it’s not your timing but mine. So He let them continue wandering, allowing the old ones to die, while He built up the courage and strength of the younger ones. So that only Joshua and Caleb of those who came out of Egypt ever set foot in the Promised Land. But please note that during all that time, their clothes nor shoes never wore out, and He fed them continually with manna! Such is the magnanimity of our God, even when He’s trying to teach us a lesson. 

Then there’s this: ‘If you don’t ask the right questions, you don’t get the right answers. A question asked the right way often points to its own answer. Asking questions is the ABC of diagnosis.’ Again, that’s simple logic. But sadly, logic is something that’s being constantly levered out of our society. We’re now been barraged by things and people called ‘influencers’ paid to influence us with their lifestyle, regardless of how foolish or distasteful and useless it is. And too many of us don’t ask questions as to why these things are being done. We just follow them blindly! 

Ah the pull, the power of social media to dictate our lives! Steups! What a foolish, gutless, monkey see, monkey do society we’ve become. Yes friends, we can’t see or understand what’s happening unless we ask questions, and the right ones at that! Let’s wake up and start doing that nuh, instead of merely accepting whatever social media and the supposed experts say nuh! Let’s start charting our own God-led paths, instead of those the world is setting out for us. And here’s one way to do that: ‘A relentless barrage of “why’s” is the best way to prepare your mind to pierce the clouded veil of thinking caused by the status quo. Use it often.’ 

Not foolishly though. Don’t just ask questions for the sake of asking questions, but develop a strategy of asking sensible and to the point questions on matters that interest you. Nobody likes a body who just keeps pestering them, asking questions willy nilly, without any good or apparent reason. Questions though, wisely asked and with proper timing can lead to a well-spring of growth and phenomenal understanding of the ‘whys’ and ‘wherefores’ of this world and our earthly existence. 

That brings us to the last quote: ‘Without continual growth and progress, such words as improvement, achievement, and success have no meaning.’ Well how could they eh, when they inherently pertain to growth and progress? The problem though is what we consider growth and progress. Is it the world’s version, or God’s version? I suggest that God’s version is the much better one! Here’s why in a nutshell. This from Jesus, the Son of God, and if He doesn’t know the truth, then who knows it eh? (smile) 

‘Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through and steal.’ (Matt. 6:19-20) 

Wow! What wonderful advice my brethren! So if that’s a fact – and if Jesus says so, then it is so – why would I want to have the worldly version of growth and progress eh? Then all my treasures would be liable to theft and ruin by rust and moth. But when I desire the godly version of growth and progress, then all that I achieve is safely stored in heaven. As Peter says so awesomely: ‘To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that faded not away, reserved in heaven for you.’ (1 Pet. 1:4) 

Oh my people, nothing bad or evil can touch anything we store away in heaven, there is never any loss or lessening of our treasures stored there. However, to be able to store away stuff in heaven we need to follow this golden rule – from Jesus again, which means it must be true. ‘Seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness; and all these things will be added unto you.’ (Matt. 6:33) That means we need to have Almighty God as our Number ONE priority!And just like He looked after the Israelites for forty years in the wilderness, He will look after us, granting us ALL the necessities we need for earthly living and also storing up some for us in heaven! 

Now how does the world’s version of growth and progress compare to that eh? Not very well, because all the wealth and power you may amass under the world’s evil prince, can be lost in the bat of an eye, like the parable of the rich fool in Luke 12:16-21, where the rich, greedy man decided to break down and build bigger storehouses for his wealth, but that same night the Grim Reaper came calling as he generally does rather unexpectedly. And what did the rich fool leave with eh? Nothing! 

And neither did he have anything stored in heaven, because in his earthly life, he was not rich towards God. So all his earthly work, progress, growth and possessions turned out to be of absolutely no use to him. My people, please let’s learn from his story nuh, and be wise and be rich towards God in our earthly lives. That’s wisdom to the nth degree!Much LOVE!

…earthly things are nice…but heavenly ones look better and last longer… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 August 2020 Nehemiah 9:3.

Nehemiah 9:3.     ​And they stood up in their place, and read in the book of the law of the Lord their God one fourth part of the day; and another fourth part they confessed, and worshipped the Lord their God.

Come on friends, it’s Thursday, so let’s rejoice! Let’s rejoice that it’s Thursday nuh! And some foolish person asks: ‘Why rejoice because it’s Thursday eh? Now if it was Friday…then I could understand the rejoicing.’ And somebody answered: ‘Fool! You rejoicing that’s it’s Thursday because you’re alive and kicking on this Thursday morning! You need to rejoice everyday that yuh alive! And furthermore, if you don’t rejoice today, Thursday, who knows if you’re going to be around to see Friday so you could rejoice then eh?’ 

Ah mih people, yuh know what I’ve discovered? That the older you get, the more you become interested in life, that’s real life, not the ‘flittery’, glittery, insubstantial thing the world terms life. But stuff like the true meaning of life, why were we put here on this planet at this particular time, and not some other time? Why nature could be so wonderful at one moment then natural disaster strikes without warning? 

What is mankind really about, why the old people told us about the birds and bees, or the stork bringing life? What happens before and after our earthly journey? Why does strife seem to be an essential part of our evolution? There’s been possibly more years of strife in our world than those of relative peace. I heard somebody say once that the only years when there wasn’t strife on earth was the thirty three years that Christ lived here. Now isn’t that remarkable, if it’s really true? 

And by now some of you must be wondering where I’m going with all this? Well the truth is, I don’t know!  For all I know, they might just be the ramblings of a confused elderly man. Please note that I didn’t say old, but elderly. (smile) That’s because I don’t consider myself old, just getting on in age… 

Oh praise the Lord! I believe I was just shown where I was going with all of that rambling. To the writings of Nehemiah after they rebuilt the walls of Jerusalem and listened to the law of the Lord being read to them and were so taken with it, that they fasted and repented. Hn! 

The Good Book puts it thus: ‘Now in the twenty and fourth day of this month the children of Israel were assembled with fasting, and with sackclothes, and earth upon them (dust on their heads). And the seed of Israel separated themselves from all strangers (foreigners), and stood and confessed their sins, and the iniquities of their fathers. And they stood up in their place, and read in the book of the law of the Lord their God one fourth part of the day; and another fourth part they confessed, and worshipped the Lord their God.’ (Neh. 9:1-3) 

Yeh friends, as the scholars explain: ‘9:3. One fourth part of the day was three daylight hours, when God’s Word was read publicly, following which the people joined in a great confession of sin led by the Levites (vs. 5-37).’ Oh my people, what a marvellous day that was in old Israel: reading God’s Word publicly for three hours then confessing their sin publicly for another three hours and making a covenant with the Lord at the end. ‘And because of all this we make a sure covenant, and write it; and our princes, Levites, and priests, seal unto it.’ (Neh. 9:38) 

Mama Mia! I wonder if we could have something like that in these desperate times eh? Not likely because of the current laws against such large gatherings. But it sure would serve a great and useful purpose if we could have what we use to call revivals…and do we ever need them in this difficult season! But people have hardened their hearts and are afraid, panicked by too many different opinions and supposed facts which don’t seem to add up. And above all, we have turned away from the God of our forefathers on too much of a large scale. 

With God no longer in schools, public places and many homes, and with false teachers in churches teaching all sorts of nonsense, but the real truth of the Word, the reassurance and confidence needed to undergo the trials and tribulations of these times is sadly lacking in our society. Yeh mih bredrin, Bruh Paul’s words to Timothy have certainly come true in our time. Talking about the preachers he says: ‘Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.’ (2 Tim. 3:5) That’s those who have mere religion without the power, without a true spiritual life. Teaching what people want to hear, a feel-good religion without any real substance. 

And yes friends, it looks much worse on us than it did on Israel back then? Why? Because many of them were just coming back from a 70-year exile in Babylon and had never heard the word of Moses read, so it was completely new to them. But we already have a covenant; one with Jesus Christ, and a better one then they had, but we have chosen to break it, to forsake the benefits it offers because we refuse to do the obedience it calls for. 

And the truth of the matter is all the people of Israel did that day was to remember the good and wonderful things that the Lord did for their forefathers and give Him thanks and praise for not destroying them completely. This verse says it all. ‘Nevertheless for thy great mercies sake (in thy great mercy) thou didst not utterly consume them, nor forsake them; for thou art a gracious and merciful God.’ (Neh. 9:31) 

Now many of us have experienced God’s mercies and goodness throughout our lives, but when the hard times come, we forget what He’s already done for us. That’s foolish my people. That’s when we ought to remember how He’s brought us through all the storms and trials and be reassured that if He’s done it before, He can and will do it again. Now I don’t know if sackcloth and ashes or dust are necessary, but I’m sure that fasting and sincere repentance and remembrance of God’s forgotten mercies would help us get through these pandemic and strife-filled times. Why don’t we try them eh? We’d be surprised at their efficacy. (smile) 

Now let’s go home sincerely declaring (steups!) our Thursday Blessings that have been generously bestowed on us to do the Lord’s work down here on earth. All together now: ‘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!’ 

What we waiting for then eh? Let’s go out and share those blessings just as generously with others, as Jesus desires! Much LOVE!

…to survive trials…count your blessings…remember what the Lord has done…  

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