Today’s Scrip-Bit   5 February 2023 John 15:12.

John 15:12.       This is my commandment, That ye LOVE one another, as I have LOVED you.

Another Sunday is upon us friends, which means a visit to the Lord’s sanctuary for fellowship and worship, to renew our allegiance to Him and to each other, as partners in the great body called the church of Jesus! And oh, what a wonderful partnership it can be, if we just do as Jesus says: ‘This is my commandment, That ye LOVE one another, as I have LOVED you.’ (John 15:12) That’s clear, simple and straightforward my fellow believers. So why is it so difficult to do it eh? 

I know that we will never be perfect, but I am sure we can do much better than we are doing right now, for there is too much anger and strife, dissatisfaction, disunity and petty jealousies in Christ’s church. And until we remove as much of that negativity as possible, the church will never be as successful as it ought to be. The enemy will just continue dividing and conquering us because we’re allowing the sinful lusts of our flesh to guide us rather than the Holy Spirit of Christ. 

If we are to make any headway against the enemy, especially in these last turbulent days, then church unity is of the utmost importance, and the best place to begin is right in the local church. We can’t always agree, but at least let’s disagree peacefully. Let’s allow our personal animosity to take second place to our LOVE for Christ. We definitely need to take to heart and practice these words of Bruh Paul to the Ephesians. 

‘Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. And grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day or redemption. Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice. And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another. Even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.’ (Eph. 4:29-32) 

Now that, my fellow believers, is the conduct that’s needed more than ever, beginning in our local churches, if we’re ever to make a serious difference in this current evil and ungodly world. And it’s something we must do, if we’re not to be judged as hypocrites while singing this wonderful song written and sung by Jenn Johnson, titled, ‘The Goodness of God.’ If we’re enjoying the ‘Goodness of God,’ then plenty of that goodness ought to be also flowing out of us to others. So, let’s offer up our sacrifice of praise this morning to our good and faithful God, in a mid-tempo, soulful, heartfelt, scintillating version of the song. 

Singing: ‘I LOVE You Lord Oh Your mercy never fails me And all my days I’ve been held in Your hands From the moment that I wake up Until I lay my head down, Oh I will sing of the goodness of God (Chorus: All my life You have been faithful And All my life You have been so, so good. With every breath that I am able, Oh I will sing of the goodness of God.) I LOVE your voice. You have led me through the fire. In my darkest night, you were close like no other. I’ve known you as a Father, I’ve known you as a friend, Oh I have lived, in the goodness of God. (Chorus: Yeahhh! And all my life You have been faithful…I will sing of the goodness of God) 

Yeah, yeah, it’s so good! Your goodness is running after, It’s running after me. Your goodness is running after, it’s running after me. With my life laid down, I’m surrendered now, I give you everything, cause your goodness is running after, It’s running after me. Oh cause Your goodness is running after, it’s running after me. With my life laid down, I’m surrendered now, I give you everything, cause your goodness is running after, It’s running after me. Your goodness is running after, it keeps running after me. And All my life You have been faithful And All my life You have been so, so good With every breath that I am able, Oh I’m going to sing, Oh I’m going to sing of the goodness of God. 

For all my life you have been faithful, all my life you have been so good. Oh you lead me in glory…ever-faithful, you are my anchor in the wind and the waves… you are my provider…Oh yeah…and you lead me in glory by your spirit…you are my joy…my joy…every day…Oh shepherd of my soul…what a joy to know you…Oh, the joy of knowing you God…you’re everything to me…so wonderful…so wonderful in all your ways…in all your ways. That’s why I will always sing of your goodness Lord…always sing of your goodness Lord.’  

Oh friends, that was wonderful…and it did sound authentic! (smile) But as one commentator asks and then answers: ‘What is the spiritual meaning of goodness? Goodness is action; it’s not something we do only for the sake of being virtuous. When we strive to be “good” only for our own benefit, it is not truly goodness that we possess. In Greek, the word goodness means “an uprightness of heart and life” 

And then there’s this other quandary: ‘How do you experience the goodness of God? It’s through the promises of God’s Word that we partake of His nature—a nature that is peace, abundance, healing, victory, guidance and protection. His promises are a pipeline that connects us with His nature. And His promises are exceedingly great and precious (2 Peter 1:3-4).’  

Of course they are! As Peter explains: ‘(God) According to his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue. Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises, that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.’ (2 Pet. 1:3-4) Now, although that’s totally true, it is a bit wordy. (smile) 

Meanwhile James says it more simply. ‘Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness (variation), neither shadow of turning. Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.’ (James 1:17-18) And Jesus said it thus: ‘If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is heaven give good things to them that ask him? (Matt. 7:11) And Bruh David put the icing on the cake when, in Psalm 27 he joyfully declared: (chuh!!!) ‘I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.’ (Ps. 27:13) 

Now that’s almost all, but not quite. There’s this last question: ‘How do Christians show goodness? Choose Kindness It means to show kindness and goodness to everyone you meet. It means Jesus recognized what we needed before we did. It also means that He wants us to be compassionate and understanding; to care for others with a pure spirit; and to realize that true life only comes through Christ.’ And that’s the gospel truth, for only through the Spirit of Christ can we do what He desires us to do. So let’s get out there and do it nuh. Much LOVE!

…do unto others…as you want them to do to you…it’s the only way to go…that’s why it’s called the Golden rule… 

 Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZ     

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Today’s Scrip-Bit   21 January 2023 Romans 12:17a.

Romans 12:17a.       Recompense to (repay) no man evil for evil…

‘Sunshine, lollipops and roses!’ Well, a half out of three isn’t bad. (smile) We’ve got a touch of sunshine. And the truth is, it’s not even true sunshine, but less cloud cover. But we’ll take it over some sort of precipitation and thoroughly dark clouds. And having lazed away my part of this lazy-Saturday morning, I’ll reluctantly turn my attention to the quotes that our friend Anselm sent us this past week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. 

And we’ll jump right into this first and ever so important one: ‘Forgive people in your life, even those who are not sorry for their actions. Holding on to anger only hurts you, not them.’ And sadly, that’s the bane of so many of us in this weak, fearful and ungodly world. We refuse to forgive those who have hurt us, thinking that we can do them something by withholding our forgiveness. 

But friends, the last laugh will always be on us. Why? Firstly, because those whom we refuse to forgive will most likely go about their business unconcerned, while we will be stewing in our hate, anger and resentment, making ourselves physically, emotionally and mentally sick. We must realize that basically, forgiveness is not for others, it’s for us, for our well-being. 

And the second foolish aspect of unforgiveness is what happens with God, when we don’t forgive. How did Jesus put it in His sample prayer: ‘Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.’ (Matt.6:11-12) Yes friends, that’s what we’re praying, for God to forgive us as we forgive others. 

So what does that mean eh? Jesus explains: ‘For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly father will also forgive you: But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your heavenly Father forgive your trespasses.’ (Matt. 6:14-15) That says it all right there my brethren. So please let’s forget this worldly nonsense about holding grudges and not forgiving, because we are only afflicting ourselves. 

Then there’s this quote: ‘Sometimes Those Trying To Bring You Down Don’t Know You’re Part Of The Reason They’re Still Standing.’ And isn’t that sometimes the awesome truth! So often our associates want to drag us down, or usurp our positions, but don’t realize that it’s because of us they are where they are, and without us they’d be nothing. 

And I guess the greatest example of that is the religious leaders of Israel who refused to accept Jesus and tried to railroad Him to His death, because they figured He would spoil the good thing they had going in the bowels of the Roman Empire. They didn’t realize that He was really the good thing that they needed, and He had come to save them. 

And unfortunately, it’s the same way with many of us; we resent and reject Jesus, but He’s the ONLY thing standing between us and eternal death and damnation. Please remember these ever so important words of Jesus: ‘For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.’ (John 3:17) And Jesus is indeed the ONLY reason why we are still standing! Please, let’s acknowledge that hard and true fact and behave accordingly. 

That leads us to the following quote: ‘A wise man once said, “Be careful who you let on your ship, because some people will sink the whole ship just because they can’t be the captain.’ Now isn’t that a glorious truth! And I can attest to that through personal experience over the years. The things some people would do for a li’l power is ofttimes surprising and unbelievable. They’d even torpedo their own livelihood just to be the boss. How foolish. But that’s the chain of foolishness and ignorance that Satan has some of us tied up in. 

Therefore,re we have to be very careful who we let into our lives, especially in these days of so many lies, deceit and fraud. Fraud is possibly the biggest crime going right now. And I just had one of those phone calls from one of the many current schemes that try to defraud you. And when you look at the missed calls, they are the same fraudulent schemers every day. They don’t seem to give up. Now, if they would just use that same persistence and perseverance in a legitimate job, they could do ever so much better. But for some reason or other, they choose the life of crime. 

However, having said that, this next quote shows us a better way. It says: ‘If you ever get the chance to treat them the way they treated you, I hope you choose to walk away and do better.’ Yes, that’s the right way, if you are a follower of Jesus, who expressed these sentiments. ‘Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt LOVE thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, LOVE your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully (spitefully) use you, and persecute you; 

That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and unjust. For if ye LOVE them which LOVE you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans (tax collectors) the same? And if ye salute (greet) your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans (tax collectors) so? Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.’ (Matt. 5:43-48) 

The long and short of the story my fellow saints is that as followers of Jesus we are supposed to rise above the norm, not just do what others do but more and better. That’s the philosophy Jesus desires to espouse in His kingdom. And Bruh Paul encapsulates it so nicely in his letter to the church at Rome, by saying: ‘Recompense to (repay) no man evil for evil… Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.’ (Rom. 12:17a, 21) 

And this last quote is self-explanatory. ‘When a flashlight grows dim or quits working, do you just throw it away? Of course not. You change the batteries. When a person messes up or finds themselves in a dark place, do you cast them aside? Of course not! You help them change their batteries. Some need AA…attention and affection; some need AAA…attention, affection, and acceptance; some need C….compassion; some need D…direction. And if they still don’t seem to shine…simply sit with them quietly and share your light.’ 

Oh my people, in this sad, confused, evil and ungodly world there are way too many of us who are suffering from a dim bulb or weak battery. Too many of us are flailing around in the darkness, and it needs us believers to attend to them with the LOVE of Jesus, so that they can be set free, to walk out of their darkness into the marvellous and miraculous light of Jesus! 

And the only way that can happen is if we shine our light in their darkness. Like our Saviour so wisely recommended: ‘Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid… Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt. 5:14, 16) Now, as true believers, let’s go out and do just that, today and every day nuh. Much LOVE!

…the goodness of God…is the only thing that will overcome…the evil of this world… 

 Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZ   

Today’s Scrip-Bit   27 November 2022 Exodus 34:6.

Exodus 34:6.        The Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, long-suffering, and abundant in goodness and truth.

Sunday, oh Sunday! Time for God’s people to gather in praise and worship, to honour His day with thanksgiving for all that He’s done, is currently doing, and has promised to do for us! And all, with one accord said: ‘Praise the Lord for His goodness to the children of men.’ 

And that segues us right into our song of worship today, titled ‘The Goodness of God.’ It’s a song of praise to our good and faithful God, written by Jenn Johnson, one half of the worship duo Brian and Jenn Johnson. She claims that ‘the song was inspired by the process of adopting her fourth child, as she had been singing impromptu into her phone while driving on a long country road about the faithfulness and kindness of God. The song was then developed from the impromptu recording.’  

Now there have been many renditions of the song down through the years, most of them slow and soulful, but today we’re going to do a soulful but lively version a la Jenn Johnson and the Bethel Church, with plenty sincere exuberance and enthusiasm, as if we truly mean what we’re singing. So, lets’ get with the sacrificial praise to high heaven.  

‘I love You Lord Oh Your mercy never fails me And all my days I’ve been held in Your hands From the moment that I wake up Until I lay my head down, Oh I will sing of the goodness of God (Chorus: All my life You have been faithful And All my life You have been so, so good. With every breath that I am able, Oh I will sing of the goodness of God.) I LOVE your voice. You have led me through the fire. In my darkest night, you were close like no other. I’ve known you as a Father, I’ve known you as a friend, Oh I have lived, in the goodness of God. 

(Chorus: Yeahhh! And all my life You have been faithful…I will sing of the goodness of God) Yeah, yeah, it’s so good! Your goodness is running after, It’s running after me. Your goodness is running after, it’s running after me. With my life laid down, I’m surrendered now, I give you everything, cause your goodness is running after, It’s running after me. Oh cause Your goodness is running after, it’s running after me. With my life laid down, I’m surrendered now, I give you everything, cause your goodness is running after, It’s running after me. Your goodness is running after, it keeps running after me. 

And All my life You have been faithful And All my life You have been so, so good With every breath that I am able, Oh I’m going to sing, Oh I’m going to sing of the goodness of God. For all my life you have been faithful, all my life you have been so good. Oh you lead me in glory…ever-faithful, you are my anchor in the wind and the waves… you are my provider…Oh yeah…and you lead me in glory by your spirit…you are my joy…my joy…every day…Oh shepherd of my soul…what a joy to know you…Oh, the joy of knowing you God…you’re everything to me…so wonderful…so wonderful in all your ways…in all your ways. That’s why I will always sing of your goodness Lord…always sing of your goodness Lord.’  

And that’s exactly the way it ought to be my faithful brethren; be grateful for God’s amazing goodness, and continually let Him know it! And what’s this goodness, what’s it’s spiritual meaning? They say that ‘Goodness is action; it’s not something we do only for the sake of being virtuous. When we strive to be “good” only for our own benefit, it is not truly goodness that we possess. In Greek, the word goodness, “agathosune,” means “an uprightness of heart and life” And that’s the gospel truth! Jesus desires us to show goodness, or kindness to all we meet, ‘to be compassionate, understanding;  to care for others with a pure spirit; and to realize that true life only comes through Christ.’ 

That’s His basic agenda. And how do we experience the goodness of God? One commentary says: ‘It’s through the promises of God’s Word that we partake of His nature—a nature that is peace, abundance, healing, victory, guidance and protection. His promises are a pipeline that connects us with His nature. And His promises are exceedingly great and precious’ 

And that commentator referenced (2 Peter 1:3-4), which tells us: ‘According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.’ Yes friends, we experience God’s goodness through the many wonderful promises found in His Word. 

And James further tells us that ‘Every good gift and perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness (variation), neither shadow of turning.’ (James 1:17) Oh my people, ALL the good things we have in this life comes from and unchanging and ever-generous God! I like How Bruh David says it in Psalm 27: ‘I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.’ (Ps. 27:13) Can you imagine the terrible state we’d be in if the goodness of God wasn’t available in these turbulent and dangerous times? Hn! I don’t even want to think about it. 

That’s why the psalmist so avidly declares (yesss!!!) in Psalm 107: ‘Oh that men would praise the Lord for his goodness (LOVING-kindness), and for his wonderful works to the children of men! For he satisfieth the longing soul, and filleth the hungry soul with goodness.’ (Ps. 107:8-9) And the Lord Himself spoke of His goodness when Moses went back up Mt. Sinai the second time to receive the Ten Commandants. He descended in a cloud and passed before Moses and proclaimed: ‘The Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, long-suffering, and abundant in goodness and truth.’ (Ex, 34:6) 

And we know our God does not lie, neither does Jesus Christ, thus His reply to the rich, young ruler who called Him ‘Good Master (Teacher)’ when enquiring how to obtain eternal life. Jesus said to him, ‘Why callest thou me good? There is none good but one, that is God.’ (Mark 10:18) Now that’s something for us to chew on, to ponder this Sunday as we sincerely contemplate our relationship to our good God. Much LOVE!

…oh…give thanks unto the Lord…for he is good…for his mercy endureth for ever… (1 Chr. 16:34)  

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ          

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 June 2021 Psalm 68:3.

Psalm 68:3.     But let the righteous be glad; let them rejoice before God: yea, let them exceedingly rejoice. 

Well here comes Tuesday, mostly cloudy in my area, and definitely not as warm as the last few days! The weather is certainly playing some games with us this month, being hot and cold, or unstable, like so many of us are in these turbulent times. But nonetheless, as long as we are alive and have the Holy Spirit of Almighty God dwelling in us, we have to give thanks for His awesome blessing of keeping the breath of life flowing through our mortal bodies. That’s an unconditional requirement my faithful brethren! 

As Bruh David says in Psalm 68 – God has gone before His people: ‘But let the righteous be glad; let them rejoice before God: yea, let them exceedingly rejoice. Sing unto God, sing praises to his name; extol him that rideth upon the heavens by his name JAH, (a shortened Hebrew form of Lord), and rejoice before him.’ (Ps. 68:3-4) Oh my people, we could not get any better advice than that, or do anything more appropriate than sing praises to our wonderful God all the days of our lives. 

That recalls the similar words of Moses in his farewell speech to the children of Israel. ‘There is none like unto the God of Jeshurun (beloved one, Israel), who rideth upon the heaven in thy help, and in his excellency on the sky. The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms: and he shall thrust out the enemy from before thee; and shall say, Destroy them.’ (Deut. 33:26-27) Aren’t those encouraging and uplifting words my people? They certainly are! 

And they lead us to Psalm 91, where the psalmist talks about God is a refuge and a fortress. ‘He that dwelleth in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I shall say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.’ (Ps. 91:1-2) Oh friends, isn’t it wonderful to have a power mightier than us in whom we can find eternal security? It surely is! And I like how the psalmist continues assuring us of the safety and security found in the One True and Living God; He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. 

‘Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler (bird trapper), and from the noisome (perilous or deadly (pestilence). He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust (take refuge): his truth shall be thy shield and buckler (small shield). Thou shalt not be afraid for (of) the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day. Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth (lays waste) at noon day. A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee. Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked.’ (Ps. 91:3-8) 

What words of utter confidence in our God! And that’s the kind of confidence that we need to have in these troubled last days my fellow saints of Christ. But unfortunately too many of us don’t have that level of faith and trust in the God we supposedly serve. But what’s the sense of serving a God if we don’t have the utmost trust in Him eh? None whatsoever! We say we surrender our lives to Jehovah God, but yet we hold back certain aspects of it from Him, and don’t put everything before Him, foolishly trusting in our own finite and puny selves to accomplish what only God can do. 

For as Jesus so rightly asked: ‘Which of you by taking thought (worrying) can add one cubit unto his stature (height)? And why take ye thought for raiment (why do you worry about clothing)? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: and yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed (clothed, dressed) like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe (clothes) the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith!’ (Matt. 6:27-30) 

Yeh friends, if our heavenly Father looks after His lesser creations so well, why wouldn’t He look after His greatest creation better than them eh? But we must sincerely believe that He is God, and a good God at that. For as the author of Hebrews declares: ‘But without faith it is impossible to please him (God): for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.’ (Heb. 11:6) 

And the rest of that chapter goes on to tell us about all the people of great faith that served the Lord down through the ages, even though they may not have received the earthly treasures they wanted, but they knew, had the faith to believe that greater treasures existed in heaven. As the author of Hebrews explains: ‘These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded (assured) of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.’ (Heb. 11:13) 

That’s the kind of attitude, the level of faith to which we need to aspire my people! It doesn’t mean that we should not enjoy the goodness of God down here on earth, but we must acknowledge that earth is not our eventual home, that heaven is, and that’s where our real treasure will be found, as we spend eternal life with our great and wonderful triune God! But the only way we will raise the level of our faith is by surrendering ALL of ourselves to God, not parts thereof, and seriously studying the word of God, believing it, then putting it into action in our lives. Otherwise we’ll live a life being scared of even our own shadow. 

Now, for those of us who are sincerely attempting to live a faithful life for God, let’s go home declaring (yeah!!!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the whole world know who we are. Altogether now: ‘In God’s eyes, I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world. Amen!’ 

And having declared that, let’s go out now and share the awesome LOVE and friendship of Jesus with all those we meet. Much LOVE!

…when you truly know Jesus…all you want to do…is share him with others…                                                                             

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 November 2020 Psalm 107:8.

Psalm 107:8.     ​Oh that men would praise the Lord for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men!

One more time, one more time, let’s do it one more time fellow saints of Christ! I mean, let’s get together on the Lord’s Day, by whatever means possible, and worship and praise His Holy Name as He desires of us on at least one day of every week! Yes my people, that is one of the duties for which we were created, along with the awesome blessing of having a close and personal relationship with the wise and wonderful Deity who created us. Glory to His blessed name, for there is no other supposed god who desires such a relationship with their followers as the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob desires with His. 

So let’s cut out the talk and get down to some serious worship nuh. (smile) And today’s song is one I sent to some of you by WhatsApp this week, titled ‘The Goodness of God’ sung by Jenn Johnson with the Bethel church. So some of you know it. (smile) And after listening to several versions of the song, all of them decent enough in their own right, I still had to come back to the Jenn Johnson version because it had a particular soulful and yet rocking sound that seemed rather appropriate for the song. 

So without further ado, let’s raise our voices in sacrificial praise, offering up heartfelt and true emotion and sentiments to our majestic, magnanimous and magnificent God, Jehovah. In slow, soulful harmony to start, then breaking into a rocking, raunchy riddim at the chorus. ‘I love You Lord Oh Your mercy never fails me And all my days I’ve been held in Your hands From the moment that I wake up Until I lay my head down, Oh I will sing of the goodness of God (Chorus: All my life You have been faithful And All my life You have been so, so good. With every breath that I am able, Oh I will sing of the goodness of God.) 

I LOVE Your voice. You have led me through the fire. In my darkest night, You were close like no other. I’ve known You as a Father, I’ve known You as a friend, Oh I have lived, in the goodness of God. (Chorus: Yeahhh! And all my life You have been faithful…I will sing of the goodness of God) Yeah, yeah, it’s so good! Your goodness is running after, It’s running after me. Your goodness is running after, it’s running after me. With my life laid down, I’m surrendered now, I give You everything, cause Your goodness is running after, It’s running after me. Ohhh, cause Your goodness is running after, it’s running after me. 

With my life laid down, I’m surrendered now, I give You everything, cause Your goodness is running after, It’s running after me. Your goodness is running after, it keeps running after me. And All my life You have been faithful And All my life You have been so, so good With every breath that I am able, Oh I’m going to sing, Oh I’m going to sing of the goodness of God. For all my life You have been faithful, all my life You have been so good. 

Oh You lead me in glory…ever-faithful, You are my anchor in the wind and the waves… You are my provider…Oh yeah…and You lead me in glory by your spirit…You are my joy…my joy…every day…Oh shepherd of my soul…what a joy to know You…Oh, the joy of knowing You God…You’re everything to me…so wonderful…so wonderful in all your ways…in all your ways. That’s why I will always sing of Your goodness Lord…I will always sing of Your goodness Lord.’ 

Mama Mia! What a great paean (song of praise, worship, triumph, thanksgiving) to Almighty God, in which our voices were gloriously united! It couldn’t get any better than that my brethren, because the sentiments were all true! And today all we’re going to do is look at some scripture that gloriously display God’s wonderful works to the children of men! And that’s the superscript of Psalm 107, from which most, if not all of our scripture will come. Hear how the psalmist begins nuh: ‘O Give thanks unto the Lord, for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever. Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom he hath redeemed from the hand of the enemy.’ (Ps. 107:1-2) 

The psalmist there was talking about the nation of Israel whom the Lord took out of bondage from Egypt, and because of their disobedience, they wandered in the wilderness, lost and without a shepherd, hungry and thirsty and faint. (Ps. 107:3-4) But eventually they smartened up, and ‘Then they cried unto the Lord in their trouble, and he delivered them out of their distresses. And he led them forth by the right way, that they might go to a city of habitation.’ (Ps. 107:6-7) 

Yeh friends, that’s the difference between obedience to God and disobedience. If we want to be left alone, He will leave us alone to do our own thing, but when we decide to call on Him in true and sincere repentance, He comes running to our aid. As the psalmist further states: ‘Oh that men would praise the Lord for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men!’ (Ps. 107:8) What a glorious observation! Why, you ask? Hear the psalmist’s answer. ‘For he satisfieth the longing soul, and filleth the hungry soul with goodness.’ (Ps. 107:9) 

Ah mih bredrin, when we come to God in repentance and submission, He looks after us. But when we turn away from Him, rebel against Him, He allows the evil one to cause us to ‘sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, being bound in affliction and iron (being prisoners);’ (Ps. 107:10) And when we wake up and cry out to Him again in times of trouble, He comes running and saves us out of our distresses. He brings us out of the darkness and the shadow of death, and breaks our bands in sunder (breaks our chains in pieces). And for that we should again praise Him for His goodness as our Bit says. (Ps. 107:11-16) 

Oh my people, we are so near and dear to the God of our forefathers that He can’t deny us when we turn to Him in true surrender. Look at what He did for the Israelites…and look at what He did for us by sending His Only Son Jesus to be sacrificed for our sins. That speaks of a golden heart of LOVE in the Being we call our God. And that’s why the psalmist’s cry makes undeniable sense: ‘Oh that men would praise the Lord for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men! And let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving, and declare his works with rejoicing (joyful singing).’ (Ps. 107:21-22) 

And that’s what we’ve just done: declared His works with joyful singing! Glory be precious people! And we can go on through Psalm 107 and the rest of the Good Book and find innumerable reasons for praising God for His goodness. But time and space are against us. So let’s remember all those times that He’s bailed us out nuh, both individually and collectively, and stay under His protective umbrella, because that’s the ONLY safe place in this evil world! Much LOVE!

…the Lord is good…ALL THE TIME… because that’s His nature… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 July 2019 Luke 21:15.

Luke 21:15.    ​For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay (refute) nor resist.
 

So it’s Wednesday; the middle of the week, and everybody breathes a sigh of relief, saying: ‘Three down, only two more to go!’ Ah friends, what is it with us and work eh? The majority of people don’t like what they do for a living, and would rather not do it, but they have limited choices, so they acquiesce and do the job half-heartedly. And that includes Christians too! 

The only problem there is that as Christians we’re not supposed to be working unto man, but unto God, and if we have Jesus dwelling in us then we’re supposed to do as good a job as possible even if we don’t like it. And furthermore we’re supposed to be contented and grow wherever He plants us. 

So if you’re the lone believer where you work and get a lot of heat for it, then believe that’s where Jesus wants you at this time, so you can shine your light in that dark world of unbelief and allow your salt to spice up and make tasty the corrupt and corroded atmosphere! But hear what Jesus says will happen when we suffer for His name’s sake. ‘Take ye no thought how or what thing ye shall answer, or what ye shall say; for the Holy Ghost shall teach you in the same hour what ye ought to say.’ (Luke 12:11-12) 

Now here is an interesting explanation from the scholars. ‘12:12. The Holy Ghost shall teach: Remember that (1) these men had Jesus as a personal teacher; (2) these disciples being Jews, had a great command of Old Testament Scripture; and (3) the New Testament was not yet begun. 

This is not to say that Jesus’ promise has no application today, since the experience of persecuted Christians in this century proves otherwise. Yet it would be dangerous to presume on direct, supernatural guidance without doing all possible to avail oneself of means already at hand to learn of God and His ways.’ 

Yeh friends, they’re not saying that supernatural guidance is impossible, but it’s much easier for you to stand up strong in Jesus’ name when you know His Word and thus for the Holy Spirit to remind you of certain truths to use when you’re under the gun. 

And I like how Luke further puts it: Jesus tells them: ‘Settle it therefore in your hearts, not to meditate before what ye shall answer. For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay (refute) nor resist.’ (Luke 21:14-15) 

Ah mih people, we don’t have to beat up ourselves as to what we ought to say when we encounter opposition, for the Holy Spirit, our guide and comforter, our inspiration and constant companion, will lead us to say the right things. But you have to know the Word so you can associate it with whatever and wherever He guides you. 

And we have this further assurance from Jesus: ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace: In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.’ (John 16:33) And if you’re a true believer that verse of scripture ought to quell whatever anxiety and worry that’s in your heart right now! 

That’s the wonderful thing about our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ; when you sincerely believe in Him, even in the midst of trials and tribulation we can have peace in our souls! No other faith can promise, guarantee and deliver such a wonderful situation! But friends, it doesn’t just happen overnight, you have to go through those trials so you can grow and mature in the faith. 

And I can testify to that because years ago, I was holidaying in California when my mother died unexpectedly up here. Obviously I was devastated by her unexpected death, but I clearly remember a surprising peace that suddenly came over me, and I was able to handle the situation with the necessary fortitude. But the people around me were also surprised at how cool, calm and collected I was despite the devastating news. 

It doesn’t mean that I wasn’t sad and didn’t cry and display all the other emotions associated with unexpected loss, but the important thing is that I didn’t fall apart and become useless to myself and those around me. And every time I look back at that situation, I can only smile and realize that it was indeed the goodness of God, the overwhelming peace of Jesus that got me through the situation. 

And what made that peace even more welcome is that I had disembarked in Las Vegas and driven to California, and the price to change my flight to leave from California was astronomical, so I had to drive all the way back through the desert to Las Vegas that took a fair amount of time. But though my heart was heavy, it was at peace, thanks be to Jesus! 

And yuh know friends, even during these last two and a half years of sickness and medical procedures, I was never worried about making it through, I was more annoyed than anything at having to go through all that stuff. (smile) And that’s because by then I had matured enough to believe God’s promise of if He puts me through it, He will bring me through it, stronger than before. And I am stronger than before! 

That’s my testimony and I’m sticking to it. (smile) Hope it does offer some encouragement to those of you who are going through serious problems right now. You just have to believe, despite the darkness of the situation. And the Lord might not change the situation, as He might just be testing you, but He will change you, so that you can handle the situation! 

Enough sermonizing for today though! Let’s go home declaring (yeah!) our Wednesday Wail telling all and sundry our wonderful position in Christ! As one strong, sincere and enthusiastic voice now: ‘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!’ 

And please remember that if we stand strong and finish our race with vim and vinegar, that future will be even more glorious than we can ask or imagine! Much LOVE!

…true faith…only comes and grows…by experiencing trials…and sincerely believing in…the faithful promises of Jesus…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 May 2018 Psalm 18:2.

Psalm 18:2.   The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength; in whom I will trust; my buckler (shield), and the horn (strength) of my salvation, and my high tower (stronghold).

Ah mih people, it’s that day again, the Sabbath! That means it’s time for celebration as well as holiness. And we can begin by joyfully declaring, as the psalmist did so long ago: ‘This is the day which the Lord hath made, we will rejoice and be glad in it.’ (Ps.118:24) 

And while we do that, we can also be wending our way to the Lord’s house to fellowship with other believers, to offer up sincere prayers, worship and give thanks for all the many blessings He has bestowed upon us, as well as to hear His word and regenerate our confidence. Wow! What an awesome God we serve my brethren! 

And as always, we’ll begin the proceedings with song, to loosen up our stony hearts and make them more receptive to the Word. Today’s song is an old but wonderful hymn titled ‘My hope is built on nothing less,’ written by Edward Mote back in the 19th century. And on a point of interest, have you ever noticed that many of our beloved hymns were written way back when. 

Maybe it says something about the level and intensity of Christian praise and worship back then. Anyway, let’s sing, with raised voices and truthful hearts. ‘My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness; I dare not trust the sweetest frame, but wholly lean on Jesus’ name. On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand; all other ground is sinking sand. 

When darkness veils His lovely face, I rest on His unchanging grace; in ev’ry high and stormy gale my anchor holds within the veil. On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand; all other ground is sinking sand. His oath, His covenant, His blood support me in the ‘whelming flood; when all around my soul gives way He then is all my hope and stay. 

On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand; all other ground is sinking sand. When He shall come with trumpet sound, O may I then in Him be found, dressed in His righteousness alone, faultless to stand before the throne. On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand; all other ground is sinking sand.’ 

And isn’t that the indisputable truth my fellow believers! The only real safe and secure foundation on which to build is on Christ, our Rock and our Saviour. Anything else is merely sinking sand, and it’s only a matter of time before the whole edifice erected thereupon crumbles. 

That’s why Bruh David could stand up and declare our Bit with utmost confidence, and so too can we many thousands of years later. ‘The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength; in whom I will trust; my buckler (shield), and the horn (strength) of my salvation, and my high tower (stronghold).’ 

Ah mih breddren, mih breddren what immortal words of comfort and assurance! And if we have Jesus as our guiding light, then we too ought to be able to declare them with audacity and boldness, for Jesus is indeed all those things to those who sincerely and truly believe in Him. 

And if Jesus is so mighty then, Bruh David is indeed right to declare after our Bit. ‘I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised: so shall I be saved from mine enemies.’ (Ps.18:3) And he did call upon the Lord, and the Lord saved him. (Ps.18:.4-16) Friends, yuh see how much time and trouble our Lord took to save Bruh David from his enemies? It’s the same way that He will save us if we call on Him with right hearts and sincere spirits. 

Hear Bruh David again: ‘He sent from above, he took me, he drew me out of many waters. He delivered me from my strong enemy, and from them which hated me: for they were too strong for me. They prevented (confronted) me in the day of my calamity: but the Lord was my stay (support). 

He brought me forth also into a large (broad) place; he delivered me, because he delighted in me. The Lord rewarded me according to my righteousness; according to the cleanness of my hands hath he recompensed me. For I have kept the ways of the Lord, and have not wickedly departed from my God.’ (Ps.18:16:21) 

Oh my people, none of us have as many enemies or problems as Bruh David had back in his day, and if the Lord saved him out of them all, why would He refuse to do the same for us if we bow down and faithfully worship Him and keep His will eh? No reason whatsoever! 

That means it’s all up to us. If we want to see the goodness of God, then we have to do the things that will produce it. We can’t just sit back and expect it to fall in our laps. So let’s get serious and do our part of the partnership nuh, if we want so see fruitful results. 

Remember, we only reap what we sow. And if we don’t sow righteousness and LOVE, we won’t receive the Lord’s blessings. Much LOVE!

…For who is God…save (except) the Lord…or who is a rock…save (except) our God… (Ps.18:31)

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 9 October 2017 Nehemiah 8:10.

Nehemiah 8:10.   Then he said unto them, go your way, eat the fat, and drink the sweet, and send portions unto them for whom nothing is prepared: for this day is holy unto our Lord: neither be ye sorry; for the joy of the Lord is your strength. 

So friends, it’s Monday…But the good news is that both in Canada and the U.S it’s a public holiday. In the U.S it’s Columbus Day, celebrating the arrival of Christopher Columbus in the Americas in the 1490’s. Meanwhile, in Canada, we’re celebrating our Thanksgiving Day with feasting and festivity, and hopefully thanks and praise to Almighty God for all the blessings He’s recently showered down on our land.  

Let’s also be thankful that hurricane Nate did not do much damage to the part of Louisiana that it passed over yesterday. Ah Lord eh! Hopefully this will be the last storm for this year, for the area could not handle much more disaster. Don’t forget to include in our prayers those who have recently suffered serious setbacks and that they are on their way to recovery and rebuilding their lives. Remember too the ones who are still undergoing trials and tribulations.  

And let’s hope that all this unexpected calamity serves as a wake-up call for us to repent, to forsake our evil ways and get back into the good graces of Almighty God, for it’s difficult not to consider the unparalleled circumstances that have recently afflicted us as a warning from Him. So let’s pray that we will take the warning to heart and wisely make amends for our sinful ways, and once again make Him the undisputed God of our society. 

Anyway, it’s Monday, which means that in our 24/7 society, some people must go to work, regardless of the public holiday, and there’s no time harder to get up and go out to labour than on days like these, when the majority of people are off. So let’s send them out on a high note with a wonderful rendition of our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. 

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

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

But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour. We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle. Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’ 

And as always, the voices of those not going out to work are the loudest and most raucous since many of us have already been celebrating for the past couple days. (smile) And whether you like it or not, I have to remind us of Granny’s warning; that drunk or sober we need to mind our business very closely, as too much celebrating can make us cross over the Christian boundary line without even noticing it, thus giving the enemy a gleeful chance to invade our space, something we want to avoid at all costs.  

That brings us to our Bit, the words of Nehemiah to the people of Israel after they had rebuilt Jerusalem and had heard for the first time God’s Word read from His Holy Book by the scribe Ezra. ‘Then he said unto them, go your way, eat the fat, and drink the sweet, and send portions unto them for whom nothing is prepared: for this day is holy unto our Lord: neither be ye sorry; for the joy of the Lord is your strength.’ 

It was indeed a day of rejoicing for those Israelites, many of whom had recently returned from captivity in Babylon and were enjoying freedom for the first time in many a day, if not the first time in their lives. We should also be in rejoicing and sharing mode, but more importantly, making sure that we give God His rightful deserts of thanks and praise for bringing us to this high standard of living, for it’s only through His generosity and magnanimity that it’s possible.  

Remember what we sang yesterday? ‘Praise God from whom all blessings flow…’ And that’s the truth in spades! For as the Good Book tells us: ‘But thou shalt remember the Lord thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth, that he may establish (confirm) his covenant which he sware unto thy fathers, as it is this day.’ (Deut.8:18)  

Yeh friends, the Lord brought Israel out of bondage in Egypt and kept them in the wilderness for forty years, then enabled them to go into the Promised Land and take it over. Without His help, none of that would have been possible. Likewise without God’s help, our current prosperity would not have ever been realized. 

So I’m imploring us, that as we gather today, with friends, families and neighbours, let’s spend some time remembering and talking about the goodness of God towards us, and giving Him appropriate thanks and praise, glorifying and exalting His precious name, for each and every one of us has so many things to be thankful to God for in this our earthly journey. We didn’t reach this stage of evolution through our own efforts, but through God’s blessings. Consequently we ought to show the necessary gratitude. Much LOVE!

…it’s not about eating and drinking…but giving thanks…to be able to eat and drink…there is a big difference…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 May 2017 Psalm 27:1.

Psalm 27:1.  The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?

Well a good Thursday morning to you my faithful brethren in Christ! As I write these words of wisdom (smile) in the early hours, a gentle rain is falling outside, blessing the earth, so that she may refresh herself with the greenery that’s spring.

That means, for those who live in my vicinity, the commute this morning might be a tad on the rough and slow side. So please leave home early, and be careful on the roads, for you know that whatever the weather and driving conditions, there are always some foolish drivers out there on our highways and byways who cause unnecessary accidents.

And the sad part is that too often, the ones who cause the accidents don’t get injured, but the innocent drivers suffer the brunt of the situation. And we certainly don’t want anything to happen to you this morning.

Now here is something from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin that I couldn’t help sharing. It’s something we could all use a bit more of. It’s titled ‘Intimate Closeness.’

And it says: ‘You promise, dear God That when I draw close to You You will draw close to me. Lord, I give myself to You unreservedly. Teach me more and more Of intimate closeness And fill my heart with You alone. To walk arm-in-arm with You Down every winding path Seems to me the dearest of all delights.’

And it is indeed my people! Walking arm-in-arm with our heavenly Father is the most delightful thing we can ever do! And I’d like to suggest to many of us today that we should be seeking a closer and more intimate walk with God, so that our lives can blossom from that intimacy.

It’s high time we give ourselves to Him unreservedly; for that’s the only way we’ll ever learn or achieve true intimacy with Him. Remember, intimacy can only be achieved through a very close relationship with somebody.

And no wonder the Bible promise for that poem is ‘Draw nigh (near) to God, and he will draw nigh (near) to you.’ (James 4:8a) 

Yeh friends, our gracious God is always waiting for us to draw near to Him, so that he can envelope us in His LOVING arms. His is an open invitation, all we need to do is accept it. 

And when we do, then we are able to shout loud and proud and confident, like Bruh David did in our Bit. ‘The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?’ 

Oh my people, it’s only when we walk closely with God that fear dissipates in our lives to be replaced by courage! That’s because our foundation is then truly in Jesus Christ, who died that we might live, that we might have eternal life. 

And hear how He puts it to the disciples. ‘I am the true (genuine) vine, and my Father is the husbandman (vinedresser)… 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 15:1,4-5) 

Now that’s telling it like it is my brethren! Without Jesus we can do nothing! All of our substance comes from Him, both as Creator and Saviour. And when we walk in lockstep with Him, we are mighty and courageous in the land, through His power that runs through us. Glory to God! 

Now listen to the Lord speaking to His people Israel through the prophet Isaiah, letting them know that He will restore them to Zion when the time is right. ‘Strengthen ye the weak (sinking) hands, and confirm (make firm) the feeble knees. 

Say to them that are of a fearful heart, Be strong, fear not: behold your God will come with vengeance, even God with a recompense; he will come and save you.’ (Is.35:3-4) 

That’s the awesome power and LOVE of our mighty God friends! Once we are walking faithfully with Him, He will never leave us in the lurch. Hear how Bruh David puts it at the end of Psalm 27, from which our Bit is taken. 

‘I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait (in faith) on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait (in faith), I say, on the Lord.’ (Ps.27:13-14) 

Yes friends, when we abide in God, and wait in faith on Him, He will strengthen us, and we’ll also see His wonderful goodness right down here on earth! And that goodness is indeed shed forth in our Thursday Blessings. 

So let’s declare them in strong voice and true belief. ‘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!’ 

Oh, the wonderful glory of God, my people! Now let’s go out and share those blessings with others, as our God desires of us. Much LOVE!

…just a closer walk with thee…blessed Jesus…let it be…please let it be…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 16 May 2017 Exodus 34:6.

Exodus 34:6.   And the Lord passed by before him (Moses), and proclaimed, The Lord, The Lord God, merciful and gracious, long-suffering, and abundant in goodness and truth.

Aye mih people, my sincerest apologies for the Bit’s tardiness today, (smile) but I had one of those real late early mornings, and the ole bod simply refused to get up when I asked it to. But as they say, better late than never. 

And though a light drizzle is falling in my area, making it a somewhat grey morning, we know that our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ is shining brightly in our hearts, minds, bodies and souls! Glory Hallelujah! 

And today, I want to share with us some exciting and reassuring words from Father Bob Colaresi’s opening remarks in the Spring Edition of ‘Between Friends,’ the newsletter of the Friends of the Society of the Little Flower (St. Therese of Liseux). 

He is talking about hope and renewal: ‘Spring is a time of HOPE. God is our God of HOPE. The Gospel is about HOPE – Renewed Life. The celebration of the death and resurrection of Jesus speaks to the human drama of dying and rising – always rising to new possibilities, sometimes beyond our imagining.’ 

And isn’t that the indisputable truth my fellow followers of Christ? It surely is! For it was HOPE that our glorious Lord and Saviour was born, died and rose from the grave for us to have; so that we can embrace a new future filled with good things. 

And as the article in the Between Friends Newsletter also says: ‘Spring is a time to reflect on what we need to let go of so we can be alive with God’s grace, possibilities and freedom.’ 

Oh what a profound and true statement my brethren! Spring is not only the time to clean our homes and garages and get rid of unnecessary junk, but it’s also a time to clean our hearts, bodies and souls of the worthless stuff that’s gathered there, and is keeping us from having the true and right relationship with our heavenly Father that we so desperately need to have. 

So I invite us to day to have what we shall call ‘spring thinking,’ where we endeavour to cleanse ourselves of anything that’s not moving us towards God’s will for our lives. 

And one of the ways we can do that is simply by concentrating on the goodness of our God, as enshrined in our Bit. ‘And the Lord passed by before him (Moses), and proclaimed, The Lord, The Lord God, merciful and gracious, long-suffering, and abundant in goodness and truth.’ 

Yeh friends, one of the easiest ways to avoid evil, is to concentrate on good; so that the mind has no place for the lies and deceits of the prince of darkness. But listen to what the Lord told Moses after our Bit. 

‘Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty; visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children’s children, unto the third and fourth generation.’ (Ex.34:7) 

Now the end of that statement sounds somewhat harsh, but with the coming of Jesus that was somewhat mitigated, for everybody now has to bear the consequences for their own transgressions. 

But Glory to God, there’s still mercy and forgiveness of sin! And nowhere is God’s goodness spelled out more succinctly than in Bruh Paul’s words to the Ephesians on the terms of grace and faith. 

‘But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great LOVE wherewith he LOVED us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us (made us alive) together with Christ, (by grace ye are (have been) saved;) 

And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: That in the ages to come he might show his grace in his kindness toward us through (in) Christ Jesus.’ (Eph.2:4-7) 

How magnanimous is that eh my precious people! Our wonderful God LOVED us so much, that even when we were dead in our transgressions, He gave us an option to be lifted out of the mire, to rise godly and righteous, through the selfless sacrifice of His most adorable Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! 

Wow! I can’t help saying it friends: ‘What a wonderful God we serve and worship! There’s NONE else like Him in all the world! Praise and Bless His Holy Name!’ 

Now let’s go home declaring our Tuesday Mantra, extolling who and whose we are. With strong conviction now: ‘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!’ 

So if that’s what we are about my brethren, then let’s go out now and share it with the rest of the world, as our friend Jesus desires of us. Much LOVE!

…spring…the time of resurrection…of cleansing…of new beginnings…

 

 

 

 

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