Today’s Scrip-Bit 8 May 2020 Matthew 5:16.

Matthew 5:16.    ​Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
 
Welcome to Friday friends and another weekend off for the relatively small number of us who have been working all week. For others, it’s just another passing day of inactivity, lack of income, anxiety, fretting and boredom. Uncertainty is still in the air and it seems like there is no unity in how to handle this uncertain situation. Leadership is divided, and nations and states and provinces and cities are doing things differently, fighting for the medical supplies they all need to staunch the flow of death that’s currently happening. 

Now what does all of that say about mankind eh? If we can’t get together for the greater good of all in a pandemic time such as this, what hope is there for us to get together in times of no pandemic eh? Ah Lord eh? I don’t know what it will take to bring us together as our great God desires nuh! I guess nothing but Jesus’ Second Coming will ever bring mankind to their senses! Anyway, it’s Friday, so let’s hear what the ordinary workingman has to say for himself nuh. 

And he begins with a rather lacklustre: ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday! Although nothing seems different to me…and it isn’t, since I’m not working, so there’s no weekend to look forward to. I’m simply lazing about, doing a few odd chores around the house, getting under mih wife’s foot and skin. Even playing with the children getting tiring now, because they have more energy than me. I just hope they fix this thing soon yes, because this inactivity slowly driving me mad. 

And as every day pass by without me doing anything substantial, I have to sadly chuckle about how I missing the slave master work! Hn! Never thought that would ever happen. But as they say, after one time is two oui! Steups! Sometimes I even want to go and join the protesters who want the place to open back up. But that is not too smart until we have a safe way to do it. 

And yuh know, is not even the money ah losing that bothering me so much nuh, because we mostly staying home, we getting by with the few dollars from the government. But is the whole uncertainty surrounding everything and the scads of information yuh getting, plenty of it false and misleading, that not really telling yuh anything yuh really want to hear; something solid and concrete they doing to stop the bloody virus! Chuh man! This thing making me feel older than mih years yes! Just hope and pray they find a sensible and safe solution soon yes!’ 

Oh friends, all of us are hoping and praying for the same thing; a safe and sensible solution to this pandemic situation! But who knows how long and what form it’s going to take eh? In the meanwhile, all we can do is hope and pray and do the sensible things like social distancing and washing of hands as often as possible and encouraging each other in whatever sensible ways we can. So let’s do the first thing we ought always to do nuh in uncertain situations; pray! Let’s chant our Friday Chant, that’s been reworked for this uncertain and anxious time. 

As one strong and confident voice, but with humility of heart: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through this past week. It’s been pretty rough…though not from work, but from all the confusion and havoc that the Covid -19 virus causing. We not accustomed to that Lord, and it really telling on us. But with your omnipotent help, and our trusting faith, we know that we can stand strong and steadfast and defeat this virus. So Lord, we sincerely ask you today to give the governments and those involved in the forefront of this serious and unexpected storm, the sure and wise guidance to handle the situation properly, with the  least amount of loss to life and property as possible. 

And please use this situation to also bring a lot of backsliders back to your fold, and also introduce a whole new flock, who will embrace your LOVE and compassion because of the way we, your faithful believers, handle the situation. Yes Lord, please use this pandemic as a means of restoring faith in You, so that our sinful world can wake up and smell the coffee, sweet and strong! We pray this in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen!’ 

And having prayed that prayer my people, we’ve now got to ask ourselves if we’re doing the things, behaving the way that will cause others to want to come to Christ? Can the fruit of these awesome words of Jesus be seen in us? ‘Ye are the salt of the earth: Ye are the light of the world.’ (Matt. 5:13-14) Oh my people, unless others can feel our saltiness and see our bright light shining through their darkness, like a city set on a hill, then we’re not doing what Jesus desires of us. Instead we’re being like salt that’s lost its flavour and is thus no good but to be trodden underfoot. And also we’re hiding whatever light we may have under a bushel or a basket. 

Friends, light is not meant to be hidden, that’s the purpose of darkness. Light is meant to be shone brightly forth, to illuminate darkness. So please, let’s get ourselves together as true believers and do what Jesus desires of us nuh. ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ That’s our earthly purpose my fellow saints in Christ, so let’s get to it nuh! Much LOVE!

…only when we truly reflect Christ…will others want to come to Him…

P.S. Hope yuh notice how short and early it is today! (smile) Much LOVE!

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 March 2020 Matthew 23:28.

Matthew 23:28.    ​Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity (lawlessness).
 
Well Saturday has dawned dry and sunshiny… Thank the Lord yes! Unlike yesterday, which had a constant drizzling of snow in all it’s various shapes and sizes; wet, dry, light, heavy. Thankfully though, none of it stayed on the ground and we’re now looking forward to a warm weekend. Glory be! I’m not accustomed to this cold and snow business nuh! (smile) Somebody was against me yesterday, or trying to send me some kind of message, because on my first day back from ‘paradisiacal’ Jamaica, every time I looked out the window all I saw was this white stuff floating down from the heavens. Chuh man! It’s enough to depress a body! (smile) 

But now it’s Saturday, a new and different day; one filled with the many new mercies and compassions of our magnificent and magnanimous God! Bless His holy name! So let’s look at some of the quotes our friend Anselm sent us this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And this first one says: ‘It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.’ And it’s strange how all of us can look at the same thing and see something different. A good example of that is a ghetto or a sorrowful person. 

Some of us will be disgusted by either sight and simply walk away as quickly as possible. On the other hand, some will see the sad plight of the place and person and be filled with compassion, and feel a burning desire to help.’ It’s all in our attitudes friends, the state of our hearts. And as believers in Christ, we ought to display the latter attitude. Our hearts ought to be filled with compassion for the lost, the sick and lonely, like Jesus’ heart was, and still is filled with compassion for us. 

And then there’s this: ‘A man is rich in proportion to the number of things he can afford to let alone.’ I guess the basic premise there is greed. How many things do we need to feel materially wealthy, as opposed to how many things we don’t need, because we’re spiritually rich? Now that’s a good question. And the best answer I can give is Jesus’ warning: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt. 6:33) The things of the world ought not to have us in such a deadly grip that we don’t put the Lord first place in our lives. 

And the next quote says: ‘Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.’ Now that should be obvious, since it’s basic common sense. But it also implies that we will be growing in the meanwhile. However, unfortunately, a lot of us are not growing, or in the way we should, and that includes believers. So how can we do better eh? That means we have to try our best to grow in the right way, in godliness, because we can only do better when we grow, and grow in the right way. 

We certainly waxing philosophical this morning oui! (smile) And we’ll also get scriptural too. (smile) For as James warns us: ‘Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.’ (James 4:17) So if we know that we should improve in a godly way, so we can do good, and don’t do it, then it just might be imputed to us as sin. Now that ought to stir us up to some godly movement. (smile) 

That leads us to this last quote, a relative to the previous one. ‘Persistence, perseverance, and continuous improvement are the ingredients for forming a successful person.’ And that’s the God awesome truth! Regardless of how rich and educated you are, even if you are filled with Bible knowledge, you will not be successful unless you put some blood, sweat and tears into your endeavour, whatever it may be. Yes friends, even when you know and practice the Word of God, persistence and perseverance are still necessary to be successful. 

And these well known words of Calvin Coolidge, (1872-1933) the 30th President of the U.S. puts it all in the proper perspective. ‘Nothing in the world can take the place of Persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan ‘Press On’ has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.’ And that’s no lie, since you can’t solve a problem unless you keep pressing on to solve it. Philosophy 101! 

Unfortunately though, we as true believers in Christ Jesus need those words more than any other set of people in our current world, because we drastically need to step up our fight against the evil and darkness that’s shrouding our world like a blanket. We’re definitely not as persistent and determined as we need to be. There is too much disunity and dissension in Christ’s body, the church, and then it’s members are also  too laid back, lazy and compromising. That’s why evil is currently ruling the roost. 

And if you didn’t know it before, let me enlighten you now. We, the supposed true believers in Christ, are the ones who are expected to fight the good fight of faith, to run a glorious and powerful race in Jesus name! Remember, Christ expects us to be the salt and light of the earth. But we’ve apparently lost our saltiness, and talk about lacking in light – we don’t seem to be shining at all. You have to look hard to find a decent Christian these days. Remember we are to be known by our works… 

Well, not enough of us are doing enough sincere works with the right motives, so that we can be noticeable and have others come to want Jesus. Instead, the main word you’ll hear re Christians is ‘hypocrite!’ And sadly that’s the truth, because we’ve become so much like the Pharisees that Jesus condemned in Matt. 23, like whitewashed  tombs, who appear beautiful on the outside but on the inside it’s another story. ‘Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity (lawlessness.)’ 

And unfortunately that can be said of too many supposed believers today, and it’s a convenient excuse for many who refuse to go to church because there are too many hypocrites within its walls. But the truth of the matter friends, is that we are ALL hypocritical in some respect and to some degree, thus going to church will only add one more to the group. (smile) Seriously though my brethren, it’s time we stop being so clean and righteous on the outside and so sinful and nasty on the inside because it doesn’t draw others to Christ, just turns them away. 

So please, let’s ask the Lord, starting right now, to clean us up inside nuh, so that both sides of us will truly be the same and we can then be good and sincere ambassadors of Christ. Much LOVE!

…it’s what comes out of the mouth…that defiles a man…not what goes in… (Matt.15:11)

Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 March 2020 Matthew 5:16.

Matthew 5:16.    ​Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
 
Well the party’s over my friends. It sure was nice while it lasted. But unfortunately I had to call it a day! Yes I’m back in my ordinary surroundings called HOME! The best place in the world! Wow! Yuh know, whether it’s a palace or a hovel, home is where you feel most comfortable because home is where your heart and soul truly are. Yes, Jamaica was nice, but there’s something about home that get’s the heartstrings playing ever so sweetly. (smile) And now it’s back to the daily grind and common task – or which ever way they say it – back to the cold and snow and bleak vegetation. 

And since it’s Friday – didn’t even realize that until just now, people must be clamouring for the workingman’s song. Well never let it be said that I kept you all from hearing what you want to hear. (smile) So here he is, in all his riotous colour and workingman’s common sense. ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday…and time for that much needed break from slave labour, called the weekend! Don’t know what I would do without it nuh. Gosh! It hard enough working five days straight, and I’m really sorry for those who have to work six and seven days straight without a break. 

Steups! Mankind really is something else yes. Like greed and abuse of his fellow man seem to be his middle name! No wonder the sad truth found in the saying: ‘Man’s inhumanity to man makes countless thousands mourn!’ Chuh! What a crying shame! And we now have to change that to countless millions…and soon to countless billions, since mankind is getting ever more greedy and oppressive as the rich get ever richer and the poor get ever poorer. What a sad world we live in eh Dr. Jack! 

And the sad part is that there’s enough in the world for everybody to get sufficient to fill their needs, but the few with plenty, more preoccupied with greedily hoarding rather than generously sharing it. That’s why there’s so much poverty and homelessness and all the other ailments that the disenfranchised suffer. But yuh know this saying is also true…One day, one day congotay … Yes the longest rope have an end…And one day all ah we, have to meet we maker and answer for we wrongs. Till then, all I can say is thank God for Fridays and weekends yes!’ 

Brother, the workingman was sure on a roll today! But what he says makes sense yes! Mankind getting more heartless, oppressive and abusive, even as we seem to be getting more enlightened. But that seems to be only in the mind, not in the heart, where it really matters. Anyway, as true believers in Jesus Christ, we have the responsibility to try and change that disgusting image of mankind. And no, it’s not easy, but with the help of our Leader we can do it, if we are willing to put in the required amount of time, energy, belief and faith it requires. 

And that’s the billion dollar question – are we willing to do what it takes to bring Jesus’ dream for the world to fruition? Apparently not, because right now we’re allowing Beelzebub and his evil cohorts to run away with the race while we sit and mourn and murmur pitiful platitudes. Oh friends, the attitude of those involved in Christ’s organization has got to improve tremendously if we expect to see any real change in our world and leave our descendants a safe and reasonable place to live and sincerely worship Jehovah God. 

That’s our calling; this is our time to further the gospel and all that it entails. They say we were born for a time such as this, but the reality is that we were born for this particular time. If the Lord wanted us in any other time, He would have put us there. But since He put us in the here and now, that means this is when and where He expects us to make our mark, to obediently and diligently do His will. Jesus said it as clearly and plainly as possible. ‘Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour (flavour), wherewith (by what means) shall it be salted? it  is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.’ (Matt. 5:13) 

Oh my people, we all know the great benefits that salt provides to our lives, and without it, everything is bland and tasteless and often rendered useless. And sadly too many of us believers have become that way… good for nothing, because we’ve lost our passion, our sense of purpose and are just content to rest on our laurels. But that’s not what Jesus desires of us. Hear Him again nuh: ‘Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle (lamp), and put it under a bushel (basket), but on a candlestick (lampstand); and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.’ (Matt. 5:14-15) 

Oh my fellow believers, that’s what Jesus expects of us; to be bright and shining and good direction lights in this dark and evil world! But we definitely are not being bright and shining and encouraging enough, since the darkness seems to be growing stronger and wider. Oh my people, my people, come on nuh, let’s do as Jesus so greatly desires of us nuh! Remember we are His ears, eyes and hands, His ambassadors on this dark and evil earth. So let’s take His words to heart and sincerely, diligently and excellently do as He asks nuh. ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ 

Oh friends, that is definitely not too much for Jesus to ask of us, after all that He’s done for us. So let’s get shipshape and become both the salt and light of the world as He desires nuh, so that we can reclaim the world from it’s dark covering with the wonderful and awesome light of Jesus! And no, I did not forget our Friday Chant, the other stuff just seemed to flow and follow more smoothly. (smile) So let’s chant our chant, in strong voice with sincere hearts, like we’re truly salt and light. 

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

Let’s do it nuh friends, let’s do it for Jesus! Much LOVE!

…you can’t be a true believer…unless and until…you do what your Leader asks of you…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 October 2019 Matthew 19:26.

Matthew 19:26.    But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With man this is impossible, but with God, all things are possible.
 

Now that’s what a beautiful autumn morn looks like! Yeh friends, the glorious sun is shining brightly on the multicoloured leaves, reflecting God’s variety of wonderful colours, and showing that He too can like beauty, just for beauty’s sake! (smile) Ahh! And it’s Saturday too, and the ole fella got up late, but that’s the beauty and purpose of Saturday eh? (smile) Saw the clock, thought it was eight, but it was actually nine. Hn! That’s what happens when you go to bed in the wee hours of the morning. Anyway, let’s see what inspiring quotes our friend Anselm sent us this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. 

Hear this first one: ‘I didn’t get there by wishing for it or hoping for it, but by working for it.’ And that’s usually true! Most of us get where we are by working our way to the top of the ladder. Unfortunately though in this lazy, turbulent society of ours, where the work ethic is almost dead, a lot of people want to, and expect to rise to the top of the heap by merely wishing and hoping. They simply don’t realize the necessity for blood, sweat and tears in the accomplishment of anything. And also the fact that we appreciate stuff more when we work for it. Look at the vast number of those who don’t work for what they have, who don’t truly appreciate it, and lose it quite soon thereafter. Think of the Lotto players, and those who receive enormous windfalls from their deceased relatives. 

And this second quote is challenging: ‘Think progress, not perfection.’ Yes mih people, many times we seek perfection in our search for progress, but progress does not have to always mean perfection. It’s quite alright to make progress without it being perfect. Once we’re moving forward, that’s the important thing. Remember too, that not many things, and NO people, are perfect in this fallen world. Now listen to this next quote: ‘When the winds of change blow, some people build walls and others build windmills.’ 

And that’s the awesome truth my believing brethren! The winds of change are always blowing in our world. That’s one of the few things we can be certain of in this life; things will change whether we want them to or not. And what makes the difference is whether we build walls to try and keep out the changes, or if we do things that will help us yolk those changes for our benefit. Like in the rest of life, it’s all about attitude. 

And I can personally testify to that because I don’t like many of the changes that are currently taking place in our society, especially with the social media thing, but I’m not trying to build walls around it to protect myself, I’m just trying to use it astutely (smile) to enhance my purposes. I can’t get away from it, or change it, so why battle it? And it’s like that in all phases of life. We have to learn how and when to choose our battles, and understand when it’s wiser just to go along for peace and the Lord’s sake. (smile) 

That leads us to the next quote: ‘It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.’ And I guess that’s somewhat true, because if we look at all the varied species of life that have become extinct it’s because many of them could not adapt to the changes that were happening in their lives, in their habitats. But it’s not easy to change when your habitat is changing because of outside influences. That’s why we have the scary talk these days about climate change. 

Mankind has made so many of God’s creations extinct by changing their habitat, and now we’re in the process of making ourselves extinct by the way we’re destroying the Eco system, the carefully planned and synchronized work of God. Listen friends, our planet and all therein is a finely tuned and balanced machine. God left nothing to chance. And when we disturb anything, it causes repercussions in all areas. So let’s wake up and smell the roses nuh. If we continue in today’s careless manner of destroying our planet, then we too will eventually become extinct. 

And here’s the last quote: ‘The ones who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones that do.’ And the first name that comes to mind is Jesus! Yes friends, He was probably the craziest of us all! He came to earth in what we’d now call a backward time, chose twelve uneducated men and sent them out to change the world. The disciples must also have been somewhat off their rocker to believe Christ’s words and accept such an impossible looking challenge. But yuh know what? They indeed changed the world! That’s why today we’re still talking about Christ and heaven and hell and all that godly stuff! 

The fact is that they had certain assurances, and they believed them. I guess the first and biggest assurance was Jesus when talking to them about a camel passing through the eye of a needle said: ‘With man this is impossible, but with God, all things are possible.’ Ah mih people, that’s the basic foundation, and until we believe that, like those disciples did, we won’t be able to make any worthwhile improvements or changes in our lives or our societies. And then Jesus inspired them with acclamations like: ‘Ye are the salt of the earth…Ye are the light of the world…Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt.5:13,14,16) Yeah friends, they believed that and went out and did what Jesus desired, and were successful, as we very well know. 

And we’ll end with these last words of Jesus to the puzzled and unsure but ever-faithful disciples. ‘Go ye therefore, and teach (make disciples of) all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost; Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.’ (Matt.28:19-20) And they took those fateful words, what we call the Great Commission and ran with them to all and sundry people and parts of the world, especially when as Jesus promised the Holy Ghost came and indwelt them in a fiery display of power on Pentecost Morn.  

Now that same baton has been handed down to us, and we have many more tools to do the work than those disciples had, so why are we so reluctant to take up our task and do it eh? Are we too sacred, or not crazy enough? That’s for us to work out individually with God! Much LOVE!

…if you are a Jesus follower…then the impossible…is in your power…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 June 2019 Matthew 5: 13a;14a.

Matthew 5:13a;14a.    ​Ye are the salt of the earth…Ye are the light of the world.
 

Well like another beautiful summer’s day is in the offing friends! Glory to our great God! How many is that eh…like four straight without any serious rain during the day! Mama Mia! 

And with Jesus riding a sure shotgun with us, how can we not make assured and confident declarations (steups!) as these: ‘I am an overcomer through Christ!’ I am above and not beneath. The head and not the tail.’ (Deut.28:13) ‘I am more than a conqueror, through Christ who LOVES me!’ (Rom.8:37) ‘And the God of all grace, who has called me to His eternal glory in Christ, after I have suffered a little while, will Himself restore me and make me strong, firm and steadfast.’ (1 Pet.5:10) 

Glory to God my brethren! And I can speak personally to that last acclamation because that’s exactly what our God is doing in my life right now, making me strong and steadfast after all the medical problems I’ve experienced over the last few years. Yes friends, our God won’t allow us to go through what He’s not prepared to bring us through. 

But please remember, oftimes we need to go through the fire, not escape it, if, like silver and gold we need to be purified, and thus increase our worth and value with greater faith. And to help us believe that, here is this encouraging quote from Dr. Norman Vincent Peale, the pastor, positive thinker, and author of several books, amongst which is the memorable one, ‘The Power of Positive Thinking.’ 

Dr. Peale reputedly said: ‘Hope is the great power that can move you to success. Why? Because when a man expects to win, he does not hold anything back, but gives his project all that he’s got. Most people fail not because they lack ability, intelligence, or opportunity, but they fail because they don’t give it all they’ve got.’ 

Words of absolute truth my people, especially in this lazy, sitting on one’s laurels, expecting someone else to do it society in which we’re currently living! We’ve become so addicted to easy and cheap and right away, that putting out any extra effort is anathema, repellant, repugnant, to us, even when the extra effort will assure us of success. 

But friends, if we’re living and working for Jesus, then we’re required to make that extra effort, to go that extra mile, because that’s what His economy is based on. In fact no economy whatsoever can succeed unless that extra effort becomes a basic part of it. Only when one is diligent and hardworking and pursues excellence, will one be successful! 

No wonder our society is on its way down and out, because those elements are conspicuously lacking from it. But if we supposed believers actually behaved like real believers, and not like worldly people, you’d be surprised to see the difference in our world. But we only talk a good talk, and not walk the good walk we’re supposed to. That’s why the evil element of the world is now holding the upper hand. 

Remember what Jesus declared and expected of us: ‘Ye are the salt of the earth…Ye are the light of the world.’ But somewhere along the way we have lost our salty flavour and have hidden our lights under a bushel? Why? Perhaps through fear of the enemy, or more likely the extra effort it takes to be bright and salty. 

But look at what Jesus said about those situations nuh: ‘but if the salt have lost his savour (flavour), wherewith (by what) shall it be salted? It is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.’  (Matt.5:13) And also: ‘A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle (lamp), and put it under a bushel (basket), but on a candlestick (lamp stand); and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.’ (Matt.5:14-15) 

Oh my fellow believers, as a group, the church, the body of Christ, we have lost our salty flavour and our light is no longer shining forth into this evil world as brightly as it ought to, and thus we are being trodden underfoot by the rulers of darkness. Now that is a most untenable situation in the sight of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, who admonished us to: ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt.5:16) And unless we obey that command, then the church, Christianity will be of very li’l or no use to mankind. 

Hear this most interesting explanation from the scholars on all that nuh. ‘5:14-16. Ye are the light of the world describes the essential mission of the Christian to the world. He is the condition (salt) to meet the world’s needs and he has a mission (light) to the world. His light is to clearly shine forth into the darkness of human depravity. He is to set his light upon a candlestick, not hide it under a bushel, that is a basket. Darkness is the absence of light, and darkness alone cannot dispel the light, but the smallest light can dispel the greatest darkness.’ 

Oh friends, the Christian body, the church today is certainly not helping to reduce the world’s depravity, in fact it is contributing greatly to it, because we have become like the world, seeking the things of the world more than the things of God! Just look at the immorality, the scandals, the evil doings that are daily being uncovered in our churches eh! No wonder the unbelievers look at us and laugh and rightly shout out ‘Hypocrites!’ 

But to those of us who sincerely try to be salt and light, let’s go home today declaring (right ho!) our Thursday Blessings that the Lord has generously granted us to help us in our earthly work. As one, with sincere belief 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 unfortunately, I have to remind us every week, that those blessings were not granted to us to selfishly hoard, but to share with the less fortunate, as we spread our salty flavour and shine the light of Jesus throughout this dark world! Much LOVE!

…how can we say we LOVE Jesus…and are a part of His body…his church…when we ‘re not doing as He commands eh…

 

Today​’s Scrip-Bit 8 April 2019 Jeremiah 6:16.

Jeremiah 6:16.   Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein.

         

‘Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee!’ (Is.60:1) Yes friends, the LIGHT of the world has come; Jesus is with us, so please, let’s rise and shine the way He wants us to nuh! Remember He said, ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt.5:16) And that is exactly what we need to do as we go out into the world this Monday morning to face the enemy and all his evil, subservient minions. 

 And yes, sometimes it’s difficult, but we have the answer, the antidote that will get us going; our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, where we cry out to a merciful, LOVING, generous and forgiving God for health and strength and wisdom to face down the enemy and defeat him, all in Jesus’ name! So let’s get with it nuh. All together now in strong voice and sincere belief, because that’s the only way it works. (smile) 

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

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

But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour. We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle. 

Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of Your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’ 

 Oh friends, yuh feel it…yuh feel the rejuvenation that’s now taking place in your body, soul and spirit? That’s the working of the Lord’s Spirit in answer to our prayer! Oh what a wonderful God we serve and worship my people! Give him some thanks and praise nuh for all He does for us undeserving children of men! 

 And all God’s children declared (right ho!) a loud and proud and grateful: ‘Thank You Lord for all that you’ve done for us, are doing right now, and have promised to do in the future! We praise and bless Your holy name and give You the LOVE you want and deserve through Your Son, our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ! Amen!’ 

 Oh what a powerful tool is prayer my people! It’s God’s way of communicating with His children, and there is no power on earth greater than it, because that’s the way God set it up. And yes, prayer is very important in our lives, but like we all cry out that we have rights, few of us also consider the fact that rights bring responsibilities! Likewise, the ability to have prayer, also brings the responsibility of obedience. Hn! 

What’s that many of us ask eh? (smile) It’s simple: if you want to enjoy God’s goodness, then you have to be obedient to His ways and desires, and walk the straight and narrow path that He decrees. Note what Jeremiah said on His behalf, long before Jesus came and told us same thing. ‘Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein.’ 

And yuh know what friends, the Lord’s saying the same thing to us in this turbulent, evil and ungodly time. And yuh know the sad part is that we are saying the same thing, behaving in the same foolish and unwise manner as the people of Judah did so long ago. We are refusing to walk the straight and narrow path that God decrees we must if we are to live life eternal with Him. How stupid is that eh? VERY! 

 Hear how the scholars explain that verse nuh. ‘6:16. The people’s stubborn refusal to walk in the traditional ways of true righteousness is often mentioned by Jeremiah (12:16; 18:15; 23:12;31:21). Moving in their own paths and following their own way could only lead to Judah’s destruction (cf. Prov. 14:12) The contrast of the way of righteousness and life with the way of the ungodly and death is often made in the Scriptures (e.g. Ps.1; Matt. 7:13-14).’ 

 And if that was true then, why do we think it’s not true now eh? Because we stubborn and own way and rebellious and want to follow our naturally sinful and evil nature! As simple as that! We ought to know better, but the devil and the world have us so wrapped up in their clutches that we can’t see the forest for the trees. We just like li’l children when their parents tell them not to do something they still go ahead and do it, and when the consequences hit them they run and bawl for mammy and daddy! 

But friends, if we don’t get with the programme before Jesus comes back, it won’t have no mammy and daddy for us to call out to nuh! Because once that last trumpet sound, is all over but the moaning and groaning and gnashing of teeth! Yuh hear what Cousin Sol said so long ago? ‘There is a way which seemeth right unto a man; but the end thereof are the ways of death.’ (Prov.14:12) And if anybody should know is Cousin Sol, because he had the means and time to experiment and he went through it all. 

 And remember what happen to the rich man when he ended up in Hades? ‘And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus (the beggar who use to sit by his gate in the good times) that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.’ (Luke 16:24) But it couldn’t happen because there was a great gulf between heaven and Hades, plus the rich man when he had the opportunity did not make use of it. 

And the long and short of the matter is that after death there is no second chance! Amen! So please, please, I implore us to be wise and make good use of the opportunities we have now! Much LOVE!

 …in life…there are many chances…but come death…there are NONE…!  

         

Today’s Scrip-Bit 5 January 2019 Matthew 5:13a, 14a.

Matthew 5:13a,14a.   ​Ye are the salt of the earth…Ye are the light of the world!
 
Well it’s the first Saturday in the New Year, and though the ole fella was up a bit early, he’s fallen somewhat behind the eight ball. But that’s allowed eh, especially on a cloudy, winter’s Saturday morn? (smile) Hope everybody is catching up on their rest after the hectic Christmas and New Year’s seasons, but please don’t put away the Christmas spirit with the decorations, and remember that we are walking closer with Jesus this year of 2019! 

And since it’s Saturday, it’s time to look at what our friend Anselm sent us this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. Now this is an interesting scenario that he’s submitted: ‘We spend January 1st walking through our lives, room by room, drawing up a list of work to be done, cracks to be patched. Maybe this year, to balance the list, we ought to walk through the rooms of our lives… not looking for flaws, but for potential. 

Things to think about for 2019: 1. Talk less; listen more; 2. Remind yourself you are not the General Manager of the Universe; 3. Sit on your ego; 4. Take one day at a time; 5. Separate worries from concerns. If a situation is a concern, find out what God would have you to do and let go of the anxiety. If you can’t do anything about a situation, forget it; 6. Pray. Happy New Year to all my friends and family!‘ 

There’s nothing wrong with any of that! In fact it’s all stuff we should do, if we want to live a joyful and peaceful and blessed New Year! Then there is this quote that sort of paraphrases the thoughts above: ‘There are greater things to be achieved in every New Year, and each and everyone must prepare themselves to be great, not by words of the mouth, but by a lot of sacrifices.’ 

Oh friends, our world is in such a sad state of disrepair, that only enormous sacrifices on the part of each and every believer could ever hope to right it! That’s why, as true believers in, and steadfast followers of Christ, we have to totally embrace this last quote: ‘The ones who can see the vision when no one else can, and work on it like there is no tomorrow, will succeed. The rest will follow.’ 

Yes my Christian brethren, that’s what our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ expects of us; to have the vision He’s supplied and then to diligently and sincerely work on it like He desires of us. He most urgently wants us to be leaders, not followers! That’s why in His most memorable sermon, that on the Mount, He took such pains to point out what He expects of us: ‘Ye are the salt of the earth…Ye are the light of the world!’ 

Yeh faithful followers, in Jesus’ time, and still today, salt and light, are two of the most valuable things, much needed commodities in our world. Salt still enhances the taste of our food and keeps it fresh, while we can’t walk anywhere or do anything constructively if there’s only darkness. 

Light, especially that special light that Jesus brings and offers, is desperately needed in this terribly dark world of ours. The powers of evil and darkness are ruling the roost, and that doesn’t sit well with our Leader. And that ascendance of darkness and evil didn’t just happen overnight, it happened over a period of time when His followers were too lax, lazy, fearful and compromising to step up and confront the undesired situation! 

But remember friends, all is not yet lost, and once we have Jesus on our side, ANY and EVERYTHING is possible! However, we have to put in the sacrifices, the actual work, not just talk to improve our world! Just thing about the kind of world our grandchildren will inhabit in the next couple of decades if we do nothing NOW to make it better nuh? 

We’ve already allowed the evil and corruption of this world to fester and run like an inflamed sore, we can’t afford to let it get any worse, otherwise we’ll just have to amputate the rotting body part. That’s why these immortal words of Jesus ought always to be pounding in our hearts, minds, bodies and souls: 

‘Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savor (flavour), wherewith (by what) shall it be salted? It is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle (lamp), and put it under a bushel (basket), but on a candlestick (lamp stand); and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.’ (Matt.5:13-15) 

 Oh friends, what more can I say eh? Except that we can’t let down Jesus like we’re currently doing! We need to pull up our britches and tighten our bootstraps if we want to be truly successful workers in His cause. And one thing also to remember, when we fail Jesus, since we are His chosen workers, it also means that He is failing the Father! 

And under no circumstance can we allow the Father the opportunity to look askance at Jesus. That’s why we have to make the effort, the real sacrifice this year of 2019 and do as He pleaded: ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’ (Matt.5:16) 

Yes mih breddren, letting our light shine in this dark world must be our avowed purpose for this New Year, so that our Father in heaven, our Creator, Almighty God can be glorified. Remember that’s why He created us! Much LOVE!

…the Father sent Jesus to do a job…He did His part…set the foundation…then sub-contracted the rest of building His church to us… and He’s depending on us to do our part…to bring about successful completion…all to the glory of the Father’s name…

 

 

 

 

 

 

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