Today’s Scrip-Bit   9 May 2022 Lamentations 3:31.

Lamentations 3:31.      For the Lord will not cast off for ever. 

Oh my people, it’s been a somewhat rough beginning to the Monday morning. For the last four or five days I’ve been plagued with some stomach problems, that’s why the Bit has been so late. It seems that if the stomach is not working properly, the mind won’t function well either. (smile) And thankfully, we are on the road to recovery…we hope. And the Lord in His great care and concern has just caused the duchess to bring me some porridge and dry toast to assist in alleviating the problem. Ah friends, between the both of them I certainly can’t go wrong. (smile) 

And that’s why, when the Good Book opened just now on this awesome scripture of promise, I simply had to use it. It comes from that awesome Chapter 3 of Jeremiah’s Lamentations, when he was undergoing some persecution and difficulties as he tried to do God’s work. However, despite his problems, at one stage he earnestly claimed: ‘For the Lord will not cast off for ever. But though he cause grief, yet will he have compassion according to the multitude of his mercies. For he doth not afflict willingly (with delight), nor grieve the children of men. To crush under his feet all the prisoners of the earth.’ (Lam. 3:31-34) 

Yes, my faithful brethren, though our God might sometimes allow us to be smitten with the bread of affliction, He will never cast us off forever. Because that’s just not His nature, not His style; He’s a genuinely merciful, forgiving, caring and compassionate God. That’s who He is! And, if like me, today you are embroiled in some kind of difficulty that you can’t fix, or doesn’t seem to want to go away, then please do like me too and have hope, be a ‘prisoner of hope,’ turn to the Lord and sincerely ask for His help, for as the sons of Korah truthfully declare in Psalm 46: ‘God is our refuge  and strength, a very present help in trouble.’ (Ps. 46:1) 

And that’s the gospel truth my people! Our God is indeed an abundantly available help in time of trouble. And though He might not deliver us immediately, or the way we desire, He will help us get through whatever is dogging our footsteps. Don’t worry, I need to believe that too because this stomach problem is certainly painful and annoying, like a li’l mouse just gnawing away at my insides. But it’s also very distracting, not allowing me to concentrate properly on the things I seek to do. Anyway, with the Lord’s help, I know that it will eventually pass, and I will return to normal…it’s just taking so long though. (smile) 

That’s why we say, and believe, that this too shall pass. Jesus reminds us that ‘Heaven and earth, shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.’ (Matt. 24:35) And when we believe that, we gain the strength to understand and accept that our problems, though real and difficult, will not last forever. As one contributing writer to the website, ibelieve.com, Debbie McDaniel writes in an article on the subject. ‘The great news is this: God never leaves us to fend for ourselves in difficult times. He promises to be with us in all that we face, and His whole heart encompasses our pain, surrounds us in peace, and gives us incredible hope and grace to keep pressing through.’ 

Now that ought to reassure us and make us an even bigger prisoner of hope in God! And for those of us who are not familiar with the scripture about the prisoner of hope, it comes from the prophet Zechariah’s prophecy about Zion’s future king coming to bring peace and salvation: ‘lowly and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.’ (Zech. 9:9) And we know that prophecy was fulfilled on Palm Sunday when Jesus made His triumphant entry into Jerusalem riding on a donkey, the sign of peace when kings entered a territory. 

Then to encourage his listeners, Zechariah later said: ‘Turn you to the stronghold, ye prisoners of hope: even today do I declare that I will render (restore) double unto thee.’ (Zech. 9:12) Yes friends, our stronghold is the Lord God Jehovah, and if we will become a prisoner of hope in Him today, that is, remain hopeful despite our less than favourable circumstances, in due course He will give us double for our trouble. Like Isaiah said of the Lord in his good tidings of salvation. ‘…to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified.’ (Is. 61:3) 

Oh my fellow saints, our very existence is all about the glorification and honour of our great God, and until we truly appreciate that fact and let it guide our lives, we will not enjoy the abundant life that Christ died for us to have. And to help us come to that awesome realization, let’s approach the throne of grace in prayer, through our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, letting heaven know of our needs and desires. 

As one voice: ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You this Monday morning for life and strong faith in Christ, despite the mass confusion in our world. We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously disobeyed Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, who has faithfully promised to hear and answer our prayers when we humble ourselves, pray, and sincerely seek Your face. That’s why we come to You now, with sincere repentance in our hearts, pleading with You to give us wise guidance and direction to alleviate our problems.  

And Father, we pray that you will ease the pain of the many who are suffering from negative situations. Please show them Your awesome grace and mercy, and keep Your promise that You’ll hear our prayer, forgive us, and heal our land if we turn from our evil ways. Show this evil world that You are indeed Jehovah Rapha; the God who heals! We pray this in the holy and blessed name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Amen! And again, we say: Amen!’ 

Now, let’s remember, that if we hope to receive positive answers to our supplications, then we need to keep the promises that we’ve made. Much LOVE!

…hope springs eternal…and while there is life…there’s ALWAYS hope… 

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit 13 February 2021 Matthew 5:12.

Matthew 5:12.     ​Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.

Oh friends, this lazy, hazy, bleak looking Saturday morning in the winter of 2021 has begun a tad rough on the ole fella. (smile) Ah the pleasures of a late night…but the travesty of an early morning. But as the ole people would say, when you do not listen you will feel, and believe me, I am feeling now. (smile) But that’s neither here nor there, God’s work needs to be done, and I know that He will give me the strength and wisdom to do it in a good and sound manner. Why? Because He has faithfully promised: ‘My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness.’ (2 Cor. 12:9a) 

Yes friends, that’s what the Lord told Bruh Paul after he had complained for the third time about a nagging and uncomfortable body problem. And that’s the promise He makes to all of us who are weak and pained; in our pain and weakness His strength and glory are shown forth. Please remember that in those times when you feel weak and in pain; the Lord’s grace will show out in you if you turn to Him in all sincerity. Enough preaching now though. And I know you’re thankful for that. (smile) 

Let’s see what our friend Anselm had to say in his quotes this past week. And the first one, makes this dramatic statement. ‘Blind belief in authority is the greatest enemy of truth.’ Now that statement does have a lot of truth in it, but whether it’s the greatest enemy of truth, I don’t know. And we do have an exceptionally good recent example of it; the crowds of Americans who listened to the lying and deceitful rhetoric of Donald Trump and the other high up, powerful but oh so deceitful crooks around him, and blindly believed in the lies and deceits they so blatantly spouted. That is what has caused the wide, unamicable split, the hateful and resentful division we now have in the U.S. of A. 

So blind belief in authority does carry serious negative problems to overall truth. And the second quote proudly proclaims: ‘Attitude is a choice. Happiness is a choice. Optimism is a choice. Kindness is a choice. Giving is a choice. Respect is a choice. Whatever choice you make makes you. Choose wisely.’ And you really can’t find any problems with that statement nuh my people, for it’s totally true. All those characteristics are choices that one must make if you want to embrace them. 

And furthermore, they are all characteristics that the believer in Jesus Christ ought to espouse, because they are all a part of his philosophy, a part of His wonderful gospel! That means choices are an invaluable part of our life, we can’t get away from them, but the essence of the whole thing is that we must be sure to choose wisely, for unwise decisions usually cause, or bring dire consequences, even life-changing, lifetime ones. And having said that, I would be amiss not to tell us that the best choice we can ever make in this life is to believe in Jesus Christ, make him our Lord and Saviour and follow him from now until eternity! 

And interestingly enough, that last quote segues nicely into this next one. ‘When one door of happiness closes, another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us.’ And isn’t that the gospel truth my fellow saints in Christ! Although we know that when the Lord closes one door He usually opens another, we get so caught up in what we might have lost, that we fail to realize and recognize the better things that the Lord is offering in the new situation. 

I guess that’s just a normal human reflex action. We miss the good things we lose, more than we look forward to the better things that are ahead. But let’s not beat up ourselves over that fact nuh because mourning and grief over the lost all takes time. But we do have to make sure that we don’t make that sad time too long since it would just break us up even further. Remember the Lord doesn’t close doors on us, unless he has better ones to open. And when those doors close in future, let’s contemplate the promise He made to His people, Israel, through the prophet Isaiah so long ago; ‘to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness.’ (Is: 61:3) 

But as sister Joyce (Joyce Meyer) likes to say, ‘You can’t get the beauty until you give up the ashes.’ And that’s oh so true. We have to turn away from the closed door, though it may be sad and hard, else we’ll never see the newly opened one. It’s all a matter of maturity, of growing in God’s Spirit, of being lifted up from glory to glory! 

And the last quote trumpets this eternal truth: ‘Never be afraid to raise your voice for honesty and truth and compassion against injustice and lying and greed. If people all over the world…would do this, it would change the earth.’ And yes, that’s an indisputable fact! If mankind would only change its evil, wicked, inhumane and unjust ways, this world would be such a wonderful place! But I guess that’s never going to happen, at least until Jesus sets up His kingdom here on earth. 

In the meanwhile though, He expects his faithful and sincere followers to exhibit those magnificent tendencies of truth, compassion, honesty and justice, and to stand up forcefully against the powers of greed, inhumanity, injustice and all the other negative things that make life so difficult for so much of mankind. And I believe the best way to close today is with some memorable words of Jesus taken from His Sermon on the Mount., the opening of His earthly ministry. 

And it’s worthwhile to note that He began with the Beatitudes, statements that the scholars explain ‘deal with the inner state of mind and heart that is the indispensable absolute truth of true Christian discipleship. It delineates the outward manifestations of character and conduct of true believers and genuine disciples… It’s a life of grace and glory, which comes from God alone.’ 

So let’s listen to these last few Beatitudes. ‘Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God. Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are ye when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.’ (Matt. 5:9-12) 

Oh friends, it is tough living for Jesus, but oh so rewarding. Hear the scholars as they explain just why living for Jesus is the most glorious thing we can do in this life. ‘5:12. Rejoice is the command that grows out of the blessedness of the believer. The phrase “Rejoice and be exceeding glad,” means even more, exult (triumph, jubilation)! Great is your reward in heaven focusses attention on the eternal destiny of all things. If God is as real as He claims, if the Bible is true, if heaven is to be gained, then no temporary earthly trouble or persecution can dispossess the child of God of joy in the prospect of the eternal glory that lies ahead.’ 

Let’s think on that nuh this Saturday my precious people. Much LOVE!

…blessed are those who believe in Jesus…and follow His example… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 July 2014 Isaiah 61:3

Isaiah 61:3.   To appoint unto (console) them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified.

Oh Friends, it’s a nice cool Thursday morning in early summer! And what does the ole fella have to say for himself? Not a whole lot nuh. I went to bed late, reading a novel, then had a rough night, turning and tossing, dreaming all sorts of stuff. But luckily though, it was all pleasant stuff, no nightmares, nothing scary… Thank the Lord for small mercies!
 
And now I’m here to write the Bit, seeking heavenly guidance to write something sensible that will help us all; that will motivate, encourage and keep our focus steadily on Almighty God, our LOVING Creator and generous Provider.
 
And in keeping with that task, I’ll just remind us that our task on this great earth is to take hold of God’s grace, to endure our afflictions with patience, without growing weary, knowing that in His own good time, our heavenly Father will perform, establish, strengthen and settle us.
 
We must be of good courage and wait with patience and perseverance, hungry hope and expectant faith on our wonderful and most faithful God. And all God’s people said a delightful ‘Praise the Lord! Amen.’
 
Yes Friends, we ought to, because that is all simply gospel truth! And why is that so? Because every worthy name named in the Good Book, had their trials and tribulations, their ups and downs, their tests and passages through the fire to check their true mettle.
 
And those who stood steadfast and strong, who passed the tests – obviously with God’s help – were subsequently rewarded By the Most High God Jehovah.
 
Oh my people, we have all sinned and fallen short of God’s glory and expectations. However, when we do acknowledge our shortcomings, confess our sins and return to being obedient to His will, He is most magnanimous to forgive and forget.
 
Oh what a great God we serve and worship! He delights so much in our repentance, that He’s promised there would be future glory in Zion, with good tidings of salvation:
 
‘To appoint unto (console) them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified.’
 
And was His great and holy name ever glorified when His Son Jesus fulfilled the first part of His everlasting promise!
 
We’re just waiting now, with patience and perseverance, hungry hope and expectant faith – yes, I do like those terms – for that fateful day when, as Isaiah promised in the Lord’s name: ‘Violence shall no more (longer) be heard in thy land, wasting (devastation) nor destruction within thy borders; but thou shalt call thy walls Salvation, and thy gates Praise.
 
The sun shall be no more thy light by day; neither for brightness shall the moon give light unto thee: but the Lord shall be unto thee an everlasting light, and thy God thy glory. The sun shall no more go down; neither shall thy moon withdraw it self: for the Lord shall be thine everlasting light, and the days of thy mourning shall be ended.
 
Thy people shall also be righteous: they shall inherit the land for ever, the branch of my planting, the work of my hands, that I may be glorified. A little one shall become a thousand, and a small one a strong nation: I the Lord will hasten it in his (its) time.’ (Is.60:18-22)
 
Oh Friends, what a glorious day that will be eh!
 
And if you don’t believe Isaiah, then listen to those same promises reiterated by our faithful Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, to John in His Revelations: ‘And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.’ (Rev.21:4)
 
Oh Glory Hallelujah! I can’t wait for that day my brethren! No more aches and pains – Wow!
 
And furthermore,  hear this on the New Jerusalem: ‘And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it. And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof. (Rev.21:22-23)
 
Oh happy dayyyy! When Jesus washed… When Jesus washed… ALL my sins away…!
 
As the scholars explain: ’21:22-23. There is no temple in the city, since both the Father and the Son will be present in their fullest manifestations. Its light will be provided by the Shekinah glory of God and of Christ (cf. Ex.3:3-4; 24:15-17; 33:14-16; Luke 2:9; 9:29; Heb.1:3).’
 
Plenty of scripture references tocheck out Friends. (smile)Now that’s not all: ‘And the nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it: and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it. And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day: for there shall be no night there.
 
And they shall bring the glory and honour of the nations into it. And there shall in no wise enter into it anything that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh (causes an) abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb’s book of life.’ (Rev.21:24-27)
 
Mama Mia! Oh my brethren, the imagined sight of that, through the eyes of faith is just working on me, stirring me up! (smile)
 
And there’s more: ‘And there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and his servants shall serve him: And they shall see his face; and his name shall be in (on) their foreheads. And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle (lamp), neither light of the sun; for the Lord giveth them light: and they shall reign for ever and ever.’ (Rev.22:3-5)
 
Oh my people, that is what awaits us at the end of the day, if we bear our burdens and yokes, already much lightened by our Saviour Jesus Christ, with patience and perseverance, hungry hope and expectant faith! There’s absolutely nothing better than what He’s promised!
 
So please, let’s get serious nuh, let’s buckle down, pull up our britches, pull up our socks, and whatever other cliché there is concerning improving our behaviour, and just live for Jesus, as He desires us to do. That’s wisdom of untold benefit! Much LOVE!
 
…Let’s LOVE our God…LIVE our Faith…and SPREAD His Word…that’s all He asks of us…
 
P.S.  Oh my Friends and fellow believers, I do hope you all enjoy reading this as much as I enjoyed writing it. There was a smile on my face and joy in my heart from soon after I began writing it, and saw where it was headed. Hope it brings a smile to your faces too and produces a fire in your hearts for Jesus! Please have a most blessed day walking safely and talking intimately with Jesus! Much LOVE!

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 2 July 2014 Isaiah 61:3

Isaiah 61:3.  To appoint unto (console) them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified.
 

And the celebrations went on late into the night! (smile) Well they might very well have, just not at my place. In fact, there were no real celebrations in my yard yesterday. We more or less took Canada Day as a day of quietness and peace, doing stuff around the house that needed to be done. And though I did get to bed rather late, it was certainly not from celebrating.
 
However, when called upon to arise and get going this morning, the old body totally rebelled. I remember getting up to go to the bathroom sometime after three o’clock and telling the Lord it was way too early to get a move on, especially since I hadn’t been to bed too long before that. But the next time I opened my bleary eyes it was after six o’clock. Hn, hn!
 
Now I’m sure there are a few of us in that predicament on this morning after. (smile) It’s a good thing though that my boss is such an understanding, forgiving and merciful boss, and He won’t rage on me or dock my pay, as some of the earthly bosses will do to those who are late this morning, especially after what has been an extraordinary long weekend for some.
 
Praise the Lord! What a life eh Friends! But these things do happen, even in the best of families. (smile)
 
Anyway, the word from my almanac for today is ‘COLLABORATE.’  And that is a most important word in all aspects of life! For remember that since no man is an island, complete unto himself, we therefore need to collaborate with others to get things done and thus have a decent and fulfilling life.
 
And the quote for today comes from Mattie Stepanek – Matthew Joseph Thaddeus Stepanek (1990-2004) American poet, peacemaker and philosopher, who published six books of poetry, he called ‘Heartsongs.’
 
Yes I know he was only fourteen when he died, but apparently his family suffered from a rare form of muscular dystrophy, which took his life and that of three other siblings at rather tender ages. Just goes to show how much we can achieve and accomplish either when pushed by things like upcoming death, or we truly put our minds to it.
 
Anyway, Mattie tells us this morning that ‘Unity is strength…when there is collaboration, wonderful things can be achieved.’
 
Wow mih breddren! What an awesome truth! And that from a young pup too! It’s true in ALL aspects of life!
 
But unfortunately, nowhere is it sadly lacking and badly needed more than in the earthly body of Christ Jesus! His church is much too fractured and divisive, with way too many different religions and denominations, all purportedly teaching and celebrating the same risen Christ.
 
Well if we’re all talking about the same Saviour, and telling the same story, then why are there so many divisions eh? There can be only ONE truth, so there should be only ONE message! I guess it just means that people are seeing the message differently, and thus telling it in different ways.
 
But Friends, what a beautiful explosion of Christianity there would be in this evil and ungodly world if the true and faithful brethren in Christ would concentrate on collaborating, in getting together, rather than falling apart into small cliques and divisions! Glory Hallelujah! The world would certainly stand up and take significant notice!
 
Please remember that Christ’s church is supposed to be ONE BODY, just like the Holy Trinity is ONE GOD!
 
Sadly though, at this juncture in our history, that cannot be said of Christ’s body, when we’re fighting so terribly and frightfully amongst ourselves. How can we expect to hear good tidings of salvation under those negative circumstances eh?
 
How can we expect the Lord ‘To appoint unto (console) them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified.’
 
It just isn’t realistic my people. The Lord’s seeking teamwork and unity amongst His children. How can we be truthfully called ‘trees of righteousness’ and ‘the planting of the Lord’ when we’re so disjointed and divisive eh, when we’re allowing the things of the world to drive us apart, rather than enjoining the things of God to bring us together?
 
The prophet Jeremiah spells it out very clearly for us. ‘Thus saith the Lord; Cursed be the man that trusteth in (the strength of) man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the Lord. For he shall be like the heath (a shrub) in the desert, and shall not see when good cometh; but shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, in a salt land and not inhabited.’ (Jer.17:5-6)
 
Yes Friends, that’s one side of the equation. Now listen to the other half of it, then tell me which half makes more sense, which one is wiser to follow.
 
‘Blessed is the man that trusteth in the Lord, and whose hope the Lord is. For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters, and that spreadeth out her roots by the river, and shall not see (fear) when heat cometh, but her leaf shall be green; and shall not be careful (anxious) in the year of drought, neither shall cease from yielding fruit.’ (Jer.17:7-8)
 
Yes Friends, those are the two options available to us, and it’s plainly stated what will happen in each. And just in case we hold deceitful intentions, please note that we can’t try to cover up our dark secrets while looking good on the outside, as we can do with men, for Jeremiah continues with the Lord’s declaration.
 
‘The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked (incurably sick) who can know it? I the Lord search the heart, I try (test) the reins (the mind, the most secret places), even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings (deeds).’ (Jer.17:9-10)
 
For sure my brethren, the Lord will judge each individual by his or her actions. So it’s up to each of us to choose the option we think best suits us. But let me add a word of wisdom here; (smile) option two wins the contest hands down!
 
Oh Friends, we can’t glorify our great and wonderful God by fighting amongst ourselves, so starting today, right now, let’s seriously concentrate on trusting the Most High God Jehovah nuh, and consequently live in unity and collaboration with each other, so that we can reap the blessedness that He has prepared for those who truly LOVE Him and seek to be obedient to His will.
 
It’s not all that difficult to do, and furthermore, it is truly the wisdom of and for the ages! Much LOVE!
 
…I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing…therefore choose life…that both thou and thy seed may live… (Deut.30:19)

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 July 2014 Isaiah 61:3

Isaiah 61:3.       To appoint unto (console) them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified. 

                                      HAPPY  BIRTHDAY  CANADA !’

Yes Friends, today is our Birthday in this fair and blessed land! One hundred and forty seven years young are we! Young by the standards of many other counties… And we still looking good too! Glory Hallelujah!

Yes my people, as I keep on saying, Canada is the BEST BIG COUNTRY IN THE WHOLE WIDE WORLD! Wow! So let’s try and keep it that way nuh Friends. And please note that it didn’t get to be that way by chance, but by choice! By the rule of common sense, law, diligence, hard work and trust and faith in Almighty God!

And it will only stay that way if we continue to do what’s right in the eyes of the Lord. Unfortunately though my brethren, we’re falling behind some, because we’re lowering our standards, and that’s never a good thing, because the best of anybody or anything is usually the one with the highest all-round standards.

So let’s celebrate, but at the same time take stock of what we’re doing nuh, and try to come up higher, in both civic and godly responsibility. That’s the only way we will remain at the top of the heap!

And please, please, as we celebrate this bountiful day, let’s remember Granny’s wonderful words of wisdom: ‘Sonny boy, drunk or sober, mind yuh business!’ (smile) I know it sounds clichéd, but that’s because it’s the awesome truth!

Anyway, enough preaching, (smile), here is the chorus of one of my favourite reggae, no just favourite songs, ‘Beauty for Ashes’ by Jermain Cowan. I heard it yesterday, and it so touched my heart – it does every time I hear it – I just had to share it, because the words and sentiments are so beautiful and true.

It says: ‘Beauty for ashes, In a shower of grace. Hope for tomorrow, It’s a bright and brand new day! He took away my sorrow, Put a smile on my face; Beauty for ashes, In a shower of grace.’

Oh mih breddren, mih breddren, how true that is of our great God; He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob!

And it’s only appropriate that we should use that wonderful promise of our wonderful Deity as our Bit on this birthday of Canada. Listen to the prophet Isaiah as he declares the good tidings of salvation to Zion, prophesying of the coming of Jesus.

‘The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me; because the Lord hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek (poor); he hath sent me to bind up (heal) the broken hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound; To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all that mourn;

To appoint unto (console) them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called the trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified.’ (Is.61:1-3)

Yes my people, it’s all for the Lord’s glorification! Let’s never forget that. In all we do, we ought to be thinking about glorifying our heavenly Father, for that’s one of the purposes He made us to fulfill. And if we are obedient to Him, we will enjoy innumerable blessings!

But Friends, the operative word here is ‘obedient.’ Our God is generous, LOVING, kind, merciful and all those other wonderful things, but he desires obedience of His people in return. And that sadly is why we are now experiencing our current state of ashes.

In the last couple of generations, obedience to Almighty God has simply gone by the wayside, but yet, foolishly, we still expect Him to bless us abundantly and be oh so merciful to us. Steups! That’s a fool’s wisdom my people!

Yuh see what He did to Sodom and Gomorrah, in whose footsteps our current world order is now marching? So what else but destruction can we expect if we continue along that pathway of disobedience eh? Too many of us take the serious pronouncements of the Bible as a joke, or old time stuff that no longer applies.

But Friends, I’m here to tell us that God doesn’t joke with, or in His Word, neither does He ever change. What He says stays the same forever. He is a God of justice and righteousness first and foremost!

And there is no better example of that than His sending His only son Jesus to die as a sacrifice for our abominable sins. He could just as easily have pardoned our sins, but because of His just and righteous nature, a price had to be actually paid for it, otherwise He would have forfeited that just and righteous acclamation.

So Friends, please don’t listen to all the crap the world’s throwing at us, for our continual disobedience to God will cause a hefty and significant price to be paid at some time or other. The Good Book doesn’t lie, and there are oodles of examples of nations and societies that rose to glory on the shoulders of God, then conveniently forgot Him when they became strong, but subsequently perished as a result of their disobedience.

Now let’s go home with some pleasant and thankful words from Bruh David, from Psalm 30 – A thanksgiving for deliverance from death. ‘Lord, by thy favour thou hast made my mountain to stand strong: thou didst hide thy face, and I was troubled. I cried to thee, O Lord; and unto the Lord I made supplication.

What profit is there in my blood, when I go down to the pit (grave)? Shall the dust praise thee? Shall it declare thy truth? Hear, O Lord, and have mercy upon me: Lord, be thou my helper. Thou hast turned for me my mourning into dancing: thou hast put off my sackcloth (the sackcloth of my mourning), and girded me with gladness; To the end that my glory (soul) may sing praise to thee, and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give thanks unto thee for ever.’ (Ps.30:7-12)

Yes Friends, let’s go forth and stop being silent! Instead, let’s sing the Lord’s continuous praise, as we walk in continual obedience to His everlasting will. There can be no higher wisdom than that! Much LOVE!

…as Uncle Charles (Charles Stanley) likes to say…the best way to live this earthly life…is to simply obey God…and leave all the consequences to Him…and that’s gospel truth my people…

P.S. Friends, it’s long and late, but what else can you expect on this Canada Day eh? (smile). It’s good though!