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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 May 2017 Luke 2:19.

Luke 2:19.    But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!

Well a Happy Mother’s Day to all you mothers out there! And this comes to you, regardless of whether you are a good, bad or indifferent mother. Just the fact that you went through all the rigors of motherhood; the nine months of bearing another child of the Creator’s in your womb and then suffering the excruciating pain, and pangs of birth, we celebrate you this fateful day. 

Motherhood is possibly the highest calling in God’s great earth, for you are following in God’s awesome footsteps; giving birth to a new creation, and then in most cases following that up with care and nurture for the rest of your life. 

And even if you didn’t personally go through the bodily discomfort of motherhood and felt those pains of giving birth, but you nourished and cared for one of God’s little ones, you are still considered a Mother! And as they say, once a mother, always a mother! There’s no getting away from it. 

And on this Mother’s Day Sunday, I went searching for an appropriate hymn to open our praise and worship session, and this one, ‘Where can I turn for Peace?’ seems to be a fan favourite. Apparently it was written by Emma Lou Thayne (1924-1973), a Mormon Poet and English teacher at the University of Utah, as she watched her daughter go through the agonizing throes of anorexia. 

Just like a mother eh! So let’s sincerely offer up these words of heartache, of solace and praise through sacrificial lips as we gather in holy fellowship this fateful Sunday morning. 

In full voice now: ‘Where can I turn for peace? Where is my solace When other sources cease to make me whole? When with a wounded heart, anger, or malice, I draw myself apart, Searching my soul? Where, when my aching grows, Where, when I languish, Where, in my need to know, where can I run? 

Where is the quiet hand to calm my anguish? Who, who can understand? He, only One. He answers privately, Reaches my reaching In my Gethsemane, Savior and Friend. Gentle the peace He finds for my beseeching. Constant He is and kind, LOVE without end.’ 

Oh friends, what a touching cry of anguish and grief, but one which ends as it should; with the faithful LOVE of Jesus producing solace and comfort in our time of need. As the song so rightfully says, He is the ONLY ONE; the ONLY ONE who hears our piercing cries and answers them, in private to boot! 

No doubt our terrible anguish of soul reminds Him of His own anguish in the Garden of Gethsemane, when He beseeched the Father for mercy, so He can sympathize, and also empathize with our pain. 

Oh my brethren, do we realize that Jesus is like a mother to us? He cares for, cleanses, heals, nurtures, comforts, befriends, and saves us; all the things our earthly mothers do. So in other words, a godly mother is a true reflection of Jesus! 

That reminds me of my biological mother, Molly, and also my five adopted mothers, yes friends, I had six mothers, Glory to God! Unfortunately all of them have gone to be with the Lord now, but their memories will forever be a part of me, because their LOVING-kindness, in my times of need, made me the man I am today. 

The Lord worked His wonders through those strong, beautiful women to bring me to where I needed to be. And believe me, none of them took any nonsense from me; they told me what I needed to hear or do, regardless of what I thought, and Molls, bless her soul, did put the strap to me when she thought it necessary. 

So I wasn’t spoiled or mollycoddled because it was all TOUGH LOVE! Oh how I wish there was more tough LOVE in our world today! We wouldn’t have so many wayward and ungodly children. But I guess we’re just reaping what we’ve sown in the last generation. 

That finally brings us to our Bit: ‘But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.’  It tells us about the foremost mother of our world, Mary, the Mother of Jesus. 

Can we ever imagine the life she experienced? I don’t think so. Her first child being miraculously conceived, being the Son of God, with so many people saying so many extraordinary things about Him. First of all, the angels telling the shepherds about His birth, His Messianic destiny, and they checking out the story and finding Him in the manger, then going and spread the news. Leaving poor Mary, possibly still a teenager, to sit and ponder all that was happening. 

Then shortly thereafter, when they took Jesus to the synagogue to be presented, and heard the praises and marvellous things said about Him by Simeon and Anna (Luke 2:25-38) Can you imagine how speechless and bewildered Mary must have been?  

And then that time when Jesus was about twelve and they took Him to Jerusalem and lost Him on the journey back home to Nazareth, then three days later they found Him in serious conversation with the learned men in the temple. But when they questioned Him as to why He had abandoned them, ‘And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? wist ye not (don’t you know) that I must be about my Father’s business?’ (Luke 2:49) 

Hn! Yuh think I could have told my mother and father that around twelve years of age? Absolutely not! Most of us would have been checking our teeth to see if they were still all there. (smile) 

‘And they understood not the saying which he spoke unto them. And he went down with them, and came to Nazareth, and was subject unto them: but his mother kept all these sayings in her heart.’ (Luke 2:50-51) 

Ah friends, Mary’s motherhood wasn’t easy, but she stood up strong under it, knowing that the God who had chosen her to be the mother of His Son, was ever-faithful and would not fail her. 

Likewise, all you mothers out there today, who might be finding motherhood somewhat difficult, please allow Mary to be you example, and believe too, that the Lord who had entrusted your children to you, will not leave you in the lurch, because His faithfulness is exemplary. Much LOVE!

…a mother’s work is never done…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 March 2017 Psalm 107:29.

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

And then the snow came…white and plentiful! (smile) Yes friends, it does look beautiful out there, with the area all covered in white. It began yesterday afternoon and is scheduled to go in to tomorrow, Wednesday. 

Hundreds of flights have been cancelled at the airport. They haven’t even gotten around to cleaning the lanes in my area as yet, so much of the white stuff has fallen. And it’s not only snowy but cold too. The temperature in my neck of the woods is around minus 11 Celsius. Hn! 

And the best part of the whole scenario is that I am scheduled to go into the big city of T.O. for an M.R.I. on my heart this morning at 11:15. Well what do you know? That doesn’t seem to be happening nuh! 

With my supposed heart problems, I’m definitely not going to fight the treacherous roads and weather to go into the city. And they can charge me the hundred dollars for not giving them 2 business day notice of cancellation, which I’ll fight anyway. 

And on top of all that, I’ve been fighting a cold all weekend, which today has morphed into a cough. So I obviously can’t go and lie quietly in their disgustingly loud machine for the half an hour or forty-five minutes that it takes. 

Now don’t get me wrong, I do want to get the procedure done, but not under these unfavourable conditions. End of tirade! (smile) 

And before we get into our Bit, here’s an interesting quote from my ‘P.S. I LOVE YOU’ Poster. It says: ‘If you are doing your best, you won’t have to worry about failure.’ 

And that’s gospel truth friends! Once your mind is focused on excellence, you won’t have time to consider failure. And if you’re a believer in Jesus Christ, then that’s even more of a gospel truth, because with Jesus on our side we can’t fail! 

We might make mistakes and feel like failures, but since with Jesus there is no giving up, and since failure only comes when you give up, then through pure logic, true believers never fail. Ah mih people, I know it’s a tad convoluted, but it’s all true. (smile) 

Now here is our Bit which resounds with everlasting truth. ‘He maketh the storm a calm, so that the waves thereof are still.’ 

Yes my fellow believers that’s indeed what our wonderful Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ does! Yesterday we read about the metaphorical stuff before our Bit about sailors drunkenly reeling around in storms on the sea, today we’ll read about the real McCoy. 

Listen to Luke’s account in the Good Book. ‘Now it came to pass on a certain day, that he (Jesus) went into a ship with his disciples: and he said unto them, Let us go over to the other side of the lake. And they launched forth. 

But as they sailed he fell asleep: and there came down a storm of wind on the lake; and they were filled (filling) with water, and were in jeopardy. And they came to him (Jesus), and awoke him, saying, Master, Master, we perish. 

Then he arose, and rebuked the wind and the raging of the water: and they ceased, and there was calm. And he said unto them, Where is your faith? And they being afraid wondered (marvelled), saying one to another, What manner of man is this! For he commandeth even the winds and the water, and they obey him.’ (Luke 8:22-25) 

Ah my people, it was the same God-man who created the wind and the water, so obviously when He spoke to them they would listen to Him! And Jesus is asking us the same thing today: where is our faith in Him in the midst of all our storms of life? 

Do we run afraid to Him, or are we faithful enough to believe that He is already in the midst of them with us, working them out for our benefit? 

Now the latter just shows more maturity, but the important thing is that we come to Him in all aspects of our lives, be they stormy or not. For He is the ONLY ONE who can truly calm anything that’s happening with us. 

And the scholars offer these explanations. ‘8:23. The Sea of Galilee is surrounded by mountains. High winds sweep down suddenly from these heights, whipping up the sea.’ 

‘8:25. It was a struggle f or the disciples, as for others, to come to grips with the person of Christ. Witnessing His mighty works helped, but a personal faith commitment still had to be made. The decision would not have been an easy one.’ 

No my people, it would not have been easy for those disciples way back then, seeing this ordinary looking man calming the wind and the sea. 

It’s still difficult for many of us today, even knowing what we know, with all the trappings of the New Testament and the teachings down through the last two thousand years. Imagine their dilemma nuh! 

And we’ll go home declaring our Tuesday Mantra in all sincerity and truth. As one 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!’ 

Oh precious people, how wonderful it is to be the beloved of God and the friend of Jesus! Glory Hallelujah! Now let’s go out and share it with the world as He desires nuh! Much LOVE!

…Jesus is simply the answer to …EVERYTHING…   

P.S. I just called the hospital and cancelled my appointment, and they didn’t charge me the hundred dollars. Glory to God! Only thing is that the next available appointment is in May. But who knows, by then I might not even have a heart problem, the way our mighty God works in mysterious ways. (smile) Much LOVE!

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 11 September 2016 Joshua 1:6a.

Joshua 1:6a.   Be strong and of a good courage…

Well friends, it’s Sunday, the Lord’s Day, so let’s have church nuh! (smile) It is only mete and right that we should do so on this day. And as always, the best way to begin church is by offering up our sacrifices of praise and worship and thanksgiving, to soften our hearts, get us receptive to receive the Lord’s Holy Word. 

And we’ll do that by singing one of our all-time favourite songs of praise, ‘Amazing Grace.’ Let’s make the Lord know that we are serious here today by raising heaven’s roof with a magnificent rendition. 

All together now: ‘Amazing grace! How sweet the sound. That saved a wretch like me! I once was lost but now am found Was blind, but now I see.’Twas grace that taught my heart to fear, And grace my fears relieved; How precious did that grace appear The hour I first believed! 

Through many dangers, toils, and snares, We have already come; ‘Tis grace hath brought me safe thus far, And grace will lead me home. The Lord has promised good to me, His word my hope secures; He will my shield and portion be As long as life endures. 

Yes, when this flesh and heart shall fail, And mortal life shall cease, I shall possess, within the veil, A life of joy and peace. The earth shall soon dissolve like snow,The sun forbear to shine; But God, who called me here below, Will be forever mine’ 

Oh my brethren that was wonderful! The Lord had to sit up and take notice! 

Now let’s pray; ‘Oh merciful Father, we come to you this day with humble and contrite hearts and spirits, offering confession and repentance for our recent transgressions. We sincerely pray that you will forgive us our disobedience and restore a right heart and clean spirit in us. 

Please strengthen and encourage us, so that we can go out and successfully minister to others, letting them know of your wonderful, mercy, grace, forgiveness and salvation, so that they can come to you and be granted eternal life. This we pray in the holy name of Your Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen!’ 

And now let’s have a moment’s silence in remembrance of the 15th anniversary of the 9/11 bombing of the World Trade Centre in New York…. 

Ah Lord eh, what a horrific disaster! But unfortunately our world is currently being dominated by disasters each and every day, that’s why as Christians we need more than ever to embrace the words of our Bit: ‘Be strong and of a good courage…’ 

Yes friends, now is when we truly need the guidance and strength that the Holy Spirit of Christ dwelling in us provides. But it won’t provide anything unless we listen closely and follow its lead. It all depends on us as individuals. 

Our world is so angry and strife-filled that we can’t make it through with man’s help alone, we need heavenly assistance to make it through these difficult times. And we can only get that when we put our sincere faith and trust in Jesus Christ, the Living Lord who died on the cross of Calvary to pay for our sins. 

Oh my people, Jesus is the ONLY ONE who can help us be successful in these trying times, in these last days! 

Now let’s look at some scriptures that keep us strong and encouraged. And we’ll begin with the opening words of Bruh David from Psalm 27 – The Lord is my light and my salvation. 

Say it with me people: ‘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? When the wicked, even mine enemies and my foes, came upon me to eat up (devour) my flesh, they stumbled and fell. Though a host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear: though war should rise against me, in this will I be confident.’ (Ps.27:1-3) 

Yes my fellow believers, we need to write scriptures like that indelibly in our hearts, minds, bodies and souls so that we can be confident in our walk of faith. 

Now hear the words Bruh David spoke to Cousin Sol when he entrusted him with building the Lord’s temple. ‘Only the Lord give thee wisdom and understanding, and give thee charge concerning Israel, that thou mayest keep the law of the Lord thy God. 

Then shalt thou prosper, if thou takest heed to fulfill the statutes and judgements which the Lord charged (commanded) Moses with concerning Israel: be strong and of good courage; dread not, nor be dismayed.’ (1 Chr.22: 12-13) 

Oh friends, those are the kinds of word we should be paying heed to, as well as imparting to our children, so that the word of the Lord, His strength and encouragement can be passed down to future generations, because that’s the only way Christianity will survive. 

And we’ll end today with this encouraging word from Cousin Sol. ‘The name of the Lord is a strong tower: the righteous runneth into it, and is safe (is set on high).’ (Prov.18:10) 

And for good measure, the scholars tell us.’18:10. The righteous find protection in the Lord.’ Now that’s everlasting truth my people! 

So today, please, let’s turn to our high tower, our rock, our strength, our fortress, the Lord God Jehovah, He of Abraham Isaac and Jacob so that we can find strength, encouragement, enthusiasm, LOVE, mercy and grace to successfully complete our earthly pilgrimage! For that is the wisdom of the ages. Much LOVE!

…only the Creator can truly sustain the creation…  

P.S.  Ah friends, please excuse the lateness of the Bit, but the ole fella has been sick for the last few days and did not get up early enough to write it before going to church. But as they say, better late than never. (smile) Much LOVE!