Today’s Scrip-Bit   18 October 2021 Philippians 4:11.

Philippians 4:11.     Not that I speak in respect of want (in regard of need): for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.

And since the universe unfurls exactly as its Creator programmed it to do, today is Monday! That’s what the printout says, and there is nothing we can do to change it, so we might as well just accept it and say, ‘the Lord be praised!’ (smile) Yes friends, we don’t have much, if any say in how the world turns, which means we had better learn to accept and be contented in whatever state we are in, allowing the Holy Spirit of Jesus to lead and guide us, knowing that in the end we will be well looked after by our heavenly Father, who has promised to work all things out for our good. 

And as Tim Sullivan says in the opening remarks of his sermon of how to abound and how to be abased, on the workerstogetherwithhim.org website. ‘To everything there is a season. Some seasons are of ease and others are of struggle. Life certainly has its ups and downs. But God desires that we know true contentment in all seasons, regardless of the circumstances that surround us.’ 

Now all of that is gospel truth, as Cousin Sol articulates as the Preacher in Ecclesiastes: ‘To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven.’ (Eccl. 3:1) And the Lord expects believers to handle whatever comes against them in any and every season with zeal and panache, with style and flair. (smile) And it’s great if we can handle the ups and downs of life with equanimity, that’s a calm and composed manner, especially in the difficult times. It’s not an easy thing to do though. 

That brings us to the encouraging words of Bruh Paul in his epistle to the church at Philippi, when talking about his appreciation of their gift. ‘Not that I speak in respect of want (in regard of need): for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.’ (Phil. 4:11) And therein lies the Christian’s problem: being content does not come as naturally to us, as complaining does. (smile) We have to learn how to be content. And that takes a lot of learning in a lot of difficult situations. 

Hear the scholars’ explanation on that verse. ‘4:11. Not that I speak in respect (because) of want: Paul’s ability to be content despite the circumstances assures the readers that his joy of verse 10 is not solely over his “need” being met at their expense. He implies that he could have done without their financial aid. For justifies this implication. I have learned …to be content: The Greek here suggests that contentment is a lesson learned neither in a classroom nor overnight, but through many practical experiences in life.’ 

Yuh better believe that friends, you can’t learn contentment in any classroom or in a short period of time. It’s only learned by going through the many hard knocks of life. As Bruh Paul continues: ‘I know both how to be abased (live humbly), and I know how to abound (live in prosperity): every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need.’ (Phil. 4:12) 

And the scholars tell us: ‘4:12. By listing some specific examples, this verse elaborates upon the very general and broad “in whatsoever state I am” of verse 11. Be abased means literally to discipline oneself, that is tighten the belt in lean times. To abound means to live in prosperity. Every where and in all things I am instructed (or “in all circumstances I have learned the secret of how”) to be full, that is “well-fed.” Paul has acquired the skill for successfully living with little and with much, the latter probably being harder.’ 

And to back up that statement, they quote the British Philosopher Thomas Carlyle (1795-1881) ‘For one man who can stand prosperity, there are a hundred that will stand adversity.’ And surprisingly that is very true. There are many who will withstand adversity better than prosperity. But here is the kicker, the engine power that makes the whole situation work. Bruh Paul’s proclamation: ‘I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.’ (Phil 4:13) All power and glory be to God, my fellow saints! 

Yes friends, that’s how we can abound and be abased and not lose hope and faith and trust in Almighty God! Now listen to the scholars: 4:13. The apostle’s ability of knowing how to live skillfully on little or in prosperity does not mean that he is a spiritual superman. The reason he can live in such extremes is not owing to his own ability. Rather he can do all things through Christ who strengtheneth him, thus enabling him to adapt to his various, ever-changing circumstances. God orders Paul’s various circumstances, and God gives him the strength to be content in them all, trying and perplexing though they may be.’ 

And that’s exactly what He does for every one of His children! God orders our steps, and He also gives us the wherewithal to handle them. That’s the kind of God He is, a fair, just, righteous and LOVING God! And the sooner we understand and appreciate that fact, the sooner we will make inroads into living the contented life. Now, through our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, let’s seek His omnipotent help with the many problems we are currently experiencing. 

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 go out and keep those promises we just made, so that the Lord can bless us and our land. Much LOVE!

…you can’t strong in ALL circumstances…unless the power of Christ is within you…                                                                                                             

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit 18 August 2021 Philippians 4:13.

Philippians 4:13.     I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.

So Wednesday has rolled around once more, in the quickly passing weeks of summer. And I wish someone could tell me why the weeks of winter don’t pass even half as quickly. (smile) They just seem to drag on and on and on. But that’s life in the northern climes, and with the help of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, we handle them just the same, though we need to be a bit more careful in the nasty weather. That means with Jesus guiding our lives we can do anything that’s necessary. 

We have that ever-faithful promise from the Good Book, where Bruh Paul writes to the Philippians: ‘Not that I speak of in respect of want (in regard of need): for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased (live humbly), and I know how to abound (live in prosperity): everywhere and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need.’ (Phil. 4:11-12) 

Yes friends, in these contrary times we believers must be good examples of contentment so that others can learn from us. And yes, contentment is something that’s learned, not in the classroom either, or overnight, but continuously through the hard knocks of life. We have become so accustomed to easy living that we complain about every single thing, and that’s the wrong attitude for believers to have. 

We need to be much more disciplined than we are; being able to tighten our belts in the hard times, or as the old people would say, band we belly when things rough, and then be able to live without airs and graces when the times get good. But it’s all a learning process, an acquired way of living. And what’s the basic underlying factor of our ability to do with or without? Bruh Paul tells us in no uncertain terms: ‘I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.’ (Phil. 4:13) 

Glory to God my brethren! Yes indeed! Christ is the one who gives us the strength to live that contented life, both in need or in prosperity! Christ is the one who enables us to adapt to the various situations we encounter in this crazy and undisciplined world. Whatever He tells us to do, or wherever He sends us, He gives us the wherewithal to handle whatever comes against us. But the problem is that we don’t pay sufficient attention to Christ’s commands, that’s why we so often find ourselves in hot water, or out of our league. 

Then we blame Him, but we are the ones who need to bear the blame for our lack of obedience to His instructions. Remember Jesus’ warning to the disciples: ‘Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. I am the vine, ye are the branches: he that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.’ (John 15:4-5) 

And I like how after all the palaver, Jesus throws in that last statement that clarifies the whole situation: ‘for without me ye can do nothing.’ And that’s a fact friends! Without Christ in our lives, we can’t do much of anything that’s really worthwhile. But with Him running the show, oh brother, we can be supermen, do miracles, show wonders, prophecy, speak in tongues, etc. etc.! That’s why Christ is such a valuable part of our lives. 

And one thing I like about Jesus is that He does not mince words, but tells it straight and true. As He said above, ‘for without me ye can do nothing,’ later on He tells the disciples: ‘Ye are my friends, if ye do what I command you.’ (John 15:14) And earlier on He was just as blunt: ‘If ye LOVE me, keep my commandments.’ (John 14:15) And again He tells them: ‘A new commandment I give unto you, That ye LOVE one another; as I have LOVED you, that ye also LOVE one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have LOVE one to another.’ (John 13:34-35) 

Yuh see friends, our entire discipleship is based on keeping the commands of Christ, which basically boil down to having LOVE for each other, that’s treating each other kindly and with compassion, like Christ treats us. And only as we show that LOVE for each other to the world, will they recognize that we are indeed His disciples. And I’m sad and sorry to say that we are not showing that LOVE for each other to the world as much as we need to. 

That’s why so many are turning away from God, or simply refusing to accept Christ as Lord and Saviour. They see us supposed Christians as merely a bunch of ole hypocrites, who talk a good talk, but don’t walk it, like the Pharisees of old did! And they are quite right! There’s too much infighting, dissension and evil doing within Christ’s church; too many petty differences that breed unnecessary resentment and strife. And until we clean up our own backyard, we can’t fault the neighbours for not wanting to run with us. 

So please my brethren, this time of much strife, sickness and natural disaster, is the perfect time for us to do that, the time to come together and show the real beauty of living for Christ. Remember Christ is depending on us, His ambassadors, His earthly agents to do His work with diligence and excellence, something we are currently not doing. Yes, my fellow saints in Christ, let’s raise the level of our standards nuh, instead of following the world and lowering them. That’s Christ’s desire for us in these trying times! 

Consequently, with that on our minds, let’s go home declaring (yeahhh!!!) our Wednesday Wail, letting all and sundry know of our wonderful position in Christ. Altogether now: ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! I am halfway home. My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

Oh my, my! And please remember friends, that if we endure to the end, the future will be even more glorious than we can ask or imagine! So please let that wonderful thought drive us this Wednesday morning as we go out to do Christ’s work. Much LOVE!

…until you start living for Christ…you will not know how wonderful it is…                                                                                                                       

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit 9 July 2021 Philippians 4:12a.

Philippians 4:12a.     I know both how to be abased (suffer want), and I know how to abound:

Well at last we have awakened to the sun and not dark, cloudy skies! (smile) As they say, you never truly appreciate the sun until you’ve seen the rain…and literally too much of it. But as good believers we must learn to be contented in whatever situation we find ourselves. As Bruh Paul wrote to the Philippians from a Roman prison regarding the gift they sent him. ‘Not that I speak in respect of want (regarding need): for I have learned, in whatever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased (suffer want), and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and suffer need.’ (Phil. 4:11-12) 

Yes friends, Bruh Paul is saying that he was grateful for the financial contribution of the Philippians, but he could also have done without it, because he had learned how to be contented in times of plenty, as well as in times of scarcity. And then he added that verse we all find so easy to quote, but don’t fully understand: ‘I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me. (Phil. 4:13) Please note though, as the scholars explain: ‘The Greek here suggests that contentment is a lesson learned neither in a classroom nor overnight, but through many practical experiences in life.’ 

And that’s the indisputable truth my people! Contentment in all circumstances, or merely contentment itself, is a hard-earned lesson offered and majored only in the school of hard knocks, the school of life. But then again, it’s only through the grace and power of Christ that we can learn such an important lesson. Let’s never forget that aspect of it. And on the Billy Graham Evangelistic Website, I found this interesting commentary on the subject by Joy Allmond. She says: ‘It’s part of the human condition – we often want what we don’t have or what we see other people getting. Discontentment is a disease of the heart running rampant, even among the most faithful believers in Christ.’ 

Then she goes on to give some examples of discontentment, which basically break down to greed, envy, jealousy and selfish pride. And follows it up with this question, one that we can, ought to all ask ourselves. ‘Why are we so easily discontented? We could assume people in the above scenarios are too busy focusing on their circumstances and not on God.’ Now isn’t that the living truth? It certainly is. Most of our discontent comes from focusing on our circumstances and not on God and His awesome ability to change or improve them. 

Ms. Allmond then tells us a couple of ways to put our focus on where it belongs – in humility and praise. Yes friends, when we concentrate on those two areas of our spiritual lives, we won’t have time to make comparisons and become disappointed or discontented. That’s because our focus is totally concentrated on God, not the circumstances currently surrounding us. And the two biblical examples Ms. Allmond gives are first on humility, Bruh Paul’s words above to the Philippians. 

She then explains: ‘Paul wrote this letter from a Roman prison, having been incarcerated for sharing his faith. By our standards here in the United States, this is a very unfair predicament. Yet, Paul did not feel he was short of anything. He was humble to accept the circumstances he had been given, because he was humbled by the grace he had been given by God when he became a follower of Christ. He knew, at that point, that he possessed that most important thing he could ever obtain – assurance of salvation and a right relationship with his Lord.’ Now do we know that my faithful brethren in Christ? I surely hope so, otherwise we are definitely missing an essential aspect of our Christian faith. 

Then on the subject of praise, she highlights the passage of scripture where Paul and Silas are imprisoned in Philippi. ‘And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed and sang praises unto God (were praying and singing songs): and the prisoners heard them. And suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken: and immediately all the doors were opened, and every one’s bands (chains) were loosed.’ (Acts. 16:25-26) And we all know what happened afterward; no one escaped, but the jailer and his family were saved, and no doubt some of the other prisoners too, which was God’s real purpose behind the earthquake. 

Ms. Allmond’s commentary on that scripture is also interesting. ‘In this passage, Paul was imprisoned (at an earlier time), along with Silas, for spreading the Gospel. They had been stripped and beaten severely. Instead of complaining or lamenting, the two men began to sing praises to their God. It’s probably safe to say they didn’t feel like praising the Lord, but they chose to have a grateful heart. They literally “brought down the house” with their songs of praise! The floor of the prison was shaken by an earthquake, and everyone in their midst were set free (chains loosed). Not only were the other prisoners set free (chains loosed) by their praise, the heart of the jailer was changed (verses 31-40). 

It’s interesting to see that their attitude about their circumstances not only pleased God, it impacted other people – it freed them. We can become so caught up in our attitude of discontentment that it affects the people in our paths. It could even keep them from wanting to know Christ. Do you think the jailer would have been attracted to a relationship with Christ if he sensed a bitter heart in Paul and Silas? Let’s commit to freedom from the bondage of discontentment through attitudes of humility and praise. By doing this, we can do more than live the abundant life in Christ that was intended for us. We can impact the world by living this outwardly for those around us to witness.’ 

Oh my fellow saints of Christ, I could not put it any better than that. So please let’s take that wise and wonderful advice to heart nuh, for it will certainly benefit us all. And there’s no better time to begin doing that, than right now, (smile) by going to our great and wonderful God in humble prayer, acquainting Him with our problems, through our Friday Chant. 

As one strong, confident, but humble voice: ‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through this past week. You know it’s been rough… what with all the anxiety, the confusion and havoc that the Covid-19 virus and the various other areas of strife are causing. We can’t seem to fix it on our own Lord, that means we desperately need your help. Oh heavenly Father, with your omnipotent help, and our trusting faith, we know that we can stand strong and steadfast and defeat both the virus and the unrest in our streets. 

So Lord, we sincerely ask you today to give the governments and those involved in the forefront of this serious and unexpected storm, the wise guidance to handle the situation properly, with the least amount of loss to life and property as possible. And please help those of us who must go out to work amidst all the confusion, to be responsible and to stay safe, and avoid any more serious setbacks. And Lord, we fervently pray that You’ll use this situation to bring a lot of backsliders back to your fold, show them the error of their ways. 

And please introduce a whole new flock, who will embrace your LOVE and compassion by the example, we, your faithful believers set. Yes Lord, please use this pandemic and the unrest in the streets 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!’  

Now that all sounds wonderful, but please remember that unless we do change our evil ways, and become truly faithful believers, our prayer will not be positively answered. Much LOVE!

…the Lord searches our hearts…for right and sincere motives…before He answers our prayers…                                                                                           

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

Today’s Scrip-Bit 25 January 2021 Philippians 4:13.

Philippians 4:13.     ​I can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me.

Monday’s on the board friends! How are we going to greet it eh? I hope it’s with plenty hope, LOVE, joy and peace, as our Christian tenets teach us, rather than with fear, anxiety and a whole lot of negativity based on our present troubled circumstances. Yes, we will have trouble, persecution, tribulation and what not in this sinful world, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ said that, but then He went on to conquer the negative stuff, like hell, death and the grave by His crucifixion and resurrection so that we would not have to worry about all the negative stuff that came our way. 

Here’s how He put it: ‘These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.’ (John 16:33) What wonderful news that is my brethren! Jesus has already overcome the world, so we just have get ourselves together and maintain that victory! Maintain it with good cheer; that is LOVE, assurance, hope, faith and the promise of eternal life if we endure to the end. 

And no, living the Christian life in this sinful and ofttimes godless world is not easy, but with Christ’s divine help we can do it. Remember how Bruh Paul characterized it? ‘I can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me.’ (Phil. 4:13) Now that’s quite true, but there’s something more we must learn, and that’s the context in which he said it. He was referring to a gift from the church at Philippi. And though he appreciated their care and consideration and gift very much, he told them: ‘Not that I speak in respect of want (in regard of need): for I have learned, in whatever state I am, therewith to be content.’ (Phil. 4:11) 

And that my fellow believers is something that we all need to learn in these troubled times and times of expected entitlement. Bruh Paul was grateful for their financial gift, but he could also have done without it, because he had learned how to be content whether he had a lot or a little. And the scholars add an interesting message. ‘The Greek here suggests that contentment is a lesson learned neither in a classroom nor overnight, but through many practical experiences in life.’ 

Oh my people, that is a truth that so many believers need to learn. Yes, we ought to be contented in any state in which we find ourselves, with Jesus’ help of course, but it doesn’t happen overnight, and like all other growth it comes with hardship and adversity. So if you’re having trouble in that area, like so many of us in this pandemic time, just remember that you can do all you need to handle the situation with Christ in your corner, but it will take time and also some effort from you. 

As Bruh Paul continues: ‘I know both how to be abased (live humbly), and I know how to abound (live in prosperity): every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and suffer need.’ (Phil. 4:12) Yes friends, it’s something that many of us are learning in these Covid times, when work is scarce and the essentials of life are difficult to come by. 

But we do need to learn how to discipline ourselves in times of prosperity and in times of want, to learn the secret of how to be well fed even in the rough going. So let’s not beat up ourselves if we’re not doing as well as we ought to or want to in these troubled days, remember Jesus is just a prayer away with help. 

Yes, I know it might not come right away, but our faith teaches us to wait and be patient and expectant. No wonder Bruh Paul could promise the Philippians: ‘But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.’ (Phil. 4:19) He is aware of their sacrifice on Bruh Paul’s behalf, and thus will generously meet their needs. 

My fellow believers, that’s what God is about; providing, meeting our needs when we sincerely call on Him. That’s His ever-faithful promise. So why don’t we do that right now nuh through our Monday Morning Battle Hymn. Let’s bare our very hearts and souls to our Creator, as He desires of us. 

Altogether now: ‘Our Father, who art in heaven, we, Your humble servants, praise Your Holy Name and thank You that this Monday morning we’re alive and standing in faith despite the mass confusion that’s currently prevailing in our world. We desperately need Your divine help, for You are the ONLY ONE with the power to solve our many problems; the pandemic of Covid -19, the racial, political, and religious strife that’s ignited worldwide, plus the natural disasters like storms, famine, drought, plagues, climate change, wildfires, earthquakes and erupting volcanoes that suddenly seem to be blossoming more and more as time goes by. 

Heavenly Father, we admit that we have all sinned and seriously come short in obedience and compliance to Your Word, but we know that You are a merciful, forgiving and gracious God, and You have 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, ordinary folks, as well as our leaders, employers and medical personnel, wise guidance and direction to bring our problems under control. 

And for those who are currently suffering from the many negative situations, we pray that You will ease their suffering and heal them. Father, 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 we have to do our part; wait with eager and sincere expectation, that’s faith, and stay repentant and be obedient so the Lord can see that we’re truly sorry for turning away from Him. Much LOVE!

…life’s not easy in this sinful world…but God is good…Glory Hallelujah… 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 15 August 2020 Ephesians 2:6.

Ephesians 2:6.     ​And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus.

 

Come on friends, let’s play! It’s Saturday, and that means it’s play time! Yeh, that used to be true, but not so much again. Our world has changed up so much in the last few months, that most of us wouldn’t recognize it if we truly saw it. (smile) But it’s still our world; it’s all we have, so let’s make as good a time as we can out of it nuh! Our great God didn’t make us to be wimpy, fearful individuals, but strong, bright, courageous and adventurous persons, who are able to take the bad with the good and handle both situations with aplomb under His watchful power! 

Wow! Like the ole fella in fine fettle this Saturday morning. (smile) Ah just hope he’ll still be in fine fettle when it comes to deciphering the quotes that our friend Anselm sent us this past week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. So let’s check out the first quote nuh: ‘Now is no time to think of what you do not have. Think of what you can do with what there is.’ And is that ever a most useful quote for these perilous, unprecedented and uncertain times in which we’re currently living! 

Yeh friends, in this pandemic and strife filled time, we cannot afford to gripe and complain about what we don’t have, our normal course of affairs, but instead we need to be thankful for what we do have and make do, be contented with it. Remember these oh so important words of Bruh Paul to the Philippians, when they sent him a financial gift. ‘Not that I speak in respect of want (in regard of need): for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.’ (Phill. 4:11) 

Oh my people, that is something we need to learn so badly in these controversial times; be contented with what we have. But please note it is a learned behaviour. It doesn’t just happen automatically. We have to consciously apply ourselves to learning it. So let’s start doing so today, right now nuh. Consequently, I believe that this next quote is rather appropriate. ‘Let us be grateful to people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.’ 

And isn’t that living truth? We ought to be grateful to those who make us happy because they are the ones who cause us to rise up and do productive stuff. And I like how the quote puts it: ‘charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.’ Friends, without that kind of people in our lives, we would be simply lost and adrift in an uncaring world. And it puts me in mind of Jesus’ historic comment: ‘I am the true (genuine) vine, and my Father is the husbandman (vinedresser, gardener). (John 15:1) 

Isn’t that wonderful. Jesus is the vine to which we need to stay attached, and the Lord God Jehovah is the charming gardener who makes our souls blossom with all Hie wonderful blessings and gardening skills. I LOVE it! (smile) And this next quote fits quite nicely with the first two. ‘One man may hit the mark, another blunder; but heed not these distinctions. Only from the alliance of the one, working with and through the other, are great things born.’ Now that’s certainly gospel truth right there mih bredrin! No man is an island! 

And though we may do great things separately, we can always do greater things together. Yuh see how Christ created His church – like a human body with many different parts, but all forming together as one. Hear Bruh Paul to the church at Rome. ‘For as we have many members (parts) in one body, and all members (parts) have not the same office (function): So we being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another. Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us…’ (Rom. 12:4-6a). 

Yes my people, our Creator gave us different individual gifts because He wanted us to work together, be one, like the Holy Trinity that we serve and worship. It’s ONE deity, divided into three parts, each part having a different function, and if the parts don’t function in sync with each other then the whole body won’t function properly. And that’s why Christ’s church is not functioning properly here on earth, we, the believers in Christ, are not working together, but against each other, as unto the world, with greed and power and pride dominating our activities. 

But hear this next quote nuh: ‘Power is not revealed by striking hard or often, but by striking true.’ And if you don’t believe that, then yuh don’t know nothing about real power! The fearful, or the tyrannical think they need to strike hard and often at whatever displeases them, but the person who truly knows about power, strikes at the right place and at the right time. That’s why so many people grab power and lose it just as quickly, because they don’t know how to handle it. Just like most of those who win the lottery and are broke in no time flat. They don’t know how to truly handle money! 

And that leads us to this last quote. ‘I believe that if one always looked at the skies, one would end up with wings.’ Now in reality, that might not be true, but as a believer in Jesus Christ, there is much substance to it. When we look to the heavens, where Christ is seated, having defeated the devil in His earthly sojourn, we come to realize how blessed and triumphant we truly are. Why? 

Because Bruh Paul says it in spades. ‘But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great LOVE wherewith he LOVED us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us (made us alive) together with Christ, (by grace ye are (have been) saved;) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus. That in the ages to come he might show the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through (in) Christ Jesus.’ (Eph. 2:4-7) 

Oh precious people of God, how can you ever beat that eh? God has not only raised up Christ to sit in heavenly places, but will do the same for us who believe and sincerely worship Him! That’s why it’s oh so important to keep our eyes on heaven, since it’s our home, the place where our real treasure, our indestructible, incorruptible treasure is stored, and we’re just pilgrims passing through here on earth, working to bring others to Christ. Much LOVE!

…for where your treasure is…there will your heart be also… (Mat.6:21) 

P.S. Oh friends, I have to testify today yes. Every Saturday when I look at the quotes, there’s a li’l trepidation as I wonder how I’m ever going to pull them together to make some sense. And I usually do, with the Lord’s help obviously. But sometimes there’s a struggle to pull it off. Today however, the usual trepidation was there, but the faithfulness of God, His awesome grace seemed to be even more prevalent than normal. 

Why do I say so? Because today’s Bit came together ever so smoothly, one thing led right into another, even the scriptures came up sort of automatically, and I did not have to pull out my hair, (smile) to put the words and thoughts together. I hope it all makes sense though. (smile) So, under those wonderful circumstances, how can I not sincerely serve and worship the Lord eh, and give Him much thanks and praise for His faithfulness? Much LOVE! 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 June 2019 Philippians 4:11.

Philippians 4:11.    ​Not that I speak in respect of want (in regard of need): for I have learned, in whatever state I am, therewith to be content.
 

After the rain comes the sun, so since yesterday was another very ‘riney’ day, today ought to be blessed with loads of sunshine! And it does seem to have begun that way. But what’s with the rain this season eh? I think the Lord’s trying to tell us something. What? I really don’t know. Perhaps a warning of some sort. But obviously we’re not paying attention, so we keep having more rain than sunshine. 

And the workingman is totally perplexed and annoyed at the situation. ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday oui! The slave master drive we hard this week and ah real tired now. Just hoping for a nice warm sunshiny weekend, to just lay out on the deck in mih hammock, catch some rays, sip a few, and just relax. But it seems like it going to be a blooming rainy weekend! What it is with this rain thing this year eh? 

Brother! We having more rainy days than sunny ones, and the weather not even getting real warm yet, the middle of June and we still have heat coming on in the house because the children cold! Steups! I don’t know what it is nuh – if the Lord trying to tell we something. But since is the weekend, and the only time I have to do my own thing, I’m going to enjoy it as best as I can – eat, drink and be merry, even if I have to do it inside! Thank God for Fridays and weekends yes…even when it cold and rainy!’  

Ah mih people, that’s the beauty of the workingman; he accepts his circumstances, even though he dislikes them, and works around them to keep himself contented. But we sophisticated Christians simply gripe and complain and thus don’t enjoy what the Lord’s granted us. Remember we’re supposed to be happy and contented in whatever situation we find ourselves. But we can’t do that unless and until we actually take the bull by the horns and become contented – with God’s help of course! 

And we’ll begin doing that by chanting our Friday Chant which is different to the workingman’s song because our Lord and Saviour, Our Leader, Jesus Christ desires that we have some boundaries and borders to keep us safe from enemy attacks. So let’s chant it now, like we really mean it nuh. 

As one strong and sincere voice: ‘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 my fellow believers, we need to be a tad more careful about our doings, our goings and our comings, because we have a heavenly purpose to fulfill, and we can’t do that properly if we’re wishy-washy, and doh-care, else the enemy will just destroy us and our witness for Christ. And we definitely can’t allow that to happen, so let’s tighten up, and strengthen up our lives in appropriate fashion nuh. 

And one of the ways we all need to do that is by being contented with what we have at any particular time in life. Yes, I know that’s not always easy to do, especially when in our circumstances there is much less than the optimal amount of whatever we need. But the fact is that we need to cry out to and hold on to God for help to become like Bruh Paul said, in regards to the gift he received from the church at Philippi. 

‘Not that I speak in respect of want (in regard of need): for I have learned, in whatever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased (live humbly), and I know how to abound (live in prosperity): every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need.’ (Phil. 4:11-12) 

Oh friends, is that ever something we believers need to learn and quickly too in this world that now lives by the motto of always wanting more and wanting it quicker than the last time. We’re definitely not a contented society in spite of the abundance we possess. But remember we’re supposed to be in the world, but not of it, so we’re not supposed to follow it’s selfish and greedy and discontented mores. 

And please note that contentment in whatever situation is a LEARNED behaviour. It doesn’t just come about like magic or a miracle; it’s something we have to earn and learn, not in a classroom, but by experiencing hard times as well as good times, by facing life like Portia. (smile) But unfortunately our current society is famous for wanting to be great without putting in the necessary effort that it takes to be great. 

Everybody nowadays is a superstar! That’s why our standards have fallen so low, and what used to be an ‘F’ is now a ‘C’, or even a ‘B’. But friends, please note that falling standards in a society only means one thing, that society is on its way down, and if its standards continue to fall, then it will soon become a lesser society, or even an extinct one. 

History bears out that contention. Just look at all the great societies we’ve had, how they prospered when their standards were high, they worked hard, made the necessary sacrifices to grow. But when they reached the top, they got fat and lazy and just wallowed in their prosperity until everything toppled down, and some other nation who was hungry and productive took over their crown. 

And sadly that is what seems to be happening in our current Western society; we’re on the way down because we’ve become fat and lazy and want everything now for now and for nothing, or next to nothing! But as believers my brethren, we are expected to always take the high road, have high standards within this world of low standards, and be contented with whatever we have, knowing that our great and generous, merciful and forgiving God is on our side and will not let us suffer more than we can bear. 

That’s why Bruh Paul could declare his ability to be contented in any situation. And he sums it up thus: ‘I can do ALL things through Christ which strengtheneth me.’  (Phil.4:13) Yes friends, we can only live contentedly if we are living for Christ, who is the enabler of the brethren. He is the one that gives us the wherewithal to be contented in whatever situation we find ourselves. Please, let us never forget that, provided we want to be successful and contented in this earthly life. Much LOVE!

…the joy of contentment…experiencing both good and bad times…with Christ always by our side…enabling us…