Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 February 2020 Jeremiah 29:13.

Jeremiah 29:13.    ​And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.
 
Greetings my brethren on this beautiful Thursday after Ash Wednesday. Yesterday I was so excited to get the Bit out early that I even forgot that it was Ash Wednesday. (smile) And strangely enough Ash Wednesday is a holiday in J.A. It’s the only place I know of that celebrates it as a holiday…and celebrate it they do. 

Now Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of Lent; a time in our spiritual lives when we become somewhat ascetic, that means becoming a li’l less self-indulgent and more prayerful, abstaining from some things of the flesh, with fasting and prayer becoming more important in our everyday lives. The forty days of the Lenten season correspond to the forty days our Lord and Saviour spent fasting in the wilderness after He was baptized and before He effectively began His earthly ministry. 

In this time we’re expected to seriously think about our faith, and what it really means to us, how we can improve it and thus get a deeper and better understanding of our great and wonderful God, and thus develop an even better relationship with Him, because that’s what He wants; a strong and beautiful relationship with His children, sinful and ignorant though we may be. (smile) 

But friends, that’s the amazing kind of God we serve and worship, regardless of our faults and mistakes, His everlasting goal is for us to come into a sincere and prosperous relationship with Him, for He is our Father, and we are His children. And just like we earthly parents desire to have good relationships with our children, in the same manner our heavenly Father desires to have great relationships with His earthly children.  

And our God is so wonderful my fellow believers, that having caused Israel to be in bondage in Babylon for their disgraceful disobedience, He promised that they would return to their homeland after a period of seventy years… Oh, let the Good Book tell us the story, it can do it better than I can. (smile) ‘For thus saith the Lord, That after seventy years be accomplished at Babylon I will visit you, and perform my good work toward you, in causing you to return to this place. 

For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil (calamity), to give you an expected end (a future and a hope). Then you shall call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto (listen to) you. And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.’ (Jer. 29:10-13) 

Yes friends, that’s what our God desires of us, to seek Him with our whole hearts, with every fibre of our mortal being. And when we do that, then we will find Him, ready, willing and able to hear and respond positively. He doesn’t just require lip-service, but true, heartfelt, diligent seeking of Him. What yuh think Jesus did in the wilderness for those forty days eh, beside not eat eh? 

PRAY! That’s what He did, seeking guidance and understanding from His heavenly Father so that He could do His earthly work with diligence and excellence. That’s why in this Lenten season we also ought to seek our heavenly Father’s face even more than usual, to get right with Him, to get His plans for our lives, how He wants us to go. 

Remember He says He has a plan for each and every one of us, not to bring us down, but to build us up, to give us a future filled with hope and good things. But we need to seek Him. I don’t know how to get that most important fact home to us nuh my people, but it’s simple logic; if we don’t diligently look for Him, we won’t find Him. 

And without Him in our lives we’re absolutely nothing! Jesus said it quite plainly when He spoke about Him being the vine and we 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 15:5) It could not be said any plainer than that friends. 

And note too that when the hypocrite Pharisee lawyer tried to tie up Jesus by asking which is the great commandment? ‘Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt LOVE the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment.’ (Matt. 22:37-38) And Jesus was only repeating the words that Moses had told the Israelites long before when they came out of bondage in Egypt. (Deut. 6:5) 

And nothing has changed since then. That is still the first and great commandment. And that’s also why Jesus so strongly advised us to: ‘Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt. 6:33) Oh my people, running down the foolish things of the world that corrupt our souls and don’t last for any length of time, but rust and depreciate, is not the wisdom of God, but of the world. 

And moreover, Jesus said that if we seriously and sincerely follow the Father, then He will give us all those worldly things that we do need. Bruh David said it too in such precise and wonderful terms. ‘The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.’ (Ps.23:1) And Bruh Paul was also very sure when he declared to the Philippians: ‘But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.’ (Phil. 4:19) 

I don’t know what else to say nuh friends except to let us go home now declaring (yeah!) our Thursday Blessings, whereby the Lord has provided for our needs in His everlasting faithfulness. So altogether now, let’s declare those blessings with strong voice and sincere hearts. ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! 

I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection! I am blessed with a compassionate heart and a positive outlook on life! 

I declare that any curse or negative word that’s ever been spoken over me is broken right now in the name of Jesus! I declare that everything I put my hands to, will prosper and succeed! I declare it today and every day! Amen!’ 

Now please remember that those blessings are not for us to selfishly hoard, but to generously share with the less fortunate, just like the Lord generously shares them with us! Much LOVE!

…it’s extremely foolish…not to believe and act on…the words of the one who made you…then selflessly saved you…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 February 2020 Psalm 18:32.

Psalm 18:32.    ​It is God that girdeth me with strength, and maketh my way perfect.
 
Monday, oh Monday, how good you are to me! I truly do LOVE you! You cause me to get up early in the morning…while it’s still dark…and I haven’t had enough sleep…to fumble around and struggle to get dressed and go out in the freezing cold, to a freezing car, and then inch my way on a blocked up highway, full of sleepy-eyed and grouchy people just like me. 

And after it takes me an hour to make a normal fifteen minute drive, I get to the concrete jungle and search for another fifteen minutes to get a parking spot, that costs an arm and a leg, I finally get to my desk and plop myself down in the chair more tired than ever, but now expected to put in a full and productive 8 hour day, doing stuff that doesn’t turn my crank! And this is only the first of five consecutive days of this nonsense! (smile) 

Ah friends, we give Mondays such a bad rap eh, when the problem lies with us; we don’t prepare ourselves properly for what we know is going to happen on most Mondays of our working life! But it’s a long time human trait; cast the blame everywhere else than where it rightfully belongs, on us. Check out our forefathers, Adam and Eve after they had eaten the forbidden fruit. Eve blamed the serpent, and Adam blamed Eve. (Gen.3:12-13) 

So now that we’ve eased our conscience by blaming Monday for our woes, (smile) let’s get serious and go to the ONLY One who can really help us at this stage of the game nuh, our heavenly Father. And to make it easy, we’ve developed this ‘antidotal’ prayer we call our Monday Morning Battle Hymn, that automatically fills in all the blank spaces, but does not get us an answer unless we go about it the right way; that’s humbly, confidently and sincerely to the throne of grace. 

So as one humble, confident and sincere voice now, let’s lift up our petition to heaven: ‘Oh Lord God Almighty, Creator of the universe and all therein! We, your humble servants, praise your Holy Name and thank you that this Monday morning we have jobs to go to; jobs we don’t like, jobs that are unfair, difficult and even dangerous, but which serve a useful purpose here on earth; keeping lives and families together. 

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

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

And yes, that incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit is now moving in all of us who prayed that prayer sincerely and humbly! That’s how quickly our God can move when it’s necessary! He knows that we have to go out and do Jesus’ work at a certain time, with not much to spare, so right away He acts on our request, raising our spirits, strengthening our belly and backbone, thus giving us the courage and confidence we need to go out and fight a good fight in His Son’s name. 

No wonder Bruh David could proclaim with such certainty in Psalm 18 – Thanksgiving for deliverance, when the Lord delivered him from the hands of all his enemies. ‘As for God, his way is perfect: the word of the Lord is tried (proven): he is a buckler (shield) to all those that trust in him. For who is God save (except) the Lord? Or who is a rock save our God? It is God that girdeth me with strength, and maketh my way perfect.’  (Ps.18:30-32) 

And that is the indisputable, gospel truth friends! Our God, the most potent Being in the universe, is the One who looks after all our needs on this troubled earth, just like Bruh Paul declared (yeah!) it to the Philippians. ‘But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.’ (Phil.4:19) 

And when Bruh David wrote that psalm, his needs were mainly those of a warrior, thus he declared (steups!): ‘He maketh my feet like hinds’ (deer) feet, and setteth me upon my high places. He teacheth my hands to war, so that a bow of steel is broken (a bow of bronze can be broken) by mine arms. Thou hast also given me the shield of salvation: and thy right hand hath holden (held) me up, and thy gentleness hath made me great.’ (Ps.18:33-35) 

Ah precious people of Christ, wherever we are, at whatever stage of life we’ve reached, the Lord God Almighty, He of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob will supply whatever we need to be victorious! It’s imperative that we believe it and act like we believe it too, through the auspices of our wonderful faith! Otherwise our faith is useless. Remember faith involves believing for something like we’ve already seen it and received it, when, in reality it hasn’t yet happened, but we know for sure that through God’s largesse and faithfulness it will happen in His time! 

So this Monday morning, although things might be a tad on the rough side, let’s believe that the situation will change because our wonderful and ever-faithful God has promised that it will! He will work all things out for our good! (Rom.8:28) Now that should be more than enough to raise our desire to get out into our distressed world and do our best for Jesus! Much LOVE!

…working for Jesus can be difficult…but it’s ALWAYS rewarding…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 January 2020 Matthew 28:20b.

Matthew 28:20b.   ​and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.
 
Life’s realities: ‘Ugh! AnOtHer MoNdAy?’ Didn’t we JuSt have one LasT WeEk!?’- or – ‘Today I will celebrate MoNDay! I will embrace the potentiality of the new week…tinged by the after shocks of the old week…’ Yes friends, those are the realities of life as found in the funnies! And it sure is strange how we find so much real life in the comic section of our newspapers…actually one of the few places that we find real life nowadays, as everything else is now about virtual reality, for real reality no longer seems to exist. (smile) 

And the first comment comes from the Mutts Comic strip, appropriately under the heading of Sourpuss’s Dear Diary, and the second from Between Friends, but they all reflect the truth of our Mondays in this crazy, evil, strife-filled and divided world! Whichever camp you fall in though, we have the real and true antidote to relive your pain. We call it our Monday Morning Battle Hymn; it’s a sincere prayer that does yeoman work on our behalf. So let’s go to the throne of grace in all humility, but confidently expecting a positive answer to our heartfelt supplication. 

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

We also thank you Father for the renewed vitality and enthusiasm you’ve wrought in our weary souls over the last two days. It’s that rejuvenation of Spirit which allows us now to sally forth with confidence into the evil, ungodly world that surrounds us, to begin a new week of work, constantly buffeted and bombarded by the enemy’s wicked taunts, wiles and lies. But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour. 

We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle. Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’ 

And what I like about this prayer, is that on a Monday morning when we cry out to heaven for help, before we’re even finished, our great and wonderful God has already instructed His Holy Spirit to begin moving in the spirits and souls of His children, to energize and strengthen them, so they can confidently and bravely go out into the great unknown and do Christ’s work with diligence and excellence. Wow! And who says our God isn’t a magnanimous and magnificent Deity eh? 

On a point of interest: The ONE and ONLY! There could never be more than one of Him, cause there’s just not enough space for two such Beings to exist in the same universe! (smile) And I like it when I get carried away talking about God’s magnanimity and greatness…the words just flow unbidden… it just comes naturally with the territory. 

But seriously speaking my fellow believers, (steups!) the main reason we can go out and do Jesus’ work without any fear is because of the awesome promise He made at the end of the Great Commission: ‘and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.’ Now we need to believe that in spades, if we are ever going to make any headway against the enemy. 

And I like two instances of Christ’s reassurance to Bruh Paul when things seemed to be getting out of hand. The first is down in Corinth. The Good Book tells us: ‘And when Silas and Timothy were come from Macedonia, Paul was pressed in the spirit (compelled by the Spirit) and  testified to the Jews that Jesus was (is the) Christ. And when they opposed themselves (disagreed with him), and blasphemed, he shook his raiment (garments), and said unto them, Your blood be upon your own heads; I am clean: from henceforth I will go unto the Gentiles.’ (Acts 18:5-6) 

But nonetheless, several prominent Jews and their families believed (yeah!) and were baptized. And notice too, that the Holy Spirit never pressed Paul to talk to the Jews until he had back-up with Silas and Timothy. And furthermore: ‘Then spake the Lord to Paul in the night by a vision, Be not afraid, but speak, and hold not thy peace (don’t keep silent): For I am with thee, and no man shall set on thee to hurt thee (attack you): for I have much people in this city.’ (Acts 18:9-10) 

Mama Yo! Yuh see how our God keeps His promises! Bruh Paul had no idea that there was plenty of help to be found in the city. It just goes to show friends, that our Lord and Saviour can indeed be trusted to look after our welfare; spiritually, emotionally, mentally and physically. That’s why Bruh Paul could afford to tell the Philippians: ‘But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.’ (Phil. 4:19) 

The next event I want to point out is when Bruh Paul appeared before the council in Jerusalem and dissension broke out between the Sadducees and Pharisees over the question of the resurrection of the dead, which the latter believed in, but not the former. The situation got nasty, bedlam broke out, and the captain of the army, fearing that they were going to tear Bruh Paul to pieces, sent his soldiers to take him out by force to their barracks. (Acts 23:1-10) 

But the Good Book says: ‘And the night following the Lord stood by him, and said, Be of good cheer Paul: for as thou hast testified of me in Jerusalem, so must thou bear witness also at Rome.’ (Acts 23:11) Yuh think we God don’t know what He doing? Bruh Paul was His main man, especially to us Gentiles, He wouldn’t let him get hurt before he finished His work. 

Likewise friends, our God won’t let anything untoward happen to us while we still have work to do. Life might get a tad rough and troublesome, but no one will stop us from doing His will. Please remember that and let’s go out into the world today, and everyday, with that attitude of victory percolating deep in our hearts, minds, bodies and souls! Much LOVE!

…if yuh working for Jesus…then yuh know yuh safe from all harm…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 January 2020 Philippians 4:19.

Philippians 4:19.    ​But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Jesus Christ.
 
And the snow did fall…in copious quantities too, but thankfully my information was wrong, we were only going to get 15 cm of snow, not the 50 I wrote about yesterday. However, the east coast province of Newfoundland and Labrador did receive a solid walloping over the weekend culminating in some 70 cm of the white stuff. Obviously everything was shut down under such a blanket of snow, with power outages and other necessities sadly lacking. 

Apparently even the snow trucks had to be taken off the road, since the blizzard was so bad that visibility was impossible. Friends, please, let’s pray for them and offer any other help that we can, because we never know when it will be our turn to be in such a despairing and disastrous situation. 

So closer to home now, the snow is finished falling but we had some freezing rain overnight and with the drop in temperature, it’s possibly slick and icy out there. So please be careful if you’re venturing out. And please don’t use the weather conditions as a convenient excuse not to go to church, (smile) although some of us will find it extremely difficult, even impossible to get out and about. 

And having said all of that, let’s turn to our multi-purpose in the Lord’s sanctuary today; to worship our great God, give Him much thanks and praise from sincere and overflowing hearts of gratitude, to enjoy sweet and encouraging fellowship with other believers, to hear the awesome Word of God which refreshes and renews us and gives us oodles of confidence and reassurance to face the fallen world in which we live! 

Now how can we get all of that if we don’t go to church eh, or have a gathering of two or three somewhere convenient? For Christ did say that wherever two or three are gathered together in His name, that He would be right there in the midst of them. (Matt. 18:20) So if only a small gathering is possible, then so be it, but a big gathering would be nicer. (smile) And today’s opening song of worship is indeed very appropriate for these troubled and disastrous times. It’s aptly titled ‘Lord I Need You’ 

And do we ever need Him friends, so let’s raise our voices in sweet harmony as we call out to our Lord and Saviour for the help that only He can give. ‘(Chorus: Lord, I need You, oh, I need You Every hour I need You My one defense, my righteousness Oh God, how I need You) Lord, I come, I confess Bowing here I find my rest Without You I fall apart You’re the One that guides my heart (Chorus: Lord, I need You, oh, I need You Every hour I need You My one defense, my righteousness Oh God, how I need You) 

Where sin runs deep Your grace is more Where grace is found is where You are And where You are, Lord, I am free Holiness is Christ in me (Chorus: Lord, I need You, oh, I need You Every hour I need You My one defense, my righteousness Oh God, how I need You) Teach my song to rise to You When temptation comes my way And when I cannot stand I’ll fall on You Jesus, you’re my hope and stay. Lord, I need You, oh, I need You Every hour I need You My one defense, my righteousness Oh God, how I need You. I need You every hour, Oh Lord how I need You…Oh how I need You. yes Lord, I need You, every hour of every day…That’s how much I need you.’  

Ah mih people, from all of that we should see how desperately we need Jesus Christ and all that He stands for. And what is a need you ask? Here’s something from a website that I forgot the name. But it says: ‘A need is something that is necessary for an organism to live a healthy life. Needs are distinguished from wants in that, in the case of a need, a deficiency causes a clear adverse outcome: a dysfunction or death. In other words, a need is something required for a safe, stable and healthy life (e.g. food, water, shelter) while a want is a desire, wish or aspiration. 

When needs or wants are backed by purchasing power, they have the potential to become economic demands. Basic needs such as water, air, food and protection from environmental dangers are necessary for an organism to live. In addition to basic needs, humans also have needs of a social or societal nature such as the human need to socialize or belong to a family unit or group. Needs can be objective and physical, such as the need for food, or psychological and subjective, such as the need for self-esteem. Needs and wants are a matter of interest in, and form a common substrate for, the fields of philosophy, biology, psychology, social science, economics, marketing and politics.’ 

And yes we need all of those things, but even more importantly we need things like spiritual protection, the ability to confess our sins and know we’re forgiven, a place of rest to lay down our burdens, someone to guide us, to help us with righteousness, to provide grace and mercy, freedom from worry and anxiety, a strong tower to fall back on, not forgetting strength and faith to stand strong against temptation! Yes friends, we do need a lot, and Jesus is the ONLY ONE who can satisfy it ALL! He is indeed our ‘hope and stay!’ 

And there’s no better verse in the Good Book that guarantees our needs than Bruh Paul’s words to the Philippians, after they sacrificed from their little to send him a gift. ‘But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Jesus Christ.’ 

And the scholars explain that verse thus: 4:19. Because the Lord is aware of the sacrifice (v.18) that the Philippians made in meeting Paul’s needs, God will surely supply all their need. God will meet their need (1) according to his riches, that is in proportion to His unlimited resources: (2) in glory, that is, He will meet their need “gloriously” or “in a splendid manner”; and (3) by Christ Jesus.’ 

Ah friends, once we have Jesus, we don’t need anything, or anybody else! Let’s remember that and put our whole faith and trust in Him nuh, because He will see us faithfully through this live unto the next one, and long thereafter. Much LOVE!…

so let us come boldly (confidently)…to the throne of grace…that we may obtain mercy…and find grace…to help…in time of need… (Hebs. 4:16)

Today’s Scrip-Bit 15 January 2020 Psalm 119:11.

Psalm 119:11.    ​Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.
 

And then it was Wednesday – the hump day of the week – but even more importantly, another new day under the Lord’s safe and protective umbrella! Glory Hallelujah! Yeh friends, we’ve been granted another day of life on earth, for which we all ought to be thankful. So let’s do the acclamation thing nuh! 

All together now: ‘This is the day the Lord has made we will rejoice and be glad in it! As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord! That’s for sure! If God be for us, who can be against us eh? Not a single soul! God will provide all my needs according to his riches in glory through Christ Jesus! I will be a lender and not a borrower! I’m the head and not the tail; above and not beneath; a mighty conqueror through Christ Jesus our awesome Lord and Saviour!’ And finally: ‘Something good is going to happen to me today! Yeah! Something good is also going to happen through me today!’ 

Mama Mia! What a whole lot of positive scripture to reinforce our faith my brethren! With all of that flourishing in our souls how can the evil one ever turn us away from Almighty God eh? No way Jose! Ah mih people, we need to know the Word, so when the enemy comes calling we can turn Him away with what our omnipotent and ever-faithful God says about us. That’s why this second section of Psalm 119 – BETH – with the superscription; ‘Thy word have I hid in mine heart’ is so important to a true believer. 

Please read these miraculous, marvelous and momentous words of the psalmist with me. ‘Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed thereto according to thy word. With my whole heart have I sought thee: O let me not wander from thy commandments. Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee. Blessed art thou, O Lord: teach me thy statutes. With my lips have I declared all the judgements of thy mouth. I have rejoiced in the way of thy testimonies, as much as in all riches. I will meditate in thy precepts, and have respect unto (contemplate) thy ways. I will delight myself in thy statutes: I will not forget thy word.’ (Ps. 119:9-16) 

Ah mih people, if only more supposed Christians would read those words and take them to heart eh! Chuh! What a wonderful place our world would be! The psalmist lets us know the right way, right up front: by following God’s Word. And what is God’s Word? According to the scholars: ‘Word (dabar) is an all-embracing term for God’s revelation in any form.’ And we have to be serious about seeking God and His Word. It can’t be just a wishy-washy, sometime, half-hearted thing like so many supposed believers engage in. The psalmist said, ‘with my whole heart.’ And that’s the way we need to come to God – with serious intentions! 

And then he pleads that he be assisted in not straying from the Lord’s commandments. Oh friends, all of us need to plead with God for help on that matter! And what are his commandments? Per the scholars: ‘Commandments (mitswot)  is a word assuming the authority of the commander and the inherent necessity of obeying the content of the charge.’ That means in simple terms, the commander is the boss, and we must obey his orders. And in this case, God is our commander and His word is the command we must obey. 

And friends, our Bit says it all: ‘Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.’ That’s the whole purpose of the exercise; not to sin against our heavenly Father! But we can only do that when we have His Word safely ensconced in our hearts, and more importantly, use it to thwart the flaming darts of the enemy that he sends against us. Then the psalmist asks to be taught the Lord’s statutes. And what are statutes? The scholars explain them thus: ‘Statutes (huqim) is related to a verb meaning “to engrave” and thus implies permanent and unchangeable regulations.’ 

That therefore means God’s regulations are permanent and don’t change, like we tend to say and believe rather conveniently in these supposed modern times of the 21st century. Then the psalmist talks about declaring (yeah!) the Lord’s judgements. The scholars describe then thus: ‘Judgments (mispatim) or ordinances refers to decisions God has made as a judge in order to make earthly behaviour conform to His heavenly standard.’ And we all know that above all, our God is a God of justice and sin has no part in His character whatsoever; but much to our benefit, He is a righteous judge! 

And I like the psalmist’s next statement about rejoicing in God’s testimonies as much as in the wealth of the world. Wish many more of us would treasure the Lord’s testimonies that much and not pay so much attention to earthly riches. And the scholars characterize ‘Testimonies (‘edot) emphasizes  the content of the Word as that which God has testified of Himself and His will.’ And should we ever rejoice in the Lord’s testimonies my people, because it tells us of the greatness of our God! 

Then the psalmist promises to meditate, ponder on God’s precepts and contemplate His ways. Now that friends, is the only manner in which God’s Word can be written in our hearts; through meditation, contemplation and ‘ponderation.’ (smile) And according to the scholars ‘Precepts (piqudim) refers to  instructions from a superior regarding the duties of those under him, in this case, from God to man.’ Again, we can only know our duties by learning them and continually thinking about them as we make every effort to put them into action. 

But yuh know friends, we will never get it right until we learn to take true pleasure in our God and all that He’s said and done, all on our behalf! We all know that we comprehend and understand stuff quicker and more deeply when we enjoy it. And that’s why so many supposed believers have problems understanding and adhering to God’s Word; they don’t take pleasure in it. But if we want to have a clean heart and a right spirit, then we must learn to enjoy God and all that He is! And He’s such a multi-faceted character that unless we spend real time with Him and His Word, we’ll never truly come to appreciate and LOVE and obey Him like we ought to. End of sermon! (smile) 

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

And when the joy of Jesus is securely planted in our hearts, then we’re assured that our future with Him will indeed be glorious…Mama Yo…more than we can ever ask or imagine! Much LOVE!

…our Christian character will show out…in direct proportion to our knowledge of…and obedience to God’s Word…

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 August 2018 John 14:27.

John 14:27.   Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

And then it was Wednesday; the mid-point of the workweek, and a lot of people exhale a grateful sigh that the week’s nearly over. Now yesterday was a rainy day in my area, and I slept a lot of it away, (smile) but I can’t afford to do that today, because I have things to go out the street and do, so I hope the sun that’s valiantly trying to push its way through some swirling dark clouds out there is successful. 

And later in the evening, I also want to go down to the C.N.E, the Canadian National Exhibition grounds, to our annual country fair and see international Reggae Artist Freddie McGregor and our local boy Jay Douglas at the Band Shell. It’s a long walk from the train station to the Band Shell and it’s also an open-air venue, so the rain definitely will not be welcomed. 

But then I just thought, who controls the rain eh? The Lord God Almighty! And if He wants to send it pouring down, who is to say Him nay eh? Nobody! Let’s just hope and pray He doesn’t make that unfortunate decision today eh. (smile) And even if He does, we just have to live with it. 

That makes this quote of the famous American essayist, lecturer and poet, Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882) come in very handy. ‘Nothing can bring you peace but yourself.’ Yes friends, that’s ever so true, because if you don’t accept peace, even that of Jesus, you won’t ever have it. One must make a conscious decision to accept peace, to live in peace and fervently pursue peace. 

As our One More Day Devotional – Daily Meditations for People with Chronic Illness tells us: ‘True peace comes from the harmony we feel within ourselves. We don’t go out and get peace of mind; it’s the result of what we do. Harmony is being at ease with ourselves, our surroundings, and with our lives. This is no easy task, as we must come to grips with the issues that cause us concern. 

This doesn’t mean that all our problems must be solved before we can have inner peace, for life will be much like a mountain road, with twists and turns and many unexpected bumps. Peace is a reality for those who accept what cannot be changed and take up the challenges that can and must be dealt with. Peace is easier to attain when we cherish the gifts of the present moment.’ 

And isn’t that the indisputable truth my brethren! When we appreciate what we have, and are not complaining or loudly clamouring for what we don’t have, it’s much easier for our souls to find peace. And the thought for that day’s devotional declares: ‘In my life, peace begins with me. I will remember that peace is a prize of the spirit and is available to everyone.’ 

Now that’s basically true, but in this current world, peace is not a valued commodity. Things like strife and anger and war and resentment seem to be more prized. So if you’re trying to find peace in worldly terms, you have an almost impossible task to fulfill. But friends, if you really want peace, the ultimate peace, then you have to look to Jesus for it. 

Listen to what He told His disciples as He warned them of His impending return to heaven. ‘Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.’ 

Wow mih people! What mighty words from our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Only He could have made such a pronouncement to the disciples in their time of fear. That’s because He knew the power of the Holy Spirit that was to come upon them after He left. 

And it’s that same Holy Spirit that comforts us in our dark and desperate times. But as with everything else, we have to accept it, and work with it. It just doesn’t happen on its own or overnight. We have to actively go after it. As Bruh David says in Psalm 34 – The Lord hears the righteous: ‘Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it.’ (Ps.34:14) Yeh friends, peace in our lives, all depends on us actively seeking it. 

And here is Bruh Paul’s sage advice on finding it. ‘Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice. Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand. Be careful (anxious) for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep (guard) your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.’ (Phil.4:4-7) 

Ah my fellow believers, that’s such wise and wonderful advice! Please, let’s promise ourselves today to take it to heart and put it into action nuh! For that’s the only way we will achieve the wonderful peace of God that passes all human understanding. 

And for those of us who have already made that wise and momentous decision, we can now go home in peace, safety and comfort, declaring our Wednesday Wail, letting the world know our sure position in Christ Jesus. So with a strong sense of purpose and loud voice, let’s wail nuh: ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! 

Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! I am halfway home. My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

And I can’t help but say it, because it’s oh so true: That future with Christ will be even more glorious than we can ask or imagine! Much LOVE!

…there’s no other way to gain true peace…than through Jesus…the Prince of Peace…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 8 March 2017 Philippians 4:7.

Philippians 4:7.   And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep (guard) your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

And then it was Wednesday; a bright and sunshiny day in my area, though not as warm as yesterday. But I’ll gladly take it! Anytime the weather is above freezing in the beginning of March, and I’m in the northern climes, then I’m happy. 

But that’s not the true source of my happiness, and I hope that something as ephemeral as the weather is not your source of happiness either. 

You know what? I don’t like the term happiness in this context, because it smacks of a circumstantial happening, something that doesn’t last long, and what I have is hopefully going to last a lifetime; that’s joy in my soul because of my close and intimate association with Jesus Christ! 

And all God’s people declared a loud, proud and grateful, ‘Praise the Lord! Glory Hallelujah! Give Almighty God thanks and praise for the sacrificial work, the selfless LOVE of Jesus, the wonderful act of dying on our behalf, of taking our sins upon His conscience and setting us free from the most undesirable bondage of sin, and the shameful, ridiculous chains that the ole crook Lucifer held us captive in! Glory Hallelujah for the Lamb that was slain for us!’ 

Ah friends, it’s so sad that so much of our world doesn’t know the joy that comes from having a safe, sound, secure and intimate relationship with Jesus Christ, the first-born Son of the Lord God Jehovah. For it’s only through such a relationship can they ever hope to have true peace and joy in their hearts, bodies, souls and minds. 

What did Jesus have to say about that? ‘Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.’ (John 14:27) 

And again He told the disciples: ‘These things have I 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) 

Now in the natural, that might seem impossible. How can one have peace in a world full of trials and tribulations eh? But the kind of peace we’re talking about is the kind that Bruh Paul wrote to the Philippians about in our Bit: 

‘And the peace of God which passeth all understanding shall keep (guard) your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.’ 

Ah my fellow believers, that is the kind of peace we receive, the tranquility that frees us from fear and worry, when we associate with Jesus; the peace of God that passes all human understanding! Glory Be! 

Remember what Isaiah said to the Israelites on the Lord’s behalf? ‘For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.’ (Is.55:8-9) 

It’s a divine peace bestowed on us by our Higher Power. And isn’t that beautiful friends? It surely is! Having an intimate Being who’s mentality and everything else is greater and better than our frail and fickle self lends us so much confidence, so much assurance that we can rely on Him to look after us in all situations. Wow! 

And that’s what brings us joy! Yeah mih people, JOY is the word I’ve been seeking all along! Why? Because that gives the impression of something other than just a circumstantial happening that’s bringing light and LOVE into my life. 

It’s a longer lasting expression of contentment and satisfaction. And besides, the Good Book tells us; ‘for the joy of the Lord is your strength.’ (Neh.8:10) 

Yes friends, when we have the Lord living in and through us, we not only have joy, but a peace that passes all understanding, which in turn helps us to deal successfully with all the trials and tribulations that we encounter in this wild and wicked world. 

And that’s why Jesus could have told us to be of good cheer, for He has already conquered the world. 

Now, armed with all that wonderful stuff, all God’s glorious promises, most of them fulfilled by the coming of Jesus, why would I want to associate with anyone else but Him eh? No way Jose! 

That brings us to our Wednesday Wail, where we reemphasize our commitment to the Holy Triumvirate that directs our lives. So let’s belt it out with all sincerity and truth nuh, as is our wont. 

As one now: ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! I am halfway home. 

My hands are fixed securely on the plough, and I’m not turning back. I’m not looking back at the past, not focusing on what has gone before. But my eyes are fixed straight ahead; straight ahead to a glorious future with Jesus. Glory Hallelujah!’ 

And having said all that, and believing it too, let’s go out and put it into action by living the way Jesus desires of us nuh, for therein is eternal wisdom. Much LOVE!

…only in sure communion with Jesus…can we live with sure contentment here on earth…

P.S. Please excuse the lateness, but as usual my sleeping and waking hours don’t seem to fall within the norm, as a friend told me on the phone some fifteen minutes ago. (smile) But them’s the breaks! Much LOVE!