Today’s Scrip-Bit 3 June 2019 2 Thessalonians 3:10.

2 Thessalonians  3:10.    For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat.
 

‘Another one’s down! Another one’s gone! Yes, another one bites the dust!’ Ah friends, one more of my university chums has departed this world for the next. And are they ever departing at a fairly speedy rate. Chuh! I don’t even want to count how many have departed in the last three or four years because it will get too depressing.  

But suffice it to say that Dr. Michael Dash Ph.D. language professor extraordinaire; (smile) has now given up his earthly body for just a spiritual one. I am not cognizant of all the facts, but I believe he was laid low by the current deadly scourge of mankind, cancer. Apparently the cancer had ravaged his body so much, that he ended up in a coma and never regained consciousness.  

Ah Michael mih brother, I haven’t seen you in many a year, but we certainly had some good times way back then on the University of the West Indies Campus in Mona, Jamaica, when we were young and carefree. So regardless of what has happened in between, those memories can never be erased. And that’s why we make memories; to remind us of what life was like in earlier times. The only problem is that we must endeavour to make good memories, because who wants to remember bad memories eh? 

Anyway, rest in peace Michael, and my sincere condolences go out to your family as they mourn and grieve your passing. The big problem with death though friends, is that the ones left behind have to go on, have to keep ploughing through the rough minefield that’s life as though nothing has happened. That means most of us still have to go out and labour on this Monday morning, which we’d still rather not do. (smile) 

That brings us to some very interesting and important words of advice, as well as of admonishment from Bruh Paul to the Thessalonians re general behaviour. ‘Now we command you brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly and not after the tradition which he received of us. For yourselves know how ye ought to follow us: for we behaved not ourselves disorderly among you; 

Neither did we eat any man’s bread for nought (free of charge); but wrought with labour (worked) and travail (toil) night and day, that we might not be chargeable (be a burden) to any of you. Not because we have not power (authority), but to make ourselves an example unto you to follow us. For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat.’ (2 Thess.3: 6-10) 

Now that’s a very strong and serious admonition! Something that still holds true today. We ought to disassociate ourselves from those who refuse to walk a style of life that conforms to God’s Word. And we all ought to work as best we can to make a living. And it’s not like Bruh Paul had to work – he was a tent maker – but he wanted to set a good example for the Thessalonians. Likewise, we ought to think seriously about setting good examples for those around us. 

And what a bam- bam it would be eh, if we ever introduced that rule about if you don’t work you don’t eat! (smile) Even more people would go hungry than are already going hungry for one reason or another.  But since we’re true believers in Christ, that’s not in our souls and spirits at all! (smile) Some of us just have a few problems getting motivated to go out each and every Monday morning after an enjoyable weekend. 

But not to worry, we have the right antidote for all those Monday blues, something called our Monday Morning Battle Hymn; sincere words of prayer, that we communicate to our heavenly Father, asking for His awesome help to get us moving. So let’s do that together now nuh, since when we agree in prayer, it makes our prayer more powerful. 

As one 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 our God is so wonderful my brethren, that before the words could even quite reach up to heaven, the Father had already instructed the angels to grant our wishes! Wow! That’s why now we all feel so refreshed and energized, with a spring in our step, a new light in our eyes and a desire to get out into the evil world and just work diligently and excellently for Jesus! 

So let’s go now and do just that nuh, so we can bring a smile to Jesus’ face and warm the cockles of His warm and oh so LOVING heart! Much LOVE!

…if you truly LOVE Jesus…and want to sincerely follow Him…then you need to…look your best…do your best…and be your best… (Uncle Charles –Charles Stanley)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 18 January 2019 James 4:7.

James 4:7.   ​Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
 

Beautiful…white and beautiful…but oh so dangerous…slippery like and eel…and treacherous and deceptive like the serpent who personifies our enemy Satan! That’s the snow covering our neighbourhood this Friday morning! (smile) And sadly, we in the northern climes are bracing ourselves for even more of the white stuff because we’ve been promised a major snowstorm this weekend. 

Let’s hope the duchess and I just have to stay inside and look at it and admire its beauty, but don’t have to venture forth in it, cause remember we’re not as mobile and steady as we once were, we’re not spring chickens any longer…but contrary to popular opinion we’re NOT old, just advanced in years! (smile) So for all of you in the wintry climes, remember, as the man says, if you don’t HAVE to go out, then DON’T go out! 

Now let’s hear what the workingman has to say for himself this winter’s morn. And I like how he’s ever so enthusiastic, regardless of the circumstances: ‘TGIF! Thank God for Friday yes! The weekend, the weekend is here, which means is time to party! And though they calling for plenty snow, yuh think a li’l thing like snow going to stop me from enjoying mih li’l two days off from the slave master work? 

No way Jose! My time is my time, my time to enjoy whatever catches mih fancy! And if ah want to play in the snow, I’ll play in the snow. But if I just want to cuddle up in front of a roaring fire and sip something strong and warm, then that’s what I’ll do! It’s freedom time, come the weekend! Thank God for Fridays and the weekends yes in this ungodly capitalist society!’ 

Now there’s a wonderful idea for this snowy weekend; cuddle up in front of a roaring fire with a hot toddy and just commune with whoever you’re with and with God! Let the world go by however it wants to, since there’s nothing you can do about it. Just luxuriate in the warmth of your home and the comforting LOVE of your wonderful God! 

And all of God’s children declared (right ho) a loud and proud and grateful: ‘Praise the Lord! Praise Him and give Him much thanks for His undeserving goodness and mercy to us!’ Yeh friends, we must NEVER forget the goodness of God in our lives, for it’s the ONLY thing that keeps us from an even more miserable existence. 

Now let’s respond to the workingman’s exuberance with our more controlled Friday Chant. Chanting in unison: ‘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 mih people, it’s not as exuberant and fun LOVING as the workingman’s song, but it suits our purposes very well, reminding us of our purpose down here on earth, to work for Jesus, and helping us to stay out of the clutches of the ever-hovering enemy. And as true believers, we like it! Glory be! Anything that keeps us out of Satan’s evil grasp is certainly welcome! 

That’s why friends, we have to pay particular attention to James’ warning: ‘Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.’  Yes my brethren, there are two things we need to do to stay out of the enemy’s clutches. The first is submit ourselves to God; then actively resist Satan’s advances! And we know that in this world he’s always lurking around offering lust and pride and other immoral and ungodly ways of life. 

But as James continues: ‘Draw nigh (near) to God, and he will draw nigh (near) to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye doubleminded. Be afflicted (lament), and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness (gloom). Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.’ (James 4:8-10) 

And the scholars offer this explanation re the above verses: ‘4:7-10. Therefore: The exhortations that follow logically result from the conditions in verses 1-6 (worldliness and pride). Resist the devil: Do not submit to, fear, or flee from Satan, but stand against him (1 Pet.5:8-10). Satan cannot lead into sin against one’s will. Draw nigh: God will not be unmoved; His welcoming response is always near (cf. Deut. 4:7; Lam.3: 57; Luke 15:20). Hands and hearts: The cleansing of one’s life must involve both outward deeds and inner thoughts (cf. Ps.24:3-4).’ 

Oh friends, please check out those scriptures, for they all show God’s welcoming hand to all who turn to Him. And we’ll close with these inspiring, reassuring and warning words from Peter on the subject. (smile) ‘Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you. Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: 

Whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in (experienced by) your brethren that are in the world. But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish (confirm), strengthen, settle you. To him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen!’ (1 Pet.5: 6-11) 

Oh my people, we could not ask for more fervent and reassuring scripture this cold, snowy Friday January morning! So please let’s take it to heart and follow it nuh! That’s wisdom of enormous proportions! Much LOVE!

…Christianity 101…submitting to God…resisting Satan… 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 September 2018 1 Timothy 6:12.

1 Timothy 6:12. ​   Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast pro​fessed (confessed) a good profession (confession) before many witnesses.

 

One more time unto the breach, dear friends, one more time! Yeh, I’ve got another medical appointment this morning, that’s why the Bit is so early again. The good thing though is that I don’t have to go into Toronto, it’s just some diagnostic testing not too far down the street from me. 

But I do have to fast for it, and fasting, or rather forced fasting and I are not the best of friends. The ole stomach is here growling away on me, calling for food, but I still have a few hours to go until I can grant it its request. (smile) But as they say, it’s all for my benefit. So just suck it up, grin and bear it! 

That brings us to this bit of good advice attributed to James J Corbett (1866-1933), the American Heavyweight fighter, better known as ‘Gentleman Jim.’ He advises: ‘Fight one more round. When your feet are so tired you have to shuffle back to the centre of the ring, fight one more round.’ And that from someone who knows what He’s talking about through personal experience! 

Yes my brethren, that’s what we Christians are called to do; fight one more round, even though we feel at the point of exertion, be it physical, mental or emotional. Oh, I know many of us are tired, what with all our personal problems, including health, wealth and friendship matters, but as believers, we’re not supposed to give up. Giving up doesn’t exist in Jesus’ vocabulary. 

And further still, they say that the darkest hour is the one just before the dawn, so if you’re seeing what you consider a very dark hour, please believe that relief is right around the corner. Remember the mind is the most powerful tool in the world, and what we believe we can achieve. We have to use what resources we possess to our best advantage and keep on keeping on. 

As Bruh Paul cautioned Timothy in his first missive: ‘But thou, O man of God, flee these things (LOVE of money, hurtful lusts, material wealth.); and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, LOVE, patience, meekness. Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast pro​fessed (confessed) a good profession (confession) before many witnesses.’ 

And as the scholars say of our Bit: ‘6:12. The good fight concerns the daily struggle with sin in the Christian life, and the hardships and adversities in the ministry. A genuine believer demonstrates the reality of his faith by being engaged in this warfare. Lay hold on eternal life does not negate the fact that a believer now possess spiritual life (John 3:36); rather, it speaks of fully realizing or appropriating salvation as the believer matures.’ 

Ah mih breddren being a true believer in Jesus Christ is not easy, but since we have declared ourselves to be true believers, we have to just keep on keeping on. And it’s not like we don’t have ample resources and encouragement, assurance and help to fight our earthly battle. We do! Namely all the resources granted to us as believers in Jesus Christ; the biggest and most important ones being salvation and eternal life. 

As the Good Book declares: ‘He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth (remains) on him.’ (John 3:36) Oh friends, that provision alone ought to be enough to encourage us to stand strong and live and defend our faith. Which other faith has that sure promise eh…with the sacrifice, and resurrection of Christ to back it up eh? NONE! 

And then we have so many other promises of God, who has a good plan for every life, with a hope and good future. He’s also promised never to leave nor forsake us; to hear our prayers and pleas when we diligently and sincerely seek Him; to bring us out of the fire unscorched; to take us safely through the flood, and most of all grant us a Deliverer, a Messiah, one to sacrifice and atone for our sins, which He did through His only Son Jesus Christ becoming flesh and offering His sinless life upon the cross at Calvary so that our sins could be washed white as snow. 

Glory to God my people! For He has done all that He’s promised, and if we do what we’re supposed to do, then He will do the rest. The Lord will not do it all for us. He requires us to put in an effort on His behalf, since we’re partners in this New Covenant. So though life might be dark, dreary and difficult, we do have all the tools necessary to fight the good fight. 

And hopefully, at the end of our days, we’ll all be able to proudly say like Bruh Paul did to Timothy: ‘I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course (race), I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that LOVE his appearing.’ (2 Tim.4:7-8) 

Yes mih breddren, what a joyful day that will be! But until then, let’s keep fighting the good fight nuh, and as a promise of our faithful intentions, go home declaring our Wednesday Wail, letting the world know our current position in Christ. All together now, let’s wail: ‘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 the future will be even more glorious than our puny minds can imagine. So think on that nuh! Much LOVE!

…when life gets difficult…consider our rewards in heaven…and the glorious future promised us there…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 July 2018 Matthew 18:11.

Matthew 18:11.   For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost.

And so friends, with God’s help, we’ve come to Thursday and are about to enjoy another awesome day in the life! Wow! Christians are so blessed eh, I can’t imagine what we’d do, or be like, without Almighty God in our lives! Let’s give Him some much deserved praise and thanks nuh people, for being such a wonderful Father, for giving us blessings, mercy, grace and forgiveness that we don’t truly deserve. 

Please pray with me: ‘Oh Father in heaven, we sincerely thank You for allowing us to see another day on planet earth. Life might sometimes be rough, causing our faith to waiver, and neither are we always obedient to Your will, but You made us and You still LOVE us despite our imperfections and disobedience. We thank You and praise your holy name for ALL that You are doing in our lives. In Christ’s name we pray. Amen!  

Yeh friends, without God in our lives, we’d be lost and gone astray like so many people out there, headed for eternal damnation and separation from Him. And as I keep reminding us, separation from Almighty God is the very worst thing that can happen to a human being, that’s why it’s ever so necessary to get involved with Jesus RIGHT NOW, for He is the ONLY way that we can connect with the Father. 

And as sincere disciples of Christ, His ears, hands, mouth and feet here on earth, we are expected to help bring those who are lost to Him. As He says in our Bit: ‘For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost.’ Awright mih breddren, Jesus came to save such as you and I, who had gone astray, who had developed strong connections with the evil one, which was definitely not in our best interest. 

And Jesus continues: ‘How think ye? If a man have a hundred sheep, and if one of them be gone astray, doth he not leave the ninety and nine, and goeth into the mountains, and seeketh that which is gone astray?’ (Matt.18:12) Oh precious people, do you realize what that means? That if the only lost soul in the world was you or I, Jesus would still have done what He did; come to earth to die and save us! What a wonderful Lord and Saviour we have! 

And that’s not all, because Jesus continues: ‘And if so be that he find it, verily I say unto you, he rejoiceth more of that sheep, than of the ninety and nine which went not astray.’ (Matt.18:13) Wow mih breddren wow! Yuh see how important that lost sheep, that lost you and I are to Jesus? He rejoices over the lost that’s been found more than the many others who had not gone astray. 

No wonder Jesus declared: ‘I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just (upright) persons, which need no repentance.’ (Luke 15:7) Jesus also spoke the parables of the lost coin and the lost, prodigal son, showing just how important the lost is to His kingdom. (Luke 15:8-32) And He wraps it up in Matthew with this: ‘Even so it is not the will of your Father which is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish.’ (Matt.18:14) 

Oh people, oh people, yuh see it all stems from the Father! He doesn’t want to lose even one of His greatest creations to the fool Lucifer, that’s why He sent Jesus to save us. We are His very heartstrings! Whatever happens to us affects Him. But now that Jesus has gone back to heaven and is sitting at the Father’s right hand, interceding for us, it has now becomes our responsibility to look for those who are lost and help them become saved. 

The question is, are we shouldering that responsibility responsibly? And the answer is, I don’t think so. Too many people are turning away from God these days for us to be doing a responsible job. In fact, if we give them a chance, they’d toss God completely out of midst. What a foolish thing to even consider, much less do. 

But that’s how much sway Lucifer has over the world these days. And it’s up to you and I, as true believers to try and mitigate that evil hold, by living lives of good example and spreading God’s Word far and wide. We have the awesome capabilities to do that now, so there’s no excuse for the Word not to be broadcast all over the world. 

So let’s seriously ponder, think on, consider, our actions along those lines nuh, and do our best to come up higher, for we can ALL come up higher and thus bring more of the many lost to Christ. And He’s already given us all the tools to do that through the bestowing of our Thursday Blessings. Now let’s go home declaring them for all and sundry to hear, that they might receive inspiration to want those same blessings. 

In full voice with 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 everyday! Amen!’ 

And since we were not granted such an abundance of blessings to hoard for ourselves, but to share with the less fortunate, let’s go out and do that now nuh, so the lost will have some good reason to come to Jesus. Much LOVE!

…sharing…caring…LOVING…that’s true Christianity in action…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 June 2018 Acts 12:5.

Acts 12:5.   Peter therefore was kept in prison: but prayer was made without ceasing of the church unto God for him.

Ah friends, an unusually late night produced and unusually late morning. It’s as simple as that! Oh, I was up at a fairly decent hour, but the ole bod screamed shrilly at me: ‘Sleep! I need more sleep!’ So what was I to do eh? Nothing but go back to bed and give the ole bod what it desired. Sometimes it’s wisest to do that, else it will not perform up to the level you need or want it to. 

And having said all of that, I do hope that you all are having a fine, upstanding, godly day. As for me, I’m not doing too badly, still caught up somewhat in the funk of being sick and tired a lot of the time. Oh, I know that this too shall pass with the passing of time, and I’m not overly worried about it, but it’s just handling the apparent slow passing of time. (smile) 

However when I think about the volcanic situations on Big Island in Hawaii, where the lava is slowly taking over, just razing homes to ash and rubble, and that in Guatemala, where the big bang happened all at once and many lives and much property have been lost, I consider myself blessed, in spite of my many problems; problems which pale before theirs. 

And those wildfires in Colorado and New Mexico seem to be still blazing away. So, please, let’s keep all these unfortunate people going through these unfortunate circumstances in our prayers. It’s the least we can do, as true believers. 

And in appropriate conjunction with that, here is a li’l tidbit from one of the Daily Bread Devotionals: ‘The best kind of friend is a praying friend.’ And is that ever so true my people! For since prayers are our basic means of communicating with God, it’s of the utmost importance to have someone else to talk to God on our behalf, especially when we don’t know or understand what’s happening in our own lives. 

And we have an excellent example of that in our Bit. ‘Peter therefore was kept in prison: but prayer was made without ceasing of the church unto God for him.’ 

Yeh friends, Herod killed James, the brother of John, and when he saw that that pleased the Jewish bigwigs, he then locked up Peter, intending to kill him after the Passover. But he did not reckon with the awesome and outstanding power of prayer, which the church unceasingly kept up on Peter’s behalf. 

The Good Book tells it thus: ‘And when Herod would have brought (was about to bring) him forth, the same night Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains: and the keepers (guards) before the door kept the prison. And behold, the angel of the Lord came upon (stood) by him, and a light shined in the prison: and he smote Peter on the side, and raised him up, saying, Arise up quickly. 

And his chains fell off from his hands. And the angel said unto him, Gird thyself, and bind on thy sandals. And so he did. And he saith unto him. Cast thy garment about thee, and follow me. And he went out, and followed him; and wist (knew) not that it was true (real) which was done by the angel; but thought he saw a vision.’ (Acts 12:6-9) 

Hn, hn! Imagine that nuh, Peter didn’t even realize what was really happening, he thought that he was seeing a vision, when he was actually walking out of the jail. And the Good Book continues: ‘When they were past the first and second ward (guard posts), they came unto the iron gate that leadeth into the city; which opened to them of his own accord: and they went out, and passed on through one street; and forthwith the angel departed from him.’ (Acts 2:10) 

Now the scholars offer an interesting explanation of that verse. ‘12:10. The text implies that the guards themselves unwittingly opened the first two gates for Peter, and then through the miraculous hand of God the last gate opened of its own accord (Gr. ‘automate’) or “automatically.” And who says our God is not mighty, powerful and faithful eh? 

And the story continues: ‘And when Peter was come to himself, he said, Now I know of a surety (for certain), that the Lord hath sent his angel, and hath delivered me out of the hand of Herod, and from all the expectation of the people of the Jews.’ (Acts 12:11) 

Yeh friends, Peter eventually realized that a great miracle had taken place, and no doubt such faithfulness of God raised his own faithfulness to an even higher level. What I want us to realize though fellow believers, is that God still does miracles in our lives today, everyday. Please look for, and pay attention to them. 

They might not be as big and spectacular as Peter’s, but miracles are miracles, be they big or small, and we need to notice them when they happen in our own lives, for they truly raise our faith and appreciation of God’s goodness to us. Now let’s go home giving thanks for the miracles of our Thursday Blessings, which God has so generously bestowed on us. 

With sincere thanks and powerful affirmation now: ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! 

I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection! I am blessed with a compassionate heart and a positive outlook on life! I declare that any curse or negative word that’s ever been spoken over me is broken right now in the name of Jesus! I declare that everything I put my hands to will prosper and succeed! I declare it today and everyday! Amen!’ 

And if you truly believe all of that, then the next move is to go out and share it with others, as Jesus so greatly desires. Much LOVE!

…faithfulness to God…brings miracles from God…

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 April 2018 Matthew 6:19.

Matthew 6:19.    Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves break through and steal.

Oh friends, it’s bright and sunshiny in my neighbourhood today! Yay! Both the Sun and the SON are in their element! Glory Hallelujah! But it’s still cold, and the ice still remains frozen on the ground and at the curbs. 

Oh, and I received some info from my Ward Councilor yesterday explaining why the roads were not cleaned after the recent ice storm. Some nansi story about it was ice and not snow and ice is harder to clean, and then it rained and clearing it would have caused more flooding etc. Hn! 

But the bottom line is that the city’s snow clearing contract ends at the end of March and keeping it going until April would cost some four hundred thousand dollars a week, which would eventually be added to our Property Tax Bill. So who cares eh? People want to be able to walk and drive safely after those storms! The Property Tax Bill is still going up every year regardless. 

At least this way we would have some idea as to what the increase is being used for. And besides, she concludes, spring will soon be here anyway. So people have to carefully navigate the dangerous ice that has accumulated on the curbs and the banks until when ever it gets warm enough to melt it? Steups! Politicians eh! Two–tongued crooks! 

But yuh know what? It’s Friday, and the workingman isn’t concerned about that now, as he sings his song. ‘TGIF! Thank God is Friday oui! The weekend…Freedom time…though is only two lousy days off! But any time off from slave labour is gladly appreciated. Our time to eat, drink and be merry! For who knows, tomorrow we may die, so let’s enjoy it to the max nuh, while we have the ability to do so. Thank God for Fridays and the weekends yes!’  

Ah mih breddren, the complexities of this modern life eh! Life was so much simpler and clearer when we didn’t have as much as we now have, and overall I believe people were happier, at least more contented with their lot. They weren’t as worried and perplexed. But now, we’re just hurrying and scurrying, walking over each other to make a living that’s not much better in quality than what our parents enjoyed. 

Oh we have more amenities, but we have to spend more time servicing those same amenities, and work like crazy to pay for them, thus the complaints in the workingman’s song. However, as Christians, true believers in our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, we have a different take on the situation as stated in our Friday Chant. Let’s declare it now nuh with much zeal 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.’ 

Yeh friends, believers don’t go overboard, we have boundaries which prevent the enemy from getting any footholds in our souls and thus wreaking havoc in our relationship with Christ. I know it’s hard sometimes to hold back from the leggo beast attitude, but hold back we must, if we are to be good and true representatives of Christ. In the long run though, it will pay enormous dividends. If not down here on earth, then certainly in heaven. 

We therefore need to be more heavenly minded or centred than we currently are. That’s why we need to take serious heed of Jesus’ warning in our Bit. ‘Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves break through and steal.’ Such wonderful advice from the Master! 

However, to be wise and faithful servants, Jesus advises: ‘But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt (ruin), and where thieves do not break through and steal.’ (Matt.6:20) Yeah mih people, treasures in heaven are theft proof, rust proof and moth proof. 

So where will you rather secure your treasures then, down here on earth, where you can lose them or they be destroyed through natural wear and tear, and you have to leave them behind when you die anyway, or in heaven where they are completely safe? The obvious answer would be heaven. 

Please note though friends, that there is nothing bad about having or gaining earthly wealth and power, Jesus will indeed grant them to us if it’s in His plan for our lives. The problem is when we begin treating the earthly stuff as our god, when it becomes more important than the real, One True God, our heavenly Father. 

And anytime we allow someone or something to become more important to us than God, then we’re in serious trouble. For remember our God is a jealous God, as He so blatantly states in Exodus 20:5. ‘For I the Lord thy God am a jealous God…’ And His very FIRST Commandment reflected that in spades: ‘Thou shalt have no other gods before me.’(Ex.20:3) 

So friends, it’s all well and good to live a good life down here on earth, because that’s part of the reason why Christ died for us. But we have to realize and recognize that God must come before everyone and everything else. And to do that without too many problems, we have to do it consciously, for as Jesus so rightly warns: ‘For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.’ (Matt.6:21) 

And that’s no lie my people! Just check your own life. Don’t you think about your earthly treasure a lot, whether it be money in the bank or costly artifacts you have already accumulated, or are in the process of accumulating? We certainly do! But today I’m imploring us not to make them more important than our heavenly Father, for we’ll certainly be on the losing end if we do. Much LOVE!

…true wisdom…live a full life on earth…but think a whole lot more about heaven…which will last much longer…like forever…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 April 2018 Philippians 4:11.

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

Well friends, it’s Saturday…and yuh know what? The ole fella slept in some. (smile) But who wouldn’t want to sleep in when the spring rain is falling gently on the land, moistening and nourishing it after a long, dry, hard, ugly winter, so that the beauty of nature can sprout and gaily flourish in the spring time? 

Yeh friends, spring is God’s most colourful and productive season where He advances His grand plans for the rest of the year, letting us know through the beauty of a resurgent nature that all things are possible with Him in the lead. Glory to our great God, my people! 

Now since it’s Saturday, let’s turn to some quotes from our friend Anselm this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And it seems like he was on a happiness trip this week, because all of them either deal with happiness or being happy. (smile) 

Here’s the first one. ‘Happiness depends upon ourselves.’ Now that’s invariably true; regardless of your circumstances, be they good or bad, you are the one who ultimately controls your happiness, although oftimes we unwisely allow others to do so. 

And the next one says: ‘Happiness …is governed by our mental attitude.’ I guess that’s basically true, although our circumstances play a large part in our happiness. Then there’s: ‘Happy people plan actions; they don’t plan results.’  Now you might not plan the results, but you definitely put forward the actions which you believe will bring about certain results that you desire. 

Next up is: ‘The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts.’ Who would have ‘thunked’ it eh? (smile) Happiness depending on thoughts? But yes, they do to a large extent. And the last quote tells us: ‘Nobody really cares if you’re miserable, so you might as well be happy, and make the most of where you are.’ 

A lot of truth in that too, especially in this ‘I and me,’ selfish generation. We certainly don’t care about each other as much as we should, so it’s best if we try to enjoy where we’re at, at any particular time, without depending too much on others or our circumstances. 

That leads us to today’s Bit. ‘Not that I speak in respect of want (regard of need): for I have learned, in whatever state I am, therewith to be content.’ Now friends, that is the Christian way! All this talk about striving to be happy just confuses and muddles us up. We have to learn to be content in whatever state we currently are encapsulated. 

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) 

Yeh mih people, that’s how Christians ought to live. But remember it’s a learned behaviour, through practical experiences and the hard knocks of life, consequently, it doesn’t happen overnight. And we need to have the joy of the Lord as our strength to accomplish it. Or as Bruh Paul tells his Philippian readers: ‘I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.’ (Phil.4:13) 

Now that is a magnificent verse of scripture; possibly the most endearing and reassuring for true believers. But as always, in God’s economy, we have to believe it first, before we see it. And if by faith, we don’t believe it, then we’ll never see it. That’s the foundation of our Christian way of life: all things are possible through Christ, if we believe that they are. 

So please my fellow believers, let’s stop killing ourselves to acquire the things of the world which we believe will make us happy, because happiness is but a fleeting illusion, if we depend on our circumstances, or other people, or our possessions to make us happy. Those things and people can change from one day to the next, thus will what we call our happiness. 

But if we find joy, which is a constant state and does not change with circumstances, then we’re in a much better position to live a contented life. But on the other hand, real joy can only be found in the Lord God Jehovah; in His strength, His promises and His eternal and unconditional LOVE, because they never change, but always stand steadfast and strong, and therefore can be relied upon to keep us anchored and well grounded. 

Oh friends, since we’re running later than I expected, I’ll close with this one piece of advice from our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ that covers it all: ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ (Matt.6:33) 

Yes my faithful brethren, if we put God first in EVERYTHING that we do, we’ll want for nothing, we’ll be contented, joyful, happy and have all we need in this earthly life. That’s the promise of Jesus…and He doesn’t lie! Much LOVE!

…he who places wants above needs…will always be left wanting…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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