Today’s Scrip-Bit 11 September 2018 Mark 6:31.

Mark 6:31.   And he said unto them, Come ye yourselves apart (aside) into a desert (deserted) place, and rest a while: for there were many coming and going, and they had no leisure so much as to eat. 

Here we go again friends with the hurricane season! Hurricane Florence is barreling towards North Carolina today! I guess all we can do is pray that at the last minute the storm will veer away from the land, and if not, that it does not do significant damage. 

Ah Lord eh! As the ole people would say; when it’s not one thing, it’s another. But it’s all a part of life and we just have to keep on keeping on in Christ, regardless of what adversity comes against us. But here is an interesting poem from our One Year Book of Bible Promises, with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin that assures us that every so often, it’s wise to step aside from the rat race that’s life nowadays and rest a spell. It’s titled ‘Moments of Leisure. 

Please pray with me. ‘Lord, thank You for the moments of leisure And peaceful solitude I can legitimately snatch Here and there Without apologizing. Thank You for assuring me That I needn’t condemn myself When I spend some time Reading or resting Or shopping just for fun. Thank You for convincing me That there’s no glory In a rat race. 

I’ve discovered, dear Lord That an hour or two “Away from it all” Calms my inner muddle And cuts through the confusion. Without a driving sense of urgency I think more clearly – I plan more wisely. I am more patient, more LOVING More understanding with my family. I even accept with calmness The multiple demands imposed upon me. Thank You so much, dear God For the certain knowledge that Jesus (Who always obeyed the Father) Went apart from the crowd to rest. So must I!’ 

Yes friends, it’s essential that we step aside once in a while from our oh so busy lives and just smell the roses and enjoy the wafting breezes sent from heaven to calm our convoluted and confused spirits! Taking this world too seriously will only lead to breakdowns in all areas of our lives. Our bodies, minds, and souls simply were not meant to keep on going continually at the fast pace the world is dictating these days. 

So please step aside and rest every so often. Just leave the world and all of its nonsense alone for a spell and rest in the comfort of your God, doing whatever makes you calm and comfortable. It’s not a sin to do that. It’s more likely sinful to continue on the fast track when your body is crying out for rest and release. 

And we have a perfect example of that necessity in our Bit and the Bible Promise for the poem. After Herod killed John the Baptist and gave his head on a charger to His wife, the disciples came and told Jesus about it, also about what they had done and taught. 

And he said unto them, Come ye yourselves apart (aside) into a desert (deserted) place, and rest a while: for there were many coming and going, and they had no leisure so much as to eat. And they departed into a desert (deserted) place by ship privately (by themselves).’ (Mark 6:31-32) 

Oh my people, if our Lord and Saviour saw the need for occasional rest and privacy, why wouldn’t we eh? Instead of allowing the world to drive us unceasingly in our efforts to gain earthly wealth and power, we need to slow down every so often and take a break from it all. 

And right after that instance above, He fed the multitude of five thousand with five loaves of bread and two small fishes, then He sent them away again to rest. ‘And straightway he constrained (compelled) his disciples to get into the ship, and to go to the other side before (before him) unto Bethsaida, while he sent away the people (multitude). And when he had sent them away, he departed into a mountain to pray.’ (Mark 6:45-46) 

Even Jesus needed to rest and recuperate after doing those miracles and having so many people around Him just pleading for their own desires to be fulfilled. It does take a toll on the human body when it’s bothered and badgered too much. And please note what Jesus went away by Himself to do; pray. Pray to His heavenly Father to ‘renourish’ His spiritual self and seek the Father’s guidance, for He came to do the Father’s work, and that necessitated occasional deep communion. 

So my brethren, we need not take the fast track that the world offers us. We have the option of taking the slower one that our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ offers. So which will it be eh? It’s all up to us individually, but I do hope that the Spirit of wisdom guides us to accept the latter, because that’s the wiser and more amenable choice. 

Now let’s go home declaring our Tuesday Mantra, letting the world know who and whose we are. In strong voice and true heart: ‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen!’ 

So let’s go out and do exactly that nuh! Much LOVE!

…the race is not for the swift…but for the sure of foot…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 8 September 2018 John 16:33.

John 16:33.   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.

‘Shalom friends, Shalom! Peace! Everlasting Peace! May the peace of God, that peace that passes all human understanding, which is instilled in us by the Holy Spirit, be unto you and yours this somewhat cloudy Saturday morning!’ 

And all God’s people said a loud and grateful, ‘Thank You Lord!’ For there is nothing that’s so badly needed right now in our world, than peace, the peace of Almighty God! And though it’s cloudy, the sun is valiantly pushing through, just like our efforts in Jesus Christ to transform this evil world, to have His LOVE Revolution conquer it! Have faith my brethren. If we persevere in Jesus’ name, it will happen. 

Now let’s look at some of our friend Anselm’s quotes for this week, as he aspires to inspire us for a better tomorrow. And the first one says: ‘Change the way you look at things, and the things you look at will change.’ Now that’s simply logical. If you look at things differently, then in the majority of cases, they will appear differently to you. I guess it’s all about our perspective. 

And the second one tells us: ‘You are not stuck where you are unless you decide to be.’ And isn’t that the glorious truth! My people, wherever we are, is where we have decided to be, at least for the time being, otherwise we’d be somewhere else. 

That’s unless we’re living for Jesus, and He has us in a particular position or situation right now that we don’t like, and as far as we’re concerned, He is moving us too slowly from glory to glory. But even then, we can always change it. It might not work out for the best under your terms, but it’s always changeable. 

Now this quote is simple but ever so important in a believer’s life. ‘Spread LOVE wherever you go. Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier.’ Yeh friends, that’s what Jesus has called us to do, ‘SPREAD LOVE!’ 

His kind of LOVE; the kind that’s sincere and true and really caring and compassionate, not the empty, insincere, deceitful words that the world utters. That means whoever we interact with, we must leave them with a li’l bit of Jesus, so that their souls and spirits can be lifted through His awesome power. 

That leads us to this last quote: ‘With everything that has happened to you, you can either feel sorry for yourself or treat what has happened as a gift. Everything is either an opportunity to grow or an obstacle to keep you from growing. You get to choose.’ That’s also very true my people! We might not be able to always control our situations, but we always have the power to control our attitudes towards them. 

What did Jesus say about such situations? ‘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) 

Wow! What assurance friends! Our Lord and Saviour has already overcome the world, so we should not allow our circumstances to drag us down and keep us down for too long. Through His Holy Spirit that dwells within us, we can have peace in even the most unpleasant and unpalatable situations. 

Bruh Paul told Timothy in no uncertain terms: ‘Persecutions. Afflictions, which came unto me at Antioch, at Iconium, at Lystra; what persecutions I endured; but out of them all the Lord delivered me. Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.’ (2 Tim.3:11-12) 

And that’s indisputable truth! Once we stand up and proclaim the name of Jesus, the enemy WILL come against us. But as the Good Book says, he will come against us one way, but flee seven ways! Glory to God! 

Now let’s end up with some significant scriptures on peace. Hear Bruh Paul to the Ephesians, re Christ: ‘For he (he himself) is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition (division) between us.’ (Eph.2:13) Yeh people, by His death and resurrection Christ has broken down all barriers between Jews and Gentiles. We are all one body, one church under His name now. 

Meanwhile to the Colossians, Bruh Paul advised: ‘ And above all these things put on charity (LOVE), which is the bond of perfectness. And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.’ (Col.3:14-15) Oh friends, LOVE is the crowning grace of a believer, and right behind it is peace! 

And to the Philippians, Bruh Paul wrote: ‘Be careful (anxious) for nothing; but in everything 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, sustain) your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.’ (Phil.4:6-7) 

Now isn’t that wonderful! Though we don’t understand God’s peace, we certainly have it available to us. So let’s use it nuh mih breddren, for it’s wisdom personified. Much LOVE!

…walking with Christ…brings tranquility of mind…frees us from fear and worry…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 4 September 2018 Deuteronomy 31:6.

Deuteronomy 31:6.   Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee nor forsake thee.

And then it was the Tuesday after the Labour Day weekend; time to go back to school and work! And it seems like it’s going to be another hot, hazy and humid day in my neighbourhood. But we’ll take it, though some of the promised rain would be nice. However, we can’t blame the weather forecasters too much, because with the screwed up climate we have nowadays, their predictions can easily be thrown off. 

Anyway, today we’re going to talk about two words that play a very big part in our lives, both as normal humans and Christian believers. Those words are FEAR and COURAGE! First up are a couple of definitions of those words from Uncle Charles (Dr. Charles Stanley) Here’s what he says about Fear. 

‘Fear – An uneasy feeling, a feeling of dread…an internal alarm that goes off inside of us when we are feeling imminent danger; feel threatened, or feel helpless to avoid or change it.’ In other words, Fear seems to be a negative disposition; one that has us nervous and jittery, feeling weak, especially when we can’t do anything about the prevailing circumstances. 

As per Courage, Uncle Charles says: ‘Courage: The quality of mind or spirit enabling us to meet danger, face opposition, or the challenges of life with fearlessness, calmness and firmness.’ Courage then boosts us up, makes us strong, has us feeling we can do whatever it takes to meet a certain situation. 

But for whatever it’s worth, both of those emotions play a very large part in our lives. These days with our world in such a sorry state of war, resentment, anger, hate and strife, fear is very common and a frequent visitor to too many of us. And it takes a lot of courage to ignore that kind of stuff and move on with a positive and productive life. 

Now we all entertain fear at some time or other in our lives, but as Sister Joyce (Joyce Meyer) likes to say, we need to do it afraid. So courage isn’t necessarily not having fear, but also doing whatever we need to do while being fearful or afraid. 

And one of the first directives Moses gave to the Israelites when he was dying are the words contained in our Bit. ‘Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee nor forsake thee.’  

What a magnificent promise my brethren! And when the Israelites held to it, they were fine, and when they didn’t they suffered serious harm. And I’d like you to know that that promise still holds true even to this day, so many thousands of years later. 

And on the death of Moses, the Lord God Himself even reiterated it to Joshua after making him leader of the Israelites. ‘Have I not commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee withersoever thou goest.’ (Josh.1:9) 

That seems to intimate that followers of Jehovah God should not be afraid of anything or anyone that comes against them because their great, powerful and caring God is always with them wherever they may go. And that’s the indisputable truth friends: our omnipotent, omniscient and omni-present God is all over, all the time! His eyes are always on us, as He walks, before, behind and beside us. 

So there’s no need to fear. We can be sometimes anxious, but definitely not fearful. And if you don’t believe me, then listen to Jesus with the ultimate word on the situation. ‘Fear not little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.’ (Luke 12:32) 

And Jesus was always cheering up His followers, advising them to have courage. Listen to him as He came walking on the water towards His scared disciples on the boat. ‘Be of good cheer (take courage); it is I; be not afraid.’ (Matt.14:27) 

And hear Him again when He tells them He’s going back to heaven and promises to send the Holy Spirit to comfort and guide them. ‘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 later on He again warns them: ‘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 (take courage); I have overcome the world.’ (John 16:33) That’s the faithful promise of our Lord and Saviour, my people! Powerful words for us to hold on to securely and courageously live by! If you’re a true believer, that’s the ONLY way to live! 

And Bruh David adds his two cents worth (smile) ‘Wait (in faith) on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait (in faith), I say, on the Lord.’ (Ps.27:14) More invaluable advice my brethren! So please take it. But now it’s time to go home, and we’ll do so declaring our Tuesday Mantra, letting the whole world know who and whose we are. 

In strong voice with sincere hearts now:  ‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world. Amen!’ 

So what are we waiting for eh? Let’s go out and do as we just declared. Much LOVE!

…faith in Jesus…that’s the only thing that will quench…fear of the world…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 28 August 2018 Hebrews 7:24.

Hebrews 7:24.   But this man (Jesus), because he continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood.

Aw shucks friends, Monday’s done – like dinner! (smile) And you’ll notice that we weren’t plagued by any of the evil forebodings we had conjured up in our minds for the first day of the workweek. Glory to God! It was all just peace and quiet, LOVE, joy and friendship in Jesus Christ! Mama Yo!

So let’s just keep it like that today too nuh. And the best way to start out is by declaring this mind-setting acclamation: ‘This is the day the Lord has made. We WILL rejoice and be glad in it!’  And having set our minds on that, we can now go out and bring it to pass. And to help us do that, here is this ‘Prayer for Success,’ from Gramps Schuller’s (Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional. 

Please pray with me. ‘As I become a success with your help, Lord, let me never forget that what I am is more important than what I do. Faith stimulates success. Hope sustains success. LOVE sanctifies success. So I cannot and I dare not succeed without your power, peace, and pressure in my life, Jesus Christ. Amen!’ That’s all gospel truth my brethren! Without those wonderful and powerful attributes of Jesus we cannot succeed in this evil and ungodly world! 

And Gramps Schuller continues: ‘Be open. Be humble. Correctable. Educable. Then you will hear God’s voice. You will see God’s plan. Grab onto it, give it all you’ve got, and you will inherit the earth!’ More words of indisputable truth friends! 

And you know what hold us back more than anything else, is not that we don’t believe etc. etc. but we don’t give it all we’ve got for a sufficient length of time. Yes my people, we give up way too easily. Just think if Jesus had given up on us, what would have happened eh? 

It’s sure scary to think about no forgiveness of sins, no mercy or grace, no salvation, no eternal life. Hn! But He persisted, even though He knew the severe trials He would have to face. And because of His persistence, He overcame them. Likewise my brethren, we, His faithful followers ought to be persistent in all that we do in His name. 

And our Bit shows just how persistent and persevering is our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. ‘But this man (Jesus), because he continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood.’ Yeh friends, all the other important priests died, and so did Jesus, but He rose from the dead and continues living and working on our behalf. 

‘Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.’ (Heb.7:25) Ah mih brethren, how blessed we are when we follow Jesus! He not only died to pay for our sins and help us be reconciled to the Father, but even now, He is sitting at the right hand of God interceding for us. 

He never stops pleading on our behalf! Glory to His Holy Name; the one that’s higher than any other, and the one that all must bow to! So are we as persevering and persistent in our work on His behalf? I don’t think so, otherwise the world would not be as evil and ungodly as it is, neither would there be so many people willing and pushing, even clamouring to have God removed from our society. 

And the reason for that ungodliness lie heavily both on the church as an organization and we individuals within it. And here I’ll just recall a couple scriptures on the persistence of the early church. ‘And they continued steadfastly in the apostles doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.’ (Acts 2:42) 

‘And they continuing daily with one accord (mind) in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat (food) with gladness and singleness of heart (simplicity). Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily, such as should be (were being) saved.’ (Acts 2:46-47) 

Friends, that just shows how fervent and persistent the early church was about living for Christ. Unfortunately though, in today’s feckless and spineless society, we seem to be more enamoured of the things of the world, than those of God. But that’s a fool’s wisdom my people. Now here is a passage of scripture I hope will encourage us to keep on keeping on regardless of what comes against us. 

‘Wherefore seeing (since) we also are compassed about with (surrounded by) so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset (ensnare) us, and let us run with patience (perseverance) the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author (originator) and finisher (perfector) of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider him that endured such contradiction (hostility) of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint (discouraged) in your minds (souls).’ (Heb.12:1-3) 

Yeh friends, the times are evil and ungodly, and only as we believers are persistent and true in following Jesus, will, or can they ever change. So let’s think about all Jesus did for us, and is still doing, and make that extra effort to run our race for Him nuh, for His glory. 

And for those of us who have decided to do just that, let’s go home declaring our Tuesday Mantra, letting the world know who and whose we are. In strong voice, with sincere hearts now: ‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen!’ 

Now let’s go out and do exactly that, so we can effect, bring about, some badly needed godly change in our world. Much LOVE!

…the saints in heaven are watching…are cheering us on to run a good race…let’s not disappoint them nuh…

 


Today’s Scrip-Bit 21 August 2018 Hebrews 5:8.

Hebrews 5:8.   Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered.

Hello there my fellow believers! Grace and the Father’s LOVE to you! It’s a wet and somewhat sombre looking morning in my area, but I guess the Lord felt we needed some heavenly blessings. I don’t know when the rain began, but it had to be late because I did not get to bed until 3.30 this morning. 

And I’m sure you can guess the resultant consequences… when it was time to get up, I got lured back to sleep by the soothing sounds of the gently falling rain. Hn! I guess I’m just a sucker, an addict to the siren-like call of falling rain. (smile) But I can think of plenty worse things to be a sucker for, or and addict to than soothing rainfall. I look at it as one of God’s tools to help soothe our disturbed and strife filled souls and spirits. Good excuse eh! (smile) 

Anyway, here is something I think we need this Tuesday morning. It comes from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional. I’m pretty sure I’ve shared it before, but it’s one of those things that we need to hear over and over again before it truly takes root in our souls. It’s called ‘A Prayer for Solutions.’ 

Please pray with me: ‘Lord thanks for assuring me that you’ll solve the problems if I’ll exercise the faith and make the right decisions! Forgive me for waiting for all difficulties, real or fanciful, to be resolved before deciding to make my commitment. I confess I have too often allowed problems instead of possibilities to take over leadership of my life – to make my decisions – and take command over my destiny. I know, now, what faith is, Lord! It’s making the right decisions before I see solutions to all the problems! Increase my faith! Amen.’ 

Ah friends, that’s the living truth! In this fallen world, we’re too often driven to wait and see what happens before we make a decision, when in heaven’s economy, we’re supposed to feel and believe it before we see it. As Gramps Schuller indicates, it’s all a matter of faith. And the more faith we have, the better we’ll be at making right decisions at the right times. 

But the tough part of the situation is that faith only comes by experiencing tough times. And though we all want more and better and stronger faith, very few of us want to experience the tough times to get it. But unfortunately to grow in Christ, we must undergo some of the trials and tribulations He went through. That brings us to our Bit, a scripture passage that just touches my heart. ‘Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered.’ 

Yeh friends, though our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ was the Son of God, as a man, He still had to learn obedience, and the only way he could do that was by ‘sufferation’. And on that subject, Bruh Paul told the Philippians: ‘And being found in fashion (appearance) as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.’ (Phil.2:8) 

Ah mih breddren, our Saviour didn’t have an easy row to hoe in atoning for our sins, in cleansing our sinful souls with His shed blood and finally bringing us to salvation and eternal life. But He persevered in the Father’s plan, though it meant He had to suffer a lot, taking ALL the sins of the world, past, present and future, on His shoulders on the cross. No wonder He cried out on the cross at the ninth hour: ‘Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? Which is being interpreted (translated), My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me?’ (Mark 15:34) 

And it was not so much from the agony of the physical pain that Jesus cried out, but more so of the spiritual hurt, the separation from His Father. It was the first and only time that they had ever been separated, but with the whole weight of the world’s sins on His shoulders, the Father, in His supreme holiness, could not very well cozy up to Him. 

And the scholars offer this interesting explanation. ‘15:34. Mark preserves the Aramaic form of Jesus’ outcry, which calls Psalm 22:1 to mind. (Bruh David’s cry of the same words). Some mistook His (Jesus’) words, (v.35) (thinking He called Elijah). Even in the midst of bearing God’s wrath for sin, Jesus still calls Him, my God. His agony does not overcome His faith.’ 

Oh my people, is our faith strong enough to overcome whatever trials and tribulation we go through and still consider God our Father, Helper and eternal Friend? I certainly hope so for all of our sakes. Because that’s the only way we will learn obedience, and God will do wonders in our lives! 

And we have the magnificent example of what the Lord did in Jesus’ life for His obedience, even unto death on the cross. The author of Hebrews continues after our Bit: ‘And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto ALL them that obey him. Called of God a high priest after the order of Melchizedek.’ (Heb.5:9-10) 

And Bruh Paul takes it one step further, when he declares: ‘Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of (those) things in heaven, and (those) things in earth, and (those) things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.’ (Phil.2:9-11) 

Yuh see friends, our wonderful God is indeed a generous rewarder of those who diligently seek Him and are obedient to His will. Will you seek Him today and be obedient to whatever He asks of you? I sincerely hope so. Now for all of us who have accepted Jesus as our Lord and Saviour, let’s go home declaring our Tuesday Mantra, letting the world know who and whose we are. 

In loud and proud voice now: ‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen!’ And if we were sincere in that declaration, then we now have to go out and action it, like Jesus desires. Much LOVE!

…being obedient to God’s will isn’t always easy…but the rewards are always worth it…just look at the example of Jesus…

P.S.  Hearing the rain falling on the window behind me. Can’t wait to get breakfast and go back to bed. One of the perks for being obedient. (smile) Much LOVE!

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 August 2018 1 John 4:19.

1 John 4:19.   We LOVE him, because he first LOVED us.

Thank You Lord…thank You, thank You, thank you! And you all must be wondering what I’m thanking the Lord so profusely for eh? Well it’s for finally sending showers of blessings on my area yesterday. After a couple weeks of empty promises from the weather reporters about thunderstorms etc., yesterday afternoon they finally delivered. 

And I have to chuckle, as at one stage I went out on my front porch to witness the phenomenon, (smile) and was promptly driven back inside by two brilliant flashes of lightning. Then later in the night we got a couple of good showers, so much so that the ground is still wet this morning. 

And yuh know friends there’s no sound as soothing to the ears and the soul as that of showers of blessings cascading down from heaven to nourish the drought-stricken earth. And that didn’t happen by mistake or coincidence, but was planned by our wise and wonderful God. How great and thoughtful is He eh! 

And here is another instance of how great and wonderful and caring our God is. Check out this poem from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin. It’s simply titled, ‘Who Me?’ 

‘Lord All of a sudden today You picked me up And hugged me And hugged me For no discernible reason. I was puzzled. After all – I hadn’t picked up my toys Or practiced my lessons Or brought You a daisy bouquet – Hesitantly, I asked why. You smiled and said: I LOVE you, that’s all. Then you added: I long to hug you more often. Why don’t You Lord? You are too busy. Too busy, Lord? Too busy hugging yourself.’ 

And isn’t that the awful truth my brethren? We’re too busy hugging ourselves and going about our business to notice that the Lord is waiting in the wings to just take us up in His awesome embrace and shower us with some of His most wonderful LOVE, so that we can be joyful here on earth and be obedient to His holy will. 

And He doesn’t have any ulterior motives. He just LOVES us because we’re his awesome creation! Don’t we all hold dear the things we create? Of course! And so does our living God! Remember what the Good Book says? ‘And God saw every thing that he had made, and behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.’ (Gen.1:31) 

Yes friends, God admired His handiwork, of which we were the most important aspect, so it’s just natural that He LOVES to LOVE us…if we’d only slow down and allow Him to. And the Bible Promise for that poem is also our Bit for today: ‘We LOVE him, because he first LOVED us.’ 

Aw my fellow believers, such touching, heartwarming and truthful words! Our Creator LOVED us from the moment He made us, before we were even aware of the emotion. He placed that emotion of LOVE in us as the centerpiece of our very existence. 

And John earlier explains the whole scenario in these few choice words of gospel truth. ‘Herein is LOVE, not that we LOVED God, but that he LOVED us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.’ (1 John 4:10) Now that’s what you’d call REAL LOVE! 

And the scholars offer this explanation. ‘4:10. No human LOVE is the standard for understanding God’s great compassion, but God’s own action on man’s behalf.’ 

Yes my brethren, our puny and finite minds cannot understand God’s action, of sending His Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ to die on our behalf, piling our sins on Him as the great scapegoat, so that we could be reconciled to Him, have fellowship with Him, and once again become righteous in His holy eyes. But nonetheless, it is the standard to which faithful believers and followers of His marvellous Son, Jesus Christ are expected to follow. 

As John says: ‘If a man say, I LOVE God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that LOVETH not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he LOVE God whom he hath not seen?’ (1 John 4:20) 

Now that’s a very good question my people. How can we LOVE something or someone we’ve not seen, and hate what or whom we’ve seen? In this context about LOVING God, it’s just impossible! But we do it nevertheless and unfortunately show ourselves to be hypocrites of the highest order. 

But here is the final word on the situation as John tells it. ‘And this commandment have we from him, That he who LOVETH God LOVE his brother also.’ (1 John 4:21) 

And the scholars spell it out in simple language for us: ‘4:19-21. Our LOVE, if it exists and mirrors God’s LOVE at all, is not our own but God’s doing. The epitome of hypocrisy is the claim to LOVE God while withholding LOVE from others. For Jesus Himself commanded that he who LOVES God is to demonstrate this through LOVING others.’ 

And with that reminder tugging at our heartstrings my precious people, let’s go home declaring our Tuesday Mantra, proudly letting the world know who and whose we are. 

Now, in strong voice, with sincere hearts: ‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen!’ 

And if we truly believe that, then we need to go out and share the awesome LOVE and friendship of Jesus with others. Only then will we be His true disciples! Much LOVE!

…in God’s universe…everything hinges on…LOVE and LOVING…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 31 July 2018 Matthew 14:31a.

Matthew 14:31a.   O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?

Well mih people, our gracious and generous God has granted us dominion over another beautiful day on Planet Earth, so let’s show our wisdom and rejoice and be glad in it nuh! But please note we’re not expected to just sit on our already large fannies and do nothing but rejoice, but even more importantly to work diligently and excellently in furthering God’s glorious heavenly kingdom. 

And to enable us to do Jesus’ work, today we want to share lots of informational wisdom with you, beginning with this bon mot from George Bernard Shaw (1856 – 1950), the famous Irish playwright, critic, polemicist, and political activist. And George wisely declares: ‘Life is not a “brief candle.” It is a splendid torch that I want to make burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations.’ 

Glory be mih breddren! That’s exactly what our God expects of us. We ought to run our earthly race with plenty salt and bright light, so that others can vividly see it and hopefully touch their hearts. Then, when our race is run, we can turn it over to them like a relay runner turns over the baton, so that they can keep on running the glorious race that glorifies Jesus and brings the lost and unfortunate to Him for comfort and care. 

Mama Yo! What wonderful ambassadors we can be for our Lord and Saviour, if we’d only put our all into it! That brings us to this plea to our heavenly Father taken from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin, titled ‘Immediately.’ 

Please pray with me. ‘Dear Lord I’m so tired of living In my little cramped vessel – So weary of dangling my feet in the water But never stepping out of the boat. I want to walk the waves with You Just as Peter did. True, he only took a few steps Before losing his courage But at least he was heading toward You. Lord, I’m coming, too! If I begin to falter or sink I trust You to catch me Just as You caught Peter. Remember, Lord? You caught him immediately.’ 

Oh friends, even when we try to be brave and courageous, deep down we still doubt the LOVE and caring and faithfulness of our heavenly Father. And He says, somewhat miffed: ‘Chuh! What kind of talk is that eh mih chile? Why do you even think that I will let you sink if you are coming to me?’ 

No my fellow believers, our wonderful God will NEVER let us sink into the morass or mire if we are sincerely seeking Him! Why would He ever do such an ungodly thing eh, when all He wants is to take us under His wing and guard us from the evil one? 

And the incident with Peter walking on water exemplifies what we’re talking about. He steps out of the boat boldly and confidently and is walking towards Jesus like a man on a mission. ‘But when he saw the wind boisterous (violent), he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me.’ (Matt.14:30) 

Oh my people, so many of us are like that; we start out with courage and faith, but when the tough times come, we crumble and begin to sink back into the mire from which we’re trying to extricate ourselves. But have no fear, our Jesus is there, is ALWAYS there to rescue us from our failing faith. 

Listen as the story with Peter continues. ‘And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand, and caught him, and said unto him, O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?’ (Matt.14:31) 

Yeh friends, oftimes our faith fails us, but that is not a crime, or anything to be ashamed of. Jesus knows our frailty and our weaknesses, and He is just thrilled to know that we want to come to Him, and will help us to do just that, in spite of all our shortcomings. Glory Be mih people! How can we want a better Lord and Saviour and King than that eh? 

However friends, our earnest desire should be to let our faith fail us as little as possible, which means we have to concentrate on growing it, becoming mature in the things of God. And the only way to do that is by reading and studying and meditating on God’s Word, by having constant communication with Him through prayer, by fellowshipping with other believers and by sincerely trying to live the life He has prepared for each and every one of us. 

Only then can we avoid Jesus asking us why our faith is so small. (smile) But remember too that maturing in the faith is an ongoing process, it doesn’t happen overnight, but as sister Joyce (Joyce Meyer) says, ‘It doesn’t matter how far we’ve got to go, it’s how far we’ve come from.’ In other words it’s not where we were yesterday, but where we’ll be tomorrow. And if we do what’s required of us, then we’ll ALL be further along that continuum of faith… when tomorrow dawns. 

Now let’s go home declaring our Tuesday Mantra, letting the world know who and whose we are. In strong voice with sincere hearts now: ‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen!’ 

And if that’s true, then let’s go out and share the LOVE and friendship of Jesus with the world, as He so greatly desires of us. Much LOVE!

…to truly show our LOVE for Jesus…we must generously and unselfishly share…ALL that He is…with others…

 

 

 

 

 

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