Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 February 2017 Habakkuk 3:18.

Habakkuk 3:18.   Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation.

And then it was Monday, that day we all LOVE to hate! Now isn’t that akin to an oxymoron? We can’t have hate and LOVE working together. It’s either one or the other. It’s like fear and faith; two different sides of the same coin. 

Anyway, very few people like Mondays, because they have to get up and go to work, and the chilly weather in my neck of the woods doesn’t enhance the situation any. But get up and go to work we have to, if we want to survive, so let’s get rid of that mantle of doom and gloom and get ourselves together to enjoy another wonderful day on God’s great earth. All the slave labour in the world can’t take that away from us! (smile) 

And to help us get our motors running, let’s sing our Monday Morning Battle Hymn with sincerity and all the exuberance we can muster. 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!’ 

Ah mih people, we certainly didn’t muster much exuberance there! You could see that our choirmaster, Jesus, wasn’t very happy with that performance. But thankfully, He’s an understanding and forgiving Being and won’t hold it against us. Instead, He will go out of His way to shower us with goodness and mercy, so that we can go out and do a good job in His awesome name. That’s the kind of Lord and Saviour we have. 

That brings us to our Bit of praise and thanksgiving. ‘Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation.’ 

Oh friends, that should not be an option for Christians, it must be a righteous standard for all believers! For there’s absolutely no reason not to rejoice in the awesome, the magnificent and magnanimous God we serve and worship, who also provided us with salvation and eternal life through the sacrificial death, triumphant resurrection and glorious ascension of His Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! 

Now the Old Testament followers didn’t have all the good news of Christ’s gospel that we possess today, but the prophets of God kept them attuned to God’s word. Our Bit comes at the end of a prayer of Habakkuk, which according to the scholars ‘contains two poems (vs.3-7 and 8-15) recounting God’s deliverance of His people in the days of the Exodus. The poems emphasize His preservation in the wilderness and His triumphal leading into the Promised Land.’ 

And listen to this verse before our Bit. ‘Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat (food); the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls: Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation.’ (Hab.3:17-18) 

Oh friends, yuh see the kind of faith those old timers displayed – at least some of the time. (smile) We can’t even exhibit a decent faith with all the luxuries we have. Hn! That’s possibly because we have too many luxuries and have become accustomed to too much ease and leisure. Yuh think many, or any of us would declare such a statement today, if we fell into such disaster? I doubt it.  

We can’t, or won’t even produce a strong enough faith to resist the enemy now, when we have Jesus and all the good stuff that goes with Him, imagine if we didn’t have Him. Ah Lord eh! 

Now let’s end as Habakkuk did. ‘The Lord God (Yahweh, Adonai) is my strength, and he will make my feet like hinds (deer’s) feet, and he will make me to walk upon mine high places.   To the chief singer on my stringed instruments. ’ (Hab.3:19) 

And per the scholars: ‘3:16-19. The instructions in the postscript indicate that this psalm (Bruh David’s Prayer of deliverance – 2 Sam.22; Ps.18 [edited]) was used as a part of the temple liturgy. It is a great psalm expressing obedience and praise to God, and trust in Him.’ 

All I can add to that my fellow believers is that we go out today, dressed in our spiritual armour, be obedient to our omnipotent God, trust Him and praise Him with all sincerity and truth, for that is the wisdom of the ages. Much LOVE!

…the reason we exist…is to be in fellowship with God…  (from the Daily Bread Devotional)

 

 

 

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 November 2016 Proverbs 13:12.

Proverbs 13:12.    Hope deferred maketh the heart sick, but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life.

Ah friends, after much unseasonable temperatures and many bright, sun shiny days, we might finally be getting our first taste of Mother Winter this weekend. The temperature is supposed to dip to just above zero on Sunday, and possibly provide flurries on that day and Monday. I sure am not looking forward to it. Wish I could be in sweet Tobago, going up Calder Hall to get some of Brother Kirby’s fine tasting and nutritious soup this Saturday morning. (smile) 

But you know the human animal is a strange being; we know that the winter weather will soon be here, and we’re supposed to be preparing for it, but when it does come, it seems to take us by surprise and throw us off guard, especially after such beautiful fall weather. Anyway there’s not much we can do, but just grin and bear it as best we can. 

But with that in mind let’s turn to our friend Anselm’s quotes, aimed at inspiring us for a better tomorrow. And today we have three, because they are all short. The first says: ‘A little more persistence, a little more effort, and what seemed hopeless failure may turn to glorious success.’ And that’s glorious advice!  

It reminds us of a quote from Calvin Coolidge, the 30th President of the U.S, which declares: “Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan Press On! has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.” 

Yes friends, persistence is the number one attribute that will help us when all else fails. Then Anselm tells us: ‘Three grand essentials to happiness in this life are something to do, something to love, and something to hope for.’ More wonderful advice! Because we need to be active, to hold something dear and have something to look forward to that will make it all worthwhile. Those are the things that make us come alive and cause us to keep on keeping on. 

My favourite quote today though, is this last one: ‘Hope is the only bee that makes honey without flowers.’ And that’s gospel truth friends! For with hope one can imagine anything and do anything. With it, we can be giants in a fallen world, but without it, we become wimps and wallow in self-pity. 

Consequently, our Bit for today deals with hope; Cousin Sol’s wise words on the subject. ‘Hope deferred maketh the heart sick, but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life.’ 

And the scholars explain it thus: ‘13:12. Hope deferred depresses, but its fulfillment revitalizes.’ 

Ah mih people, hope is the emotion that galvanizes us into action! All the other emotions are wonderful, but if they are not accompanied by hope, then they will most likely not be acted upon. For without hope, we become listless and without a sense of purpose, just sort of drifting along with the tumbling tumbleweed, wherever the wind might blow it. 

However my brethren, it’s also very important where and in what direction we focus our hope. And we have a good example of what Cousin Sol is talking about in Psalm 42 – An intense longing for God. The sons of Korah write: ‘Why art thou cast (bowed) down, O my soul? And why art thou disquieted in me? Hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance (presence).’ (Ps.42:5) 

Yes friends, when there is no hope in our souls, our fire goes out, and the best place to channel our hope is in Almighty God! There is no doubt about that! 

Listen to Jeremiah. ‘Blessed is the man that trusteth in the Lord, and whose hope the Lord is. For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters, and that spreadeth out her roots by the river, and shall not see (fear) when heat cometh, but her leaf shall be green; and shall not be careful (anxious) in the year of drought, neither shall cease from yielding fruit.’ (Jer.17:7-8) 

Aye mih breddren, yuh see what happens when we channel our hope in the Lord God Jehovah? No fear, no anxiety, just prosperity regardless of the circumstances! Now why would I want to place my hope in anything or anyone else eh? No way, Jose! 

And I just LOVE this verse of scripture from Zechariah. ‘Turn you to the stronghold, ye prisoners of hope: even today do I declare that I will render (restore) double unto thee.’ (Zech.9:12) That phrase ‘prisoners of hope,’ just raises my spiritual temperature! (smile) Oh friends, how I wish that we could all be ‘prisoners of hope,’ so that we could be more active and successful in Christ’s work. 

This verse from Psalm 119 is also a moving scripture. The psalmist petitions the Lord: ‘Uphold me according unto thy word, that I may live: and let me not be ashamed of my hope.’ (Ps.119:116) Oh precious people, our wonderful God will NEVER let us be ashamed of the hope we place in Him! Please, let’s write that indelibly in our hearts, minds and souls. 

And we’ll end with these brave and wise words of Bruh David from Psalm 31 – In thee, O Lord, do I put my trust.  He solemnly and confidently declares: ‘O LOVE the Lord, all ye his saints: for the Lord preserveth the faithful, and plentifully rewardeth (fully repays) the proud doer. Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the Lord.’ (Ps.31:23-24) 

So my fellow believers in Jesus Christ, I implore us to take that wonderful advice of Bruh David to heart today and put it into immediate action, so that our faith in the Lord God Jehovah will flourish and blossom like the bees make honey with the flowers. (smile) 

And let’s remember to keep our friend Scotty in our prayers, be prisoners of hope, that the Lord will restore him to full health, that he can continue doing good work in Jesus’ name. Much LOVE!

…hope is the catalyst that drives all other emotions…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 5 January 2014 Isaiah 2:8

Isaiah 2:8.   Their land also is full of idols; they worship the work of their own hands, that which their own fingers have made.
 
Oh Friends, the ole fella’s in a lousy state this first Sunday morning in January of 2014. Steups! I’ve been fighting a rather challenging cold for the last few days. Ah Lord eh! All I’ve been doing is resting and taking stuff to try and minimize its effects, but… Chuh! Every morning I get up and expect it to be better, I find like it’s gone back to an earlier stage.
 
And you know that there’s no sickness in this whole wide world that makes you feel as miserable as the common cold. You know you’re not dying, but you feel so lousy, that you might as well be. (smile) I don’t even think I’m going to church this morning.
 
However Fridns… What a beautiful spelling of Friends, Fridns! We’re not going to do this nonsense again today are we? I made more spelling mistakes in writing the Bit yesterday than I’ve ever done before. The spelling check didn’t even have to point them out to me, they were so glaring. Like the cold’s affecting my mental capacity, which already isn’t the greatest. (smile) 
 
Anyway, as I was about to say, though I can’t seem to physically get rid of the cold on my terms, must let it run its course, I do have the medicine for my spiritual and emotional well being. And it’s to be found in this old but very beautiful hymn: Just A Closer Walk With Thee. So please sing it with me my brethren.
 
‘I am weak, but Thou art strong; Jesus, keep me from all wrong; I’ll be satisfied as long, As I walk, let me walk close to thee.’
 
Now let’s raise the roof with the chorus Friends: ‘Just a closer walk with Thee, Grant it, Jesus, is my plea, Daily walking close to Thee, Let it be, dear Lord, let it be.’
 
Wow, mih people! That sure hit the right spots in my soul! Hope it did in yours too! But that’s exactly what we need in this New Year, a single-minded resolution that will take care of everything else.
 
Yes my fellow believers, we can’t ask for, or have a better resolution than walking closer with our faithful Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ! For when we do that, our lives just blossom like the lilies of the field!
 
As the second verse of the hymn says: ‘Through this world of toil and snares, If I falter, Lord who cares? Who with me my burden shares? None but Thee, dear Lord, none but Thee.’
 
And that’s the gospel truth my people! Only our wonderful Lord and Saviour truly cares about our troubles, and furthermore, is willing to help us bear our burdens down here on this hellish earth. Our fellow man might say they do, and sometimes they really do, but none of them can’t help us the way that Jesus Christ can.
 
That’s why it’s ever so important Friends, to not let our Bit be a true reflection of our society. ‘Their land also is full of idols; they worship the work of their own hands, that which their own fingers have made.’
 
For if that is the true state of our land, then we can’t expect much, if any help from our Lord and Saviour, because that means we’ve broken our covenant with our God; not to worship any gods but Him. And in fact, then we’re not only being unfaithful, but also stupid, because THERE ARE NO OTHER GODS BUT HIM! HE IS THE ONE AND ONLY GOD; ALIVE AND KICKING FROM DAY ONE UNTIL TIME EVERLASTING!
 
I don’t know what it will take for us to get that through our thick heads nuh Friends. Now hear these prophetic words of the Lord of Hosts, as spoken by the prophet Jeremiah, re the broken covenant.
 
‘Hear ye the words of this covenant, and speak unto the men of Judah, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem; And say thou unto them, Thus saith the Lord God of Israel; Cursed be the man that obeyeth not the words of this covenant, Which I commanded your fathers in the day that I brought them forth out of the land of Egypt, from the iron furnace, saying, Obey my voice, and do them according to all which I command you: so shall ye be my people, and I will be your God….
 
Yet they obeyed not, nor inclined their ear, but walked everyone in the imagination (stubbornness) of their evil heart: therefore I will bring upon them all the words of this covenant, which I commanded them to do; but they did not. And the Lord said unto me, A conspiracy is found among the men of Judah, and among the inhabitants of Jerusalem.
 
They are turned back to the iniquities of their forefathers, which refused to hear my words; and they went after other gods to serve them: the house of Israel and the house of Judah have broken my covenant which I made with their fathers. Therefore thus saith the Lord, Behold, I will bring evil (calamity) upon them, which they shall not be able to escape; and though they shall cry unto me, I will not hearken unto (hear, listen to) them.’ (Jer.11:2-4, 8-11)
 
Ah mih people, there’s not much to debate there, because all of that also applies to our time. There’s no doubt that we’ve turned our back on God, and that there is a definite conspiracy to take Him out of our lives and societies. So what else do we expect eh?
 
And the sad and senseless part of it all is that a lot of the calamity that we’re now experiencing, isn’t so much the Lord sending it on us, but it’s more the result of our own foolish choices and stubbornness, e.g. the widespread strife that exists in our rather fragile world, and the scary, unpredictable weather patterns that are now becoming the norm, because we’ve so badly polluted the atmosphere. We’ve recklessly disrupted the finely tuned mechanisms of God’s universe!
 
Ah mih people, all I can say is, I hope that we soon come to our senses and realize the error of our ways, before it’s too late to make a positive change. So let’s go home, singing the last verse of our hymn.
 
‘When my feeble life is o’er, Time for me will be no more; Guide me gently, safely o’er, To Thy kingdom shore, to Thy shore. Just a closer walk with Thee, Grant it, Jesus, is my plea, Daily walking close to Thee, Let it be, dear Lord, let it be.’
 
Yes my people, please ponder seriously on all that we’ve said, and let’s make 2014 the year that we truly walk closer with Jesus, because it’s the wisdom for all ages! Much LOVE!
 
…true wisdom declares…obey God…or face the negative consequences…it’s that simple…