Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 February 2018 1 Corinthians 15:57.

1 Corinthians 15:57.   But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Ah mih people, welcome to another day on God’s great earth! Oh, I know that we will be surrounded by numerous problems and everyday we hear of more and more foolish strife, war and heated words in our society, but that’s no reason not to give thanks to Almighty God for the good things He’s done, is doing, and will do in our individual lives. Yeh friends, telling God, ‘Thank You,’ is essential for our very survival. 

Now I’m going to share something from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional that I’m pretty sure I’ve never shared before. I don’t know why, if it was just too long and didn’t lend itself to useful paraphrasing, but to day I’m going to share the entire thing, because I believe it’s ever so important for believers in these violent and negative times to understand. 

So here goes. In the first place it is titled: ‘Thank You! Thank You! Thank You!’ So you know it’s all about thanking God. 

And Gramps Schuller says: ‘When you lose a LOVED one, there is a way to thank God. You can thank Him for the promise of eternal life. You can thank Him for the assurance that someday you will be reunited with the one you’ve lost. The worse the loss, the harder the fall, the deeper the pain – the more you need to say, “Thank You, Lord!”  

Thank You, Lord! is the force that draws back the curtains, letting tomorrow’s light pierce today’s darkness. Thank You, Lord! is the first slippery step back up from the ditch of depression. Thank You, Lord! is the seed of faith planted in the dry, cracked earth. When you least feel like doing it – say Thank You, Lord! 

You don’t say Thank You to God because you are crediting or blaming Him for your heartache. NO! Nothing could be further from the truth! God is good! He is the Father of LOVE and goodness! Most of the time we make our own heartache. Why then do we say Thank You, Lord, in the midst of the raging storm? 

We say Thank You, Lord, that you’re still there to help us! Thank You, Lord, that I’m not totally alone! Thank You, Lord for the help you will send me. Thank You, Lord. Thank You for tomorrows that are sure to come. Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! It’s a vital element of positive prayer.’ 

Oh friends, I do hope that Gramps Schuller’s words on the importance of saying ‘Thank You,’ to God, have resonated and reverberated in us, and will continue to do so, because if we want to have positive thoughts and actions, we first have to use positive words, in spite of our circumstances. And there are no simpler and yet more positive words than those two: ‘Thank You!’ 

In our crazy, confused and troubled world, when said to others, they can diffuse a tremulous situation; soften a hard heart, lend healing to a broken one, and bring a smile to a sour face. And when we sincerely say them to God, we just raise the level of our faith and maturity. 

Our relationship with our heavenly Father enters a deeper phase, because we are acknowledging His goodness and LOVE, His omnipotence and ability to control circumstances, both our own and the world’s. We are saying in effect, ‘heavenly Father we trust You, regardless of what’s happening in our lives and the world. We’re standing firm on Your promises, because we know that You are faithful and will keep EVERY promise that You’ve made.’  

Now here is our Bit, which declares the thing that we ought to be most grateful for and give the most thanks for: ‘But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.’ 

Yes my fellow believers, we can never be too thankful or grateful for the victory over death, hell, the grave and any other negative things, that Jesus has given us through His own sacrificial death, resurrection and ascension, through the never-ending grace of our heavenly Father. 

And Bruh Paul further sates in his second letter to the Corinthians: ‘Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to (leads us in) triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour (fragrance) of his knowledge by us in every place. For we are unto God a sweet savour (aroma) of Christ, in (among) them that are saved, and in (among) them that perish.’ (2 cor.2:14-15) 

Oh friends, are we ever a sweet fragrance to God when we accept His Son Jesus Christ as our Lord and Saviour, and wisely accept His free offer of salvation and eternal life, and thus will not be relegated to the foolish group that will perish because of their non-acceptance of Christ. He doesn’t want anything more than that. So, with His awesome help, let’s do our best to bring others to that realization nuh. 

Now let’s go home declaring to the world who and whose we are in our Tuesday Mantra. In full voice and heartfelt sincerity: ‘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 are sincere, then let’s go out and share that amazing LOVE of Christ, as He so ardently desires. Much LOVE!

…LOVE unshared…is No LOVE at all…

 

 

 

 

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 17 January 2018 Psalm 27:4.

Psalm 27:4.   One thing have I desired of the Lord, that I will seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty (delightfulness) of the Lord, and to inquire in his temple.

Ah mih people, a friend who reads the Bit told me yesterday that everyday I complain about the weather. Well, today, I’m just going to say that it’s sunny and cold. (smile) And oh… that it’s better in Tobago. It certainly is! 

Now let’s move on to something more worthwhile than the weather. It’s a poem titled ‘Beauty’ by Gramps Schuler (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) from His hour of Power Devotional. I’m sure I’ve shared it before, but as they say, when it’s nice you’ve got to share it at least thrice. (smile) 

Please pray with me. ‘Thank you, Father, for filling the world with beauty. I thank you for the beauty of life, the beauty of LOVE, the beauty of children, and the beauty of old people. I thank you for the beauty of Christ and for the beauty of any life where Christ is invited through the Holy Spirit. Thank you, Father, that you have made my life beautiful too. Amen.’ 

Isn’t that special friends? It surely is! And you young people will notice that there’s also beauty in old people. (smile) When we’re imbued with Christ and the Holy Spirit, we can see beauty in almost any and everything! That’s because Christ Himself is beautiful and He opens our eyes to the beauty of the things around us. 

If we don’t have Christ in us, then our eyes are clouded and nothing looks beautiful. And how does this all happen eh? The Daily Bread tells us that ‘The Holy Spirit transforms us through His LOVE and by His grace.’ What powerful tools my people; LOVE and grace, through which despicable sinners like you and me can be transformed into righteous believers, to be called the righteousness of Christ! 

And all God’s children declared a loud and grateful: ‘Thank You heavenly Father for filling us with your grace and LOVE and bringing us into righteous fellowship with You, through Your Son Jesus Christ. We LOVE and adore You and will continue to do our best to live the way You want us to. In Jesus name we pray. Amen!’ 

That brings us to the heartfelt desire of Bruh David in our Bit. ‘One thing have I desired of the Lord, that I will seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty (delightfulness) of the Lord, and to inquire in his temple.’ 

Oh friends, when we take time to really know our God, we’ll find that He is truly delightful. But we can only discover that wonderful aspect of His character by taking time to spend with Him and getting to know Him intimately. Many of us claim we know God, but as soon as something negative happens and He doesn’t fix it immediately, we turn on Him. 

But we have to remember that God is the potter and we are the clay, and we have to abide by His decisions, be they convenient and/or comfortable for us. And when we abide by His decisions, without a whole lot of complaining, however they may affect us, that’s when we come into true intimacy with Him and He shows us His true delightful self by blessing us with His LOVE and mercy. 

It’s just like being with our earthly fathers. Unless we spend sufficient time with them, (pay attention children) we won’t know their true ways. But when we do, and learn their likes and dislikes, and generally stay on their good side, we see the delightfulness of our fathers and are usually showered with LOVE and blessings. Our God is no different; He wants our constant attention and expects us to do His will. 

What did Bruh David say in our Bit? ‘…that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life…’ Oh my brethren, do we feel that way; like we want to dwell with the Lord for our entire lives? If we’ve truly surrendered our lives to Him, then we ought to. 

And if we haven’t surrendered our lives to Him, then we ought to right now, today, because time is of the essence; Jesus is coming back soon, and once He returns there will be no more chance for surrender. 

And we all know that although Bruh David wasn’t perfect, made mistakes for which he paid dearly, he faithfully trusted the Lord in all aspects of his life, and was quick to ask for forgiveness, thus the Lord’s LOVING-kindness towards him. We can have the same kind of life friends, if we do our best to walk in step with God. 

Hear how Bruh David ends Psalm 27. ‘I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait (in faith) on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord.’ (Ps.27:13-14) 

Words of everlasting wisdom my people! Words that we ought to follow in our own lives, if we sincerely want to experience the goodness of God. Nuff said! 

Now let’s go home declaring our Wednesday Wail, letting the world know of our wonderful relationship with the Lord. In all sincerity and truth now: ‘Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: I’m so glad to be alive on this Wednesday! Wednesday, Wednesday, Wednesday: Thank God the breath of life is still flowing through me on this Wednesday! 

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

And we all know that it will be indeed a glorious future, so let’s do our best to encourage others to join us in looking forward to it nuh. Much LOVE!

…the more time we spend with God…the more intimate we’ll get with Him…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 10 January 2018 Acts 8:35.

Acts 8:35.   Who shall separate us from the LOVE of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

And the week and the year are rolling along like a downhill snowball. It’s already Wednesday, and we’re also into the tenth day of the new year. Time certainly is waiting for no one. 

And neither are the natural disasters, as they continue to roll along. Check out the 7.6 earthquake in Honduras a couple of days ago, and the mudslides that have killed some thirteen people in California after wicked rainstorms hit the scenic area that had already been ravaged by recent wildfires. 

Ah Lord eh! We can’t give up though friends, we have to keep keeping on despite those setbacks. But we do have to help however we can, especially with prayers. And in the face of these disasters, I believe it’s the ideal time be reminded of one of the most important facts in this world, and to acknowledge it with sure certainty. (smile)

And that fact is: ‘GOD LOVES ME!’ It’s gospel truth my brethren, and cannot be altered. Please pray this prayer with me from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional that bears the above title. 

‘Thank you, Lord, for this holy sentence, this good news, this happy report, this exciting thought, this graceful truth, this fantastic lesson. God LOVES me! Even when I’m at my worst – God LOVES me. Even when my faith is dim – God LOVES me anyway! It’s incomprehensible and fantastic! Thank you, Father. Amen.’ 

Oh my people, God’s great LOVE for us might be incomprehensible, but we don’t have to understand it, just accept it for the great truth that it is! So even if we don’t remember or learn anything else today, let’s solidify that truth in our hearts and souls today nuh, because that’s where everything begins. 

God first LOVED us, and to such a degree, that even when we were still sinners, He sent His Son Jesus to die for us. That ought to say a lot to Christians, for no other faith has anything even close to resembling that awesome fact. And the added fact that God LOVES us in any state, wherever we are, should indeed raise our reverence and LOVE for Him. 

And as a direct consequence of that awesome LOVE, Bruh Paul is able to ask this enormous question in our Bit. ‘Who shall separate us from the LOVE of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?’ 

What a striking question my people! And hear how Bruh Paul answers it nuh. ‘As it is written, for thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that LOVED us. 

For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature shall be able to separate us from the LOVE of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.’ (Acts 8:36-39) 

Mama Mia! What surety emanates from Bruh Paul on the subject my friends! He is certain sure that NOTHING whatsoever can separate us from the LOVE of God which flows down to us through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! And he’s quite right! 

But friends, are we each individually sure of that? I don’t know. But I do know that until that idea is written in stone in our consciousness, our faith will never be as great as it should be, because that’s the foundation stone of our faith: God’s LOVE is inalterable and everlasting. Once you receive it, it can never be taken away from you. 

That’s why they say that once you receive the faith of Christ and the Holy Spirit comes to live within you, you are sealed until eternity. Glory to God! Once your name is written in the Lamb’s Book of Life, it shall not be removed, unless you turn away from God and become the devil’s advocate instead. 

So friends, today, let’s be wise and build our faith on that solid bedrock, that solid foundation that’s Christ nuh, for it is eternal wisdom. And having taking in all of that, let’s go home now declaring our Wednesday Wail, letting the world know about our amazing position with Jesus. 

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

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

And it will indeed be a glorious future my brethren, for as the Good Book says: ‘Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that LOVE him.’ (! Cor.2:9) Much LOVE!

…only fools…will deign to refuse…God’s great and unconditional LOVE…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 December 2017 John 1:14.

John 1:14.   And the Word was made (became) flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.

And then it was Wednesday! Yeh friends, that means the long Christmas weekend is over and most of us have to go back to work now. Hn, hn! Most of us will be dead tired and won’t get much done this upcoming week, even though the massa constantly flashes his bullwhip at us. 

That’s because we had such a good time celebrating the birth of Christ. And though they’ve stopped playing, or rather inundating us with Christmas music, and we have to go back to work, the season is not over yet. Not by a long shot! (smile) 

And we’ll continue the peace, LOVE and good cheer for a li’l longer with ‘A Christmas Prayer,’ from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional. It’s too nice to pass up, just because we’re two days removed from Christmas Day. 

Please pray with me. ‘You lead me, Jesus Christ, to thoughts of God. I see you in a manger carved from a tree. I see you as a young man with hands that reach to touch hearts that hurt. Your caring reaches out like the strong and kind branches of a gentle tree reach out to invite road-weary and travel-worn wayfarers to quiet rest. 

I see you again hanging on a tree with outstretched arms taking in the whole world. From your cross, you show me that God will stop at nothing to save my soul. So, I celebrate God’s LOVE today as I celebrate your birth around a twinkling Christmas tree, I pray, my life, like yours, O Lord, may be tall and upright as a pine tree pointing, reaching, sharing, sparkling, life-giving; solid, sturdy, strong-rooted in God’s LOVE, a beautiful soul, evergreen forever. Amen.’ 

And all of that is gospel truth my brethren! Without God’s great and merciful LOVE, we’d be nowhere, still swimming in a sinful sea of muck and evil. But through Jesus’ amazing birth, God has given us a solution to our sin problem…’Just believe in Him, ‘ He says…’Only believe…’ And your sins will be forgiven and your souls washed white as snow! What an awesome promise my people! One that we’d be very foolish to pass up. 

That brings us to our Bit: ‘And the Word was made (became) flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.’ What a revelation! 

As John says at the start of His gospel: ‘In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not anything made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in the darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.’(John 1:1-5) 

Yeh friends, Jesus was with the Father from the beginning of time, there was a perfect fellowship between them. Jesus was distinctly divine and created the world through the spoken word. That’s why our words have such power today my people. 

But then Jesus put on the human flesh and came to live with us, but we didn’t understand or appreciate Him. How sad! He came to lift us out of the sinful sea of darkness and evil on which were then travelling and bring us into His bright light; the light that leads us on the straight and narrow path. 

As Bruh Paul declares in Galatians: ‘But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law.’ (Gal.4:4) 

And the scholars offer these explanations: ‘4:4. The fullness of time corresponds to “the time appointed of (by) the Father in 4:2. Made of a woman (or, born of a woman”). This stresses Jesus’ humiliation at leaving His preexistent glory and becoming man; without having done so He could not have died for our sins. Made under the law (or, “born subject to the law”); He was born a Jew under the law in order to free those under the curse of the law. (4:5).’ 

And verse 5 and onward says: ‘To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons. And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying Abba, Father. Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.’ (Gal.4:5-7) 

What a beautiful scene friends! If we believe in Jesus and try to walk in His ways, we are adopted by God and thus become a Son of God too like Jesus, and an heir with Him! Wow! How can anything be better than that eh? So as we go home today, let’s declare our Wednesday Wail, letting the whole world know just how tight we are with Jesus nuh. (smile) 

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

And what a glorious future that will be, precious people of God! Much LOVE!

…walking with Jesus isn’t always easy…but it’s ALWAYS beneficial…to the human soul…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 December 2017 Psalm 36:9.

Psalm 36:9.   For with thee is the fountain of life: in thy light shall we see light.

And then it was six… and counting! Yeh friends, six more days to the big one of Christmas! And I do hope that the celebrations are being ramped up, and all the preparations are falling nicely into place at your homes. 

It’s not looking too bad at my place. The outside lights are the best in the neighbourhood. (smile) So I’m somewhat biased, but they do look good. And I came home last night to find the Christmas tree being decorated. That looks good too…as always…! 

And brother, was I thrilled when I opened the door and was greeted, or rather assaulted, by a wonderful smell of baking Christmas cake in the air. And for a while the aroma just wafted through the house, adding to the air of Christmas cheer and peace and goodwill that existed. 

But all of that though friends should be secondary to the overwhelming presence of the Spirit of Jesus in our homes. For He, His miraculous birth, is the entire reason for all this celebration! And we need to keep that uppermost in our minds. 

And talking about birth, today I want to share a passage from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional titled ‘Nourishment from Above.’ And he says: ‘Wait on the Lord, and He will renew your strength! Prayer is the umbilical cord that allows you – with your embryonic ideas – to draw nourishment from a source that you, like an unborn infant, can neither see nor fully know or comprehend – God our heavenly Father! 

Prayer is the power that pulls everything together successfully. With this prayerful attitude tackle your problem today. Turn it over to God. Take out a sheet of paper. Pick up a pencil. And get ready for the ideas that he will drop into your mind.’ 

(And as you do that, you can pray something like this:) ‘Father, I have a strong sensation that you brought me to this moment of prayer because you have a plan to share with me insights to solve my problems. So I will go out and face the sunlight of a new day and a new week crammed with undiscovered possibilities. I am encouraged! I am enthused! I am more hopeful than I have been in a long time! Amen.’ 

Oh friends, do we Christians ever need to be more enthused, encouraged and hopeful than ever before because of the evil and ungodly world in which we’re living. And that uplifting will ONLY come when we establish a tight relationship, keep in constant communication with our heavenly Father through prayer, for He is indeed the source of all life and all good things. 

That brings us to our Bit: ‘For with thee is the fountain of life: in thy light shall we see light.’ Oh my people, our God is indeed the fountain of life: it’s through Him that we were granted physical life, and it’s ONLY through Him is eternal spiritual life available! Jesus made this fact clear so often that I don’t see how we can ever forget or neglect it. 

Listen to Him talking to the Samaritan woman at the well. ‘Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again. But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well (fountain) of water springing up into everlasting life.’ (John 4:13-14) What an inspiring and encouraging scripture friends! 

Now hear Jesus after His listeners told Him about the Lord giving their forefathers bread (manna) from heaven in the wilderness. ‘Verily, verily I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world. 

Then said they unto him, Lord, evermore give us this bread. And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.’ (John 6:32-35) 

Glory to God my brethren! For how can we ever beat that promise eh? Jesus IS the bread that gives life; all kinds, although there He is referring in particular to spiritual and eternal life. 

And if you still have doubts and misgivings about the true source of life, then listen to Jesus one more time. ‘In the last day, that great day of the feast (feast of tabernacles), Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me and drink. He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly (heart) shall flow rivers of living water.’ (John 7:37-38) 

Oh precious people, Jesus is indeed the fountain of life, the bread of life, the giver of living water (the indwelling Holy Spirit), the giver of physical life, spiritual life, eternal life – whatever kind of good life you’re looking for, the source, the head spring, is to be found in Jesus! Please remember that and act accordingly. 

Now let’s go home declaring loudly and proudly to this evil and ungodly world, who and whose we are in our Tuesday Mantra. ‘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 now, in this Christmas season, the time of Christ’s birth, let’s go out and truly share that wonderful LOVE of our awesome friend Jesus! It’s ever so appropriate. Much LOVE!

…as for me and mine…we will follow Jesus…the fountain of ALL life…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 12 December 2017 Romans 13:12.

Romans 13:12.   The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light. 

Oh friends of mine, it’s a beautiful white Tuesday morning in my area. Hn! Yes, we’ve finally registered our first significant snowfall of the season! It’s not too big a snowfall, and as always, it looks beautiful when unsullied by human passage through it. But trudging through it is something else…and so is shovelling it. Good thing I won’t be doing either of those activities today! (smile) 

Anyway, there’s lot’s of stuff I want to share this morning, so let’s get right to it nuh. And the first one is something called ‘The Tyranny of Things,’ from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional. I don’t remember if I’ve ever shared this before, but it’s ever so appropriate for these secular and selfish times, especially this time of year. 

Please read with me: ‘Materialism does not satisfy because it is tyrannical, and the human being was born to be free! We all know about the tyranny of things. We find that we don’t own a house – the house owns us. We are married to a mortgage. We become slaves to gadgets and garments. 

After we have all our “things” purchased, delivered, and installed, and have enjoyed a fleeting sense of pleasure, we find that they are still dominating, dictating, and demanding. “Press me, polish me, patch me, paint me, prune me, plaster me, repair me,” they shout. 

So we spend the best years of our lives and the bulk of our money working for the “things,” until, discouraged and depressed, we discover that we have no time left to pursue life’s really enjoyable avocations: visiting friends, having fun, and, yes, even going to church regularly. Thus mastered by materialism, tyrannized by things, we have no time left to do the deeds, or see the places, or visit the people, that would really give us great inner joy.’  

And isn’t all of that the living truth friends? It certainly is! In this materialistic, highly commercialized society, it’s all about things and stuff, especially at this season of Christmas. And in a couple weeks time, we’ve forgotten about all the stuff we bought – on credit; even get annoyed when we see some of the stuff, as we struggle to pay for them. Hn! Hn! 

So please, let’s take this advice to heart this Christmas season nuh, and not go overboard with the material stuff. Instead, let’s focus on the human relationships and spiritual processes that truly are the reason for the season, with Jesus being the main focus. 

That brings us to our Bit: ‘The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light.’ More words of truth and wisdom, my brethren, whether you take them literally or figuratively! 

Time is flying by, and none of us knows how much we have left, so we need to use each second economically, purposefully and usefully, both in the human and spiritual realms. Darkness and evil have taken a stranglehold on our world, and as true believers in Christ, we can’t afford to let that happen. We need to push back…and push back hard too, if we want to make a difference in this crucial fight. 

And we have a quote ascribed to Antoine de St. Expury (1900-1944) the French author, poet and aviator. It says: ‘In these times one must write with one’s life. This is the challenge to all of us.’ 

And is that ever so true friends, especially for us Christians! We need to show the dark, evil and cruel world what true Christianity is like through the way we live our lives, rather than the way we talk. For one doesn’t always reflect the other. As the saying goes; ‘examples work more forcibly than precepts.’ 

So please let’s concentrate on living our lives as good examples of Christ’s LOVE Revolution nuh, so that the unbeliever will see our sincerity and want to follow Jesus too. That’s the whole point for our being here yes friends. 

Now let us take a quick look at the second part of our Bit; putting on ‘the armour of light.’ And all we have time for is Bruh Paul’s notable warning and brief description of God’s spiritual armour to the Ephesians. ‘Finally my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles (schemes) of the devil. 

For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities (rulers), against powers (authorities), against the rulers of darkness of this world (world rulers), against spiritual wickedness (wicked spiritual beings) in high places. Wherefore take unto you (take up, put on) the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.’ (Eph.6:10-13) 

Yeh friends, only when we’re dressed in God’s armour, can we stand strong and resist the evil one, for He will attack again and again. That means we have to be continually ensconced in our ‘girdle of truth, and breastplate of righteousness, shod with the gospel of peace, bearing the shield of faith, having on our heads the helmet of salvation, and waving the sword of the Spirit in our right hand, with prayer and supplication’ driving us ever onward and forward! That’s our spiritual armour, and how we defeat the enemy. 

Now let’s go home declaring as we do on Tuesdays, our Tuesday Mantra, singing out loud and clear to the evil world who and whose we are. In full voice and sincere heart 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!’ 

Mama Mia! How blessed we are eh! Now let’s go out and put it all into action; share the LOVE of Jesus! Much LOVE!

…dark and evil times…call for Christians…showing their light…the light of Jesus…and leading the way…out of the darkness…

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 19 November 2017 Proverbs 13:12.

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

And as the church bells peal the call to church, we put on our Sunday best and get ready to gather in the house of God, be it a magnificent cathedral or a manger like where Christ was born. The physical place is not as important as the people who gather in Christ’s name, and what they do there; sing, praise, worship and glorify His holy name. 

Oh friends, only the ole fogeys will remember the simpler days when church bells rang to tell us how long before church began. And you’d see a whole lot of us hurrying into church just as the last bell was ringing. (smile) But sadly church bells are now a thing of the past, just like church going is for way too many of us. 

Anyway, enough reminiscing, let’s get on with today’s proceedings. And we’ll open with this well-known 18th century hymn by Isaac Watts, based on Psalm 90:1, to instill a sense of assurance and a place of refuge in Almighty God. 

So let’s raise our voices in sacrificial praise like we’ve truly found that sense of assurance and place of refuge nuh. ‘O God, our help in ages past, Our hope for years to come, Our shelter from the stormy blast, And our eternal home. Under the shadow of Thy throne Thy saints have dwelt secure; Sufficient is Thine arm alone, And our defense is sure. Before the hills in order stood, Or earth received her frame, From everlasting Thou art God, To endless years the same. 

Thy Word commands our flesh to dust, “Return, ye sons of men”: All nations rose from earth at first, And turn to earth again. A thousand ages in Thy sight Are like an evening gone; Short as the watch that ends the night Before the rising sun. The busy tribes of flesh and blood, With all their lives and cares, Are carried downwards by the flood, And lost in foll’wing years. 

Time, like an ever-rolling stream, Bears all its sons away; They fly, forgotten, as a dream Dies at the op’ning day. Like flow’ry fields the nations stand Pleased with the morning light; The flow’rs beneath the mower’s hand Lie with’ring ere ’tis night. O God, our help in ages past, Our hope for years to come, Be Thou our guard while troubles last, And our eternal home.’ 

Oh my people, those words come close, but they can’t really do our great God justice, for there are no words to truly describe what He means to mankind.  He is our BE ALL and END ALL! We are created by Him, live physical life under His dominion, then end up wherever He thinks our spiritual life is best suited. So since He is Master of ALL He surveys, true wisdom will dictate that we put ALL of our trust and hope in Him. 

That brings us to our Bit: ‘Hope deferred maketh the heart sick, but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life.’ And we only had time yesterday to admit to that truth; when we don’t have hope, we’re depressed and miserable, but when we do have it, we’re revitalized and joy abounds. But what actually is that thing we call Hope eh? 

Here is an interesting definition from Gramps Schuller (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) from His Hour of Power Devotional.  He says: ‘HOPE. It is a scientific experience of the presence of God operating in your personality… Your good luck is really your good Lord. Hope is a mystery. God always offers hope regardless of your beliefs, whether you are an agnostic or atheist. Hope is the presence of a God of LOVE coming into your mind, your spirit, your body, your personality. This is God. This is HOPE!’ 

And who are we to doubt him eh? However we define hope, it is important to realize that it comes from our LOVING Creator, and it is given to reassure and encourage us to have faith in Him. Moses so rightly declared in the opening of his psalm. ‘Lord, thou hast been our dwelling place (refuge) in all generations. Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever thou hadst formed (gave birth to) the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting thou art God.’ (Ps.90:1-2)  And if all of that is true my people, then the only logical place to look for succour and refuge, to acquire that mysterious, scientific uplifting experience termed hope, is from Almighty God! 

And another stalwart of faith, Bruh David concurs completely with Moses, as he questions his depressed mood. ‘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) Yuh see friends, Bruh David is there seeking refuge, hope, relief from his depression, revitalization through God’s presence. And if we are wise, we will do the same thing. 

Now hear how Bruh Paul describes hope in his epistle to the Roman church, as he expounds on the results of justification. ‘And patience, experience (character); and experience hope: And hope maketh not ashamed (does not disappoint); because the LOVE of God is shed abroad (has been poured out) in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us. For when we were yet without strength, in due time (at the right time) Christ died for the ungodly.’ (Rom.5:4-6) Yes friends, Christ died that we might have hope, and the Holy Spirit dwelling within us is the living sign of that hope, as He walks and talks with and for us. 

And we’ll close with one more applicable scripture from Bruh Paul to the Romans, as he talks about Life in the Spirit. ‘For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience (perseverance) (eagerly) wait for it.’ (Rom.8:24-25) Truer words were never spoken my brethren! Now let’s put our hope and trust in God nuh, so that our faith can be boosted and our lives become more Christ-like. Much LOVE!

…you can’t have faith without hope…for hope is the underlying nature…the foundation of faith…



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