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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

‘Oh Lord, thanks for getting me safely through another week of work! It hasn’t been easy, but with your generous help, I made it through. Now, please help me to get sufficient fun, fellowship, rest and relaxation in these two short days off, so that I can be renewed and refreshed in soul, body and mind, to go back out and do it all over again next week, furthering your glorious kingdom with each step I take. I pray this in Jesus name. Amen.’ 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 March 2018 Jeremiah 17:7.

Jeremiah 17:7.   Blessed is the man that trusteth in the Lord, and whose hope the Lord is.

Oh friends, does it ever stop; the adversity and calamity? Apparently not, because it seems that New York and the surrounding U.S. States are due to be hit with another winter storm today, but with more snow than rain this time. And that while some people are still without power from the deluge last week. 

Ah Lord eh! And some of it can definitely be blamed on climate change. And speaking of climate change, I went to an Ecumenical Service last night, on the World Day of Prayer, where the topic was reviving the environment, in specific reference to the country of Surinam, and the betterment of the lives of it’s female population. 

Yuh know what? I think that EVERYDAY should be a World Day of Prayer because we have so many problems to deal with around our world, that one day is definitely not sufficient. But in this current world order, we get so busy that we don’t have time to do the things we need to do. 

And what does ‘BUSY’ mean? According to Uncle Charles (Charles Stanley) ‘BUSY means Bondage under Satan’s Yoke.’ And that’s a fact. Satan has us so busy doing the non-essential things that we don’t or can’t find the time to do the essential ones, like look after our planet and have greater communication with our awesome God. 

But thank God that some of us are wise enough to flaunt God’s LOVE and power in Lucifer’s evil face. Only problem is that there ought to be plenty more of us doing it. But not to worry, time longer than twine, and with our faithful Christian fervour, we WILL increase those numbers substantially. 

We have to start right now though friends, because who knows how much time we have before Jesus returns. And once He does return, ALL bets are off. That brings us to our Bit, the same one from a couple of days ago. I had planned on using it yesterday, but the Lord apparently saw a greater need for yesterday’s message yesterday. And who am I to say Him nay eh? (smile) 

‘Blessed is the man that trusteth in the Lord, and whose hope the Lord is.’ Yes my faithful breddren, those are words of gospel truth! Remember in the last message with this Bit, we saw how Jeremiah described the God-centred man as a flourishing tree despite calamitous times. 

Now listen as the psalmist, in the very first Psalm, corroborates Jeremiah’s statement. ‘Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly (wicked), nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate (ponder) day and night. 

And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers (channels) of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.’ (Ps.1:1-3) How wonderful is that promise eh my people! 

And we’ll continue featuring scriptures that corroborate our Bit. Hear the psalmist from Psalm 146 – The blessedness of trusting God. ‘Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man (a human being), in whom there is no help (salvation). His breath goeth forth (spirit departs), he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish. 

Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is the Lord his God: Which made heaven, and earth, the sea, and all that therein is: which keepeth truth for ever:’ (Ps.146:3-6) 

Now why would we turn to someone other than the Lord God Almighty eh; the One who made the universe and all it contains? No good reason that I can see friends. I definitely want to be bosom buddies with the greatest power, the most LOVING and merciful Being in the universe. No One or nothing else will do. It’s just pure common sense. 

Now hear Isaiah in his appeal to his Jewish people to turn to the Lord for help. ‘And therefore will the Lord wait, that he may be gracious unto you, and therefore will he be exalted, that he may have mercy upon you: for the Lord is a God of judgement (justice): blessed are all that wait for him.’ (Is.30:18) 

And the scholars offer this explanation: ’30:18-33. Because God is gracious and has been willing to wait for His people to return to Him, He will certainly bless those who wait for him. “Waiting” is a confident and dependent trust in God.’ 

Oh friends, I like that last line. I think it puts it all in the right perspective. ‘A confident and dependent trust in God.’ That’s exactly what we’re talking about my people! So let’s wisely set ourselves up to try and achieve that goal nuh, for it’s the only one that really matters. Once we achieve that, everything else will flow smoothly from it. 

In the meanwhile, let’s declare our current position in Christ Jesus through our Wednesday Wail, boldly letting the world know that without a doubt, we’re moving on with the Master. 

As one, in 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 what a glorious future that will indeed be my fellow believers, for Jesus has promised it! Much LOVE!

…trust and obey…there’s no better way…to be happy in Jesus…than to trust and obey…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 18 February 2018 Psalm 8:1.

Psalm 8:1.   O Lord our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth! who hast set thy glory above the heavens.

Top o’ the morn my fellow believers! It’s that wonderful day, Sunday, which means the gathering of Christians all over the world in the Lord’s sanctuary. And that can be any of the following; a magnificent cathedral, a small church, a house, a hovel, a palace, or under a coconut tree, wherever we can gather, to worship and give immeasurable thanks to our great and ever-LOVING God! 

Yes friends, wherever God’s people are gathered that’s His sanctuary, for He is there in full regal presence. As Jesus said: ‘For where two or three are gathered together in my name; there I am in the midst of them.’ (Matt.18:20) And all God’s children declared a loud and proud: ‘Glory Hallelujah! Bless His holy name, for He is a great God, and indeed worthy to be praised!’ 

And in keeping with that truthful sentiment, let’s open today’s celebrations with this most appropriate hymn ‘How great thou art.’  It’s a hymn apparently based on a Swedish traditional melody and a poem written by Carl Boberg, pastor, poet and politician (1859–1940) in Mönsterås, Sweden in 1885. 

After a brief thunderstorm, it’s reputed that he opened his window and saw a rainbow gilding the sky and all of God’s nature creations shining bright and fresh having been cleansed by the rain. Supposedly modelled after Psalm 8; Bruh David’s words exalting God’s glory and man’s honour, it was first translated into German and then into Russian and became a hymn. Later on, it was further translated into English from the Russian by English missionary Stuart K. Hine. 

So in strong voice and total harmony, let’s offer up this favourite hymn to our heavenly father, through the sacrificial praise of our lips.  ‘O Lord my God, When I in awesome wonder, Consider all the worlds Thy Hands have made; I see the stars, I hear the rolling thunder, Thy power throughout the universe displayed. 

(Refrain: Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee, How great Thou art, How great Thou art. Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee, How great Thou art, How great Thou art!) 

When through the woods, and forest glades I wander, And hear the birds sing sweetly in the trees. When I look down, from lofty mountain grandeur And see the brook, and feel the gentle breeze. (Refrain) And when I think, that God, His Son not sparing; Sent Him to die, I scarce can take it in; That on the Cross, my burden gladly bearing, He bled and died to take away my sin. (Refrain) 

When Christ shall come, with shout of acclamation, And take me home, what joy shall fill my heart. Then I shall bow, in humble adoration, And then proclaim: “My God, how great Thou art!” (Refrain: Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee, How great Thou art, How great Thou art. Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee, How great Thou art, How great Thou art!)’ (repeat). 

Ah mih people, what wonderful and truthful words of praise, worship and adoration to our mighty God. That makes the opening words of Bruh David’s psalm a perfect Bit for today. ‘O Lord our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth! who hast set thy glory above the heavens.’ 

And there can be no doubt whatsoever about the veracity of those adoring words! For He is the ONLY truly omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent Being in this whole universe. He created it, it belongs entirely to Him, and He controls it as He sees fit. Glory to God! 

And Bruh David continues to prove his contention. ‘Out of the mouths of babes and sucklings (infants) hast thou ordained (established) strength because of thine enemies, that thou mightiest still (silence) the enemy and the avenger. When I consider thy heavens, and the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained;

What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest (pay attention, or care for) him? For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour.’ (Ps. 8:2-5) 

Ah friends, it ought to be obvious why God cares for us. In the first place He created us in His image and gave us His breath of life, so that we could worship Him and have a positive and productive relationship with Him.

From the day He created our forefathers, Adam and Eve, He’s LOVED us with His whole heart, and though He kicked them out of the Garden of Eden, when they disobeyed His command, He never stopped LOVING His human creation nuh, we stopped LOVING Him. 

So it’s not rocket science why He did as Bruh David further describes. ‘Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands; thou hast put all things under his feet: All sheep and oxen, yea, and the beasts of the field; The fowl of the air, and the fish of the sea, and whatsoever passeth through the paths of the seas.’ (Ps.8:6-8) 

And why not eh? We are His most precious creation, the only earthly being He created that has the ability to communicate with Him. Just like we LOVE our disobedient and trying children, our Creator LOVES us the same way – and even more.

So let’s remember to continually thank and praise Him for all the good things He’s done for us down through the ages, is currently doing, and has faithfully promised to do in the future. And we’ll end like Bruh David did, with a shout of heartfelt praise: ‘O Lord our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth.’ (Ps.8:9) Much LOVE!

…only fools and mad men…refuse to praise and worship their Creator…

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 February 2018 1 John 3:18.

1 John 3:18.   My little children, let us not LOVE in word, neither in tongue, but in deed and in truth.

Oh boy, it’s another bright, sunshiny day in the neighbourhood! Thank You Lord! If we have to put up with the snow and cold, then we should at least have some sunshine to brighten up the gloom those things produce in our spirits. (smile) 

And I’m in a quandary here; don’t know what to write on; Ash Wednesday or Valentine’s Day, as both of them fall on the same day. Hn! The former begins the season of Lent for believers; a serious time of introspection, fasting and prayer. 

On the other hand, the latter is a time of joy and celebration and the time of the biggest display of LOVE in our hate-filled, angry and resentful society. And even though it smacks of a lot of insincerity and commercialism, how can you write off any kind of LOVE at all eh, when we so badly need it? 

I guess in one sense you can say that the bacchanal of Carnival is over now, and we begin the season of Lent with a fiery burst of LOVE! Oh how wonderful that would be if the LOVE went a li’l deeper and was more sincere and lasting! But beggars can’t be choosers, so if we get even a small amount of LOVE in this LOVELESS world we have to be grateful and say, ‘Thank You Lord!! 

Meanwhile, on the Lenten side of the ledger, we need to get serious about our walk with God and delve into what it truly means to be walking in sincere tandem with Him. We need to empty our spirits, as Jesus did when He was led into the wilderness to suffer forty days of temptation at the hands of the evil Lucifer. 

He spent His days in prayer and contemplation with fasting, a way of building His belly and backbone to withstand the rigours of His upcoming ministry. He knew that His ministry would not be easy, and that was the Lord’s way of strengthening Him. 

And in this season of Lent we ought to try and be strengthened in like manner my faithful and believing brethren. If we want to be like Jesus, to grow in Christ-likeness, then we have to do some of the things He did, follow in His footsteps as much as possible. And tuning out more of the world than usual, in these next forty days, is something we can do, and ought to embark on. 

I guess you can call it the yearly cleansing of our spirits. But however we do it, the important thing is to get closer to God, by putting aside some of the worldly things that usually occupy our time, and giving Him more of our time, studying His word more closely and meditating on it, so we can discover its true meaning for our lives. 

And yuh know what friends? As we spend more time in serious reflection, we will understand God better, and His most wonderful attribute, that of LOVE, will seep into our hearts and souls even more. Wow! How amazing that would be if we could get the majority of the world to reflect on God’s Word and discover His awesome and unconditional LOVE! 

And on this Ash Wednesday and Valentine’s Day, I believe the most appropriate Bit for today, is the same one we had yesterday. ‘My little children, let us not LOVE in word, neither in tongue, but in deed and in truth.’ 

Yeh mih people, please, please, I implore us to bring out true LOVE in our daily lives, show it to our fellow man in living colour, in sincere actions, because that’s the only way we will truly make this world a better place. Not to mention that it’s only true, sincere actions of LOVE, that anyone will truly want to come to Christ. If we keep preaching that Christ is LOVE, and don’t show true LOVE, then we’re making a mockery of Christ and all that He stands for. 

As John says earlier on: ‘For this is the message that ye heard from the beginning, that we should LOVE one another. Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew (murdered) his brother (Abel). And wherefore slew he him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother’s righteous.’ (1 John 3:11-12) 

Now listen to the scholars’ explanation of that last verse. ‘3:12. See Genesis 4:8. Of that wicked one refers to a child of the Devil (v.10). Cain killed Abel because their conflicting allegiances (Cain’s to Satan, Abel’s to God) were plain to see by their respective actions. 

John seems to be saying: “If even wicked Cain could see that a man’s character is revealed ultimately, not in what he says he believes, but in what he does, should not Christians be able to see this as well?” 

Of course we should my brethren! As we said yesterday, LOVE is an action word, and only through our actions can we outwardly manifest it. But sadly, so many of us lack LOVE in our souls, that we obviously can’t show it. We can’t give what we don’t have. 

However, if we’re serious about giving LOVE, then all we have to do is go to God and sincerely ask Him to fill us with it. But then that means spending time with Him, something that so many of us unfortunately shy away from. 

Anyway friends, this Ash Wednesday/Valentine’s Day is the right time for us to come to the trough and drink of God’s grace, mercy, LOVE and forgiveness. Remember, it did not just happen by chance, but God programmed it that way, to accomplish His purpose. 

Now let’s go home declaring our Wednesday Wail, letting the world know our blessed position in Christ. All together 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!’ 

Now that’s truth and wisdom of everlasting proportions! Much LOVE!

…if one is consistently hanging with Jesus…then one’s future can only get brighter and brighter…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 February 2018 Psalm 34:1.

Psalm 34:1.   I will bless the Lord at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth.

And the place is white again…Chuh! What’s with this snow business eh? True, it’s not a lot, but snow is snow, regardless of how much falls. (smile) But then again, I’d rather the snow than the 6.4 earthquake that occurred in a tourist area of Taiwan yesterday. A picture I saw showed a big building leaning, like the Tower of Pisa, at about a 40 to 45 degree angle to the ground. 

Ah Lord eh! We have enough natural disasters to undergo, without causing the many man-made ones that constantly bombard us. But friends, let’s never forget that the Lord is in control and nothing happens in this world without His allowing it, for whatever reason or purpose He has in mind. 

For His thoughts and His ways are so much higher than ours. The most we can do is pray for those undergoing disastrous situations, and ask the Lord to lead and guide us safely along the path that He’s planned for each of us. 

Now here is a li’l something from a Laura Palmer; couldn’t figure out which one, because there are so many, but whoever it was, certainly had their wits about them. And the quote says: ‘The past should be culled like a box of fresh strawberries; rinsed of debris, sweetened judiciously, and served in small portions, not very often.’  

And isn’t that the awesome truth friends! We should not dwell in the past. We can’t totally forget it, but we must not let it define our futures. We need to stop dwelling in the past and wishing for the good old days. Why? Because the best days of our lives are still ahead of us! 

And I firmly believe that. Why would the Lord keep us down here if He didn’t have something better planned for us eh? We need to have a positive mindset my people; where we look to the future; a future filled with the Lord’s wonderful promises! 

Looking back at the past too much is only going to taint our vision of the future. Once we learn to not make the same mistakes we did before, we’ll be okay to move forward. As they say, you can’t know where you’re going, unless you know where you came from. But where you came from should not overly colour where you’re going. But what a way the ole fella waxing philosophical this morning eh! (smile) 

And one of the things that will help us keep looking to the future and not the past, is doing like Bruh David declares in our bit. ‘I will bless the Lord at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth.’ Yeh friends, if we keep looking to the Lord, keep singing His praises, keep magnifying and glorifying Him, we’ll be too busy looking forward to have time to look back. 

As Bruh David continues: ‘My soul shall make her boast in the Lord: the humble shall hear thereof, and be glad.’ (Ps.34:2) Are we doing that my friends; boasting in the Lord, and not in ourselves or the frivolous and temporary things of man? I certainly hope so, because EVERYTHING but the Lord is expendable! 

And furthermore, if we don’t talk of God, how will others learn of Him eh, especially the weak and poor and sick and humble, who need Him so badly?  And Bruh David provides for that with this glorious invitation: ‘O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together.’ (Ps.34:3) 

Oh mih people, mih people, I’m extending that very invitation to all of us now! Please magnify and exalt the Lord with me! Besides, it’s our bounden duty; it’s what we were created to do! We’re supposed to be the earthly version of the heavenly praise and thanks crew. 

Listen to the Good Book. ‘And the four beasts had each of them six wings about him; and they were full of eyes within: and they rest (cease) not day and night, saying, Holy, holy, holy, Lord God almighty, which was, and is, and is to come. And when those beasts (living creatures) give glory and honour and thanks to him that sat on the throne, who liveth for ever and ever; 

The four and twenty elders fall down before him that sat on the throne, and worship him that liveth for ever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying, Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created (by your will they exist.)’ (Rev.4:8-11) 

Oh friends, yuh see what a wonderful time is had in heaven, just thanking God, giving Him His rightful due! Now that’s all they seem to do up there, and it would be wonderful if we could do it as much down here. But obviously that’s not possible to the same extent. However, it can be, and definitely needs to be done much more than we’re currently doing it. 

So let’s ‘wisen’ up nuh mih fellow believers, let’s get truly serious about our magnificent and magnanimous God, and exalt His holy name throughout the whole earth! That will bring even more singing and glorifying in heaven! 

Now let’s go home declaring our Wednesday Wail, stating our unashamed position in Christ. All together now, in sincerity and truth: ‘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!’ 

Oh my people, mere words cannot describe how glorious that future really will be nuh! Much LOVE!

…true believers…always find a way…to talk about and exalt their God…

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 24 January 2018 Psalm 16:8.

Psalm 16:8.   I have set the Lord always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.

And another one bites the dust! Yeh people, another of my associates from university days in Mona, Jamaica, has apparently gone home to the Father. Dr. Emmanuel Griffith M.D. passed away yesterday in a nursing home in South Trinidad. He’s been sick, partially paralyzed for a number of years, initially felled by a stroke, and another stroke carried him home. 

One thing’s for sure; Emmanuel Griffith, better known as ‘Griff,’ a Trini South Boy, LOVED life. Tall, dark and full-bodied, with his thick black frame glasses, he was loud and talkative, but friendly, and was always ready for a party or a lime. He was good people. Once he became your friend, he’d do anything for you. Some of you who read the Bit knew Griff, possibly even participated in some of his hijinks, because he also liked his pranks. 

But that’s why it is important to make good memories in your young days. And Griff mih brother, we certainly made some good ones back in those youthful times. I can look back now and chuckle at the many nights you had me walking the dark, back roads of Kingston, after the busses had stopped running, trying to get back to the Mona campus, because I had naively allowed you to talk me into accompanying you to see a lady friend. 

But in hindsight now, it seems that even back then, the Lord’s hand was actively involved in my life, because it’s on one of those night excursions that I initially got involved with the lady who would eventually become my wife. Brother! I can’t believe I’m talking about 50 years, a half century ago. 

I know we lost touch once I left the Mona campus and returned to T&T, and by the time you came back to T&T, I had migrated to Canada. But over the years through a mutual friend, I’d occasionally hear revelations of your still crazy life. But who am I to judge you eh brother? I haven’t been the greatest either. 

And now your body will be returned to the dust from whence it came, free of all the pain and earthly sorrow, but thankfully your spirit will be free to roam the halls of heaven. I know that you will enjoy that! Happy roaming my friend! My condolences go out to your family and friends, left behind to mourn and celebrate your life. 

Yeh people, it’s a fact that as you get older you find your friends slowly dwindling. Over the last few years I can count at least six of my friends going home to be with the Lord. And just this past week an older friend and I were discussing the situation, because he had just come from the funeral of one of his already few friends. 

But that’s life! We’re only here for a short time, and hopefully we’ll all meet up again in the wild blue yonder when Jesus comes back for us. But until then, we just have to grin and bear what ever befalls us on this evil earth. 

And the wisest way to do that is by leaning on Jesus, as Bruh David says so eloquently in our Bit, while seeking preservation and blessing. ‘I have set the Lord always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.’ And that my friends is not only the absolute truth, but also indisputable wisdom! Glory to God! 

Whenever we sincerely look to, partner with Almighty God, we place ourselves in the very best position to have an abundant and joyful life, despite the adversity and calamity that will inevitably crop up on occasion. Nobody faced more adversity than Bruh David, but when he placed his sincere trust in God, after our Bit, he was able to say with great conviction: 

‘Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth: my flesh also shall rest (dwell securely) in hope. For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer (allow) thine Holy One (Jesus Christ) to see corruption. Thou wilt show me the path of life: in thy presence is fullness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.’ (Ps.16:9-11) 

What absolute confidence and trust in Almighty God, Bruh David shows there my fellow believers! That’s the kind of trust and surrender and confidence each and every Christian ought to have. And I think I’ll just order the reading of Palm 16, as today’s homework, (smile) so you can understand the scholar’s explanations thereof. 

‘Psalm 16. The attitude of the righteous man is described in life (vs.1-8) and death (vs.9-11). In life, his attitude is one of trust (v.1), gratefulness for God’s goodness (v.2), delight in God’s people, (v.3), separation from idolatrous worship (v.4; cf. Ex.23:13; Deut. 12:3), satisfaction in God’s gracious provisions (vs.5-6), praise for the Lord’s counsel (v.7), and steadfastness in spiritual devotion (v.8). 

In facing death, the righteous man rejoices and is hopeful (v.9). He is confident that God will preserve him from the decay of death and that death will not result in his corruption (v.10). Rather, he will travel down the path of life, that is, the path leading to life, which will terminate in God’s joyful presence (v.11). David’s confidence in his ultimate destiny is valid for him (and for all believers) only because Christ has travelled down that path and paved the way for all who believe in him (Acts 2:25-28).’ 

Oh friends, it could not be said any better. So if we’re wise, we’ll try and live that lifestyle, as it’s the optimum one available here on earth. And by the way, Acts 2:25-28 is only Peter’s paraphrasing of vs.9-11 in his big sermon on Pentecost day. Now let’s go home declaring our stellar position with Christ 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 if we truly believe, then we know that there is indeed a glorious future ahead with Jesus Christ for all those who believe in and obey Him! Much LOVE!

…to know, know, know Him…is to LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Him…  

P.S. Yeh, it’s long and late, but nonetheless very worthwhile! (smile) 

 

 

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…

 

 

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