Today’s Scrip-Bit 18 June 2017 Ephesians 6:4.

Ephesians 6:4.    And ye fathers provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture (training) and admonition of the Lord.

HAPPY  FATHER’S  DAY!

Grace and peace be unto all you fathers out there on this Father’s Day Sunday! May the Lord look down upon us with fatherly mercies and blessings that we can share with our families. 

Ah my fellow fathers, this is the day that our society has chosen to honour us, please let us enjoy the day, and let it raise our level of fatherhood as we go through these trying times in our world. True fatherhood has never been more necessary than it is right now, as we are supposed to be the leaders and basic guides of our households. 

So please let’s step up to the plate and do our best so that those who follow us will have superb examples to emulate. That’s the best gift we can ever give; that of being a good role model. Remember, we’ll never be perfect, but we can all be the best we can be. 

Now let’s offer up some thanks and praise to our Mighty Father in heaven, shower Him with the adoration that He so rightly deserves. Let’s acknowledge that even in the deepest and darkest and most tumultuous times of storm, His strong anchor holds us together. So let’s sing one of my favourite Gospel Songs, ‘The Anchor Holds,’ with strong voice and true sacrificial praise. 

‘I have journeyed through the long dark night, Out on the open sea, by faith alone, Sight unknown; and yet his eyes were watching me. (Refrain: The anchor holds, though the ship’s been battered. The anchor holds, Though the sails are torn. I have fallen on my knees as I face the raging seas. But the anchor holds, in spite of the storm.) 

I’ve had visions, I’ve had dreams; I’ve even held them in my hand. But I never knew they would slip right through, Like they were only grains of sand. (Refrain) I have been young but I’m older now. And there has been beauty these eyes have seen. But it was in the night, through the storms of my life, Oh, that’s where God proved His LOVE for me. (Refrain) I have fallen on my knees as I face the raging seas. But the anchor holds in spite of the storm.’ 

Yes friends and fathers, in spite of everything the world throws at us, if we are sheltered under the mighty hand of God, our anchor WILL ALWAYS HOLD! That’s His faithful promise! And we know that our God doesn’t take His promises lightly like we tend to do. 

That brings us to our Bit; most worthy advice from Bruh Paul to the Ephesian fathers way back when, and even more so for these undisciplined and uncontrolled times. ‘And ye fathers provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture (training) and admonition of the Lord.’ 

Ah fathers, we have already allowed this current generation to grow without proper fatherly advice, so that now they are ungodly, lack discipline and figure the world owes them a living. We obviously have not lived up to our wonderful billing, else our youth would not be as disorganized, disenfranchised and disturbed as they are. 

We have done this primarily by our absence from the family home, and even when there, through our neglecting to teach the children what we are supposed to teach them. And it’s not that we didn’t know, because most of us were taught it when we were growing up.  And it’s all based simply on the Lord’s words to His angels about Abraham, before He destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah. 

‘For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgement (righteousness and justice); that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of to him. (Gen.18:19) 

Yeh fathers, it’s all about serving the Lord and executing righteousness and justice, as Moses further instructed the Israelites. ‘And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: and thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.’ (Deut. 6:6-7) 

Oh fathers, how many of us teach our children about God or talk about the Lord or any kind of godly stuff in our houses these days eh? Not too many. But we teach and talk about all sorts of worldly stuff in our homes and schools, while God is considered a subject of taboo. That’s not right or wise fathers, for in the long run it will bring the wrath of God down on all of us for disobeying His command. 

Now hear these words of Asaph the psalmist. ‘For he established a testimony in Jacob, and appointed a law in Israel, which commanded our fathers, that they should make known to their children: That the generation to come might know them, even the children which should be born; who should arise and declare them to their children. 

That they might set their hope in God, and not forget the works of God, but keep the commandments. And might not be as their fathers, a stubborn and rebellious generation, a generation that set not their heart (did not prepare its heart) aright, and whose spirit was not steadfast with God.’ (Ps.78:5-8) 

Unfortunately fathers, that is the kind of generation we have raised. Now what will they teach the next generation about the Lord eh, if they don’t know anything about Him, and thus don’t care about Him? Not a whole lot. And that is exactly why the Lord wants us to teach our children about Him; so that the word can be passed down from generation to generation. How do you think it go to us eh? Because each previous generation taught the one after them. 

And we’ll close with one immortal verse from Cousin Sol. ‘Train up a child in the way he should go: and (even) when he is old, he will not depart from it.’ (Prov.22:6) Yes fathers, once we instill the Lord in the hearts of our children from an early age, even if they stray some, they will always have something solid to fall back on. 

Now, though we have not done our best so far, it’s definitely not too late for us to try and right some of our wrongs. So let’s sincerely ask the Lord to help us do our fatherly duties properly from this time onward. That’s wisdom of enormous proportions! Much LOVE!

…fathers should be people their children can proudly look up to…

 

 

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 5 November 2015 2 Peter 1:8

2 Peter 1:8.  For if these things be in you (are yours), and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren (useless) nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Aye Friends, this going to bed early is truly for the birds yes! Steups! I tried it last night and what a fiasco it turned out to be. 

Chuh! I was up almost every hour on the hour, then couldn’t find a comfortable position to go back to sleep, and thus kept turning and tossing. 

Then I was finally forced to get up by my aches and pains. It surely seems like they have all come out of the woodwork this morning, and have me doddering around like a real old man. (smile) 

Don’t know how people lie in their beds for 8 to 10 hours nuh. I could not even make seven comfortably. After about five, if so much, things begin to go awry with me. 

But you know what Friends, I will take those aches and pains any day over the more serious problems that more than half the world has. I at least have a roof over my head, food on my table and a comfortable bed to sleep in, I just can’t spend too much time in it. (smile). 

However, a lot of our brothers and sisters around the world, don’t have those luxuries, and may never have them throughout their entire lives. What a sad tale in a world of plenty! 

At least I know that as the day goes along and I move around, my aches and pains will gradually diminish, but there are too many unfortunates in this rich world whose lives will never change without help, and it is our bounden duty to help them in whatever way we can. 

We have to be people of excellence, of LOVE, care and compassion, as Jesus desires us to be, and share our good fortune with the less fortunate. That’s how people will know that we are true disciples of His. 

And while we’re on the subject of excellence, listen to this quote attributed to the Greek philosopher Aristotle (384-322 B.C). It says that ‘We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.’ 

And that’s very true my people. You just don’t develop excellence overnight; you have to work at it continually. That means that excellence can only be achieved through repetition. And that is why we practice and practice and practice yet again, at the things we want to be excellent in. 

Nowadays everybody wants to be a supposed superstar, but unfortunately they don’t want to put in the effort and work necessary to become one. I think it’s the same with our Christian faith. We all want to be mature and righteous and otherwise, but we don’t want to do the things it takes to become such. 

Those Christian attributes don’t come overnight nuh mih people. Like everything else, they do take a lot of toil and time, effort and energy, misfortune and suffering. But the beauty of our situation though is that we have the powerful help of the Holy Spirit to lead and guide us in becoming excellent Christians, provided we’re willing to do what it takes. 

No other faith has that divine body continually with them, and I’m sure it disappoints Jesus when we don’t use His Spirit to the max, or in the best ways possible. 

Now let’s turn to our guidebook, the Bible, where we have this passage from 2 Peter that exemplifies all that we’ve been speaking about. ‘Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ, to them that have obtained like (the same kind of) precious faith with us through the righteousness of (our) God and our Saviour Jesus Christ: 

Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through (in) the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord. According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: 

Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. And beside this (but also for this very reason), giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; 

And to knowledge temperance (self-control); and to temperance patience (perseverance); and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity (LOVE). 

For if these things be in you (are yours), and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren (useless) nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.’(2 Pet.1-8) 

Yes Friends, we already have everything we need to live fruitful lives, we just have to raise them up and work continuously at them. That’s the only way we can grow in spiritual maturity, which Peter is encouraging us all to do. 

And Peter doesn’t stop there, he also shows us the other side of the coin. ‘But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off (is shortsighted), and hath forgotten that he was purged (cleansed) from his old sins. 

Wherefore the rather brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall (stumble): For so an entrance shall be ministered (supplied) unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.’ (2 Pet.1:9-11) 

There we have it Friends; to become excellent in the knowledge and glory of Christ, we have to work diligently at it. And a large part of becoming mature in Christ is that as we grow, we also put our knowledge, faith, virtue, godliness, brotherly kindness etc. to work. 

For we ALL need to remember that our faith, Christianity, is not merely a lot of talking, but even more importantly, plenty, plenty action. So today, as we grow in faith, let’s also grow in our actions nuh, so that others may see our worthwhile fruits and desire to come to Jesus, and get what we have. Much LOVE!

…wherefore…by their fruits ye shall know them…  (Matt.7:20) 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 September 2015 Psalm 119:81‏

Psalm 119:81.   My soul fainteth for thy salvation: but I hope in thy word.

Grace and peace be unto you this Sunday morning my fellow believers from the Lord God and our Saviour Jesus Christ! 

It’s our big day, where we gather to fellowship with each other, sing and praise and worship our great and wonderful God, and in return receive His encouragement and strength to face another week down here on this crazy and very disturbed earth. 

And all God’s people declared a loud and sincere, ‘Praise the Lord, for He is indeed good to those who believe in Him and walk in His paths of righteousness! Glory Hallelujah!’ 

Yes Friends, all of that is indisputably true, so please, let’s get ourselves together and go out to church and join in grateful praise and worship this wonderful Sunday morning. We are alive and well blessed, so let’s give some thanks in return. 

Now here is something wise and wonderful, strengthening and uplifting from Gramps Schuler’s (Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional. I believe I’ve shared it before, but it’s ever so appropriate for sharing again in these very turbulent and disruptive times. It’s titled ‘A Prayer for Confidence,’ and do we ever need that these days. 

So please pray with me. ‘It is flowing into me now, for my conscience is clear. I have made the right decision. I am not afraid of problems. I will face challenges calmly and serenely for God is behind me. He will help me. If I must go through difficult times, he will rescue me. 

I feel his spirit of confidence surging in my heart now. With him I cannot possibly fail. “If God is for me who can be against me?” I have a strong feeling that everything is going to work out just beautifully. Thank you, God. Amen.’ 

Oh mih breddren, it’s that kind of confidence we need to exude today! And if you sincerely prayed that prayer with me, then I’m sure you can feel that surge of confidence just pulsing through your entire body, soul and mind right now. Oh glory to God for His answers to our prayers! 

And I sincerely hope that all of what we’ve said so far will light a fire under us, will increase our desire and longing for God, as our Bit, the same as yesterday, declares. ‘My soul fainteth for thy salvation: but I hope in thy word.’ 

Yes Friends, though life might be rough, and we long to be saved from our trials and tribulations, we must not lose hope and trust and faith in the holy and indisputable Word of Jehovah God! For it is indeed a guide to successful earthly living. 

As the psalmist says further on in Psalm 119. ‘Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path. I have sworn, and I will perform (confirm) it, that I will keep thy righteous judgements.’ (Ps.119:105-106) 

Oh my people, please allow the Word of our God to be our lamp and guide down here on this polluted and ungodly earth! Let’s swear to keep all His statutes and commandments, so that it will be right with us as we continue on our pilgrim’s journey.  

Now let’s hear a couple of scripture passages that corroborate the truth of our Bit. Let’s begin with beautiful words of the sons of Korah, from Psalm 84 – Blessed are they that dwell in thy house. ‘How amiable are thy tabernacles (how lovely are thy dwellings), O Lord of hosts! My soul longeth, yea, even fainteth for the courts of the Lord: my heart and my flesh crieth out for the living God. 

Yes, the sparrow hath found a house, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may lay her young, even thine altars, O Lord of hosts, my King, and my God. Blessed are they that dwell in thy house: they will be still praising thee.  Selah.’ (Ps.84:1-4) 

Oh Friends, doesn’t that just touch the very cockles of one’s heart? It surely does! When someone longs so much for God, we can only be touched and hopefully influenced by it. 

Now listen to the words of Asaph from Psalm 73 – The mystery of prosperous wickedness. ‘Whom have I in heaven but thee? And there is none upon earth that I desire beside thee. My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength (the rock) of my heart, and my portion for ever. 

For, lo, they that are far from thee shall perish: thou hast destroyed all them that go a whoring from thee (who are unfaithful to thee). But it is good for me to draw near to God: I have put my trust in the Lord God, that I may declare all thy works.’ (Ps. 73:25-28) 

Yes my people, that’s what you call inordinate wisdom. (smile) And we’ll end with these trusting and faithful words of Bruh David from Psalm 63 – God satisfies the thirsting soul. 

‘O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is; To see thy power and thy glory, so as I have seen thee (looked for thee) in the sanctuary. Because thy LOVING-kindness is better than life, my lips shall praise thee.’ (Ps.63: 1-3) 

Oh Friends, if Bruh David could pen those faithful and trusting words when he was lost and foraging in the wilderness of Judah, we who are not suffering such tribulation can certainly get up this Sunday morning and go out to the Lord’s sanctuary and look for Him, and praise His Holy Name for all the LOVING-kindness He’s bestowed on us, unworthy though we be. Much LOVE!

…when one sincerely longs for Christ…He comes into one’s soul and strengthens it…  

P.S. You all can’t complain about the length of today’s Bit, because it’s very short…but nonetheless sweet. (smile) Much LOVE!

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 8 January 2013 2 Corinthians 1:2

2 Corinthians 1:2.     Grace be to you and peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
 
Aye Friends, whoever says that our God isn’t something else, doh really know Him nuh. Listen to this story: A couple days ago He worked a magic on me, a nice magic obviously, and now would you believe that He wants me to testify to it. Hn, hn! But you know, since I try to be obedient as much as possible, I am going to testify, though not simply out of obedience, but more so out of LOVE and gratitude for God’s awesome goodness, and as usual, He was just in time. Anyway, the story goes like this. That day I guess I was feeling somewhat tired and low down, plus the weather was sort of wet and damp, and to make matters worse, my old bones were acting up with the arthritis, so I was having a bit of a pity party, day dreaming about the wonderful weather in Tobago. And right at that momentous moment in time (smile) the duchess called me from downstairs to pick up the phone. And lo and behold, it was one of my sisters in Jamdown (Jamaica) calling to wish me a Happy New Year and also to tell me that my niece and nephew from Tobago had just had dinner with them. And I don’t have to tell you all what that caused – my joy was most thoroughly renewed! And who says that our God isn’t a real great God eh? Foolishness! Much thanks Sister Audrey! I’m sure she didn’t even know that she was then being used by the Most High to revitalize me. And some of you must be wondering how come I have sisters in J.A. But they must be my sisters since some forty years ago, when I was living there, their parents took me in when I had no place to go, and the family showered me with plenty, plenty LOVE, a true action of Jesus. Thanks so much Aunt Amy and Uncle Aubrey. I won’t even venture to think what would have become of me, if the LOVE of Jesus hadn’t penetrated your hearts and caused you to take me in. And as I keep saying Friends, we miss the best part of our God when we don’t see His wonderful actions in our daily lives. Ah sorry for you people who don’t look for Him in the everyday situations, and thus cannot appreciate what He does in the ordinary, day to day moments, but the Lord has done so much ordinary magic in my life that He’s made me a sure believer. Unfortunately, most of us keep looking for big miracles, which are obviously few and far between, when we should be looking for the small ones, which happen almost everyday. However, from today, RIGHT NOW, I want us all to look for and thus enjoy those smaller moments of magic, cause that’s when we truly come to know, appreciate and LOVE Him. I also want us to be serious about our New Year’s resolution to increase the level and intensity of our LOVE Walk with Jesus. That means being more committed in thought, word and action to the LOVE REVOLUTION we’re trying to foment. Oh Friends, I guarantee that if you all really tried to get closer to Jesus, you’d be amazed at the good changes that will start taking place in your lives. Then you’d start to believe more. In other words, you’d be growing in faith. And that’s the name of the game my people: believe… experience… more belief… more experience, at an even higher level… faith grows even stronger… with righteousness not bad at all… and you just keep growing until He’s ready to call you home. In fact, once you come to really know Jesus, you never stop growing because there’s such an awesome amount of stuff to learn about and from Him. And that Friends, is my testimony for this Tuesday morning, early in January, in this new year of 2013 with its promised watershed, unexpected, and most interesting happenings. Ah mih people, if we can’t find joy in the Lord, then something’s wrong. But here’s our Bit: ‘Grace be to you and peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.’ And like Bruh Paul, I’d like to wish us all that this morning. That greeting came to be his signature at the beginning of almost all of his writings, beginning with that to the Romans. ‘To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.’ (Rom.1:7) The scholars explain that thus: ‘Called to be saints. This tells how they got to be saints, namely by way of God’s call (cf. 8:30). Grace is the typical Greek greeting, whereas peace is a traditional Hebrew greeting. Note Paul’s greeting in his other epistles, for this characteristic expression of Paul.’ And re our Bit, here is the scholar’s note. ‘Grace to you and peace: for Paul, grace always precedes peace. Peace is subsequent and comes because God’s grace has been received by faith. Nothing brings this peace as much as the undiluted gospel of God’s grace (cf. Eph.2:14; Phil.4:7; Col.1:20; 3:15). From: The single preposition ‘apo’ links the Father and the Son in an indissoluble union, thus pointing to the deity of Christ.’ And all God’s children declared a loud and grateful, ‘Praise the Lord!’ Now Friends, we’ll close with the words to the chorus of another li’l reggae ditty I recently heard that are most appropriate to our Bit today. It’s called ‘Beauty for Ashes, and is sung by Germaine Cowan. Please sing the chorus with me: ‘Beauty for ashes, In a shower of grace. Hope for tomorrow; It’s a bright and brand new day. He took away my sorrow. Put a smile on my face. Beauty for ashes, In a shower of grace.’ Isn’t that just plain beautiful and filled with so much gospel truth my brethren! Let’s ponder on those things today nuh, let’s consider the many instances where our wonderful God has taken our ashes and given us beauty in return. Let’s start looking for His glorious presence in our everyday lives, because that’s where He wants to be and is mostly to be found. Much LOVE!…And of his fullness…have all we received…and grace for grace…(graced heaped on grace)… (John 1:16)