Today’s Scrip-Bit 20 November 2017 Jeremiah 29:11.

Jeremiah 29:11.   For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith, the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil (calamity), to give you an expected end (a future and a hope).

Ah friends, the days are rolling by quickly and who knows how much time we have left to successfully perform any tasks, or bring to fruition whatever plans God has in store for us. That means we’ve got to get with the program right away; no excuses, laziness or procrastination, but be a diligent, hard worker and fruitful vine bearer for Christ. So that at the end of our days, He’ll greet us with that wonderful, big smile, a tantalizing bear hug, and the overwhelming invitation: ‘Welcome! Welcome home, thou good and faithful servant!’ 

Wow mih breddren, there can’t be any better welcoming words than those anywhere in the universe! But for our lives to play out that way, means we have to begin by being fired up this Monday morning; no whining and complaining; just seriously, sincerely and conscientiously going about the Lord’s business. Oh, I know some Monday mornings it’s difficult to roll out of the warm and comfortable bed to face our cruel and evil world, especially as the chills of winter descend upon us, in the northern climes.  

But that’s why we have our Monday Morning Battle Hymn; to boost our spirits, reverse all the negative effects of an undisciplined weekend (smile) and get us ready to face whatever comes against us with the energy, assurance, joy and peace that come from being a believer in, and a follower of our wonderful Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. So let’s blast it out as passionately as we can nuh. 

‘Oh Lord God Almighty, Creator of the universe and all therein! We, your humble servants, praise your Holy Name and thank you that this Monday morning we have jobs to go to; jobs we don’t like, jobs that are unfair, difficult and even dangerous, but which serve a useful purpose here on earth; keeping lives and families together. 

We also thank you Father for the renewed vitality and enthusiasm you’ve wrought in our weary souls over the last two days. It’s that rejuvenation of Spirit which allows us now to sally forth with confidence into the evil, ungodly world that surrounds us, to begin a new week of work, constantly buffeted and bombarded by the enemy’s wicked taunts, wiles and lies. 

But heavenly Father, we’re not afraid, for we know we’re invincible, sure conquerors, once we’re wearing your powerful, protective spiritual armour. We surrender our all to you, and humbly ask that you let your incredible aura of LOVE, the Holy Spirit, lead and guide all your servants as we go out to meet the enemy in battle. 

Fill us with steadfast faith, so that we can make worthwhile inroads into the enemy’s ranks, and thereby further your glorious kingdom. We pray this in the Holy Name of your Son, and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. AMEN!’ 

Awright mih people, yuh see how our Battle Hymn changes our entire perspective, how our passion rises as we trill it to the high heavens? So let’s keep that adrenaline flowing nuh, as we get out onto the highways and byways and make our way to the concrete jungles and hunker down to labour for another day. But all the while keeping the unbreakable promise of our Bit solidly grounded in our hearts, bodies, minds and souls. ‘For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith, the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil (calamity), to give you an expected end (a future and a hope).’ 

Yeh friends, even when God punished the Israelites by having Babylon take them captive, He promised to bring them back to Jerusalem after seventy years. Hopefully, they would have learned their lesson by then. And it’s the same way my faithful brethren that the Lord has good plans for us, plans to give us hope, joy and peace. Why would He create us in His own image, give us His breath of life and then, when we screw up, send His Son Jesus to die for us, if He didn’t have good and worthwhile intentions towards us eh? 

Listen to Jesus tell it like it is: ‘All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise (certainly not) cast out. For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me. And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day. And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.’ (John 6:37-40) 

Oh my people, does that sound like a God who has bad intentions towards us? Certainly not! He wants only the best for us, that’s why He sent Jesus to die for our abominable sins; to give us a hope and a future; otherwise it would have been curtains for us, certain calamity through eternal separation from Him. And believe me, eternal separation from Almighty God is the WORST thing that can ever happen to a human being! 

So friends, please let’s take this earthly life seriously, let’s take Jesus seriously, because if we don’t, we’ll end up paying an enormous price for the dubious privilege of being foolish.  We don’t have to be miserable and joyless, because Jesus came to give us joy, but we do have to be sensible, thoughtful and wise if we want to be welcomed in heaven. Much LOVE!

…he who has ears to hear…let him hear…else he will certainly feel…

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 26 October 2017 Psalm 119:75.

Psalm 119:75.   I know, O Lord, that thy judgements (laws) are right (righteous), and that thou in faithfulness hast afflicted me.

Alive and kicking, alive and kicking serious butt my friends! That’s the way we should be as Christians. But unfortunately, most Christians seem to be barely alive, just going through the motions. For whatever reason, we don’t have the necessary energy or desire to kick butt for Jesus! 

That’s wrong though my fellow believers. How then will Christ be known all over the world if we don’t get up and get moving eh? Remember, we are His body here on earth; His hands, His feet, His mouth. He depends on us to stir up the populace on His behalf. 

And I don’t know if it’s simply fear of the world, or just laziness and procrastination that’s holding us back, but it’s obvious that we’re not doing such a great job on Jesus’ behalf, while the unbeliever is luxuriating in his wicked and evil deeds. 

Anyway, here is something called ‘The Pain of Growth,’ from our One Year Book of Bible Promises with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin that I think will shed some light on our problems. (smile) 

It says: ‘O God Growth is a painful process. I frankly confess I am a coward about pain. I don’t like it, Lord. I never pray for it Or get excited over it. In fact, I often resist it: The pain of emotional trauma So overwhelming So baffling and crushing. 

The deep-cutting pain Of a broken relationship. Physical pain that goes on and on Until my entire body screams. The pain of cruel cutting words. The pain of loneliness, rejection Or financial ruin. The pain of being misunderstood. Lord, the very thought of pain Frightens and unnerves me. 

Yet it is true – Again and again it is true: My greatest spiritual growth Has come through pain. Through heartache And anguish. And very often in my suffering When I sadly thought You were doing absolutely nothing At that very moment You were doing more within me Than I ever dreamed or hoped.’ 

What words of truth and wisdom my people! None of us like pain or suffering, but it is inevitable in the fallen nature of our lives. And that is simply how we grow in any and everything. As the ole mantra goes, ‘no pain, no gain.’ 

And that’s especially true in our Christian walk of faith, for God matures us through tests and trials which often involve some serious pain. Yuh see the pain and suffering Jesus had to bear to atone for and absolve our sins? 

Likewise we need to go through some tribulation, else we’ll never grow in our Christian walk. Unfortunately though, in these modern times, Christians are a soft, wimpy bunch of people who just want to enjoy the good life without any problems whatsoever. 

In fact our whole society has become soft and wimpy through all the ‘make life easy’ amenities that we now possess. But since the fall of our forefathers in the Garden of Eden, life has never been easy; the consequences of sin have made it tough and as Christians we are expected to weather whatever storm comes against us. 

However, the wonderful news is that we have our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ to help us weather it! Glory Hallelujah! Unbelievers don’t have that luxury, so they have to weather it all on their own. 

So please let’s stop complaining as much as we do, and instead plead the wise and truthful words of our Bit: ‘I know, O Lord, that thy judgements (laws) are right (righteous), and that thou in faithfulness hast afflicted me.’ 

Yes friends, whatever our ever-faithful and righteous God allows to come against us has a perfect reason behind it. He is the great I AM, who knows the beginning from the end and has everything in His universe under control. 

And we should rightly be saying like the psalmist does after our Bit: ‘Let, I pray thee, thy merciful kindness be for my comfort, according to thy word unto thy servant. Let thy tender mercies come unto me, that I may live: for thy law is my delight.’ (Ps.119:76-77) 

Oh my people, our God has promised that though He chastens us, He will not do it out of spite or anger, but out of LOVE. Now listen to these words of Cousin Sol which seal the deal. 

‘My son, despise not the chastening of the Lord; neither be weary of (detest) his correction. For whom the Lord LOVETH he correcteth; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth.’ (Prov.3:11-12) 

There it is in black and white friends! So please not get too antsy about the pain and suffering that comes against us, because it will all work out for our good eventually. Our faithful God has promised that. With all of that in mind then, let’s go home declaring our wonderful blessings, knowing that they will wash away whatever pain we have now, or are yet to face. 

In strong and sincere voice now: ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! 

I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection! I am blessed with a compassionate heart and a positive outlook on life! 

I declare that any curse or negative word that’s ever been spoken over me is broken right now in the name of Jesus! I declare that everything I put my hands to will prosper and succeed! I declare it today and everyday! Amen!’ 

Oh what a wonderful God we serve and worship my believing brethren! Much Much LOVE!

…whatever comes from God…comes in LOVE…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 September 2017 Hebrews 12:2.

Hebrews 12:2.   Looking unto to (let us fix our eyes on) Jesus, the author (originator) and finisher (perfector) of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Well friends, as they say, all good things must end! And it looks like this delightful, unexpected party of summer weather is over as of today! Chuh! But we’ve certainly enjoyed it while it lasted. 

As of tomorrow, we’re supposed to go to highs of around 19 Celsius, which is more like the normal temp for this time of year. So enjoy today’s twenty something high, cause it’s the last time we’ll see it for a long, long while. (smile)  

And today, I have an interesting excerpt to share from our One Year Book of Bible Promises, with writings by Ruth Harms Calkin. I can’t remember if I’ve ever shared it before, but it certainly applies to a lot of us believers. It’s simply titled ‘Excuses.’ 

Please read with me. ‘O God I’ve become a self-educated master Of a thousand polished excuses. Hoping to avoid your penetrating gaze I clutch them to me like valuable gems. When I think I have myself thoroughly covered I’m caught short with the realization That you can see right through me. My flimsy excuses are never really hidden. 

I find an excuse for all my failures Wrong choices Late appointments Wasted time. I excuse my foolish blunders, my laziness My broken resolves, my unreachable goals. I need your help, Lord! To hide from You is as foolish As the Grand Canyon Attempting to hide from the sky. 

O God, my only hope Lies in your invincible power To make me what I am not yet But what you know I can become. Strengthen my will, Lord. Make me firm, steadfast, consistent. Control my impulses, my emotions. May I keep pursuing and never quit.’ 

Ah mih people, I’m sure all of us, at some time or other have made various excuses to God why we didn’t or couldn’t do something He desired of us, but deep down we knew that those excuses were pretty flimsy and couldn’t hold up to the Lord’s scrutiny. 

I don’t know why we insist on doing that foolishness nuh, when we very well know that the Lord can see right into our heart and detect the truth, including our nefarious motives. We all know that being a pilgrim here on earth is not easy, but we do have the wherewithal to handle whatever comes against us. 

And if we truly feel unable or afraid to do something, it’s better to go to God with the truth, than with a flimsy, selfish excuse. Remember, we can’t ever run, nor hide from God! But some of us still insist on trying. (smile) 

And the Bible verse for that poem, as well as today’s Bit, is one we all know. ‘Looking unto to (let us fix our eyes) on Jesus, the author (originator) and finisher (perfector) of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.’ 

Yeh friends, in rough and uncertain times we need to keep our gaze fixed completely on Jesus, seeing how He handled His hard times and trying to do likewise. Our Bit talks about the joy that was set before Jesus. Yuh think His physical ‘sufferation’ and unholy crucifixion were joyful? 

Surely not! But the joy was the knowledge that His sacrificial death would set us free, pay our sin debt in full, and then elevate Him to the right hand of the Father, where He could still advocate on our behalf. That was the joy which Jesus beheld friends! 

And the scholars tell us: ’12:2. Just as verse 1 establishes some qualities for the entrance into and the actual running of life’s race, so verse 2 directs one’s eyes to the finish line. Jesus is the author and finisher in that He has already blazed the trail and finished the course.’ 

Yes my fellow believers, Jesus has already done it all, we don’t need to carve out a new trail, just follow the one He has blazed. 

And I like the two verses after our Bit. ‘For consider him that endured such contradiction (hostility) of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint (discouraged) in your minds (souls). Ye have not yet resisted unto blood (bloodshed), striving against sin.’ (Heb.12:3-4) 

For sure friends, the majority of us have not, and will never come up against anything close to what Jesus endured on our behalf. So just remember when things get rough and tough, that Jesus is the supreme example of endurance, both physical and spiritual, andHe is the One we must always look to, as a mighty example, and for help in our own endurance. 

Now let’s go home declaring our Wednesday Wail, which shows that we are truly on the right path, the straight and narrow one. In strong voice, with true sincerity: ‘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!’ 

How could it be anything other than that eh mih breddren? Much LOVE!

…what a glorious example we have in Jesus…in how to live a pilgrim’s life…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 January 2017 Philippians 4:4.

Philippians 4:4.   Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice.

Ah friends, it’s just been one of those days. I got up early, but could not decide whether to write the Bit or go to the early morning church service. Hn! Consequently I did neither. 

Then I hem and hawed about whether to write the Bit or go to the later church service. I finally went to the ten o’clock service and did not get back home till after twelve, so that’s why I’m only now writing the Bit. 

Steups! What a good day for indecisiveness and laziness! Let’s be thankful that that doesn’t happen every day. 

And the church service was refreshing. Everybody was glad to see me back out, though they didn’t notice that at one stage during the pre communion prayers, I had to sit down because a bout of tiredness suddenly hit me. That’s because I purposely sat at the very back of the church. All in all though, it was a good time, and I hope it just gets better every week. 

Now let’s get in some praise and worship with this old hymn which accurately describes my situation right now. My physical state might not be the greatest, but certainly, ‘It is well with my soul.’ 

‘When peace, like a river, attendeth my way, When sorrows like sea billows roll; Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say, It is well, it is well with my soul. (Refrain) It is well with my soul, It is well, it is well with my soul. 

Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come, Let this blest assurance control, That Christ hath regarded my helpless estate, And hath shed His own blood for my soul. (Refrain) 

My sin—oh, the bliss of this glorious thought! — My sin, not in part but the whole, Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more, Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul! (Refrain) 

For me, be it Christ, be it Christ hence to live: If Jordan above me shall roll, No pang shall be mine, for in death as in life Thou wilt whisper Thy peace to my soul. (Refrain) 

But, Lord, ’tis for Thee, for Thy coming we wait, The sky, not the grave, is our goal; Oh, trump of the angel! Oh, voice of the Lord! Blessed hope, blessed rest of my soul! (Refrain) 

And Lord, haste the day when the faith shall be sight, The clouds be rolled back as a scroll; The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend, Even so, it is well with my soul. It is well, it is well with my soul…’ 

Yeh my people, I do hope it is well with all of our souls, for that’s where it really counts. That brings us to our Bit, a serious clarion call from Bruh Paul. ‘Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice.’ 

Oh fellow believers, that might sound somewhat difficult to do, what with all the difficulties we have in our current lives. But as a believer, it is essential for us to have continual joy, a steady spate of rejoicing, otherwise we won’t be able to handle our individual circumstances. 

Now we don’t necessarily mean constant jumping and shouting, but more a quiet thankfulness that makes the heart and soul feel satisfied, regardless of the situation. 

Listen to this explanation from the scholars. ‘4:4. The mention of believers’ names being recorded in heaven (v.3) causes the author to write rejoice in the Lord always. 

Harmony among church members, as Paul assumes will be the result of his plea in verses 2 and 3, is another reason to “rejoice.” In adding and again I say, Rejoice, it is though the apostle looks into the future, considers all possibilities of sorrow, and in spite of them all repeats “the command.” 

This command to rejoice at all times and in all circumstances is nothing less than a call to faith. For if the Christian believes that his life and all its circumstances are in the hands of a sovereign, wise, and LOVING God who is always working to accomplish good for him, then he can indeed “rejoice always.” 

And Romans 8:28, tells us just that: ‘And we know that all things work together for good to them that LOVE God, to them that who are called according to his purpose.’ 

So there is good reason to rejoice always. Why do you think I’m keeping my peace and hanging in there despite my numerous ailments? Because I’m believing on God’s promises to make everything right in His own time. 

Friends, that’s the only way to find some peace in this crazy, strife filled world, especially in the uncertain and apparently divisive era of Donald Trump’s presidency. 

Let’s pray that he will soon wake up and smell the roses and not simply make matters worse than they already are. Remember, as the U.S. goes, most of the world goes, thus we are also praying for ourselves. Much LOVE!

…if heaven is your future home…then there’s no need to be sad on earth…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 6 November 2016 Ecclesiastes 5:1.

Ecclesiastes 5:1   Keep thy foot (walk prudently) when thou goest to the house of God, and be more ready to hear (draw near to hear, rather) than to give the sacrifice of fools: for they consider not that they do evil.

Aye mih people, a blessed Sabbath Day to you and yours!  And we’ll begin as usual with some praise and worship to get us ready, to get our hearts softened up for the Word. So let’s belt out that wonderful hymn we all know and LOVE, ‘Amazing Grace’! Let’s raise our sacrifices of praise heavenward, like we truly mean it nuh. 

‘Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound, That saved a wretch like me. I once was lost but now I’m found, Was blind, but now I see. ’twas Grace that taught, my heart to fear. And grace, my fears relieved. How precious did that grace appear, the hour I first believed. 

Through many dangers, toils and snares, I have already come. ’tis grace that brought me safe thus far, and grace will lead us home. The Lord has promised good to me, His word my hope secures. He will my shield and portion be, as long as life endures. 

When we’ve been there ten thousand years, bright shining as the sun. We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise, than when we first begun. Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound, That saved a wretch like me. I once was lost but now am found, Was blind, but now, I see.’ 

Yes friends, it’s all through God’s amazing grace that we can aspire to heavenly things and places! Without His saving grace, we would truly be lost like a thirsty man in an endless expanse of desert, only seeing mirages, or a rudderless ship adrift in the dark on a storm tossed sea.  Only through God’s grace can we find an oasis in the desert, or a clear path in the storm. 

That reminds me of the picture in one of my Bibles showing a ship caught in a storm with a young lad standing at the ship’s steering wheel that’s bigger than him, but comfortingly, behind the lad stands Jesus, with His left hand on the boy’s left shoulder and His right hand pointing the way through the storm.  

Ah friends, that’s how it is with all those who sincerely believe in Jesus and seek His saving grace; He takes us gently by the arm and guides us safely through the fearful storms of life. Now, given that generous life-line of grace, I don’t understand why anyone in their right mind wouldn’t have a great desire to associate with Jesus. But, I guess, if you don’t believe His Word, then you won’t see any reason for such an association. 

All I can say friends, is that I’m truly sorry for those who, for whatever reason, pass up the wonderful opportunity to walk closely with Jesus. It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity, so let’s pray that they will come to their senses before their earthly lives are over, because then that glorious opportunity will cease to exist. 

Oh, before we get to our Bit, let me apologize for a typo in yesterday’s message. Don’t know how many of you noticed it, but one heading had the 5th of November while the other had the 4th

Chuh! I didn’t notice it until after I sent out the Bit. Obviously it annoyed me, but it was too late do anything about it then. And it all stems from laziness yes, copying the heading rather than typing it all over again, then forgetting to change the date. Ah Lord eh! I guess that just shows that I’m human, and thus liable to make mistakes. (smile) 

Then this morning the clocks went back an hour, bringing an end to Daylight Saving Time. I don’t know why we continue the practice nuh, because it doesn’t seem to help anybody I know, and many other countries don’t use it and seem to get by very well. But them’s the breaks, we just have to grin and bear it, and once more figure out and remember the time difference in places we deal with. 

Anyway, we’ve finally come to our Bit, a caution against hasty vows, which seems rather appropriate for this Sunday morning as we go to church. ‘Keep thy foot (walk prudently) when thou goest to the house of God, and be more ready to hear (draw near to hear, rather) than to give the sacrifice of fools: for they consider not that they do evil.’ 

A very timely bit of advice indeed my brethren! And the Preacher continues: ‘Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter anything before God: for God is in heaven, and thou upon the earth: therefore let thy words be few. For a dream cometh through the multitude of business (effort or activity); and a fool’s voice is known by multitude of words.’ (Eccl.5:2-3) 

Yes friends, wisdom for the ages from Cousin Sol, writing as the Preacher. And the scholars enlighten us thus. ‘5:1-7. The emphasis of the passage is on the folly of an empty religious profession before a sovereign God: God is in heaven, and thou upon the earth. God expects sincerity and meaningfulness in worship. He is not impressed with foolish vows.’ 

Ah mih people, unfortunately, in the heat of the moment, a lot of us offer lengthy prayers and make rash, unwise promises to God, which we obviously can’t or don’t intend to keep. 

But listen to these awesome words of wisdom from the Preacher. ‘When thou vowest a vow unto God, defer (delay) not to pay it; for he hath no pleasure in fools: pay that which thou hast vowed. Better is it that thou shouldest not vow, than that thou shouldest vow and not pay.’ (Eccl.5:4-5) 

The truth of the matter though my fellow believers is that wisdom doesn’t only apply to our dealings with Almighty God, but should apply to our dealings with all humans! As sincere followers of Jesus, it is imperative that we keep our promises to all and sundry. He keeps all of His promises, and consequently expects us to do the same. 

Sadly though, our social media revolution has made this a time of many words – most of them foolish and unnecessary – and rash promises – many of which we have no intention of keeping, or simply can’t keep. That’s why we are cautioned to not promise, rather than to promise and not pay. Please let that be our motto from now on my people, it will keep us out of many troubles. Much LOVE!

…whatever happened to the old adage…promises were meant to be kept…not broken…

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 7 September 2016 Galatians 2:20.

Galatians 2:20.    I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of (by faith in) the Son of God, who LOVED me, and gave himself for me.

Ah mih people, it’s another God-given, blessed day in our lives! All praise and thanks be to our great and generous God! 

The first thing I want to do is to apologize for the error in the dates in yesterday’s titles. I know that many of you missed it, but that’s what comes from laziness, meaning copying the titles from the day before and not remembering to change the dates. One title says the 6th while the other says the 5th

Chuh! It annoys me when I make those lazy attitude errors, but as we all know, you only reap what you sow. So if you sow laziness, errors and mistakes are what you’ll reap. (smile) 

However, on the good side of the ledger, let me now share some wonderful advice from an anonymous Irishman, taken from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional. I believe I’ve shared it before, but as we say, when it’s nice, we can share it twice, or even thrice. (smile). 

And the golden words of advice are: ‘Take time to work, it is the price of success. Take time to think, it is the source of power. Take time to play it is the secret of youth. Take time to read, it is the foundation of wisdom. Take time to be friendly, it is the road to happiness. Take time to dream, it’s hitching your wagon to a star. Take time to LOVE, it is the highest joy of life. Take time to laugh, it is the music of the soul.’ 

Oh friends, those are not only wise words for the ordinary man, but they also sound like the Christian Manifesto! For those are all the things that a true, Jesus –LOVING and faithfully serving Christian ought to be following, if we sincerely hope to make a positive difference in this crazy, misguided, corrupt, and evil world. 

The truth is though, we can only do those things properly if and when we have Jesus in us and we are in Him. Hence our Bit. ‘I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of (by faith in) the Son of God, who LOVED me, and gave himself for me.’ 

Ah mih breddren, what a joy it is when Christ is the ruling passion in our lives! First of all He gave His holy and sinless life as a sacrifice, so that we could be saved by the generous grace of God! Then, when His Holy Spirit indwells us, He gives us, strength, wisdom, understanding, and all the other wonderful things we enjoy in association with Him. 

No wonder Bruh Paul could make the powerful and true statement he makes in our Bit! If we allow our old, sinful selves to be crucified with Christ, that means we will also be resurrected with Him in a new life, with Him living in us and we in Him. Glory Hallelujah! 

As Bruh Paul says in his letter to the church at Rome, when talking about freedom from sin’s power. ‘For if we have been planted together (united) in the likeness of his death, we (certainly) shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection: 

Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed (rendered inoperative), that henceforth we should not serve (be slaves to) sin. For he that is dead is freed from sin.’ (Rom.6:5-7) 

Yes my brethren, isn’t it wonderful that when we die to self, we are raised with Christ in newness of life! ‘Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature (creation): old things are passed away; behold all things are made new.’ (2 Cor.5:17) That’s Bruh Paul talking about us to the Corinthians! (smile) 

Now here are some explanations from the scholars on the earlier verses from Romans. ‘6:6. Our old man: This is our old self, the person we were before we were crucified with Christ. Might be destroyed (lit. “rendered inoperative”). The believer now has the power to serve Christ instead of his old master, sin.’ 

‘6:7. Freed from sin: The believer has been delivered from the guilt and penalty of sin and is set free to serve Christ.’ 

And believe me friends, nothing is more interesting and wonderful than serving Christ! It’s not easy, but it makes us people of excellence… and brother, let me tell you, the rewards are certainly worth it! 

So why aren’t we supposed Christians doing better than we are eh? I’m not sure, but maybe, just maybe it’s because we don’t truly believe all that we read and hear, re Jesus, and thus we don’t put our all-out effort into living for Him. And on top of that, the material things and ways of the world still exert a powerful pull on us, and keep us wanting what the world offers. 

Anyway my people, it’s time for us to break those chains that the world still have us bound and wrapped up in, else we’ll never really enjoy the freedom, the LOVE, the joy, the abundant life that Christ died for us to have. 

Now let’s go home joyfully and sincerely declaring our Wednesday Wail. No I haven’t forgotten it. (smile) 

Wailing as one: ‘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 having so gloriously declared that, now let’s go out and put it all into action nuh, make it reality and not just a bunch of insincere words. Much LOVE!

…the words and actions of a true believer…ought to show Jesus truly living in them…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 27 May 2016 Ecclesiastes 3:1

Ecclesiastes 3:1.   To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.

Summertime, Summertime, Summertime, Summertime! Thank God it’s Friday in the summertime! Mama yo! We leaving work early to beat the traffic, heading for the cottage to spend a marvellous weekend; eating, drinking, boating, swimming and fishing! Wow! The barbecues will be on fire, and the beer will be ice cold… Oh Lord, thank you for Fridays in the summertime!’ 

Yes friends, that’s the mantra of a lot of people on a Friday in the summertime, as they head for cottage country and their lakeside getaways. Consequently, many of them miss church and the wonderful fellowship and rejuvenation of spirit that comes with it. 

And then the boating accidents proliferate, because now they are drinking and driving on the water, just as they do on land. Every summer you hear of several mishaps on the water because of the brown girl in the bottle. Ah Lord eh! 

But for us few, who know how to spend a proper weekend, let’s chant our Friday Chant, so that we can get the right perspective. As one now: ‘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.’ 

Yes my brethren, that’s more like the focus we should have for the weekend; a nice balance of rest, recreation and fellowship. And today I want to share an interesting and important quote attributed to Lord Chesterfield, Philip Dormer Stanhope (1694-1773), 4th Earl of Chesterfield. I believe I’ve shared it before, but as they say, when it’s nice, you’ve got to play it at least twice. (smile) 

Lord Chesterfield is reputed to have said: ‘Know the true value of time; snatch, seize, and enjoy every moment of it. No idleness, no laziness, no procrastination, never put off till tomorrow what you can do today.’ 

And that my brethren is the god-awesome truth! We can’t afford to fool with, or waste time, because time waits on no one, it just goes along its own rollicking way, whether you decide to use it wisely or not. 

Remember the saying too that procrastination is the thief of time. More awesome truth! The more we put off, the less we get done and the less time we have left in our bank. Unfortunately we don’t know how much total time is in our account. 

So please, let’s learn to pay better and closer attention to our time because Almighty God has given us just enough to do whatever He desires, and if we waste it, we obviously won’t complete all that He has planned for us. End of sermon. (smile) 

That brings us to our Bit, the well-known verse of wisdom from Cousin Sol, writing as the preacher in Ecclesiastes. ‘To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.’ More indisputable truth my people, because as Christians, truth is all we ought to ever deal in. 

And after our Bit, Cousin Sol goes on to list a whole set of positive and negative things to which time have been apportioned. Like ‘a time to be born, a time to die… A time to weep, and a time to laugh…A time to LOVE, and a time to hate…’ Just read Ecclesiastes 3 and you’ll see how he has it all nicely laid out. 

Now here is some info from the scholars on that scripture. ‘3:1-8. As Solomon reflects on all of life, he expresses a beautiful poem of 14 pairs of opposite events that God has a sovereign design behind all events (cf. Rom.8:28). To gather stones (v.5) refers to the process of clearing land for planting or building. To hate (v.8) means to withdraw from intimacy and should not always be taken in an absolute sense (cf. Mal.1:2-3).’  

Yes friends, there’s no real time ever for the true sense of the word hating. It’s not supposed to exist in a Christian’s vocabulary. 

Now let’s look at a couple of other scriptures which deal with time in the life of man, starting with the words of Ethan the Ezrahite from Psalm 89 – God’s sure promises to David. ‘The days of his youth hast thou shortened: thou hast covered him with shame.   Selah.  

How long, Lord? Wilt thou hide thyself for ever? Shall thy wrath burn like fire? Remember how short my time is: wherefore hast thou made all men in vain (for what futility hast thou made all men)? What man is he that liveth and shall not see (experience) death? Shall he deliver his soul from the hand (power) of the grave?’ (Ps.89:44-48) 

Now listen to Moses from Psalm 90 – From everlasting to everlasting thou art God. ‘The days of our years are threescore years and ten (the span of our lives is seventy years); and if by reason of strength they be fourscore (80) years, yet is their strength labour and sorrow (their boast only labour); for it is soon cut off, and we fly away. 

Who knoweth the power of thine anger? Even according to thy fear, so is thy wrath. So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom (gain a heart of wisdom).’ (Ps.90:10-12) 

Yes my fellow believers, we know not how long our time on earth will be, so please let’s use whatever we have wisely nuh, meaning in the pursuit of the things of God and heaven, not those of the world and the evil one. Much LOVE!

…no one knows the time nor the hour…of their earthly demise…

 

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