Our idea of blessed is all backward when define it by things going our way or having beautiful things. But this is how we define it most often. We are blessed when we have food for a nice meal; we are blessed when our child gets into that program, we are blessed when we get that promotion, we are blessed when we move into that new house with the white picket fence.
Jesus says otherwise. Blessed is not what you physically have possession of, it is when you realize you have nothing of any value at all; when you understand God is what you need.
When we have resources, we may ask God to fill in some gaps, but we still try to take care of as much as we can on our own. We don’t tap into the full power of God.
When we have food, we may feast on the bread of life, but only a little because we are quite full with what we already have. We miss out on the fullness of God.
When we are content or satisfied, we may ask God for those new desires, but we aren’t desperate for them. We are pretty okay. We miss out on the truly abundant life God has in store for us.
When people admire us and speak well of us, we think we are on the right track. We crave more from people and truth becomes blurry. We may be leaning too far into things of the world over things of God.
In story after story and teaching after teaching, Jesus tries to get us to see this truth, but we continue to live according to the world’s definition of blessed. We may get a little of God, but only what fits in the holes left behind by our own filling. Do we really know Him?
I don’t want to be so full of earthly things that I miss even one ounce of what God wants to fill. But at the same time, I don’t know how to let these things go. I think they are so entrenched in our culture and my mindset, I can’t easily shake it.
So how do we get to a place of true blessing with God as the filler of all of our holes? I think this question is why Jesus launches into His next teaching.
Jesus tells us to love. Yes, we love those who love us, that is easy. But Jesus says to love our enemies. And love is an action, not a feeling. Love does stuff. We do good to those who hate us. We bless those who curse us. We pray for those who abuse us. These are HARD words to hear, much less do.
Loving doesn’t mean condoning, and it doesn’t mean passivity, but it does mean responding differently. It is stepping outside of our entitlement mindset that makes things all about us, and moving into reliance on God…His justice, His mercy, His grace. Because when we do these humanly impossible things, it isn’t us doing them. It isn’t our natural inclination. It is all the power of God in us. We have to tap into Him to be able to do these things, and we can do these things until we feel these things.
It is about loosening the grip on the things we strive so hard for and cling so tightly to. And in that loosened grip – that poverty, hunger, emptying – we are filled even more with God. Oh boy, how hard it is to make that leap. Honestly, I haven’t figured it out. But I want to.
Oh, God, change my want to. Help me want Your definition of blessing more than I want my definition of blessing. And in the meantime, help me to LOVE as You love. Help me to see people and my surroundings through Your eyes, not my own. Help me to be the person You see when You look at me. Help me to trust You enough to do what You say, even when I don’t yet feel it.
All 1 1 Corinthians 1 Peter 1 Thessalonians 1 Timothy 2 & 3 John 2 Corinthians 2 Peter 2 Thessalonians 2 Timothy Acts Colossians Ephesians Galatians Hebrews Info James John Jude Luke Mark Matthew Philemon Philippians Revelation Romans TItus