DayBreaks for 9/30/16 – Jesus’ Definition of Blessing
From the DayBreaks archive, 2006:
First of all, let me say, “I’m guilty.” “Guilty of what?” you might ask. Well, I’m guilty of saying to folks from time to time: “Blessings to you,” or “God bless you,” or “May God shed his blessings on you.” No, those aren’t bad things to say, but sometimes I feel as if they’re rather hollow – just a phrase that we repeat mechanically without any depth of soul to it. For example, when someone sneezes and we say, “God bless you!”, we really don’t mean that in the way those words should be spoken and understood.
When you say “Bless you” to someone, or ask for God’s blessings, what are you thinking of? Most of the time we equate blessing from God with having “things”: good health, a home, working cars, hot water, food on the table and clothes in the closet, a decent bank account and a 401k that we hope will see us through our retirement years. Are those things bad? No, not necessarily. But what Americans would consider blessings from God and what the third word Christian would consider blessing are two radically different things.
From PreachingToday.com, Brian Larson, 9/18/06, made an excellent point that I’d never really thought about or considered. Let me share it with you: “Jesus made a number of general statements about what kind of people are blessed, but how often did he tell someone directly that he or she was blessed? I searched my memory and then did another search with BibleWorks (far more reliable) and came up with only two occasions. Once Jesus told Peter he was blessed, and elsewhere he told the group of his disciples they were blessed, and on both occasions their blessedness consisted in God giving them the ability to understand the truth: He turned to his disciples and said privately, ‘Blessed are the eyes that see what you see. For I tell you that many prophets and kings wanted to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it‘” (Luke 10:23-24; for Peter see Matthew 16:17).
“With Jesus now in glory, this blessedness applies in large measure now to those who have the Word of God and understand it. I don’t take this for granted. Sometimes I pray, Thank you, Lord, that I was given the Bible. Thank you for giving me understanding into its meaning. Thank you for those who have taught me the Scriptures. Thank you for illumining my mind through the Holy Spirit so that I know and believe your Word. Thank you for giving me a love of your Word.”
This is truly a different twist on understanding what constitutes blessedness from Jesus’ point of view. But it makes sense, doesn’t it? What is the greater blessing: to have a house and full refrigerator, or new car and boat, or to see and understand the truth that all these things are passing away and that there are much more important matters that demand our attention? Ah – there is the true blessedness, to see this world as transitory and not to get too much in love with it.
PRAYER: I fear, Lord, that my vision of blessedness needs to be re-aligned. Thank you for the Light of the World who was also the truth, the way and the life, that shows us what is true and right and real. Help us to live like those who have seen the light and to live in it so we can be freed from the things this world uses to tempt us. Please continue to give us more light as we walk this pathway with you. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Copyright 2016 by Galen C. Dalrymple. All rights reserved.