Blessed Are You NOW

blessedIn a recent article in Living Lutheran magazine, author Tiffany C. Chaney makes an interesting observation about the Beatitudes found in Matthew 5:1-12. She writes,

“The text doesn’t say ‘Blessed are those who used to mourn or those who were poor in spirit or those who made peace before.’ The blessed are in the midst of serving God now; they are deep in the trenches. They are being persecuted and reviled and more, even now. And yet they are blessed” (“Living Saints,” Living Lutheran magazine, November 2017, p. 23).

The present-tense reality of being blessed in the midst of trials really struck home to me. I realize that in the midst of struggles, I often look toward to some future time when blessings will come my way. But the fact of the matter is that blessings come when I am feeling sad, when I can feeling a lack of spirit, when I feel far from peaceful.

The blessing comes when in my grief, God comes to me with comfort, that I might comfort others. Remember 2 Corinthians 1:3-4:

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.

The blessings come when the power of the Holy Spirit enriches my soul with strength. Think of 2 Timothy 1:7:

For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.

The blessings come when the peace that is beyond my comprehension envelops me, as it says in Philippians 4:7:

The peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

So be blessed right now, where you are, not in some far-off utopia. It may not be easy. It may not be pretty. But the blessings will come. Christ has promised us that.

 

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