The Beatitudes – Measuring my Life in the Present Climate

The Beatitudes – Measuring my Life in the Present Climate

Kevin Carlson

Did you catch the story of the person from Adelaide trying to sell his stockpile of 5,400 toilet rolls? Some may call it enterprise but plenty of others would call it something else!

Sitting at the feet of Jesus we too are called out to measure our life in view of entering and belonging in the Kingdom of God (Matthew uses the term, Kingdom of Heaven, meaning the same)

Jesus says, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven.”

Put simply, the ‘poor in spirit’ are not bereft of material goods but rather spiritual poverty as one stands before the living God. It is one whom God convicts. It is one who realizes and acknowledges before God;  “I have nothing I can bring to warrant entry to your Kingdom”. It is another expression of viewing my sinfulness; I have nothing to offer or plead my case, nor buy or earn my way into your Kingdom.

Jesus is not saying anything new but is amplifying what has been before. Eg. – “This poor man called, and the Lord heard him; he saved him out of his troubles.” (Ps 34:6). “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise” (Ps 51:17).

A very good explanation in story form is found in Luke 18:9-14; have a read.

I guess it is easy to call out the behaviors, attitudes, and performances of others and yet fail to view ourselves in the light of hearing Jesus speak his word in relation to his Kingdom and not the world we live in.

Jesus says, “Blessed are the poor in spirit…” God’s blessing upon us is his approval; the rich are still sent away empty (cf Luke 1:53)

             Nothing in my hand I bring,

            Simply to thy cross I cling;

            Naked, come to thee for dress;

            Helpless, look to thee for grace;

            Foul, I to the fountain fly;

            Wash me saviour, or I die. (Rock of Ages)

 

Prayer: Our Father in Heaven, I come to this new day with a thankful heart; for this is the day you have made and a new day of opportunities is spread before me. On this Easter Friday, I remember the cross and Jesus who died on that cross for the sins of the world. So long ago yet this same cross invites me to come, not with money, or good deed stories, but to come as I am, a sinner, devoid of merit except by the blood of Christ and his unmerited grace. You invite me to come and empty myself of all self-righteousness that I may be filled with a righteousness not my own. Fill me anew dear Father in Heaven……..Lord, in these days I now live, help me to take stock of my life; show me your pathway and teach me your ways. In the name of Jesus….Amen

 

Hymn: Rock of Ages – Fountainview Academy: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZmboVILc4rw