The Beatitudes – “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.”

The Beatitudes – “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.”

Kevin Carlson

So many weeks have passed of watching and listening to the Media reporting daily of our world in mourning. Loss of life, unemployment, economic woes beyond what most of us have ever experienced nor witnessed. Comfort does come through the many good news stories that push through the gloom and show kindness, inventiveness and even humour.

This second Beatitude is about Mourning; and a personal mourning and grief which no one entering God’s Kingdom can circumvent nor avoid. But it comes as a blessing!
“Blessed are those who mourn…” are those who mourn their own “Poverty of spirit”.
Poverty of spirit is not a creed to recite or for one to be desensitized from feeling the weight of personal effect and consequence of one’s sinfulness. These first two Beatitudes strike the essence of the true self when confronted by the Living God (our creator); no longer in self-sufficiency but in need of a Saviour to escape the mess. Such mourning led the apostle Paul to express in such language, “What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death?” – Romans 7:24

To remain in such a state would mean hopelessness. But there is good news. Just as those in Poverty of spirit enter the Kingdom of God, so the mourners of such poverty will be comforted. Paul could thus answer his own question with assurance and HOPE, “….who can rescue me? Thanks be to God- through Jesus Christ the Lord.”

The comfort offered in this second Beatitude is not a “Now , now, don’t be too harsh on yourself….”; but rather, “Yes, weep over your sin (Old Testament times there was Sackcloth and ashes) but be strengthened, be fortified in your honesty and integrity, for Christ has redeemed you and forgives you through the cross.” Please reflect on the readings from David of old: Psalm 32:3-5 & Psalm 51.

When we learn to weep and grieve our own shortcomings we are placed in a position to weep and grieve for a world in pain and a world separated from Christ.

Such a sober reflection today yet it is God’s pathway into his Kingdom; his blessing will never disappoint. How good is for one to “Get things of their chest”. How good can it be then to be in that place where God says, “Blessed are you……” How pertinent it is then to heed Paul’s admonition each time we share in Communion, “….a person ought to examine themselves…” – 1 Corinthians 11:28  May God bless you as you sit at the feet of Jesus this morning.

Hymn

Love Lifted Me https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YgZVbiZlYr0

“I was sinking deep in sin, far from the peaceful shore; very deeply stained within, sinking to rise no more; but the master of the sea heard my despairing cry, from the waters lifted me, now safe am I. Love lifted me”

Prayer

Our gracious Father in heaven, whose presence is ever promised to be with us on earth, we rise up to say thank you Lord for giving us this day, another brand new day. We thank you for your spoken word and pray beyond the printed pages your Holy Spirit would bring fresh understanding and insight. You have promised to all who would seek they will find and to all who believe will never be disappointed.

– Lord in these times of need beyond our control and to those in much more dire circumstances than our own we remember them, unknown by name, but men, women and children, made in your image, and loved by you in the same manner that you love us.

– We pray for the Tumaini School children and for Rose and her staff. For such basics as food and medical supplies; for safety and protection. May we find a generous spirit towards those in such needs which we may find room to supply.

– As we now meet this day, watch over us, and guide our speech and activities that we may be a blessing unto others. In Jesus name… AMEN