What do you think of as the “blessed” life? Do you picture the American Dream… a large house, new clothes, a nice suburban family life? Or is it a satisfied ambition, fulfilled talents and dreams, good health? Is it a life with few regrets? A feeling of happiness?
What is the Blessed Life?
How great the contrast between the definitions humans beings apply to the word ‘blessed’ and the ones of God’s choosing! Most of us agree with Job’s friends, and few believe that mourning in life is the sign of a blessing. I haven’t. Not even when I read those words, today, in the beatitudes listed in Matthew. I still do not view mourning as a blessing, or trials as a joy … the way James exhorts in James 1:1-3. I have to wrestle, struggling to twist my mind into a way of considering things that is completely foreign.
There is little in church messages to help me to conform to God’s view on this. Instead, I condemn myself, and am supported in the opinion that every trouble in my life is my fault and evidence of how displeased God is. We are that saturated with a view of blessing so contrary to one who lives as resident of God’s Kingdom.
Jesus promised us abundant life, but we have interpreted that to mean that we are materially wealthy and upwardly mobile in our society. We forget that He plainly said, “one’s life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses”. It is a matter of how we measure blessing.
How do you measure blessing?
It also isn’t a matter of whether men speak well of you.
Or how popular you are in your sphere… or elevated in your career … or even what influence you hold. Yet, isn’t that what we call living a blessed life?
How does God measure the blessings of a blessed life?
Many of the measurements are acquired character. Some are the patient trust and waiting upon God for outcomes in our situations. All are, one way or another, tied to how we relate properly to our Maker. Not once or twice in a lifetime, but everyday. If we seek God, we will find the blessed life… not always smooth and trouble-free, but with a happy ending.