Monday, March 3, 2008

Understanding Jesus, installment 2

Blessed are those who mourn...

I know that when we mourn and grieve, the Holy Spirit comforts us. But I also know that we are not supposed to wallow in mourning (after the loss of a loved one, for example) because those who love Jesus get to be with Him. For the past couple days I have been mulling this concept about in my head...why then, does Jesus seem to be encouraging us to mourn? Yesterday in Church we sang a song with the words, "Break my heart for what breaks Yours." I tend to think that the blessing (in this case, comfort) is given when we mourn for those things that Jesus mourns for: lost souls, broken relationships, starving children, aborted babies, people full of bitterness and hatred.

Blessed are the meek...

Isn't Jesus the funniest guy? Like really, He just keeps telling us to be different! Our world gives honor to the strong, powerful, successful...Jesus tells us to be meek! In my mind, this word meek is equated with 'wimpy.' Not just physically weak, but in personality too. You know, that person who stands and lets another berate her - tear a strip out of her - and simply looks at the floor and takes it, a doormat. I had to dig a bit to see if Jesus was really asking me to be a doormat.

The concordance in my Bible defines meek as 'humble before God.' Humble is a word I understand a bit better. To be humble is to not take all the glory for yourself, even if you deserve it. To be humble is to be truly repentant when you do something wrong. To be humble is to strive to do good for the sake of doing good, rather than seeking recognition.

Proverbs 11:2 says with humility comes wisdom. Proverbs 3:34 tells us that [He] gives grace to the humble. Psalm 18:27 tells us that He save[s] the humble. Don't we all desire wisdom? Don't we want, no need, grace (forgiveness)? Is there anyone who doesn't want to be saved, to be rescued? To experience these blessings here on earth, all we need to do is put Jesus first and ourselves last. We don't need to be doormats, weak and pathetic. In fact, we need to be strong enough to turn praise and glory away from ourselves and lift it up to God, who truly deserves it.

Phew, God doesn't ask much of us, does He (LOL)?! These heart attitudes, these ways to be, they can sound so simple on the first reading, but with a little exploration I am realizing that I require a total attitude overhaul...

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