It is the Father’s heart to bless His children. Go no further than Genesis 1:28, “God blessed them; and God said to them, ‘Be fruitful, multiply, fill, subdue, and rule….” Of course Adam’s mess led us into the opposite: curses.
But watch God choose Abram and renew His original intention: “And I will bless you… And so you shall be a blessing… And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed” (Gen. 12:2-3). It is God’s heart to restore the blessings. So why aren’t more people blessed? Everyone wants to be blessed: that’s a no-brainer!
The problem starts with us not knowing what is blessed. Jesus, therefore, comes out of the gate, so to speak, by declaring the attitudes of heart that lead to blessings. These famous 8 declarations immediately tell us that His kingdom is unlike anything in the history of mankind. Unique. Startling. Shocking. And for most, Unbelievable.
What if we were to reference the 8 Blessings as they pertain to our lives? I find this a powerful exercise—one that helps me check my attitudes. Hey, I want these Blessings.
Am I poor in spirit? When I’m hurting do I go to God for comfort? Am I teachable, easy to lead? Am I hungering for my character to be like His? Do I care enough to pay attention to the feelings of others? As I search my heart, are my motives pure? Am I playing the role of peacemaker in my relationships? When I get hurt trying to do what is right, am I rejoicing?
I think these are Jesus’ GPS for the soul.
Everyone wants a blessed life!
I think every person desires a blessed life, but as I look around the odds must not be very good. I’m not saying that people always cast the issue in terms of blessing; they just want life to work. Most seem on a vague undefined search as they wander through life without clarity about where to discover the principles of life.
Viola, the Bible! Take a new look and see it as the Book that explains blessings and curses. The word “blessing/blessed” occurs 466 times, so it’s a good bet that God is offering to align us with attitudes, values, behaviors, and principles that fit with Who He is. These are the things He delights to bless, and those things that do not align with His nature automatically fall into the curse department.
Jesus’ most basic message, summarized in the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5-7, begins with an outline of eight attitudes and actions that are blessed. His kingdom operates according to these eight Beatitudes.
Many people have heard of these Beatitudes, but how many seriously align themselves with them is another thing. Jesus anticipated this when He described a narrow gate as the path to life in contrast with a broad, easier, more popular road. He predicted that few would follow the way of blessings. These will be the salmon swimming upstream, for society doesn’t resonate with Jesus’ teaching.
I recommend memorizing these Blessings. Reflect upon them. Study them, for Jesus is describing the very principles that make life work. He has come to lead us into blessings.
“Christ redeemed us from the curse of the Law, having become a curse for us…in order that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles…” (Gal. 3:13-14).
Blessing is contagious.
God plucked Abram out of a generation that was deeply mired in idolatry with all of its accompanying curses and spoke these gracious words, “I will bless you, and make your name great; And so you shall be a blessing…. And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed” (Gen. 12:2-3).
Paul says in Romans 4 that we are “of the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all.” He was the pioneer of the faith and the blessings that we now enjoy as followers of Christ.
The two-fold calling upon our lives is 1) to carve out these blessings in our own lives by following our Savior, and 2) to share these precious secrets that make life work with others. In other words, the call that originated with Abraham is passed down to us.
Discover the blessings. Spread the blessings.
Jesus no more than outlines the Beatitudes when He immediately takes us into our missionary role as those who change the lives and destinies of the people within our reach. Speaking of those who live in the Eight Principles, Jesus says, “You are the salt of the earth…. You are the light of the world.”
How like the Father, who desires that all His children shine with His favor and become contagious in the world. To be used by God to change lives is such a joy!
Receive. Give. Serve. Love. Help others find their soul GPS!
The Beatitudes mini-book is coming soon!