I always say that things go in
streaks. Everything goes smoothly for a
while, then something comes along and
sabotages those blissful moments of
peace. During those moments, all good
intentions are brushed aside and that little
pitchfork of frustration, worry, and yes,
sometimes even anger raises its not too
Are they, as we are so often assured, just
emotions – human in form and perfectly normal? After all, Jesus
experienced these same emotions as well. Yet, there is
something unsettling about them.
So I wondered about Jesus’
words, Love others as yourself; Bless those who persecute you.
I turned to Matthew 5 – the Beatitudes – all the many blessings
of God right from the mouth of Jesus. Blessed are…the poor in
spirit; those who mourn; the meek; those who thirst for
righteousness; the merciful; the pure in heart; the peacemakers;
the persecuted and reviled (actually a double blessing for this
last group). How could one feel blessed when people hurt you
or when pain seems to surround you?
Then realization struck…
these are not blessings for being good, having good feelings
every moment, they are for living life – the good as well as the
bad moments that catch us by surprise. They are assurances
that God is with us, loves us in all moments, even in our most
frustrating and ugly moments. They are assurances that no
matter what is going on in our hearts, we are still blessed. Why?
Because God loves us; because God never leaves; because
God never causes discomfort or pain but sends the Holy Spirit to
comfort, guide, and encourage. This is the root of these blessings, the joy and peace sprouting from a love that always
blesses and is always present, even when it seems way too
We will, at times, worry or hurt or get angry or be enveloped in
sorrow. Yet, even in these moments, we are overshadowed by
a love that shines more brightly than any cloud that could ever
come over our horizon. Jesus once said, Do not doubt but
believe (John 20:27). And yes, our cry
can even be, "I believe; help my
unbelief” (Mark 9:24).