What does it mean to be blessed? Too many times we think that blessed means God giving us more than we need, gives us what we want and shows favor to us as believers. In His Kingdom reality, being blessed is fundamentally growing in God’s character. God is giving, so we give. God is merciful, so believers show mercy in their walk humbly knowing that God alone is the ultimate giver of mercy. God is love. Because of his love in us we love. God is generous and full of grace, so we pray to be full of grace and generosity with honors. God is patient with us so we are patient with others who are learning His character. God is gentle with us as we learn and grow, so we are gentle with others learning and growing with us.
How do we know this? Jesus.
Jesus came to earth on a mission to seek and to save the lost of whom there were many. While on earth He also taught who God is and how we should live in God’s ways. He was very explicit, giving clarity to his new followers who want to be like Jesus in every way. This is what He told them about being “blessed”.
Matthew 5, The Message
1-2 When Jesus saw his ministry drawing huge crowds, he climbed a hillside. Those who were apprenticed to him, the committed, climbed with him. Arriving at a quiet place, he sat down and taught his climbing companions. This is what he said:
3 “You’re blessed when you’re at the end of your rope. With less of you there is more of God and his rule.
4 “You’re blessed when you feel you’ve lost what is most dear to you. Only then can you be embraced by the One most dear to you.
5 “You’re blessed when you’re content with just who you are—no more, no less. That’s the moment you find yourselves proud owners of everything that can’t be bought.
6 “You’re blessed when you’ve worked up a good appetite for God. He’s food and drink in the best meal you’ll ever eat.
7 “You’re blessed when you care. At the moment of being ‘care-full,’ you find yourselves cared for.
8 “You’re blessed when you get your inside world—your mind and heart—put right. Then you can see God in the outside world.
9 “You’re blessed when you can show people how to cooperate instead of compete or fight. That’s when you discover who you really are, and your place in God’s family.
10 “You’re blessed when your commitment to God provokes persecution. The persecution drives you even deeper into God’s kingdom.
11-12 “Not only that—count yourselves blessed every time people put you down or throw you out or speak lies about you to discredit me. What it means is that the truth is too close for comfort and they are uncomfortable. You can be glad when that happens—give a cheer, even!—for though they don’t like it, I do! And all heaven applauds. And know that you are in good company. My prophets and witnesses have always gotten into this kind of trouble.
Wow, right? We are blessed when our lifestyle is consistent with what we say we believe and matches the way God has clearly shown us to live. Maturity in growing Godly character comes when we do what God wants without thinking about how it looks to mankind, what we can get from doing right, or seeking recognition or a “good feeling” or “vibe”. We live this way because we are fully committed to God. Nothing held back.
Our Psalmist sings, “Blessed man, blessed woman, who fear God and cherish and relish his commandments…”. To be blessed is to keep growing in His character and love. THIS is being blessed. Being blessed and honored by God is to consistently mature in the unforced flow and rhythm of God’s love and grace. When we do, we ARE blessed to be a blessing back to God and others.
“An honored life. A beautiful life!” –A blessed life.
Worship and Wisdom, Psalms and Proverbs
Psalm 112, The Message
Blessed man, blessed woman, who fear God,
Who cherish and relish his commandments,
Their children robust on the earth,
And the homes of the upright—how blessed!
Their houses brim with wealth
And a generosity that never runs dry.
Sunrise breaks through the darkness for good people—
God’s grace and mercy and justice!
The good person is generous and lends lavishly;
No shuffling or stumbling around for this one,
But a sterling and solid and lasting reputation.
Unfazed by rumor and gossip,
Heart ready, trusting in God,
Spirit firm, unperturbed,
Ever blessed, relaxed among enemies,
They lavish gifts on the poor—
A generosity that goes on, and on, and on.
An honored life! A beautiful life!
Someone wicked takes one look and rages,
Blusters away but ends up speechless.
There’s nothing to the dreams of the wicked. Nothing.
TRUTH: Believers are blessed when they walk with God “Unfazed by rumor and gossip, Heart ready, trusting in God, Spirit firm, unperturbed, Ever blessed, relaxed among enemies…Yes, and Amen!
Proverb 30:7-9, The Message
And then he prayed, “God, I’m asking for two things
before I die; don’t refuse me—
Banish lies from my lips
and liars from my presence.
Give me enough food to live on,
neither too much nor too little.
If I’m too full, I might get independent,
saying, ‘God? Who needs him?’
If I’m poor, I might steal
and dishonor the name of my God.”
WISDOM: Pray to grow in Godly character.
You are blessing me but I still have a long way to go in growing and mature your character traits. Make me more like you from the inside out and less like my natural self. I want to be more like Jesus taught is to be. Thank you for working out your salvation in me.
In Jesus Name, Amen