Blessings are God’s idea. They are throughout the Bible. Birthrights were blessings. The angel called Mary blessed. Children sought their father’s blessing. Scripture says that God blessed Abraham and Abraham would bless others. God would bless those who bless Abraham. Blessed is the One who comes in the name of the Lord! Blessed are the poor in spirit, the meek, the pure in heart, the persecuted, the insulted.

A blessing means you receive something. It’s for you. It’s not a maybe. It’s there. It becomes part of your history, a good part, and can often be shared. It is a common pick-me-up, a silver lining.

Matthew 5:1-12 is a Bible passage we commonly refer to as the Beatitudes. The Beatitudes are blessings and were taught by Jesus to a large crowd. Not all the blessings he taught were packaged in fun. Some came wrapped in vulnerable states of poverty, mourning, hunger, and persecution. Others were from a position of power, like showing mercy or working for peace. But all of them have an outcome that God determines as good.

When I spent time reflecting on these Beatitude blessings I began to think of our global partners and how these blessings might look from their perspective, personally or in the environment where they serve God. Over the next few months I will share my reflections on this famous teaching from Jesus and seek to put them in a context that will help us understand our global partners better while also applying the learnings to ourselves here at home.

“Blessed are the poor in spirit.” (Matthew 5:3a, NIV) Such a challenging phrase – poor in spirit. What kind of poverty is this? I’ll share some thoughts next time.

Til next week,