Blessed to be a Blessing

Josh WannerDevotions

This coming Sunday in worship, we will begin a 4 week worship series called “Blessed to be a Blessing.” The series focuses on exactly what it says – we as the people of God have been so immensely blessed by God IN ORDER THAT we might then be a blessing to others.  Throughout the next 4 weeks, we will take a look at the Power, Purpose, Pledge and Practice of God’s blessings.

This Sunday specifically, we will ponder the power of God’s Blessings by taking a look at the famous “Blessed are you” statements from Jesus’ sermon on the mount in Matthew Chapter 5 (often called “the beatitudes”).

“Too Blessed to be Stressed” Perhaps you have heard the phrase, or seen it posted as you scroll through your facebook feed  Maybe you have even seen this encouragement in someone’s home, or have a sign with the inscription yourself.  It is a nice reminder that we truly do have many gifts from God, and that we should not be so concerned about the “little things.” 

However, as we ponder how we are “too blessed to be stressed” I think sometimes our tendency is to focus solely on the material blessings that we have been given – and indeed many of us have been given them in abundance.  We have large, comfortable, temperature controlled homes with space to eat, relax, and play. We are able to communicate with nearly anyone in the world.  We take nice vacations. Rarely if ever do most of us wonder whether or not we will be able to afford the next meal.  We have family, and friends, toys and trinkets, and entire wardrobes for each season of the year.

These are blessings from God indeed.  But God’s primary way of blessing us is not by giving us things that make us happy.  Instead, Jesus says that those with little to nothing are the most “blessed.” He says Blessed are the Poor in Spirit, those who mourn, those who are humble, those who desire what is good, those who are merciful, those who are pure in heart, those who make peace, and finally, even those who are persecuted.

Having a comfortable and happy life with many of our wants satisfied  is a good thing, but it is not the primary way God blesses us.  His blessings are in the gifts of the Holy Spirit, namely forgiveness, life, and salvation, as a free gift guaranteed to us through the work of Christ Jesus.   Someone who “has it all” but doesn’t have Jesus is not blessed no matter how much wealth, fame, prestige, or good relationships they have.  On the other hand, someone who has nothing at all and yet calls upon the name of Jesus, that person already has everything!  They have life forever in Jesus.

Even when I am stressed, still then I am blessed.

Prayer: Lord God, may the worries and cares of this life not overtake me.  Make me grateful not only for material things, but even more for the blessings of life and salvation that you have accomplished for me through the work of Jesus. Amen.