Lately, I’ve really been struggling. I had to go off one of my psych meds before my second knee replacement surgery and I destabilized. Then I took opioid pain medication that destabilized me even more. I’ve been fighting severe depression and mild psychosis for the last month. It has me worn down and feeling isolated. I don’t know when – or even if – this torment will end, and I’m so discouraged I just want to give up.
So, then I go to church today and hear a sermon on the beatitudes Matthew 5:3-12. It lists a series of states that Jesus calls “blessed” when we often think they are anything but. “Blessed are the poor in spirit, those who mourn, the meek, those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, the merciful, the pure in heart, the peacemakers, those who are persecuted because of righteousness, you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of [Jesus].” Jesus says THESE are the people are blessed, not the wealthy, the successful, the famous, the popular. People who struggle in life but keep trying, keep loving, keep seeking after God, THESE are the blessed.
I love this scripture, but it is so contrary to what I WANT. I want the success the world dangles in front of me, but this is not where my heart needs to be. I also need to remember this is not a future statement. God is not saying we WILL be blessed, He says we ARE blessed. It is these attitudes and actions that He commends not the actions the world says we need to do. So, as hard as it is to wrap my mind around it, I have to go to these beatitudes to evaluate my life not the world. And I need to see my blessings in the present not a wish for the future because these blessings are now: “theirs is the kingdom of heaven, they will be comforted, they will inherit the earth, they will be filled, they will be shown mercy, they will see God, they will be called sons of God, theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven.” Amen!