Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. ~ Matthew 5:3
READING: Matthew 5:1-12
The most famous sermon ever preached was Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount. And the opening to His messages was the best introduction ever given – the eight beatitudes. The beatitudes are our Lord’s instructions on how to be truly happy. “Blessed” means happy.
Church planting is a high calling, but our happiness as church planters does not depend upon how quickly our congregations develop or how abundant is the harvest of souls.
The world cannot produce real happiness. No one can buy it, earn it or discover it. Happiness comes from God alone. If we learn the lessons of happiness, our congregations will be filled with happy people, too.
First, Jesus said, “Blessed, truly happy, are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” “Poor” means destitute – like a beggar crouching down with his empty hand extended. Christians are blessed because they start by knowing they are poor in spirit. They are happy because theirs is the kingdom of heaven. They live under the rule of God and depend totally upon His grace.
Coming to God every day, mindful of our spiritual poverty, leads to submission to His agenda, rather than demanding our own. It brings contentment with the life He gives. It leads to adoration of the great God who has loved us and saved us, apart from any works of our own. And it teaches us to be grateful for what we have, rather than resentful of what we don’t.
The Lord told Isaiah, “This is the one to whom I will look: he who is humble and contrite in spirit and trembles at my word” (Isaiah 66:2).
May you be a happy church planter!
Father, Thank You that in my poverty of spirit You have made me rich in Christ! Amen.
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