Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Modern love

I was blessed today by this modern rendering of the Beatitudes from Jesus' Sermon on the Mount:

Blessed are you who are depressed, emotionally fragile, mentally exhausted-the whole creation, everything under God’s jurisdiction, has been given to you to delight in with your maker.

Blessed are you children of divorce, you who lost sons and daughters, fathers and mothers way too early…you who have cried until your eyes were bloodshot and your head throbbing-your comfort has come.

Blessed are you who have been compassionate, kind and gracious while everyone else around you is clamoring for power and money, stepping on you to get it…and you let it happen-God has honored your humility by giving you the world itself as a playground.

Blessed are you that have pushed back the plate, or had the plate taken from you; blessed are you who have doubled-over in ache for God…it is time to feast on His holiness and goodness until you can’t take anymore.

Blessed are you who have given too many extra chances, you who have forgiven the one who cut you the most deeply-only to be treated like hell all over again. Drink deeply of the grace of God, he has taken pleasure at your tenderness.

Blessed are you whose heart has still longed for God, even when you felt like a storm of anger and lust raged all around you-you have clung still to your vision of him. God knows you long for holiness…and his response is to let you see all of his colors and beauty with those war-torn eyes.

Blessed are you who [have] been in the middle of a fight and been smacked and punched, bruised and trampled yourself trying to bring peace into the middle of chaos, God calls you beloved sons and daughters.

Blessed are you who have had the people closest to you make fun of you for following Jesus, you who have been rejected by your own flesh and blood because of your love for God-you too are the recipients of God’s whole elegant creation, to rule and reign with him over it.

Every time you have been insulted, every time you have been tortured, every time you have been lied on and laughed about…it’s reason to break out the streamers and party hats, time to sit down for the best steak and the finest wine, your reward is exponentially greater than your suffering. Your name has been added to a prestigious list of prophets who experienced the same things, and you share in their reward!

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