When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain. He sat down and his disciples gathered around him. Then he spoke and began to teach them:
Fortunate are those who are poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Fortunate are those who mourn, they shall be comforted.
Fortunate are the gentle, they shall possess the land.
Fortunate are those who hunger and thirst for justice, for they shall be satisfied.
Fortunate are the merciful, for they shall find mercy.
Fortunate are those with a pure heart, for they shall see God.
Fortunate are those who work for peace, they shall be called children of God.
Fortunate are those who are persecuted for the cause of justice, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Fortunate are you, when people insult you and persecute you and speak all kinds of evil against you because you are my followers. Be glad and joyful, for a great reward is kept for you in God.
READ: Jesus went up to the mountain and taught the crowd about those who are truly fortunate in the kingdom of heaven. This standard is in contrast to the standard that the world holds.
REFLECT: Many spend their life toiling to achieve something which they think would make them happy. Of course power and authority, fame and fortune do give joy and satisfaction. But to achieve them you have to work hard, give much, sacrifice those that are sometimes dear to you. In the end, are they really worth the price paid? Do they give joy and happiness to last forever? Contrast that with what Jesus offers as the new form of blessedness. They are laughable in the least because they represent the end of losers in this world. They are counter-intuitive. But come to think of it, all those called fortunate by Jesus are those who work and suffer for something that will lead them to God. The meek, sorrowing, lowly and those who work for justice and peace will inevitably find themselves in front of God. That is why they are blessed. God will be their ultimate possession.
RESPOND: Many people or groups work for a better society. They advocate values that are consistent with the gospel. Have I shown my support and participation to their cause? It would be good to stand up once in a while for what I believe and profess.
PRAY: Loving Father, awaken my passion to those that advance the cause of Your kingdom. Let me not waver in my resolve. May I be bold enough to identify myself with Your cause, and may I act accordingly without hesitation. Amen.
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