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Struggles; Are They Troubles or Blessings?

I’ll admit sometimes my patience wanes, and it feels like God has forgotten me! Are you struggling? Do you feel like you’re missing God’s blessings? Today, while reading in Matthew chapter 5, I realized there are characteristics defining “The Blessed.” I will be blessed if I mourn and am meek; if I desire Godly principles and extend mercy; if my heart is pure and not deceitful and I don’t promote strife but am a peacemaker. So, I thought about how these things are reflected in my life.

Blessed am I if I mourn. It’s okay for my heart to break because it means I have loved. If I grieve over a death or if I mourn as a result of sin, either in my own life or the lives of those around me, then, I can receive God’s blessing.

It’s not always easy to be meek, but it is a fruit of the Spirit. The things I say and do have power to affect others. If someone cuts in front of me in line, I don’t want to do what my pre-k grandson did, which was stab him with his pencil! Instead, I should extend to them the grace of being first. Sometimes, I am so caught up in my own problems, I forget to consider others before myself. Everyone has problems. I’m not the only one.

What is it that motivates me? What do I hunger for? Is it my own selfish desires, like an eagerness to advance my finances? Or to have things that make me feel good? Is it me, me, I, I? “Thou shalt have no other gods before me,” says the Word of Truth. I should hunger after righteousness in my own life and in the world around me. God and His will must be first above my other thoughts or desires.

I believe I am merciful when it really counts. But, am I? When someone does me wrong, am I willing to forgive and extend mercy? Maybe that person hasn’t admitted they’re wrong. Should I forgive anyway? Absolutely! I hope everyone that I have wronged has forgiven me anyway. All of humanity is fraught with frailties. We all make mistakes, sometimes while thinking we’re doing the right thing! Remember, Jesus prayed for those who crucified Him.

Matters of the heart are indeed complex. What exactly is meant by a pure heart? I believe it has to do with following Jesus, a daily walk of endeavoring to follow His teachings. But this is where it gets tricky, in walking that narrow path, I can become prideful, almost pharisaical. If I’m not careful, my heart becomes deceitful as I fool myself and those around me. May my heart always reflect truth.

I have known people who love to stir up strife. If I am a peacemaker, I will not be among them. I will be the one who infuses light, love, and mercy into such situations.

Blessings come in all shapes and sizes. Some are easily recognizable and others are disguised. For example: Michelle Qureshi, the widow of the late Nabeel Qureshi author of Seeking Allah; Finding Jesus, shared a post about placing their house on the market and not having many showings. Instead of seeing that as discouraging, she refers to it as “a personal gift from an all-knowing God” even though she has already purchased a smaller home!

Last and not least, if I am mocked or suffer because I love the Savior, then I am blessed beyond measure. I believe in the Lord Jesus Christ. He is my Savior. I don’t believe I’ve been persecuted for His name sake, but if that time comes, I pray that I will stay the course for great will be my reward.

May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.

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