Daily D – Matthew 5:4
Matthew 5:4 “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.”
Twitter has been full of condemnation the last couple of days. From the Sex Abuse Task Force report to the horrific murders in Uvalde, one person after another has screamed, shouted, declared, and denounced others. This has been the reaction and response of many Christians, including leaders of significant ministries.
In light of what has happened in these events alone, there have been unending complaints and denunciations. It is amazing how much vitriol can be packed in 140 or 280 characters.
Some of these women and men see themselves as prophetic in their declarations. Some see themselves as joining Jesus in pronouncing woes upon those who are the cause of suffering. (See Matthew 23:13-36.)
Any preacher or Sunday School teacher or Twitter theologian who makes such powerful statements in allegiance to Jesus needs to recall how Matthew 23 ends. Verses 37 and 38 sound more tearful than declarative. Jesus mourned and grieved for those whose first concern was themselves and not the truth, goodness, and righteousness of God. Read these verses as you ponder the reports and events of this week.
“Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing. Look, your house is left to you desolate.”
Jesus loves the little children, and so must we.
Jesus loves the abused, and so must we.
What is the most loving and protective thing we can do for the children?
What is the most loving and protective thing we can do for victims of abuse?
How can we join Jesus in bringing comfort, healing, and hope?
Let us mourn for the pain our selfishness inflicts on others.
Let us mourn for not doing enough to prevent such evil.
Let us mourn for the loss of innocence and the loss of life.
Let us mourn how we are quick to condemn but not nearly quick enough to prevent these problems from happening in the first place.
Let our mourning lead us to repentance. Let our mourning lead us to reform. Let our mourning lead us to renewal. Let our mourning lead us to Jesus who loves the little children, who loves the victims, who loves those who mourn.
Let us live in the blessed state of resolution arising from grief and turn it into necessary action.
Our Father, what a horrible week this has been. How could we not grieve at a deep gut level? How could we not see the evil and fall to our knees? Deliver us from evil. Empower us now to do what needs to be done to bring your healing, hope, and reformation to those who have been cruelly abused. Empower us to bear your comfort to those who have lost so much. Empower us to do what is necessary to prevent future loss of this nature. Amen.
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Psalm 139:17, 18 How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. They cannot be numbered! I can’t even count them; they outnumber the grains of sand! And when I wake up, you are still with me!
2 Corinthians 5:1-5 For we know that when this earthly tent we live in is taken down (that is, when we die and leave this earthly body), we will have a house in heaven, an eternal body made for us by God himself and not by human hands. We grow weary in our present bodies, and we long to put on our heavenly bodies like new clothing. For we will put on heavenly bodies; we will not be spirits without bodies. While we live in these earthly bodies, we groan and sigh, but it’s not that we want to die and get rid of these bodies that clothe us. Rather, we want to put on our new bodies so that these dying bodies will be swallowed up by life. God himself has prepared us for this, and as a guarantee he has given us his Holy Spirit.
1 Corinthians 10:13 The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.