“Blessed are those whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered.”- Romans 4:7
All too often I hear people talk about or share how “truly blessed they are” due to the objects in their life that make them “happy”. We all have seen the picture of a mother holding her baby with #blessed in the caption. We have all had the conversation with another individual that goes something like this:
Person 1: “Hey! How are you doing?”
Person 2: “I am blessed! My job is great! My bank account isn’t overdrawn! My life is good!”
Person 1: “Oh man, you really answered.”
This is far too familiar. Ok, maybe not the last “person 1” comment, but you know you think it.
Why is it that we instantly turn to the word blessed when we have good things going on? I mean, it might not be a bad choice of a word, but would we still consider ourselves “blessed” if we weren’t doing alright? Would we still use the term to describe the life we are living if it were missing the healthy babies, finances, etc.?
You see, your level of being blessed is not determined by what you have or don’t have. Your level of being blessed is determined by Who you have and to Whom you belong.
Jesus is what determines your blessing. If you claim Jesus, you’re blessed. If you don’t, well, you might be missing out.
If you claim Jesus and He claims you, then your blessing is based on His love and grace, not on your child’s love or your financial peace.
Some might say, “Well, yes, but if we have financial success, wouldn’t that be a sign of blessing?”
I would respond with, “Maybe? What if that financial success goes south tomorrow? Does that mean you fell out of favor with God? What kind of theology is that?”
We serve a God that is eternally loving and gracious. His love and power transcends all walks of life (because He created it) and infiltrates the rich and the poor alike. He even says that He will allow the rain to fall on everyone (Matthew 5:45), so no rain over your head doesn’t make you more blessed, it just means God chose to not get you wet today or He knew you forgot your umbrella and didn’t want you to feel slighted.
It is interesting the transition from Old Testament terms of blessing and New Testament terms of blessing. The New Testament does not discount the blessings of material things by God, but it does show that true blessing comes when we accept the One who created it all.
In James we see the brother of Jesus write, “Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.” (James 1:12). Jesus said in His “Sermon on the mount”: “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” and “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me” (Matthew 5). Suffering for the sake of Jesus seems to be what brings about blessings, at least when it comes to the New Testament.
In the Old Testament, God started blessing in the beginning with Adam and Eve, “God blessed them and said, ‘Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the water in the seas, and let the birds increase on the earth’” (Genesis 1:22). There’s also this account of Abraham, “The Lord has blessed my master abundantly, and he has become wealthy. He has given him sheep and cattle, silver and gold, male and female servants, and camels and donkeys” (Gen. 24:35).
So, there’s plenty of support that God blesses with things, but that was also before He gave His ultimate blessing through His Son.
We may receive blessings from God in material objects, but we cannot allow ourselves to believe that those items are the only sign of blessing.
Please do not believe the lie that if you have not received, then God does not want to or will not bless you. He already has…abundantly!
We have all been blessed through sacrifice. Through true suffering for the sake of grace we have received blessing from our Father.
That is the true blessing of peace, love, and everlasting hope.
Peace and BLESSINGS friends.
QUESTION: How have you seen God’s blessings in your life?