those who mourn, for they shall be comforted
Christmas is wonderful.
Some say that Christ was not born on December 25th, but
whether the date is precisely correct or not is irrelevant
We should simply be grateful that a day is set aside in
many countries to celebrate the arrival of our Lord into
this world. Without His advent, we would have no remedy
for sin, and it is probable that without Him, our race would
already have been destroyed by a holy God, long ago.
You and I would not have even had a chance for survival,
for we never would have been.
God is indeed
holy and He expects, even demands that we will be like
Him. You can see this in places like Leviticus 11:44,
where God reveals I am
holy and He insists that YOU
shall be holy, too. Holy
in that verse is from a Hebrew word that speaks of moral
purity. He is GOOD in all His ways and we are not,
though He reasonably EXPECTS goodness to be in us; which
should be normal for this world.
He has provided
a way for us to be restored to His image, however, and the
Name of this Way is Jesus Christ. In addition to
being holy, God is also
love (1 John 4:8).
It was in love that God created us; a love so great that
it is beyond our ability to understand. This is a
love that lets us be free to choose Him or to go our own
way, for our love in return must be by choice, not by compulsion.
We choose our own destiny and we are free to love (or not
love) the Lord.
God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we
were still sinners, Christ died for us (Romans 5:8).
While we did not like Him, or want Him, or have any real
love for Him, He (Jesus Christ) died for you and me.
He became our Remedy, much like an effective medicine will
restore the person who receives it. He heals our unbelief,
our sin, replacing it with the HEALTH of faith, love and
holiness. That is why His advent (and thirty years
later, His cross) is so wonderful. He has given all
His love to you and me.
offers so much, is difficult for many. A loved one,
often more than one, has passed from our lives. You
may feel alone, abandoned by those you have needed, and
you mourn this loss. There are many who mourn, and
indeed, this ache within us is universal to humanity.
Yet Jesus addresses your loss in unexpected ways.
He says, as in our Scripture verse for today, Blessed
are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted
(Matthew 5:4). He IS our Comforter.
is a form of the Greek word Makarizo,
derived from Mak, which
meant large or lengthy. By the time of the New Testament,
Makarizo had come to
mean happy or blessed, for He takes
us out of that which is small, dark, and narrow, and delivers
us into an ample place, full of His light. We are
given Makarizo Happiness.
We are not forced; but are simply offered Christ, who is
holidays are difficult for many, and that is because we
often do not understand the life He gives to us. We
are given Him, and also one another! Husbands are
given wives, and wives their husbands. We are awarded
children, who are to be protected and loved by their parents.
Such relationships are often misused, but Gods intention
is that we will have love! Families are formed,
but then are gone, as the aging process and other factors,
takes a toll. All seems lost.
Some who are religious
(and others who are not) insist that we should not grieve
those who are lost to us. Brenda Wilbee, in a recent
spoke of the condemnation
she received in relation to losses in her life. She
my fifteen-year-old brother snapped his neck and was paralyzed,
I was told to stop grieving; this was Gods will.
When my grandmother died, I was told to stop weeping; she
was in heaven. When I broke into tears while telling
of my sisters death several years earlier, I was told to
get over it; let the dead bury the dead. It isnt
Christian to lament. Lamentation reveals a bankrupt
faith, she was told.
to her was terrible, but she looked to the Lord and His
written Word, and then said this: I
spent the year getting reacquainted with David, Jeremiah,
Isaiah and Job men who wept and wailed, who dressed in
sackcloth and sat in ashes and denied themselves food whenever
they found themselves dismayed by turmoil, torn apart by
grief or terrified out of their minds. Even Jesus
wept. Reading on, I realized that their tears were
not a sign of a bankrupt faith, but the prism through which
they saw clearly. Jeremiah saw his mandate, Job his
confusion, David his fear, Jesus His sorrow. And in
seeing, they found comfort.
Jesus came that
we might become fully ALIVE. We are given LIFE, abundant
life, in Him. If you are happy, then live your happiness
to the fullest, sharing it with others. If you are
drawn to weep, do so, and then, also take your sorrow to
Him, doing the same with your happiness express everything
to Him. He is the one who has given you life, feelings,
intellect, the capacity for love and grief, and the right
to become a Son of God (you are
all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus
You have a right
to mourn that which is gone. Those who have lost and
wept, are not bankrupt
at all We are merely human. His encouragement is
this: Blessed are those who mourn,
for they shall be COMFORTED (Matthew 5:4).
We are not so much to be comforted by people, though we
may indeed offer some encouragement to one another.
But real comfort is from the Son of God, who gave up everything
on your behalf, and from His Holy Spirit, who is given to
those who trust in Him. When God allows loss, He always
gives more in return.
brother became paralyzed, her grandmother and sister were
dead, and she experienced the betrayal of those who were
assigned by God to comfort her. But she received much
When she was able, she went to the Lord and His Word,
and was given Understanding! Like Jeremiah and the
rest, she was COMFORTED by God. You will love, laugh
and weep, all in the comfort, love and holiness of our Lord.
Father, I bring
to You, my laughter and my sadness. Thank You that
in mourning I shall be comforted. Thank You for sending
Your Son. I love You. In Jesus Name. Amen.
Ron Beckham, Pastor
Friday Study Ministries
PO Box 92131
Long Beach, CA 90809-2131
we were yet sinners, Christ died for us"