What is wrong with the world?

I have arrived at the sad conclusion the the greatest problem in the world today is Christians who have a lot to say about what is wrong with the world and very little to say about what is right with God. We have been hiding the light under a bushel for so long that the world around us has no idea that there is a better, and happier, way to live.

Jesus gave a description of the happy life of a true believer in verses 3 to 12 of Matthew chapter 5, which are often called the beatitudes. The word that is sometimes translated blessed in these verses could just as well be translated as happy, as it is in other places in the New Testament. We should not flippantly label these verses as descriptions of happy attitudes. They must be much more than that; they must be the rock solid reality upon which we live our lives.

Happy are the poor in spirit. This doesn’t mean beating ourselves up and saying “Woe is me.” It means acknowledging that we have come to the end of our own resources and discovered the infinite resources that God provides for us in His kingdom.

Happy are they that mourn. God will reveal Himself to those who lament the frailties of their nature and the uncertainties of life and reveal to them the comforting reality of His enduring love.

Happy are the meek. We can make our lives complicated by questioning everything that comes our way unexpectedly. When we accept these happenings and ask God how to find our way through them, He will reveal to us the fulness of the heritage of the child of God.

Happy are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness. When our longing for holiness is greater than our natural bodily appetites, God will fill our hearts with purity and happiness.

Happy are the merciful. We can only experience true happiness by extending to others the mercies which God has extended to us.

Happy are the pure in heart. Purity in appearance isn’t enough to bring happiness, it must come from deep within the heart, by not entertaining thoughts of envy, bitterness, anger or selfishness.

Happy are the peacemakers. Taking sides in a dispute and feeling that we are right is not happiness. Happiness comes from being able to see the desire for good on each side and to seek a way to reconcile the differences in approach.

Happy are they which are persecuted for righteousness sake. We don’t desire persecution, we must not attempt to provoke it to prove our righteousness. Neither must we attempt to avoid it if holding up the light of God’s truth provokes someone to attempt to stifle this reproach to their life. This has often been the lot of the people of God and we should rejoice and be happy to be in that number.

Rejoice and be exceeding glad; for great is your reward in heaven; for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.

We have grown accustomed to a comfortable life, we even think we are entitled to expect things to continue in a comfortable and easy way. But what if our happiness and the happiness of the rest of the world depends on us being made uncomfortable? “O LORD, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps,” (Jeremiah 10:23).

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