One of my favorite Monday morning observations goes like this: “The best preparation for Mondays is always Sunday with your church family.”
Rebekah has been preaching on The Beatitudes, and yesterday’s focus was #3: “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.” (Matthew 5:5 – KJV)
- “God blesses those people who are humble,” another translation says, “the earth will belong to them!”
- Or, “Happy are those who claim nothing, for the whole earth will belong to them!”
- Then, – from The Message – “You’re blessed when you’re content with just who you are—no more, no less. That’s the moment you find yourselves proud owners of everything that can’t be bought.”
- And, “Blessed are those who are free of pride; God makes happy those who quietly trust him and do not try to get their own way.”
NEW MEMBERS: Also, during the 9:00 Praise Service, we received three beautiful new families into membership at WFPC.
It occurred to me how critically important this beatitude is when we consider what is at the heart of our focus as a community of faith.
Essentially, we’re saying this: “Join us in our commitment to be like Jesus – ‘humble and lowly of heart’ (Matt 11:29)- to eschew personal power, and to redefine success in terms of serving God and others.”
We live in a culture that values self-promotion; where pop-psychology focuses on the advancement of “me”, the acquisition of power, and the celebration of personal achievement; and where pop-religion is all about health, wealth, and self.
MOTHER TERESA: I’ll borrow this short story from Rebekah’s message:
A reporter followed Mother Teresa around the streets of Calcutta, watching as she literally went into the gutters and the sewage to take dying, diseased people in her arms, and carry them to a place where they could either recover – or die – with dignity and in the presence of love.
“Mother Teresa,'” the reporter said, “I wouldn’t do that for a million dollars.”
Mother Teresa was quiet for a moment; then she spoke softly. “I wouldn’t do this for a million dollars either,” she said.
“Don’t be fooled,” Jesus tells us; “this good news I’m proclaiming is all about giving it up and giving it away. Only then – when you have put personal pride aside, and when you have given all that you are and all you hope to be over into the hands of God – will you be in a position to realize that everything already belongs to you.”
JOIN US! Some invitation to join a church, huh? Join us as we grow in our commitment to follow Jesus, and to serve God as a community of faith. We don’t ask much – only everything; and the benefits of membership can be summed up as the privilege of giving ourselves, our resources, and our gifts back to God.
Meekness is an amazing quality of strength, when we think about it. It’s about allowing God’s kind of strength to flow through us; it’s about serving others unimpeded by our personal pride, our lack of humility, or our need for power and approval.
“The meek will inherit the earth,” Rebekah said. “They won’t conquer it, they won’t purchase it, they won’t take it, they won’t force it into submission; but they will inherit it.”
Welcome to church, where all God wants is everything we are, and all God offers in return is the kind of inheritance we could never imagine!
When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain; and after he sat down, his disciples came to him. Then he began to speak, and taught them, saying:
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
“Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.
“Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.
“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.
“Blessed are the merciful, for they will receive mercy.
“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.
“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.
“Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. – Matthew 5:1-10
Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at https://www.amazon.com/Derek-Maul/e/B001JS9WC4), and there's always something new in the works.
Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor's degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.
Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men's Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.