Which Beatitude Are You?

We don’t hear The Beatitudes (Matthew 5) very frequently in our normal church service, but they have come up quite often in the Morning Prayer podcast that I’ve been listening to for the past few months.

(source)

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 be shown mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers,
   for they will be called sons of God.
Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness,
   for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

After hearing them a few times, I started wondering which blessed category I might even hope to fall under?    

I am not “poor in spirit” or “meek,” and I cannot say honestly that I “hunger and thirst” for righteousness. I have too many unkind thoughts to be “pure in heart” and I’m not always a peacemaker. Despite the promised blessing, I am grateful that I am not persecuted for any of my beliefs. When I feel mournful, I know that God is comforting me, but I am not living in a state of grief.

That leaves “merciful,” which I think fits me pretty well, as long as I am being judged by imperfect, human standards. I am quick to forgive and try to put myself in the other person’s shoes–or at least look at the situation from their perspective–before I pass judgement. I believe that some wrongs warrant consequences, but I am more interested in rehabilitation than retribution. I may not always “turn the other cheek,” but usually I will give you another chance.

The promise of being “shown mercy,” is meaningful to me. While I don’t believe that God holds every transgression against us–or that Saint Peter guards the gates of heaven with a long list of our sins–I can’t rule out the possibility that someday I may have to account for “what I have done, and what I have left undone.” If that happens, I will be pleading for God’s mercy, knowing that I don’t deserve it, but counting on His infinite love and grace to prevail!

Have you given much thought to The Beatitudes?

Which category might fit you?

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9 Responses to Which Beatitude Are You?

  1. Maite says:

    Great post! I also agree that as evil as he was, there is something not right with celebrating death.

    • Coco says:

      The timing of this post was interesting. Of course, I had no idea when I wrote it!

      My comments on rehabilitation vs. retribution were on a more personal, day-to-day, run-of-the-mill level. I understand that hardened criminals, oprressive dictators and international terrorists who have no remorse may be beyond rehabilitation. I'm still not comfortable with retribution as a goal, but realize that there are some people for whom death probably is the only way to stop them from their truly evil ways.

      I hope the world is a safer place now, but I'm not confident in that either. Maybe that's another reason why I'm not "celebrating" this turn of events.

  2. Miz says:

    I hadnt
    I shall
    I love your posts as even though we are not the same faith—you start me thinking.
    this is a perfect was to launch my week.

  3. It is beautiful… and I too have to think where I "might" fit in… Hmmm – I'm really not sure – BUT – I'm sure there are other ways to be blessed? It makes me think of the Prayer of St Assissi (?) (forgive my lack of religious training) – Pray to comfort, rather than be comforted…. So lovely – TY Coco!

    • Coco says:

      Ah, that probbably deserves its own post. Here it is, thanks to Google: Prayer of Saint Francis of Assisi

      Lord, make me an instrument of your peace. Where there is hatred, let me sow love; where there is injury,pardon; where there is doubt, faith; where there is despair, hope; where there is darkness, light; and where there is sadness, joy.

      O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console; to be understood as to understand; to be loved as to love. For it is in giving that we receive; it is in pardoning that we are pardoned; and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Amen

      • YAY!!!!!! You are fast – and alas – I totally had it wrong – but it's the "sentiment" I guess. I know that I am forgiven – isn't that the lovely thing about this?

        There have been many, many times in my life where this has brought me great peace.

        Thank you again!

  4. Yum Yucky says:

    Welp, I can't really say which one I am. I need to think on it some more! But I do have a heart for those who mourn, especially little – when they mourn because they've been wronged in some way (physically, verbally, mentally) – whatever it might be. I find myself praying with a heavy heart for children I don't even know.

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