Blessed to Death
It's interesting that if you look at the Beatitudes—Jesus' definitive teaching on who is blessed—he never mentions people who are happy, have a high status or a vast amount of wealth. He doesn't mention those who are privileged by birth or have just plain good luck. In fact, he basically mentions the opposite of what our current culture would describe as blessed. Rather, Jesus says it's the downtrodden, those who are in mourning, those who are meek, merciful and bring peace to troubled situations. It's those who are persecuted by others.
Yet in our current American religious culture, we've bastardized the word. I almost always hear it in regards to having privilege, status, wealth and possessions. Being "blessed" with a promotion a high salary, a second home, a luxury car, etc. Kinda sucks for people who don't have a high status or wealth or a great job (or any job at all), right? In fact, this wealth definition of "blessed" indicts everyone who may not have those things.
So who is blessed? Again, I look to Jesus. He said its downtrodden and those who are in mourning. It's those who are meek, merciful and bring peace to troubled situations. It's those who are persecuted by others.
You might even say that "blessed" looks like being tortured, ridiculed and crucified while loving those who are doing those things to you. When those with power, wealth and privilege crucified a meek, poor Jewish Rabbi, it was actually Jesus who was bursting at the seams with blessing, bringing life into a dark world.
It's time to crucify the self-centered, materialistic, wealth-based idea of "blessed." Who's with me?
All 4 pieces in this series are available to purchase on my print shop.