Blessed Are Those Who Mourn

We’ve been exploring what it means to be part of the Kingdom of Heaven on earth, starting with Jesus’ descriptions of its citizens, including those who are “poor in spirit.” He goes on to say:

“Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.”

This one hits close to home for the many who have faced some kind of loss. Perhaps it is loss of a loved one, which we usually associate with mourning. But there are many other more subtle losses: moving can result in loss of friends, loss of a home, loss of a job, loss of security, loss of a set of norms. Illnesses can include loss of certain capabilities, loss of independence, loss of freedom. Any significant form of change goes hand-in-hand with losses, and many times we don’t allow ourselves time to mourn.

For me, the significance of loss and comfort became salient when my family (and the dear friends working with us) were forced to leave the country that was home after four years living in Central Asia. I went through the stages of grief, the questioning of why God allowed it to happen, the anger, the sadness, and the times of feeling alone and out of place. But that summer I encountered the significance of comfort. God showed me that going through that experience would allow me to offer comfort and support to others who suffered similar pain. Paul wrote:

“Praise be to the the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God” (2nd Corinthians 1: 3-4).

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It is during times of mourning that the pain of living in a sinful world collides with the opportunity to experience God’s perfect love at a deeper level. When God hears us, his people, crying out in the midst of loss and pain, he is present. He too lost his Son, but also knows the outcome, just as he knew of Christ’s resurrection from the grave to conquer death itself.

Ultimately heaven will be a place where no more tears are shed, but while on earth it is the tears that are often the salt of the earth; it is in the times of darkness that God’s light shines most brightly, and it is because of pain that his healing can be received. And just as Paul experienced, those who receive the comfort of Jesus also become vessels to share it with others.

God never commands us not to mourn; burying the pain does not facilitate healing. Instead he invites us to run into his open arms and receive his loving comfort.

Do you have areas of pain in your life that you have not brought to the feet of Jesus? He will not condemn you for your emotions and questions; he will not accuse you of lacking faith; he will not belittle your pain. Instead he offers his compassionate comfort. Get ready to encounter his love when you pour out your heart.

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  1. […] Blessed Are Those Who Mourn » […]

  2. […] (I know my focus is not always on righteousness) or unpalatable (whose goal is it to be meek and mourning?). We all know that no one is perfect, so the next statement appears out of our […]

  3. […] (I know my focus is not always on righteousness) or unpalatable (whose goal is it to be meek and mourning?). We all know that no one is perfect, so the next statement appears out of our […]

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