I have been visiting Dr. Luke frequently. I recognize more than a few areas where a physician’s wisdom is needed. In the beatitudes he shares the Chief Physician’s encouragement and instruction for every circumstance!
Most people familiar with the bible know this passage from Luke 6:20:
“Blessed are you who are poor
…you who hunger
…you who weep
…when people hate you
…exclude you and insult you
and reject your name…“
Until now, I have skimmed over the hard parts of the ” be attitudes” to the blessing that God promises. Today I let the suffering of each phrase resonate.
Jesus commands, “Rejoice in that day and leap for joy.” (vs 23) Spoken by anyone else, we might be tempted to throw these words out the window; but from the One who suffered more than any other, we can nothing less than listen. He walked in the paths of
hunger and poverty
rejection, insult, and hatred
false accusations and slander.
Then comes another tough directive, “…Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse, you and pray for those who mistreat you.” (vs 27) The inevitable questions I have are, “why and how?”
“…because He is kind to the ungrateful and wicked.
Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.”
There was a time when I was included in the barrel of rotten apples marked “ungrateful and wicked.” I have tasted of mercy. As His daughter, I am called to re-present Him in love and mercy.
This, of course, is impossible in myself. Only by Holy Spirit’s transforming of my inherent self-protect reflex to supernatural other-focus will this be possible.
God fully equips us …
“His divine power has given us everything we need
for a godly life through our knowledge of him
who called us
by his own glory and goodness.”
II Peter 1:3
When life gets remotely tough, I need to lock this poisonous gate. Critical judgments multiply faster than houseflies in my mind if left unchecked. Jesus says it straight,
“Do not judge.
Do not condemn
Luke 6: 37
Just like I keep a fly swatter ready for the occasion when a fly finds entrance into our home, I am ever vigilant to destroy thoughts contrary to kingdom thinking. My goal is to have a mind where negative thinking has no room within me.
I still need my flyswatter!
A Good Heart
“A good man brings good things
out of the good stored up in his heart…”
My Greek Lexicon tells me “good” means “well positioned, peaceful, prosperous.” The opposite of which is “evil” meaning “hurtful, broken state, morally misaligned.”
Opposites they are! It is impossible to be well positioned while broken or morally misaligned and peaceful. The old adage “hurting people hurt people” is very true. Only when God fully heals our hurts can good things flow from our good hearts.
Lastly Jesus tells us the wise dig down deep; they keep digging until they are solidly planted on The Rock, Jesus Himself.
“…like a man building a house,
who dug down deep and
laid the foundation on rock.”
Luke 6: 48
And who qualifies as one so wise?
“…everyone who comes to me and hears my word and puts them into practice.”
I have a bit more digging to do! I’m deep enough to be able to see the Rock, but not deep enough to imitate Him fully. The coming and hearing is easy; putting it all into practice is the catch.
The road may be long, but our destination is sure! Let’s not quit before we reach the fullness Christ intends even in the midst of great difficulty.
Walking High in Suffering
“The Lord God is my strength,
my personal bravery, and my invincible army.
He makes my feet like hind’s feet
and will make we walk
(not stand in terror, but to walk)
and make (spiritual) progress
upon my high places
(of trouble, suffering or responsibility).”
Habakkuk 3:19 AMP
It is in our upside down thinking that we perceive trouble, suffering or responsibility valley walking. God sees them clearly as high places where we discover Him in new ways and see His face more clearly.
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