You are blessed when. Before we pulled up to this beautiful location, I was already feeling blessed and grateful. So thankful I’ve met the person of Jesus, so thankful the spirit of God lives in me and that I have the privilege of understanding and learning daily from the life of Christ. Walking onto the land where Jesus spoke the greatest piece of teaching in all of history, I was wowed by the beauty and serenity of this place. Let me describe. The hillside was covered in hundreds of trees from Oaks to a variety of fruit tress to huge shrubs of covered in a rainbow of colors. Olive trees were seen in every direction humming with birds singing as if a time of celebration was at hand. The hillside looked down over a glistening sea of Galilee dotted with fishing boats sitting quietly across the water.
I walked briskly to a location I was hoping would be silent and isolated. However, I’ve learned it’s almost impossible to find isolation with so many seeking after similar opportunities as I. I did however beat the majority of our group to the a confined location where Jesus very well could’ve delivered His masterpiece. I sat quietly trying to picture what this scene must have looked like as people gathered to hear the miracle worker speak His truths. With no amplification, Jesus positioned himself so those sitting across the hillside could hear His words. With a genuine smile and a deep love for these people He began to deliver, “Blessed are . . .”, Matthew 5-7. He lovingly walks His followers through what it looks like to “human”. This is how we live, this is what we build our lives on, what’s important and what’s not, how we should give to those in need. This oration was like nothing this crowd had ever heard. This message turned everything these followers had ever heard up side down. This message was about a God who LOVED them deeply. The people were accustomed to hearing about what they had to do to earn the respect and love of God. Now, Jesus was teaching a different story, a story of a loving father, a story of asking, seeking and knocking directly to God? How is this possible, Jesus was in the process of changing an entire thought process of not simply a culture but an entire race. In fact not one race but many. He taught of living a life of forgiveness.
Jesus was setting a different standard a new way of thinking. This thinking is rebellious and shocking to all who would listen. Yet, it made perfect sense, it didn’t go against the law of the land but somehow fulfilled it to perfection. Jesus was setting the world up for something new, something that would last for eternity. He was making Himself available to all in need and yet those listening still didn’t know exactly what that would look like. How would this be possible? Jesus was preparing to give everything in order that our reality would change for all time to come.
What was Jesus saying today to me, in this moment of time? I think He was saying the same thing He was saying 2000 years ago, if I choose to follow Him, I could live a full life. I could live a forgiven life, I could be free, I wouldn’t have to worry anymore and He was always available.
This life with Christ does cost me, it costs me everything. Denying myself, my own desires and choosing a life of obedience to Him. A life of pursuing Him instead of what comes natural to me and my emotions. If we lose our lives to Jesus, we will actually find them.
Today, again Jesus, I choose you.