“#Blessed: Matthew 5:3”

#Blessed: The Other Good Life
 
We all want to live the good life, to be #blessed. But what if God’s idea of blessing is different from our own? Join us as we work our way through the Beatitudes, learning that the #Blessed life might be very different, but even better than we ever imagined.
 
-Ultimate Happiness depends on Absolute Helplessness
-Contentment comes from Christ, not circumstances
-The Good life is not what I have but who has me.
 
3 Steps to the OTHER good life
1. Own MY Poverty Beg for GOD’S Mercy
2. Marvel at GOD’S Goodness
3. The Good Life isn’t counting my blessings but counting on the one who blesses
 
Further Conversation
1. What are your retirement dreams (beach, mountains, travel)?
2. If you polled the average person in our community, how would you guess they describe & say we achieve “the Good Life”?
3. Read Matt 5:3-10 What stands out to you as you read these eight statements as a whole? Why might Jesus start his main message this way? What do these statements ask of us?
4. Reread Matthew 5:3 How could emphasizing our “poverty” lead to blessing/happiness? Why is this so hard for people to do?
5. Read Philippians 4:11-13 How does Paul say he finds contentment? How could we learn to do this? (see vs 4:5-9)
6. Why won’t “counting our blessings” actually bless us? What are ways we can focus our thoughts on God, the one who blesses?
7. Look over the “3 Steps to the other good life”. In what ways do these steps challenge you? Encourage you?
8. How can Christ Church help you grow in Christ and take a next step this week?
 
Daily Devotions: Go Deeper this Week
 
Monday – John 10:6-10
My parents used to say that money burns a hole in my pocket. I don’t buy a lot of stuff for myself…I’m more a giver. When I get more, I feel a compulsion to give. I think most of us become generous when we have an abundance. The trouble is, we rarely feel rich. Jesus makes a bold promise in John 10:10. He promises a rich and satisfying life…life abundant…for all who follow him. That doesn’t mean we’ll be financially rich, but it means that our life will so overflow that we’ll feel compelled to share life with others. How are you experiencing Jesus’ promise? How might you be better able to realize & live this promise?
Pray: LORD Jesus, please help me fully experience and share your great promise of life abundant!
 
Tuesday – Genesis 15:1-19
God can make some crazy, seemingly impossible promises. Abram is an old man with no kids and no home to call his own…and yet God makes this bold promise that he will become a mighty nation that blesses the world. It takes many generations…yet God makes it happen. God always fulfills God’s promises. What has God promised to us? New life…abundant life…peace that pass understanding. We experience these as we stay focused on following the promise-maker. Are you focused on the promise-maker?
Pray: Almighty God, you alone are the one who gives life and keeps promises. May I trust in you.
 
Wednesday – Genesis 50:22-26
Sometimes it seems like God can’t possibly do what God promises to do. All Abraham’s descendants now live in Egypt. Soon they will all be slaves. For 400 years, they will remain in Egypt. Yet they never forgot the promise. The promise sustained them, it became their story. Have you ever felt lost and forgotten by God? Are you feeling that way now? God’s time is not our time. Remind yourself of God’s promises today. Trust God.
Pray: Holy God, may I not forget who you are or what you promise. In difficulty, please remind me.
 
Thursday – Philippians 3:12-21
Keep your eye on the ball! How many times have coaches and parents uttered these words to young children learning a sport? Hope to hit or catch…then you better keep your eye on the ball. Paul shares the same wisdom with his students in Philippi. Keep your eye on the prize. The NLT says it this way, “Focus on this one thing.” Jesus is our goal, our prize, our “ball.” Be like Jesus to experience the promises of Jesus. What distracts you from keeping your eye on the Jesus “ball”? What needs to change?
Pray: Holy Spirit, please help me focus by limiting my distractions and reminding me of the promise.
 
Friday – Deuteronomy 6:1-9
I love hearing my dad tell me the stories about our long past relatives, especially my great-grandfather. He was such a strong, determined man. He put himself through college by coal-mining, lumberjacking, and farming. It took him nine years, but he graduated in 1909! Wow! I love to hear the stories and tell the stories. These stories encourage me when difficulty comes. How do we maintain our faith in the face of hardship? Tell the story! Over and over again, we must tell the story. Put reminders in place. Tie a strings to your finger (or put Scripture on your head & wrist). We remember when we choose to intentionally not allow ourselves to forget. The promises to Abraham sustained the Israelites in Egypt. The stories of Jesus and his promises will hold us now. How do you remind yourself daily of God’s promises for you? How might you begin intentionally creating reminders?
Pray: LORD Jesus, may I not forget. Help me daily tell your story, reminding me of your truth.
 
Saturday – Revelation 22:7-21
He will come back. Jesus will set things right. Not only may we experience abundance now,, but we can eagerly look forward to Jesus’ return. This is God’s promise. If God always keeps promises…what might change in us if we repeated these verses and this promise daily in our life? What keeps us from being intentional in reminding ourselves? May we never take our eyes of this prize, His promise, Jesus’ return!
Pray: Heavenly Father, thank you for keeping your promises…I will choose to remember.