This week, Mike kicked off a new series of teachings, which will collectively outline the blueprint for the revolution that Jesus embodied. Because the Beatitudes were both foundational to this revolution and widely misunderstood, Mike clarified their meaning. As background, the Beatitudes are a famous part of the Sermon on the Mount; they can be found in Matthew 5 and proclaim that the poor, those who mourn, the meek, those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, the merciful, the pure in hear, the peacemakers, and those who are persecuted are all blessed. While many see these categories as personal characteristics that need to be developed, that view ignores cultural context. N.T. Wright's translation of the Beatitudes is more accurate; it states simply that there is "wonderful news" for those who were meek, merciful, etc., because God would bless them. This view stands in stark contrast to our American values, which celebrate strength, wealth, and success. God does not value these things, but instead blesses the opposite: those of us who do good without recognition, the humble, the grieving, those who await God's remedy of injustice. In short, Jesus' revolution begins with those on the bottom of the American "ladder."
Storytelling by Kali Echaves
Kali Echaves shares with us how she found God’s grace as she was fighting anxiety, depression and physical health issues. Her anxiety had become so severe that she felt hunted by God; she couldn’t even read the Bible, sing praise songs, or go to church. As she was going through a painful process of therapy, medications, and lifestyle changes, all she could do was to pray to God for His mercy. One day, she realized that God sees her and meets with her exactly where she is.
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