This week, while I am on vacation, I will be re-posting some of the post-Easter daily devos that I’ve written over the past three years (with a few edits). I hope you enjoy them.
I have this friend who has the most annoying habit. Every time you ask him "How's it going?" he responds by saying, "I'm blessed." Every. Single. Time.
You're probably thinking, "What's the matter with you, man? The guy is just feeling blessed. You're a serious grump." Allow me to elaborate on why it annoys me when my friend constantly says, "I'm blessed."
It's because there are days when I don't feel like blessings are showering down upon me. There are moments when I am feeling kind of blue and bitter and not at all filled with the joy of the Lord. I have seasons when it seems as if God has withdrawn his favor.
And then my friend--despite whatever is going on in his life--slaps a grin on his face and says "I'm blessed," and it makes me feel rotten.
The fact of the matter is I am blessed. Blessed beyond measure. I happen to live in the greatest country in the world, I have a roof over my head, food on my table, and clothes on my back. My wife and I are able to provide a good life for our children, and we get to do amazing things with amazing friends.
What's more, by the grace and mercy of God I can claim the story of God's great love story--the story of how He is redeeming all of Creation through His Son, Jesus Christ.
So, why is it that I lose sight of these things? Why do I find myself feeling rotten when my friend reminds me how blessed I really am? I think it's because I sometimes lose sight of why I have been blessed to begin with.
Psalm 67:1-2 helps me to see more clearly. "May God be gracious to us and make his face shine on us--so that your ways may be known on earth, your salvation among all nations."
When our sight turns inward, and we start to feel sorry for ourselves for all that is going wrong in our lives, we lose our joy, our sense of hope, and we also lose the vision that God longs for us to embrace: all of the blessings we are given have a greater purpose than our own fulfillment and happiness.
The reason we have been blessed is to be a blessing. And when we lose sight of this, I really believe we also lose my ability to truly experience the abundance of the blessings we have been given.
May you find ways today to use the blessings in your life to be a blessing to others. Use what you have in abundance to share with others. Share your time. Share your presence. Share your resources. Share your love. Make the ways of our loving and gracious God known in the world.
And may the grace and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you now and always. Amen.