Chapter V of the Gospel of Matthew is considered the most important part of his message. The teaching is in depth and with a new concept of the life of the Faithful and will be read in the next four Sundays. Maybe is something you can take as a personal reading and preparation for the Sunday mass.

I would like to explain just one part of this Gospel, the word that is repeated nine times “blessed are…”. The Greek word for this is Makarios, which is translated, happy, and is used to describe the principle graces of a Christian. In this Sermon of the Mountain, Jesus presents to us a new kind of happiness contrary to what we are used to. For Jesus, to be blessed is to be happy, and the happiness does not consist of the things that the world proclaimed as the source of happiness.

Obviously, the happiness that Jesus presented to us is something that unites these two worlds: the one in which we live and the Kingdom of Heaven.  All the Beatitudes should be looked at and considered in this context, always looking beyond what people see or the world expected.

I believe that this disposition to consider everything that happened in this life or the perspective to the life to come, changes the way we see the way we live our own life. The reason of this is very simple. Nothing is finished until we arrive to the Kingdom of Heaven. Nothing is complete until we are in the presence of the Lord.

Sometimes we see our lives and make a judgment over it, and we may say it is good… or it is bad, or it could be better… and with all the reasons we might have, there is a lot more to know, but we are deprived now to understand or see.  Some things in our early life that we saw as difficulties or struggles, became with time the reason for us being strong and the person we are now. Did we know that then? No, of course not…

The situations enumerated in the gospel: be poor, be hungry or mourn… are things we try to avoid. They are not the ideal wishes of any person, however Jesus presented them to us as a blessing because of the connection that those things have with the whole vision of life.

Jesus is trying to teach us that the events of this life are not the only ones that should be taken in consideration. His message is that the life that we see and live is not the only life we have because even some times the eternal life can be forgotten. It is the understanding, acceptance and knowledge of that life that many times give sense to the life we live here and now.

In the beatitudes,  Jesus assures us of the rewards that will be given in the Kingdom of Heaven. “Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be great in heaven.” The anticipation of that moment make us blessed while we live here in this world.

 

-Fr. Sergio

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