It doesn’t take long as a Christian to realize there’s a wide and ugly gap between the bare-walled reality we feel captive to and the joy Jesus offers. But I have realized the tension of this dilemma is something Jesus acknowledged in His Sermon on the Mount—and in it, we find we already possess one of the most useful tools in this journey toward real and lasting joy.
Jesus makes a series of declarations in His mission statement called the Beatitudes that sound impossible and unattainable. Each proclamation has one foot firmly planted in a colorless, hopeless reality and the other firmly established in a vibrant “fairy tale” world.
“Blessed are the meek,” Jesus says, “for they will inherit the earth.”
“Blessed are those who mourn”—a statement grounded in the certainty of the moment, and I always imagine there is a long pause in between these words before He delivers the punch line—“for they will be comforted.” Are you sure? When? How?