God's word is hard. While it often brings me great comfort, at times it brings me great frustration as well. The reason is because I want to follow it. I want to do what it says. Rather than find the verses that fit me and my needs, I really want to live the entirety of God's message out. That is harder than anything I know. Often times it has me looking around and wondering if anyone is trying to do the same. Then I feel lonely.
We had a retreat for our Singles group last weekend, and we studied parts of the Sermon on the Mount. When I came home Sunday night I decided it would be my goal to read through these passages again and again nightly for the next month. As I read Jesus' words I would then try to live them out. I'd pick a verse, pray on it, and then do it.
But it only took me till verse 3 to get disappointed. Matthew 5:3 says:
"Blessed are the poor in spirit,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven."
The first words out of Jesus' mouth - his opening statement - is too tough for me. I can't hardly even go on to the next verse although its a bit more comforting:
"Blessed are those who mourn,
For they shall be comforted."
In a country where things like laughter, ambition, and self-confidence are the esteemed values, it's hard to think that there is any room for humility, meekness, or mourning. In fact, the more I read the Sermon on the Mount, the more I think it goes counter to everything I've ever learned in life.
Yes, that's why it's a revolutionary lesson. But sometimes we leave it as that. Revolutionary. I don't want too. I want to live it.