World Conference 2023

Promises of Blessing

14 September 2023

By Andrew Bolton of Leicester, England

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.

Matthew 5:9

[Adapted from Sermon and Class Helps, Year A: New Testament, 2016, p. 35]

As so often happens when expression is given to what the kingdom is about, we find the world turned around.

The Beatitudes are a promise of blessing from God, reflecting God’s grace through the life and ministry of Jesus. Blessed are the poor in spirit—blessed are those who recognize dependence on God’s grace. They are promised this good news: theirs is the kingdom of God. Blessed are those who mourn for their sins and the sins of the world, for a country in which a few were rich and most were poor. They will be comforted. Blessed are the meek, the humble—God can use them and they, not the rich, the powerful, or the proud, will inherit the earth. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness or a just way of life.

Blessed are those who want to live differently and honor the worth of all persons fully—they will be satisfied by this goal in life.

Prayer Phrase

“He has made everything beautiful in its time” (Ecclesiastes 3:11).

Spiritual Practice

All That Lives

Take a walk and find a tree where you can sit (or imagine walking and sitting beneath a tree). Lean against the tree and feel the texture of the bark. Listen to the wind move through the leaves. Sit quietly and sense God’s presence flowing through the trees and all creation. Offer a prayer of gratitude for your connection to all that lives. Ask for grace to discern and carry out one small act of justice or healing that creates greater wholeness for the plants, animals, trees, waters, air, and land that are part of the community of creation.

Today’s Prayer for Peace

Engage in a daily practice of praying for peace in our world. Click here to read today’s prayer and be part of this practice of peace.

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