Heaven on Earth

In today’s Gospel, we hear Jesus teaching His disciples the Beatitudes. Jesus talked about people the world considers lowly and insignificant – the poor, the mourning, the meek, the hungry, the merciful, the pure, the peacemakers, and the persecuted. They were all challenged by their situations and experiences. However, Jesus honored them and called them blessed. Regardless of their situation, Christ gave them hope, drew them to Himself, and showed them His love. Jesus’s sermon gives us the true meaning of blessedness—not prosperity or achievements, but being hopeful and trusting in God despite the circumstances of one’s life.

It is easy to overlook the essence of the Beatitudes as we go along in life. We are sometimes confused with our purpose. We easily lose hope and fall into despair because we cannot see a way out of our misery. Yet, when we pray and open up and discover the Beatitudes hidden in our situations and opportunities, our cloudy vision clears. We realize that circumstances we consider to be depressing are sources of hope and blessings. Certainly, when we put God first in our lives, we receive the outpouring of His grace. We may even gain true peace in knowing God is always present to bless us immensely with His love, mercy, and forgiveness.

The Beatitudes are not just words of wisdom given to Christ’s disciples, but a secret in gaining the Kingdom of God. These words of Christ are meant to comfort us, fill us with hope, and challenge us to find and experience the Kingdom of God even while on earth.

By: Sem. Lester John D. Cabais

Today’s Gospel

Mt 5:1-12

When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain,
and after he had sat down, his disciples came to him.
He began to teach them, saying:
“Blessed are the poor in spirit,
for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are they who mourn,
for they will be comforted.
Blessed are the meek,
for they will inherit the land.
Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
for they will be satisfied.
Blessed are the merciful,
for they will be shown mercy.
Blessed are the clean of heart,
for they will see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers,
for they will be called children of God.
Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness,
for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you
and utter every kind of evil against you falsely because of me.
Rejoice and be glad,
for your reward will be great in heaven.
Thus they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”

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