Blessed are those who mourn

Listen to the message here:

“God blesses those who mourn, for they will be comforted.”
Matthew 5:4 (NLT)
“God blesses you who weep now, for in due time you will laugh.”
Luke 6:21 (NLT)

Mourning is defined in the dictionary as: “the expression of sorrow for someone’s death.”   It is a deep grief, sorrow or sadness, and often an expression of respect for the lost one.   It is a natural reaction to the loss we feel deeply.   Even though we know – if we are Christians – that our loved ones are not truly lost.   They may be lost to us for a time here on earth, but we will be reunited one day in heaven, and they are there – maybe dancing with Jesus – but reunited with the One who saved them.

Knowing that they are in heaven is a comfort of sorts but does not diminish the sense of our loss here on earth – and our grief and sadness because of that.   It is completely normal.   We are created in God’s image to feel pain and loss.   Even Jesus grieved at the loss of His friend Lazarus, even though He raised him from the dead!   He mourned for the time he was lost to his friends and family here on earth.

Then Jesus wept.

John 11:35 (NLT)

You see, there is:

A time to cry and a time to laugh.   A time to grieve and a time to dance.

Ecclesiastes 3:4 (NLT)

Yes, Jesus wept.   He would have known what He was going to do only a few moments later – but He still wept.  

If you mourn today, I hope that you can take some comfort in the fact that you are blessed.   God knows your pain, He weeps with you, and He will comfort you, and there will be time for laughter once again – real laughter.

And one day, all this pain and sorrow will be gone forever:

He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain.   All these things are gone forever.

Revelation 21:4 (NLT)

Jesus was sent to bring you some comfort today; you don’t have to wait until those last days, you don’t have to wait until the New Jerusalem which is promised in Revelations.   Jesus came to bring you comfort today:

He has sent me to comfort the broken-hearted … to tell those who mourn that the time of the Lord’s favour has come … to all of those who mourn in Israel, he will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning, festive praise instead of despair.

Isaiah 61:2-3 (NLT)

You see, this IS the time of the Lord’s favour.   This is the time that Jesus came into the world – to die – so that your wrong-doings are forgiven, and they are forgotten as far as the east is from the west.   This is the day of salvation – your soul can be saved today and you can inherit everlasting life one day.  

Of course, as Christians, you know all that.   But Jesus came that everyone be saved:

… God our Saviour, who wants everyone to be saved and to understand the truth.

1 Timothy 2:4 (NLT)

So tell everyone – all your family, friend and acquaintances who are not Christian – everyone, that God our Saviour wants everyone to be saved.   Everyone!   Not everyone who is good, not everyone who behaves – everyone, period; full stop.   That means absolutely everyone!   Murderers, rapists, terrorists, bullies, thieves, and everyone else.   Even those who think they are “good” people, but don’t know Christ – they need to be saved.   So, tell them!   God loves you and wants you to be saved and to understand the truth.

Mourning is not just for the dying – it’s for those who are destined to die, who are not yet saved.   Mourning is for what we have done – all our wrong-doings – however good we might think we are.

Let there be tears for what you have done.   Let there be sorrow and deep grief.   Let there be sadness instead of laughter, and gloom instead of joy.

James 4:9 (NLT)

We can also mourn for the wrong-doings of others, particularly when there is widespread or endemic wrong-doing.   For example, when countries war against each other, or where there is systematic abuse or racism.   As Christians, we should mourn these atrocities, barbarities and cruelties.   They are the antipathy – the complete opposite – of God’s will, God’s way, and God’s love for all human beings.

Nehemiah mourned that the wall of Jerusalem had fallen and that the gates had been destroyed.   Jerusalem, of course, was the Holy City – and reflected the relationship between God and His people.   The fact that it lay in ruins reflected how that relationship had also broken, which created a deep sense of sorrow in Nehemiah’s heart.

When I heard this, I sat down and wept.   In fact, for days I mourned, fasted and prayed to the God of heaven.

Nehemiah 1:4 (NLT)

And that mourning, that fasting, and that prayer eventually led to restoration – the walls were rebuilt, the city was renewed, and the relationship with God was repaired and restored.   It’s often what we need in our own lives too.

Blessed are you if you mourn – you will be comforted, and there will be a time to laugh once more.

May we pray: Thank You, Lord, that you comfort those who mourn.   May those who mourn today know your comfort in a real and practical way.   We ask this in the precious name of our Saviour, Christ Jesus; Amen.

If you are in mourning right now, we would like to pray for you – please get in touch.   Don’t feel as though you have to struggle alone – Jesus wants to comfort you and to carry your burdens for you.   May you know God’s Blessing today.

Have you had your copy of ‘DARE to Hope!’ yet? You can download it here.