“Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.” Matthew 5:4

This week we are looking at the Beatitudes and considering how we can apply them to our lives in a way that brings us to the place where the Lord calls us blessed.

Over the last months, a lot of us have lost loved ones, and have had reason to mourn for them. The typical meaning of the word “mourn” is feel or show deep sorrow or regret for (someone or their death). When we are facing these situations, we know that the Lord provides comfort and gives us strength to bear the sorrow.

But, in this passage in Matthew, Jesus is probably referring to mourning as repentance or being sorry for our sins. No matter how badly we feel about what we have done in the past, we cannot change it and wish it had never happened. But when we repent and ask for forgiveness, Jesus puts the sins of the past in the sea of His forgetfulness, never to be remembered against us again. He washes us clean with His precious blood and we are a new creation in Him. That is what brings us comfort.

The enemy of our soul will try to remind us of past sins and failures, but we can look him in the eye and rebuke him, because Jesus has forgiven us, and we are no longer slaves to the past.

Repentance is not a one-time thing. Because we are human, we will find ourselves making mistakes, doing things that are not pleasing to the Lord. As the Holy Spirit convicts us, and we repent of our failures, we have the confidence that the Lord has forgiven us, and once again, we are comforted.

David was a man after God’s own heart, and yet he yielded to temptation and sinned. But he knew where to go for comfort. He could not go back and undo what he had done, he had to live with the consequences, but as he repented, God forgave him and gave him comfort. Psalm fifty-one describes his experience, and he summed it up in verse 17: “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.” Psalm 51:17.

Prayer: Thank you, Lord Jesus, for the privilege you have given us to come to you in repentance and that you promise us comfort and we will be blessed.

Devotion by Anne Johnston


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