Monday, September 17, 2018

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Psalms 128
Blessed are all who fear the Lord, who walk in obedience to him. You will eat the fruit of your labor; blessings and prosperity will be yours. (Psalms 128:1-2)
Choice matters
Blessedness is a state of life which is the lasting fruit of our choices. It is not a transient feeling or an emotional festival either. Therefore, the choices we make in our life define and determine the meaning and fullness of our lives. Choices are more than just saying "yes" to some people or some choices. It is not choosing one id the best options. On the contrary, it is an unswerving commitment to a person, Jesus, who taught us the importance of making choices that are eternal, even at the face of death, and what it means to be committed to the will of God. Jesus chose not death, but to live meaningfully unto death. If it were otherwise, Jesus' death would have been nothing but a suicide. So, by choosing to live, we choose life itself; not death. When we choose life over death, God honors our choices and we become blessed. And, we shall be called blessed not only by our generation, but by generations to come. That is, blessedness of life is a choice as well as a gift.
One Choice to fear God
As children of God, we have only one choice-to fear God, which is not a noun but a conscious action-that can make us blessed. That is, by fearing God we get personal happiness and fulfillment. Psalm 128 pledges this experience in two areas of life: firstly, the personal and the present: Blessedness of God helps one to eat the fruit of his/her own labor (v.2). The labor is not in vain because he/she walks in ways of life (v.1). Seeing the fruit of one's own labor is the restoration of the blessedness of the Garden of Eden. And, there will be joy in family and in places where we work. God honors the person who chooses way of life-fear of God- with abundance of life. It's not just the person who made the choice to fear God is blessed, but the whole family-wife and children-are too blessed (v.3). Thus, by becoming a channel of blessing, we ourselves become a blessing (v.4).
Channels of Blessing
Secondly, public and future (vs.5-6): The blessing of one family is confined to its four walls, but it blesses the neighborhood and the whole nation. When we fear God, we receives blessing; and when our blessings become a channel of blessing for others, we become blessed. That is, fear of God is the beginning of our blessedness. Fear of God is more than being afraid of God. It means an intense desire to live fully and meaningfully obedient and committed to the ultimate source of love and life in all our ways.
Dear God, help us to love you by living in you and living for you that we nay be called blessed. Amen.
A God fearing life raises the stature of a person.

Christian Education Forum, Diocese of NAE of the Mar Thoma Church