“God wills our happiness. He blesses. There is no question about that. He also graciously describes the kind of life that is able to receive and live out the blessings that he wills. He does not say, “I want you to be happy, but how to be happy is your business to discover by trail and error the best you can. Good luck!” Not at all. He gives a precise description.
The Poor in spirit: We empty ourselves of pride so we can be filled with God’s spirit.
Those who mourn: We share the sufferings of others rather than avoid them.
The meek: We hone our passions to a skilled gentleness.
Those who hunger and thirst for righteousness: We reject the appetites of a consumer society and cultivate deep personal relationships with God and others.
The merciful: We refuse to react to the wrongs and troubles in the world by condemning and blaming, but instead we involve ourselves in compassionate serving.
The pure in heart: We don’t allow ourselves to be distracted and dissipated in gossip and trivia, but we center ourselves in God.
The Peacemakers: We decide to look at others, whatever their position, whoever they are, not as rivals to beat out but as brothers and sisters to love into wholeness.
The persecuted: We reject the comfortable conformism of fitting into whatever the majority is doing, and we take instead the nonconforming narrow way of living out the difficult truths requiring love and grace.”