For the past two months, I've been teaching my 2nd-5th grade Sunday school class about the Beattitudes. I've been using a curriculum, The Kids Travel Guide to the Beattitudes, that I haven't been that happy with, actually. I had used a previous book in the same series and really liked that one. But, this one... it has felt like there's a lot of fluff. So, I end up taking a few ideas from the book and writing my own lessons each week.
Yesterday, I only had a half hour in which I needed to prepare my lesson. I'd been taking care of my family's needs all day and that was all there was. I prayed and trusted that the Lord would help me put the pieces together. One of the pieces came from an unexpected place...
A few months ago, I agreed to review a Christian Living book because all of the author's books have been encouraging to me. The book is The Blessing of Humility by Jerry Bridges. A few months ago, this man passed away in the same weekend that another well known Christian author and preacher died. The biographies of the other pastor were prolific. It was easy to find details about his life. But, when I tried to find out more about Jerry Bridges, I found very few details about his life. This struck me as interesting at the time.
When his book came to my mind yesterday afternoon, I realized just why this was the case. The Blessing of Humility is about the Beattitudes--which I hadn't realized! I had felt for several weeks that I needed to pick up this book, but I kept pushing it off because I wasn't sure that I wanted to delve into this topic. How would this book affect me? I looked at the book as if it was bad tasting medicine that I knew would be good for me. Of course, it turns out that it doesn't taste as bad as I thought it would and of course, God knew just what I needed.
I've just begun reading this book, but I have been very encouraged by it. My eyes opened to a huge piece of the puzzle that my Sunday School curriculum hadn't shown me.
The Beattitudes are a sermon. But, just like a conversation, all of the verses are connected together and build upon one another. All of my life, I have always isolated each verse from one another. Instead, this sermon is all about Salvation, forgiveness, and realizing the greatness of God!
From the ESV: Matthew 5:1-5