Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of April 21, 2013
As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho Press,
here is a selection from our book of daily devotions,
"Living as the Beloved: One Day at a Time," by the
Rev. Dr. Sandra Bochonok.
Please read the Scripture passage and Dr. Bochonok's
meditation. We hope you will be blessed. Thank you
for forwarding this to your friends.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for
"Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for
righteousness, for they will be filled.
are those who are persecuted for righteousness'
sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven."
Matthew 5:6, 10
Righteousness is not a popularly used expression
among the people I live and work with. It often
carries a negative connotation. Frequently we
hear it used as criticism, "Oh don't be so smug
and righteous!" It is often associated with
hypocritical, legalistic, religiously judgmental
attitudes towards life and people.
Yet the Biblical word is worth reclaiming.
Righteousness is a positive attribute of God. We
too, are to be righteous and just. We are to be
faithful and truthful. This is pleasing to God
and is not burdensome. Righteousness condemns
evil. Jesus often uses this word throughout the
Gospels as a good attribute that conforms us
positively to the will of God.
It can be helpful to use other English Bible
translations for added insights for our spiritual
readings. I feel blessed with the Amplified
Bible's interpretation with this verse, "Blessed
and fortunate and happy and spiritually
prosperous (in that state in which the born-again
child of God enjoys [God's] favor and salvation)
are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness
(uprightness and right standing with God), for
they shall be completely satisfied." I need to
hear this, for I had read ahead and discovered to
my dismay that those who hunger and thirst for
righteousness will experience persecution! This
persecution is considered a spiritual blessing.
Righteousness is used three times in this
chapter, in verses 6, 10, and 20. Meditate on
both the positive and negative sense of the
word. Watch how Jesus uses it. Righteousness is
a blessing from God, but will bring us persecution.
If we are not careful, we can become hypocritical,
negative and legalistic, judgmental religious
God, dare I ask for you to fill me with a sense
of your holy righteousness? Will you bless me
with an ongoing awareness of righteousness
through the life of Jesus? Will you help me not
be a negative, pompous, and legalistic religious
hypocrite? Protect me from a "holier than thou"
attitude. Let my righteousness be a blessing for
many. That is the best I can pray today. Amen.
Grace and peace,
Chi Rho Press
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