Blessed are those who mourn. What did Christ mean? Is not our goal in life to be happy? Then why would mourning be a blessing?
4 Blessed are those who mourn,
For they shall be comforted.
Matthew 5:4, NKJV
Solomon addressed this subject in the book of Ecclesiastes.
2 Better to go to the house of mourning
Than to go to the house of feasting,
For that is the end of all men;
And the living will take it to heart.
3 Sorrow is better than laughter,
For by a sad countenance the heart is made better.
4 The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning,
But the heart of fools is in the house of mirth.
Ecclesiastes 7:2-4, NKJV
It is true, that after a catastrophe, our spirits are certainly much more attuned to spiritual things. As a matter of fact, the Sunday after 9/11 occurred, church buildings across the United States reported record attendances.
According to Solomon, the house of mourning causes us to ponder our end, which has a profound affect on how we live. However, the words of Christ from Matthew 5, point out another benefit of mourning. Why are those blessed who mourn? They are blessed because they shall be comforted!
How easy it is for us to live each day as though there is no end to the comforts and blessings that we enjoy. Life, health, and peace seem as though they will go on forever. However, one does not have to live to be very old before one realizes that is not the case. We live in a fallen world, captivated by sin. The evidences of that sin manifest themselves in all that we see around us. Not only are our bodies affected by sin, but even nature groans before God due to the effect of sin upon it.
22 For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now. Romans 8:22, NKJV
As Jesus reminds us, there is no comfort without first mourning. For the believer, mourning reminds us that this world is not really our home. Our true home is in heaven with the Lord Jesus, and all of life is a travail that will end with the perfect peace of eternity with our dear Lord and Savior. When sorrow is about to overcome us, we, as believers, experience God's peaceable fruit of righteousness. Wrapping His great arms about us, He comforts us with a comfort that no man, woman, or child could give.
Go, then, this day, in the comfort of the Lord. If God is allowing great difficulties to come into your life at this time, turn to Christ, and experience His great and wondrous comfort.
This reminds me of a chorus we used to sing in my church when I was just a teen.
Just a little longer, and the trump of God shall sound.
Just a little longer, and we'll all be glory bound.
Lift your eyes to heaven, your Redemption draweth nigh.
Just a little longer, and we'll meet Him in the sky!
See also the children's devotional, Blessed are they that Mourn