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The False Reality of Shallow Blessings

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Mere Props on the Stage

Have you ever been to Universal Studios? One of the main attractions they offer is a tour of their movie sets. I remember seeing the crash and chaos scene from War of the Worlds, multiple western-themed scenes, New York Street for many movie scenes, the Bates Motel, and one of the more extravagant ones was the neighborhood made for the widely watched show in the 2000’s called Desperate Housewives.

Looking as you drive past on the tour, these are some mesmerizing sights. These sets are beautiful. Luscious greenery, tremendous buildings. It makes you envy these places — well, except maybe the Bates Motel.

Yet, the truth is, many of these buildings and houses are fake. They are sets. Some of the biggest buildings are just a face — and in the back are many, many supports and structures to keep them in place as good backgrounds. And the greenery and flowers aren’t real; the houses are hollow, and the reality of these perfect neighborhoods don’t actually exist.

Our Problematic View

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The world’s view of blessings is set on material things. To view God’s greatest blessings in life as temporal things fails to see that everything we own are but stage props in the drama of God’s glory (1 Corinthians 10:31).

Yet, this is how we see the world in reality. We see big paychecks, fancy cars, big families, large retirements, extravagant vacations; rich and healthy, wealthy and happy — and we think instantly, “That is the blessed life. They are blessed way beyond me.”

But, like those movie sets, material realities and earthly things — no matter how big, nice, fancy, shiny, new, or expensive — are actually hollow. They aren’t real; that is not true joy. As we pass through the world as it were on a tour we must remember that the things that catch the eye and gather the gaze are not what a blessed life actually is.

Jesus said that eternal life is centered around knowing Him and treasuring God (John 17:3).

Blessed Life According to God

The word “blessed” in this context of Psalm 1 literally means “happy.” And in Psalm 1 we are given a true picture of what it means to have a happy life; the happy life according to God. “Blessed is the man… whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night,” (Psalm 1:1-2, ESV).

We are surrounded with shouts of “blessed life” talk only in the areas of outward, physical realities — and those can be a blessing, But true happiness is something else.

Jesus himself had no place to lay His head; He worked an average job, owned little to nothing; He had a few friends, was a man of sorrows, and experienced all that we endure — and yet, He was the happiest and the only perfect man to ever live. He said this in Luke 12, “one’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.”

The blessed life according to God is about treasuring Christ. Psalm 63:3 says that the steadfast love of God is better than life!

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The truly blessed life is one that has Christ as their treasure, God as their love, glory as their end, and heaven as their inheritance. To live a happy life, we must do all things for God’s glory, live according to God’s Word, and above all things, love God’s Son.

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Cale is the pastor of Union Baptist Church in Orrick, MO. He is married to his wife Kelly and they have two children (third on the way!). Cale will be graduating with a Masters degree from Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary this Fall and Spring 2023.
Cale is the pastor of Union Baptist Church in Orrick, MO. He is married to his wife Kelly and they have two children (third on the way!). Cale will be graduating with a Masters degree from Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary this Fall and Spring 2023.




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