Praying the Beatitudes is a powerful way to pray. The Beatitudes are so rich in depth and spiritual meaning–anytime we pray the words of Jesus, mountains are moved! Let’s take a look at the beauty of the Beatitudes and discover how we can pray the Beatitudes with power and grace.
What are the Beatitudes?
The Beatitudes is a collection of powerful teachings Jesus taught in a powerful sermon known as the sermon on the mount. He sat on a hill in Israel (now known as the Mount of Beatitudes) and preached these powerful words:
Jesus not only taught these powerful truths, but preached the greatest sermon of all time in the Sermon on the Mount, with his teachings stretching from Matthew chapter 5 through chapter 7.
What can we Learn from the Beatitudes?
The Beatitudes teach us the beautiful truth of what it truly means to be blessed. The word blessed in Greek is makarios, which means happy (source). The great paradox in the Beatitudes is the fact that no one would expect the things Jesus mentions to actually make us happy.
Happy are those who are poor in spirit?
Happy are those who mourn?
Happy are those who are lowly and meek?
Happy are those who are persecuted?
How on earth could these biblical concepts make us happy?
It’s like the verse in James 1:2-4,
Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.
Consider suffering a joy?
How can we be joyful when we face trials of many kinds? This also reminds me of Paul’s words in Philippians 3:10,
I want to know Christ better. Yes, I want to know the power that raised him from the dead. I want to join him in his sufferings. I want to become like him by sharing in his death. (NIRV)
Why would anyone want to join with Christ in his sufferings? According to this verse, the way we truly know Jesus and the power of his resurrection is through suffering. No one wants suffering or welcomes it willingly–but it is within this beautiful paradox that we are blessed. Jesus didn’t come to comfort the rich. He didn’t come for the well-fed or those in high positions of authority. In fact, he had strong warnings for them.
“But woe to you who are rich, for you have already received your comfort.”Luke 6:24
“Woe to you who are well fed now, for you will go hungry. Woe to you who laugh now, for you will mourn and weep. Woe to you when everyone speaks well of you, for that is how their ancestors treated the false prophets.”Luke 6:25-26
So what does this mean for us? How can we embrace the beauty of the Beatitudes in our culture that finds happiness in riches, power and prestige? We can start by praying the Beatitudes and draw closer to our Savior.
Praying the Beatitudes
Anytime we pray the words of Jesus, we can usher in his power and presence.
Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Prayer: Lord, help me in the times when I am poor in spirit. In the times when I think I am self-sufficient, help me to remember that I desperately need you. Amen.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.
Prayer: Lord, please help me in my times of mourning. You promise in your Word to comfort me. Help me to remember that my weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning (Psalm 30:5)
Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.
Prayer: Lord, teach me to be humble and gentle in spirit, just as you are. You did not use your power to dominate and control others, but to serve them with humility. Teach me to view meekness as a powerful strength, that I may inherit your blessings. Amen.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.
Prayer: Lord, you are the Bread of Life. Help me to hunger and thirst after you and your righteousness, and I will never be empty. Fill me with the grace and power of your Word. Amen.
Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.
Prayer: Lord, you are a merciful God. As you extend your grace and mercy towards me, help me to show mercy and grace to those around me. Amen.
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.
Prayer: Lord, as David prayed in Psalm 51:10, create a clean, pure heart within me. I desire to see you and experience your greatness and power in my life. Through your Spirit, show me the areas in my life that are not pleasing to you, and lead me in your everlasting way. Amen.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.
Prayer: Lord, teach me to be a peacemaker in our world of strife and unrest. Peacemakers do not avoid conflict, but lovingly confront others with the truth of your Word. Thank you that I am your child. Amen.
Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Prayer: Lord, there are many people around the world who face real persecution for your name. Persecution is not mild discomfort when people may mock me for following you.
But many people in the Body of Christ around the world experience harsh treatment, ridicule,and physical harm to their bodies because they serve you. Strengthen your Church, and sustain us through the power of your great name. Amen.
We can learn so much from praying the Beatitudes in our personal pray times with Jesus. Whatever you may be going through in your life right now, whatever trial, difficulty, or tribulation, remember that God is close to the brokenhearted (Psalm 34:18). We can be blessed, happy, and filled with unspeakable joy when we take our burdens to the cross of Christ, and when we remember that Jesus suffered so that we can truly be blessed in Him!
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