Tuesday, January 01, 2013

The Eighth Day of Christmas

Eight maids a-milking - the image sends us back to simpler times when human beings worked with their hands to provide for families and communities. A romantic idyll, possibly, but simplicity and purity are rare commodities to find in our lives controlled by the second hand of the clock rather than the rolling of the celestial spheres. Yet how happy are those who live in that simple and honest lifestyle in which appearance correlates with actuality.

Eight is the number of the Beatitudes pronounced by the Lord as He preached on the mountain.

Blessed are the poor in spirit, those unencumbered by the clutter of things that force the attentions onto material goods, those who recognise that they own nothing of real worth and look humbly to the hand of God to feed them. These folk recognise that only God can provide and only God will rule. They possess the kingdom of Heaven.

Blessed are those who mourn, those who express honest emotions of sadness at the injustice in the world, at the needless deaths, at the lives that pass unloved and unrecognised by a world to busy to deal with the apparently useless. Blessed are those who are simply unsatisfied with how Society cares for other, cares for the world. Blessed are those who allow their hearts to be broken by cruelty in any form. These folk will find comfort in God. God, not Society, will make all things new. All sadness will end; heavy hearts will be lightened; joy will come in The Morning.

Blessed are the Meek, those who do not rely on any authority of their own, who are humble and realise their limitations. Blessed are those who know if they are put in charge, then they are accountable for their decisions not only to those above, but also to those below. Blessed are those who know that they must explain their actions to the Highest power and act accordingly.These careful and gentle folk will be given the tender care and concomitant joys of their stewardship of the Earth, knowing that they are supported by a loving God.

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst after righteousness, those who are simply not satisfied with the claims of governments and monarchs to know what's best, those who treat philosophical theories of ethics with caution and scepticism, those who seek what is truly right from the Absolute Truth that does exist, These folk will find precisely what they are looking for - the true righteousness that is inherent and characteristic of the Divine Being.

Blessed are the merciful, those who are not blinded by hatred of those who do them wrong, those who see the real interpretation of "an eye for an eye", those who let go of the injustices they suffer through forgiveness because they are aware of the transience of human action. Blessed are those who refuse to demonise any human being whatsoever, who accept human judgement knowing that a greater judge will try each and every human being. Their generosity of spirit will be returned to them. Their failings will be forgiven, and they will find true and complete absolution for their faults because they choose not to remember the faults of others.

Blessed are the pure in heart, those who have no ulterior motives for their actions, those who seek simplicity of action. Blessed are those whose lives are focused entirely on God, who do not weave complex schemes to get their own way. These folk will look into a mirror and, because their lives are purer than crystal, they will see God shining through them, and rejoice at the privilege.

Blessed are the peacemakers, those who hate hatred and fight against fighting. Blessed are those who seek to mend wounded communities, who look to heal divisions, to repair Society, to enfranchise the demonised and to accept the outcast. Blessed are those who see the good in both sides, who see the human beings in both sides, who see the children of God in both sides. These will be recognised as the Children of God, just as they recognise the image of God in all people.

Blessed are those persecuted for righteousness' sake, those who see that there are things more valuable than comfort, health, and even the preservation of life itself. Blessed are those who hold principles dearer to them than their own blood, and who will stand up for their belief in goodness, in kindness, generosity, love, peace and truth and in the God who is the source of all these properties, even though it will mean degradation, oppression, torture or death. They too recognise God as their king and He will choose them for His kingdom for their loyalty to Him. They will have all that which has been taken from them restored an hundred fold for Eternity.

These Eight Beatitudes demonstrates the nature of God as One Who Blesses. Such Blessings are evidence of the happiness of humanity in receiving the Gifts of the Holy Spirit in addition to the gifts of Creation and Life under the Law of God announced in the Gospels in which the Glorious Trinity expounds His twofold covenant ratified in the blood of Christ Crucified. These Beatitudes are the effects of the gifts of our True Love.

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