I started a year long study of the Sermon on the Mount this month, with Tim Mackay and the Bible Project. So today we read a “fasting” verse. (At this point I can read the story of Jonah and see that it’s about the whale fasting)
The verse is Matthew 5:6, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst (I told you) for righteousness, for they will be filled.” Sounds good to me. I’m ready right now. I’ve been fasting for 23 days. I quote this verse every night and still wake up hungry.
Well, maybe this is about fasting but not in the way we think. Tim Mackay points out that the blessing is not in the doing thing. The blessing is in the results. There is nothing blessed about not eating ice cream or giving up video games for a month. The blessing promised is in the result. I sense the presence of God more clearly. I am kinder to people around me. My prayer life has increased. Those are the blessings. So read the beatitude backwards.
”You will be filled with righteousness if you hunger and thirst for it. And that’s a blessing.”