The Collective “Ouch!”

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Blessed are those who mourn.

Jesus neither instructs us to drown in our sorrows in perpetual melancholy nor to drown our sorrows in the intoxicants of happy thoughts and positive confessions. Many, while failing to weep with the Father over his broken beloveds, buoy themselves by singing victory choruses and filling their pockets with promise box verses. But bone-crushing poverty, humans being bought and sold, school shootings, and senseless wars over oil beg us to cry “Ouch!”

I remember the Sunday following one of our country’s many mass shootings in which fifteen people lost their lives and many were wounded. I went to church hoping for an opportunity to shed some tears with brothers and sisters and pray for the survivors, when all we did was sing snappy songs, listen to a sermon on how to be prosperous, and pray for pay raises. I left that service with yet another tragedy to mourn on my own.

This is an excerpt from a book I hope to publish in the near future on the Sermon on the Mount called: What In The World? Some Moral, Social, and Politically Disruptive Implications of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount.

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