Those who will be spiritually blessed possess eight traits in common.
1. They depend upon God: “Blessed are the poor in spirit” (Matthew 5:3). The word translated ‘poor’ indicates dependency. The word was used of beggars who depended on society for subsistence. Until one sees how lost he is without God’s mercy and grace, one will not accept God’s offer of salvation.
2. They are genuinely sorry over their sins: “Blessed are they that mourn” (Matthew 5:4). Sin is no laughing matter. One needs to be tender-hearted enough to weep over sin.
3. They humbly let God direct them: “Blessed are the meek” (Matthew 5:5). The word meek doesn’t mean weak. It was used of strength which could be controlled. It was used of oxen and horses which would pull a plow or a chariot. One needs to allow God to be Master.
4. They greatly desire to be right with God: “Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness” (Matthew 5:6). The original words used here are of the most extreme hunger and thirst. How greatly do you desire to be right with Him?
5. They are beneficent: “Blessed are the merciful” (Matthew 5:7). They care about people. The care about those in physical need (Luke 10:30-37; Galatians 6:10; James 2:13-17; 1 John 3:17-18). They care about those in spiritual need (Galatians 6:1-2; James 5:20). Understanding the mercy of God, they stand ready to forgive others (Matthew 18:21-35; Colossians 3:12-13).
6. They are pure in thought: “Blessed are the pure in heart” (Matthew 5:8). The heart is the source of actions (Proverbs 4:23). One needs to be cautious on what he thinks (Philippians 4:8).
7. They seek peace with others: “Blessed are the peacemakers” (Matthew 5:9). They strive to “live peaceably with all men” (Romans 12:18). “Follow peace with all men, and holiness without which no man shall see the Lord” (Hebrews 12:14).
8. They are prepared to suffer for righteousness rather than compromise: “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness sake…blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely foy My name sake” (Matthew 5:10-12). Our commitment should lead us to be “faithful unto death” if necessary (Revelation 2:10).
These are characteristics that we each should seek to possess. If you are looking for areas to grown in this next year, work on these characteristics. You will be blessed by so doing.