"Blessed is the man who makes the Lord his trust, who does not look to the proud, to those who turn aside to false gods," (Psalm 40:4 NIV).
This scripture tells us to keep God as our trust - our Confidant, our Hope, the One we rely on - and if we do we will be blessed. But, what blessed mean? Jesus defines being blessed in the Sermon on the Mount, Matthew 5:3-12. But let's look at the dictionary meaning first. The American Heritage Dictionary says blessed means, "worthy of worship; enjoying happiness, being fortunate; or bringing happiness or pleasure."
To bless someone means "to make holy or sanctify, to invoke divine favor upon, to honor as holy; to confer well-being or prosperity upon; to endow as with a talent" (also, from the American Heritage Dictionary). To me that says generally the only one who can bless is God; however, I can think of several instances when people bless others, can't you?
In the Sermon on the Mount Jesus says the blessed are: those who mourn, the meek, those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, the merciful, the pure in heart, the peacemakers, and those who are persecuted and insulted. (See Matthew 5:3-12). My Life Application Study Bible notes say,
"to Jesus, 'blessed' means the experience of hope and joy, independent of outward circumstances. To find hope and joy, the deepest form of happiness, follow Jesus no matter what the cost."
To be blessed is to be filled with that wonderful hope and joy that comes from having Jesus live in us - no matter what is happening in our outward life. To be blessed means to be able to take one step in front of the other even when the road we must walk is hard and rocky or along the dangerous mountain cliffs. No matter the cost - be it sacrificing our lives for our faith or standing up for what we believe in and being ridiculed or shunned.
Lord, fill us with your mercy and grace, so we can stand tall as Christians and face any trial that comes our way.
Blessed are believers
who depend on God
for their well-being.