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Jun 3

Really?

Posted on Monday, June 3, 2013 in Uncategorized

1414861_plane_silhouetteWe have our tickets purchased to travel later this year. We’re flying on a reputable airline to a safe destination.Yet, we and or about 40 percent of our fellow passengers will have some form of fear or anxiety about flying. According to Discovery.com, “Much of this fear can be attributed to the perception that the odds of surviving a crash are slim.” 1

The odds of being in an airplane accident are incredibly small. “Accidents occur at a rate of one per 1.2 million flights, and the odds of dying in a plane crash are 1 in 11 million. The odds of dying in a car accident are around 1 in 5,000, so you’re much more likely to die getting to the airport than you are flying in the plane.”

How ironic!

This fascinated me, “if you’re onboard that 1 in 1.2 million flights that ends up in an accident? Surprisingly, you’re much more likely to walk away from an airline accident than you are to perish. In fact, a staggering 95.7 percent of people involved in plane crashes survive. Even in the most serious class of crashes, more than 76 percent survive.”

Clearly the odds are on their side, but each and every one of them would feel blessed to be alive.

Blessed

One day as Jesus saw the crowds gathering, he went up on the mountainside and sat down. His disciples gathered around him, and he began to teach them.

Blessed are the poor in spirit,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Blessed are those who mourn,
for they will be comforted.

Blessed are the meek,
for they will inherit the earth.

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.
Blessed are the merciful,
for they will be shown mercy.

Blessed are the pure in heart,
for they will see God.

Blessed are the peacemakers,
for they will be called children of God.

Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” 2

And, a couple thousand years later I am – you are – still captivated by those words.

How could he say those words?
How were the people whose life was going bad, really going good?

How did Jesus’ listeners hear his words?

Did people laugh?
Was he mocked and ridiculed?
Did he have any self-doubt as he said them?
What thoughts came to his mind as he was speaking them?

Did Jesus have a conversation like I might in the back of my head that sounded like people mocking me,
“Look no one’s listening.”
“What a bunch of %^&^.”
“Oh, that’s easy for you to say, look how good your life is. ‘Blessed’ my @$$.”

I don’t know the answers, but I do know that a couple thousand years later I want to know the truth, how are those who experience painful circumstances really “blessed”?

Can I be just as “blessed” without going through such hardship? Is it an either or?

Can we learn the lessons secondhand and still be blessed?

Yes, no and yes.

Most people learn best through hard times, but God doesn’t need each person to learn each lesson firsthand.

What lessons have you learned from hard times?

How have you been “blessed” through painful circumstance?

I’m so excited about this “Against The Odds” series!

1 – Big Question: What are the odds of surviving a plane crash?
2 – Matthew 5:3-10, NIV

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