God sure does have a different way of doing things.

Maybe God is trying to turn our upside-down world right-side-up.

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“Happy are people who are humble, because they will inherit the earth.

“Happy are people who are hungry and thirsty for righteousness, because they will be fed until they are full.”

Matthew 5:5-6

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In this verse of the beatitudes, “humble” is also commonly translated as “meek.” In a Bible class in college, the campus minister, Jim Barnette, taught us that “meek” meant “power under restraint.” That has always stuck with me because I thought it was so strange! So, powerful people are “meek”? Well, not just anyone powerful is meek — only those who are capable of unleashing their strength in order to hurt others, but choose not to. Just because someone has the power to oppress others, use force, subdue, destroy, intimidate, or cause fear, does not mean they should use this power. God does not value this kind of power.

Instead, God calls the powerful (and indeed, all of us) to not only restrain our use of this power but also to renounce it. Blessed are the people who hunger and thirst, not for revenge or war, but for righteousness. Blessed are the people whose aching deep in their bellies can only be satisfied by justice. Blessed are we when we turn from the celebration of power to the desire to do the will of God.

Erin Spengeman Hutchison

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God, help me to be a doer of your word and not just a hearer only. I know that the doing is the hard part — may your Spirit stir my soul with unease until I renounce the ways of oppressive power in myself and in others. Amen.

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Today, join God in turning the world right-side-up, one decision at a time.

Erin Spengeman Hutchison

Rev. Erin Spengeman Hutchison is a Baptist pastor and has worked with youth for nearly 20 years. She loves to preach, laugh, and listen to Bruce Springsteen. She lives in Cincinnati, Ohio and has a super cool husband, two awesome kids, and a crazy dog named Cricket.


Carter Harrell

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