In the movie “The Princess Bride,” one of the villains mocks the hero, saying “You fell victim to one of the classic blunders!” And then launches into his personal list of classic blunders.
I bring this up not because “The Princess Bride” is one of my favorite movies (although it is). But because the back half of the Beatitudes (today’s Gospel) is all about one of the real-life classic blunders.
It’s a warning that we often miss. But it’s one we need to hear. Because the danger to us is so subtle.
After all of the “blessed are you’s” in the Beatitudes comes a warning from Jesus. About trusting in riches. Instead of God.
But how does that apply to you and me? Since no one would mistake us for being rich.
Being rich depends on your perspective. You and I don’t have much compared to the wealthiest people in the world. But in the eyes of the homeless people that we serve at the shelter and with our street ministry? We’ve got it made.
And there’s the danger. As soon as we get comfortable. As soon as we feel like we have what we need. That’s when we’re at risk.
Of falling for one of the classic blunders.
Of thinking that we can handle things on our own. Of drifting away from God (often without meaning to). Because we think we’ve got this.
If we could see ourselves falling for this one, it would be funny if it wasn’t so sad. Because we’ve tried to go it alone so many times before.
And it always ends badly.
Instead of that closeness with the One who loves us best. Instead of letting God lead and being open to God’s best in our lives. We let things come between us and God.
We settle for things we think we can control. For good enough. And, without really meaning to, end up trusting in ourselves. Or what we have. Instead of God.
Which works. Until it doesn’t.
Of course, drifting away from God because we think we have what we need, that we’ve got this, isn’t the only way we set ourselves up for a fall.
It’s just one of the classic blunders.Read More