Eternal Gifts are gifts that connect us more closely to the reality of eternity – and possibly gifts that will only be truly valued on the other side of this life. Persecution reminds us that a better day is coming.
Righteousness, purity and mercy are gifts that will bear fruit in kingdom living – they cause us to be fruitful citizens in faith communities.
Gentleness and peacemaking is not an introverted personality trait – it’s the product of following Jesus and becoming formed to His way.
Being poor in spirit (without other options) and acquainted with sorrow connects us to the presence of Jesus in ways we could not be otherwise. Questions to answer: What does it mean to be poor in spirit? How does a life look that possesses “the kingdom of heaven”? How can mourning & comfort lead to happiness?
In communication, thesis matters more than anything. It sets the tone and drives and edits the content for the rest of the message. Jesus’ thesis for the sermon on the mount is How to Be Happy.