I should just credit my pastor for most of this post. And Jeff Cavins because obviously Father's homily was influenced a bit by Jeff's presentation on the Sermon on the Mount.
The gospel this weekend was the Sermon on the Plain in Luke. Coincidence that the Sunday before Lent last year was the Sermon on the Mount?? In any case...
Besides our sinfulness, we all have one thing in common, and that is the desire to be happy. God also wishes this for us - we are made for happiness. But He wishes it for us on His terms - not ours. We can look for happiness in all the wrong places....and we may come close, but we will never be able to grab it.
What are God's terms?
Blessed are the poor. "Poor" is not talking about how much money you don't have in your bank account. Poor means that we are dependent on God for everything and we know it. That we trust that God will provide for us.
Blessed are those that mourn. More than the loss of a loved one, we are mourning sinfulness in ourselves and in the world around us. But if we know that we depend on God for everything, then we also depend on Him for mercy. And when we become aware of our own sin, then we take responsibility for it, own up to it, and run to God, seeking his mercy and his loving embrace.
Blessed are those who are persecuted. When we walk with Jesus, when we put Him first, when we bring all things (good, bad, triumph, tragedy)to Him, we will be laughed at, ridiculed, rejected. Comes with the territory. But if we are walking with Him, then that is where we will ultimately find peace and happiness. Some of it in this life, and infinite amounts of it in the next. And you will be blessed!