he who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone has immortality, who dwells in unapproachable light, whom no one has ever seen or can see. To him be honour and eternal dominion. Amen.” (1 Timothy 6:15–16)
What a wonderful word ‘blessed’ is. I do wonder if its use every time someone sneezes has robbed it of its glory, of its halo of sheer grace. To be blessed is to be the recipient of something which brings joy and is undeserved. It is to live in a state of thankfulness, knowing that someone else has favoured you.
Now when we say, for example, “blessed be the God and father of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Ephesians 1:3) it is important to understand that we are not giving to God something he does not have! Rather we are giving back to God something has given to us. It’s the same kind of logic behind the verse from Chronicles we use in the communion service: “all things come from you, and of your own have we given you” (1 Chronicles 29:14). It is the gratitude of sharing the blessing we have received from God, or acknowledging its source.
Similarly, When Paul writes that God is “the blessed and only Sovereign” he is not suggesting that he has received something from one who is greater, but rather that blessing is in his nature. By nature he is blessed, and that is the blessing he gives to us.
The idea of simply having what you deserve - “I deserve this good thing, this gift” - is corrosive to the soul. What better thing it is to view your life as containing blessings from God! These things are not deserved, but simply the outpourings of grace. Treat all things like a blessing, and it’s like living as if everyday were your birthday!