What does it mean to be Blessed?


Does it sound a bit rude to bring up the idea of blessedness in the middle of a pandemic?

Well, that was the topic of our study on board a ship recently. We looked at Psalm 1 and observed three distinct truths: 1. There are only two groups of people in this world, ever – the blessed and the wicked; 2. There is a specific divine response to where we belong among these two groups; 3. It is naturally compelling for us to know for sure where we belong.

We drew some help from Psalms 15 and 24 where we find a “litmus test” for someone to be called “bless­ed.” We concluded that none of us could be called “blessed” according to these Psalms, and therefore cannot stand in the assembly of the right­eous mentioned in Psalm 1. Only Jesus Christ stood alone in that group. However, by the grace of God, we do find a “second litmus test” to give us positive results when our lives are examined against the rules. We find that in Psalm 32:1-2. What joy! We learnt that while we who once stood as the “wicked” could now stand as the “blessed,” because Christ’s sacrifice covered our sins. In fact, we learnt from 2 Corinthians 5:21, that God in His grace, in order for us to be counted as righteous, counted Christ as though He were a sinner. Amen!

At times when sea­farers are too busy with their work, and could only afford me the time to pray (rather than study the Word with them) I would always resolve to proclaim these truths as I prayed, thanking God for providing a way to bless us, to forgive our sins through the sinless sacrifice of Jesus on the Cross. Invariably, in the last few weeks, I have always seen seafarers express their joy on hearing these gospel truths.

Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered.

PSALM 32:1

I particularly remem­ber Kim, who was busy on watch and was sorry that I could not be allowed on board due to the COVID restrictions. When I learnt that Kim was a Christian, I used the opportu­nity to thank God for Kim and prayed that He will remind Kim of these precious truths as he navigates through the uncertainties of life.

As I got off Kim’s vessel, and walked down to the vessel berthed behind it, I found crew working on top of it. A Russian crew spoke in broken English asking for any literature in Russian. And thank God, I did have Russian gospels and a Russian Bible with me. I also shared hats and chest warmers as gifts for the crew on board.

That afternoon, when I drove back home, I pondered on a thought from Shake­speare’s “Quality of mercy” where he identifies “mercy” as that which is “twice blessed” – “it blesseth him that gives and him that takes.” How true it is for us, sinners saved from slavery to sin, that it is a bless­ing to share the good news of God’s mercy. We are indeed most blessed of all people!

Are you a seafarer reading this, feeling you are unsure if you are truly blessed by God? Please do contact us using the information overleaf. We will be happy to help you gain the assurance of being saved from sin and death, and enjoy fellowship with God.