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poverty of spirit

December 28, 2006


So I’ve been trying to become “poor in spirit” according to Matthew 5:3, and it hasn’t been working. I’m not feeling it. I’ve been praying, Lord, show me what it is to be poor in spirit! Very passionate.

Yesterday I realized I am poor in spirit. Given my previous altered-for-context definition of “poor,” we’re all poor in spirit. The proudest atheist is completely poor in spirit.

poor: having little or no means of support (without Jesus -Ed.), dependant upon charity (read: grace -Ed.), meagerly endowed, deficient, lacking, inferior, inadequate, lacking in (my own -Ed.) skill or ability, deficient in moral excellence, meager, humble, modest, needy.

We know that anything good in anyone’s life is an act of God’s mercy, because He loves saint and sinner alike. If He removed His hand from our lives, we’d all be without support; we’re all dependant upon His charity and grace. It’s true of everyone. So what’s the deal with the first beatitude?

Whether or not the kingdom of heaven is mine depends on my knowing and admitting and living according to the fact that I am completely at His mercies (which are new every morning: hallelujah.) Jesus councils the poor, encouraging us to come to him so he can take care of us. In order to go to Him, though, we need to first realize how poor we are.

I’m not exactly sure how to do that. I think He has to show me, so I think it’s going to involve a lot of quiet time and a very vulnerable spirit.

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