Poor In Spirit
11 January 2018
GraceNotes – A Journey of Discovery
Scripture: Matthew 5:1-12 (Click link for scripture in Bible Gateway)
1 One day as he saw the crowds gathering, Jesus went up on the mountainside and sat down. His disciples gathered around him, 2 and he began to teach them. (Matthew 5:1–2 NLT)
Well, friends, here we are at The Sermon on The Mount! I’ve been looking forward to this ever since deciding to start out on this Journey of Discovery through the Gospels! I wasn’t sure then how to tackle this incredibly rich and dense three chapters – Matthew 5-7. Honestly, I’m still not sure! But this is my plan to start: a verse a day through the Beatitudes (Matthew 5:3-11 The “Blesseds”), then the few verses of each topic as we move forward.
God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him (the poor in spirit), for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs. (Matthew 5:3 NLT)
I don’t want to spoil the surprise for you, but we’re going to find out real soon that Jesus has a special place in his heart for the poor! And for the “poor in spirit”! Rich people, powerful people, the top of the class, the “A” list celebrities, weren’t Jesus’ favorites and he certainly wasn’t their favorite.
We’re all stinkin’ rich by first century Palestine standards. Then, there were the very rich and powerful, a small merchant class, and a whole lot of peasants! Now, we’re twenty-first century folks and we know you can have a lot of stuff and still be poor. And we know it takes a lot more stuff to function here and now than it did there and then. So we can only get so far comparing us to them.
Here and now, people like you and me who say, “I’ve got quite a lot of stuff, but I have a curious mind, a hungry heart, and a needy soul!” are among the Poor in Spirit. And Jesus promises us the Kingdom!
Before you move on to something else, take a moment and consider how important the needs of your heart and soul really are compared to putting all your time and energy into your stuff. And pray this simple prayer with me…
Father, I’ve signed up to follow Jesus. I’m all in and I’ve got a lot to learn and a long way to go. Help me learn to value the right things. Keep me Poor in Spirit so I can continually say, “I’m on a long journey and I haven’t arrived yet. I want to know you better and I want to follow you more closely!” In Jesus’ Name.