“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven."-- Matthew 5:3
Jesus begins his sermon on the mountain by challenging us to the meaning of true blessedness.
Humans have their ideas about what being blessed is; God has His ideas. Guess who's idea matters?
What exactly does it mean to be "poor in spirit"?
The general idea is that it means being needy in one's spirit, being aware of your own spiritual emptiness.
There are many people who are self-satisfied. They believe they are good enough. They believe they are good. They are people who are healthy in the world do not need a doctor. These are people who are self-sufficient because they are rich in their opinion of themselves, or rich in the world's respect, or rich in the world's goods. This does not mean that those who are rich are not poor in spirit, but it is very hard for a rich person to go to heaven. Why? Because those who are rich in the world's goods are not generally buffeted by the world. The Bible says money is a defense and wisdom is a defense. However, those who lack either money or wisdom or both, realize their need for God.
In this world, it seems good to walk around with super self-esteem. The world tells us to believe in ourselves. But the Lord tells us that we are greatly blessed if we understand our emptiness. We are truly knowledgeable when we know that we do not know anything. We are truly good when we understand how righteous God is and how far from perfect we are.
Sometimes if we aren't careful, we get into fights with people because we can't die to our pride. But how terrible it is to be proud before God! God cannot change anyone who resists Him.
Why is being poor in spirit such a good thing? Because it brings the kingdom of heaven to us. The Bible declares that kingdom of heaven is life, peace, joy, righteousness.
Lord, help me be poor in spirit. No matter what. No matter who. Let your heavenly kingdom grow wonderfully in me