Life is amazing. We can learn things even so late in the game. Well, I have been learning a wonderful practical truth, and the fruits are just wonderful.
I am coming into a greater awareness of how important an abiding sense of spiritual poverty is. What follows is my attempt to show, as feeble as it is, how freeing this awareness is and how this is the foundation of kingdom living.
Jesus taught us, “Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of heaven”. I have attempted to define this many times, so I will not elaborate too much on the meaning of the text. Instead, I will give a few definitions and then tell my story of how this truth is so practical and revolutionary to our spiritual walk.
A Few Definitions:
1. Blessed are those who are aware of their spiritual poverty.
2. Blessed are those who abide in an orientation of dependence on God.
3. The truly happy or blessed life is to those who are beggars, spiritually speaking.
4. Blessed are those who know that they are spiritually sick and in need of constant grace to live by a power other than themselves.
5. I am the vine; you are the branches. Abide in Me for apart from me you can do nothing.
6. I am the vine; you are the branches. Abide in Me for apart from me you cannot live the life I am calling you to live to glorify the Father.
7. True happiness and a heavenly quality of life is to those who put no confidence in the flesh, as sick as the flesh is, but are continually looking for a righteousness which comes through faith.
So taking this principle, here is how I put it into a practical step:
We admit our spiritual poverty and powerlessness and accept that only on a foundation of this abiding admission can Jesus build in us a truly happy and heavenly quality of life.
My Story of Implementing this Principle
I do not feel free in this context to get into specifics so lets say my sin is I like to walk in front of moving cars.
Well, today was one of my less than perfect days. I have been walking under an open heaven for the last two weeks and just living a life that is happy. I feel completely free of jaywalking. But today, I forgot this principle that I am a sick man. I am sick. Oh!!! the liberty of knowing that I am sick. You see when I know I am sick and powerless over my weakness of character. I know I cannot just nonchalantly walk in front of cars like others. If I start this activity, for me, it becomes very dangerous.
Well, my sickness is not actually jay-walking. My issue is control of my tongue. I say things I shouldn’t. But it is as much a sickness and as insane as being tempted to jump in front of moving cars. When I see the sickness of my character defects and its fruit and I see that I am powerless, I am forced to live life from an orientation of spiritual poverty. From this awareness and openness to my sickness, I find I can see the sickness all around me. I fin seeing the sickness frees me greatly to the core of my real problem. The real problem is the self and the ego. When I see this sickness clearly, I simply do not play this ego game.
For a moment today, when I lost my poverty, I thought I could talk like a normal person ,but I cannot. You see - I am spiritually poor and sick and this lack of self-control is my sickness. Oh, the power that comes to us who realize that we have no power over such a simple thing as one’s tongue. In fact, when I see my own sickness, it is so easy to see that the whole world is insane. So many people walk in this sickness, just like I am prone to, but I have a secret. I believe that Jesus can free me and lead me, through His teachings, into a truly happy and heavenly quality of life that is totally free from this sickness.
Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is a heavenly quality of life. This new life is not like the life that the world lives. No, it is altogether different. This life does not play the insane games of the world. This good life is filled with an abiding awareness of one’s sickness and mourns over it. This heavenly life is filled with meekness, for it knows that the root of sin is selfishness and ego-mania.
When I lose an awareness of my sickness that is when I find myself back in the spiritual sickness of the world and the games of self preservation and fear that all the world plays. Oh, the blessed life is not like that at all. The blessed life is a life of awareness of the insanity of the flesh and the sickness of the self. The fruit of this self is clear if we come out of our pride and are willing to see it. The evidence may be hidden, but we all know what it is. So, we confess our sickness and the insanity that comes with it. We abide in this awareness and from this abiding awareness of our spiritual poverty, we turn to a righteousness which comes from God. This awareness of our spiritual poverty alone is not the totality of the way, but it is the first step.