The Poor in Spirit

A Christian friend shared with me that one of his grown children asked him to say a prayer over her and her family, somewhat like a formal benediction. My friend also shared that he was reluctant to do it because he didn’t feel worthy enough to do something like that. Knowing the sincerity of his faith and love for God, I encouraged him to do it. I tried to reassure him his feelings of unworthiness indicate that he was spiritual and worthy enough.

Jesus said, “Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” Martin Luther gives us a very simple interpretation of what it means to be poor in spirit: He wrote, “the poor in spirit are not beggars and the bodily poor. They are the broken hearted ones who suffer under the agony of their conscience and from the insecurities that emerge from their feelings of inadequacy. The poor in spirit seek and desire help and consolation from God. They run to nothing else or go to no one else but God. They know that there is no help outside of his mercy.”

Joseph Hutchison

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