Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Poor in Spirit

I never understood what “poor in spirit” meant until an adult religious education class several years ago. And then my understanding was really enhanced last week by listening to a radio show on the Beatitudes.

The question the host asked was in what areas we consciously choose to be poor - even if we’re not materially poor? Where do we do with less, or do without as a reminder of our dependence on God providing for us.

That’s a challenging question for those in my area where we live and work amid some of the wealthiest zip codes in the state and country. There’s such a cultural pressure for bigger and more. As a marketer, there’s a clear bias to sell more and get more for it. And a variety of stigmas are associated with anything that's “less.”

Let’s all ask - what are we willing to sacrifice that’s truly meaningful to us?




Leslie said...

It is hard to live where we do and not feel the pressure to have more. I think surrounding ourselves with friends who have similar values helps tremendously!

Our pastor preached a series of sermons on this topic last fall. Go to and click on worship + sermons, then check the sermon archives. The series is called Simplicity, Generosity and Joy.

Mike Brown - said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mike Brown - said...

Leslie - Thanks for being such a loyal commenter and for the suggestion on the link:

There's a Catholic priest named Fr. Larry Richards from Erie, PA who has a lot of talks out on various subjects. In one, he talks about a poster that hung in his office which said, "Every time I think I've surrendered everything, He asks me for something I'm unwilling to give up." That one quote has shaped me profoundly to challenge my attachment to the most precious things in my life.

Thanks, Mike