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15th June: Beatitudes (2) -- The Poor in Spirit

Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 5:3

'Blessed are the spiritually destitute' is another and perhaps better way of translating the opening words here.

For the heavy responsibilities I have, I am totally inadequate spiritually and in my fundamental personal characteristics. Without rich resources coming from God I am inadequate in so many ways -- as a doctor or as a patient, as a parent or as a child, or whatever. I can't even begin to conquer personal temptation or the evil flooding about me in society.

And the promise -- 'for theirs is the kingdom of heaven'. This immense concept is a central theme in Jesus' teaching; the essence of his ideology. Every doctor everywhere would do well to ponder Jesus' meaning. It is the highest good which can be conceived. It is present: it is future. It is personal: it is universal. It is the 'place' where God's will is sought and done, where what he says is done. It is the new society; the new mutant in human life, the new man and woman. In this beatitude Jesus is saying that anyone who knows his or her need can turn to God to find his way and be given the grace and power to follow it. His disciples living this way are the new society, the 'kingdom of heaven'. I have found that a sure way to become aware of my need is to ask God to make me aware of it. It never fails to work!

Keep me mindful Lord, of my own inadequacy and
of your boundless resources; so that I might be
used to effect your eternal purposes.

Further reading: Jn 15:1-11.


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