Poor in Spirit, Rich in Grace

Poor in Spirit, Rich in Grace

Seeing the crowds, he went up on the mountain, and when he sat down, his disciples came to him. And he opened his mouth and taught them, saying:
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. – Matthew 5:1-4

Check out last week’s sermon here.

Poor in Spirit and Made Alive
“How did I get here? The Master called me. I came with nothing, empty hands raised, and He gave me everything eternally.”

There is no ‘blesseder’ place to be than under God’s smile. God says of His own, “this is my beloved [your name here], in whom I am well pleased.”

Jesus says God’s favor is upon the ones who have given up hope in themselves. God’s kindness is on those honest enough with themselves to admit how helpless they are. These needy folks fall before the Lord crying, “Wash me, Savior, or I die!”

Is there fear, in that moment, that those hands raised to the Savior will look foolish to the world? Perhaps at one time, maybe even for years, that fear and self-focus would make you shove your hands back in your pockets, turning away with chest puffed out.

But not today! “I don’t care, just make me clean,” cries the poor in spirit. “Make me new. Give me freedom. Now I see you. I just need you!”

Poor in Spirit Each Morning
“Now I wake up each morning, hands still raised, poor in spirit, rich in blessed grace!”

God is still smiling at the poor in spirit. They stand each morning blessed, clothed in the righteousness of Jesus. Yet, there is no return to the puffed-out chest and hands in pockets, saying to God, “I’m good, thanks.” The poor in spirit are raised to remain on their knees, hands reaching out needy. Christ is the one standing, graciously interceding. The poor in spirit are blessed, in the best place they can be eternally. And, they can’t get over how they ever got there.

*Rock of Ages
Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
let me hide myself in thee;
let the water and the blood,
from thy wounded side which flowed,
be of sin the double cure;
save from wrath and make me pure.

Not the labors of my hands
can fulfill thy law’s demands;
could my zeal no respite know,
could my tears forever flow,
all for sin could not atone;
thou must save, and thou alone.

Nothing in my hand I bring,
simply to the cross I cling;
naked, come to thee for dress;
helpless, look to thee for grace;
foul, I to the fountain fly;
wash me, Savior, or I die.

While I draw this fleeting breath,
when mine eyes shall close in death,
when I soar to worlds unknown,
see thee on thy judgment throne,
Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
let me hide myself in thee.

*Written by Augustus Toplady, 1776.

What I Learned Last Sunday