I read something Oswald Chambers wrote in his book The Making of a Christian that I read again the other morning and it once again caused me to stop and think about how I view myself as a Christian; my perspective. There is a tendency to look at our natural virtues from our perspective. From God’s perspective they are part of a design that is broken and the only way that design can be fulfilled is by our being made all over again. I get that, what we so often consider to be our virtues, our moral high standards, are in God’s eyes just the opposite, and His plan for dealing with that is a foundational piece of discipleship. Jesus put His disciples through one crisis after another until they discovered that they could not be His disciples by means of their sincerity and devotion to Him. That’s where Chambers put it in perspective for me by challenging my view by taking me back to Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount.
“Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. The bedrock in Jesus Christ’s kingdom is poverty, not possession; weakness, not strength of will; infirmity of character, not goodness; a sense of absolute poverty, not decisions for Christ. Blessed are the poor in spirit. That is the entrance, and it takes a long time to bring us to a knowledge of our own poverty. The greatest blessing we get from God is to know that we are destitute spiritually.”
When I think about that it makes me stop and reflect on how often I fail to consider that I am poor in spirit because of my understanding of what it means to be poor; lacking enough money to live a standard of life that is comfortable. As used here the word means to fail or to fall down. If we are destitute in spirit, if we are “failing” or “falling,” then we are in the place God’s wants us to be. The spiritual place where our perceived virtues are meaningless; where we are looking to Jesus as the answer to our poverty; the place where we are “truly blessed.”