She is boisterous, cheerful, and charming sometimes, waking up always with a loud shout, "this is the day the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it." And she does feel that way every morning. She feels like the day will definitely be blessed, and certainly nothing can come her way that she wouldn't be able to handle. She makes breakfast, she dresses up and heads out to work. She smiles at her co-workers, wow...such a beautiful smile. She even brings smiles to the lips of people, and they appreciate her for that. It is not until work is over and she drives back home, and while driving she talks on the phone to a close friend who tells her she did something wrong that everything changes.
"What do you mean I did something wrong?"
"Because you did, concerning what happened the other day, you acted nonchalantly."
"I can't believe after so many years of friendship you can even open your mouth to say that about me. It means you don't know me. You don't even know who I am. I can't believe this. You really believe that I would do that? I'm your friend, why would you think I would do that to you?" she retorted sharply because she was so shocked that her friend of 10 years could say that about her.
"Well, that's what I noticed. I'm just speaking from my heart. I'm trying to let you know that I didn't appreciate that."
She begins to shout, "What rubbish. Please, I'm not going to waste time talking about this nonsense. I'll talk to u later." She snaps the cell phone shut, boiling in anger.
When she gets home, she is still boiling in anger, and the movie she had borrowed from blockbuster becomes such a wasted effort. She would just eat and go to bed now. Someone just spoilt her day. This was supposed to be the sweet sweet day that the Lord had made...what happened?
Does this conversation sound familiar? Have you ever been in such situations? Where you felt the need to shout back in anger at a friend? And at the end of the day does shouting back really help the situation at all? This conversation was very familiar to me recently. I am making sure my sentence is 'past tense' because God has rescued me from wasted efforts of unnecessary outbursts of wrath (anger), and He taught me exactly what to do in times like this when I read the following scripture:
"Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven," Matthew 5:3
I was confused when I read that, I never wanted to be poor in anything. Infact the Bible tells me that God is the One who maketh rich and addeth no sorrow. So why should I be poor? I don't believe in being poor, there are so many blessings that are my portion straight from the word of God Himself. So there must be something I am not understanding. "Poor in spirit????" At this point, I had to ask the Holy Spirit (remember He is our school teacher) to come and help me solve this mathematical problem, otherwise known as a puzzle.
What does it mean to be 'poor in spirit?' Why should the 'poor in spirit' inherit the kingdom of heaven. Why shouldn't the 'rich in spirit' be the ones to inherit it? Then miraculously, I began to get the break down...
Spirit: [from L. Spiritus: "courage, vigor, breath"] The spirit is defined as "the vital principle or animating force within living things; an attitude that inspires, animates, or pervades our thoughts, feelings, or actions; the part of the human mind associated with the mind, will, and feelings; an emotional state characterized by vigor (energy)."
Therefore, your spirit is what defines you. Your spirit controls your physical attributes. It controls your movements, your will, your mind, and your emotions. It controls your vigor, or in other words the energy that keeps you going from one activity to the next. Your spirit is vital. So now, why should we be poor in 'spirit?' You would think it would be reverse because even the bible says that "the kingdom of heaven suffers violence and only the violent shall take it by force." The violent must be energetic right? Their spirit must be invigorating right? So I investigated what it really meant to be "poor" in something.
Poor: Lacking in value or quantity; deficient or lacking in something specified; humble, modest.
Immediately I studied those definitions, I was totally amazed at my new knowledge of what it means to be "poor in spirit." It simply means "not placing any value or quantity on things like your 'thoughts, feelings, actions, influence, sentiments, emotions, mind, will, and vigor,' but instead surrendering all those things to God and placing God as priority." Being poor in spirit does not mean you won't have the vital thing that keeps you alive ~ your energy, thoughts, mind, and emotions. It doesn't mean that you should be less violent while taking the kingdom of heaven by force. It simply means that you won't value those things so much that your life depended on them. It's like selling a Limousine or Lamborghini for just $1.00. You can show your emotions, but don't place such high value on them. You can show your strength to others, but don't place such a high value on it. Don't take yurself too seriously. The life that you live is no longer yours, but you are dead to your flesh but alive in Christ. Don't get mad, get glad!
This is not saying your emotions are worth nothing. No, instead it is saying that nothing should ever bother you so much for you to consult your emotions and ask if everything is alright. There is only One we must consult at all times ~ God! When we begin to see that God is our priority, and other things are only secondary to God. Then it is easy to have self-control (which is listed under the 'fruit' of the Holy Spirit in Galatians 5, as one of the things we must possess). Self-control is what says, "hey, let me restrain myself, this is not more important than God." Self-control causes us to be "swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath," (James 1:19). If you do not place any value on your spirit (what controls your emotions), but place all the value on God's Spirit living in you, then you will inherit the kingdom of heaven. That's what it means to be "poor in spirit..." The poor in spirit will inherit the kingdom because they are kingdom focused, they will sell all they have just to buy the kingdom...