Sheri Wohlfert contemplates a day when she reached out to God from her poverty of spirit.
The Lord hears the cry of the poor. (Psalm 34)
When I hear the word "poor" I usually think, "no money." Anyone else think that? I know financial poverty is not what the Psalmist was referring to so I paused to think about the bigger meaning of these words. I pondered all the areas of my life where I am poor, and here’s what I came up with.
There are days when I am very poor in patience. My tongue can be snappy and my judgments quick. One of the great casualties of being poor in patience is not being a good listener. I wondered how many things happened on these days that could make me richer if I wasn’t so busy being impatient.
Lord, on these impatient days, help me remember to cry out for your calm and your peace.
Sometimes I am poor in trust. When my pockets seem to be emptied of this treasure I decide to take control and do God’s work for Him. I tend to look to heaven and say “I got this one God!” I can tell ya how that usually works out. When I’m poor in trust I doubt His love for me and the wisdom of His plan … silly me! I forget that I’m looking at one page of the story and He’s holding the whole book!
Lord, on the days I lack trust, help me remember to say the words "Jesus, I trust in You."
More often than I’d like to admit I’m poor in acceptance. I have to remind myself often that things in my life are organized specifically the way God needs them to be. When money is tight or when success seems to find its way into someone else’s life, it’s tough not to get discouraged. One of the things I work on with my middle lovelies is celebrating when good things come to others because they are blessings from God. All too often, instead of celebrating with others in their good fortune, we evaluate all the reasons it should have happened to us instead.
When I’m poor in acceptance, Lord, remind me to keep my nose in my own journey.
I think I am the poorest when I fail to live in the present. God has created THIS day for me. Yesterday is already finished and tomorrow isn’t a guarantee. The people, the opportunities, the joys and the challenges of THIS day are His gift to me. It’s my job to soak it all in and ask constantly through the day what the plan for all of it is. When I get this right, I feel His blessings.
Recently I had a mountain of a day to climb: jobs, tasks, deadlines, projects and a teacher evaluation scheduled on top of it all. I woke up that morning feeling like limp lettuce! It wasn’t even 5 in the morning and I wanted to go back to bed and be done with the day. I threw up my hands in morning prayer, thinking, "God, how in the world am I supposed to 'rejoice and be glad' when I’ve got a day like this?"
I then stumbled across the word "surrender" several times in my readings and prayers that morning. So that’s what I did! I flat-out said, “God, if you plan to be hearing from me during evening prayers tonight, you'd best be sending reinforcements, because I can’t get this all done and still be joyful.”
I gave Him the day and I just sat back and watched Him show off! I was very rich indeed that day. Things fell into place, help I didn’t even request showed up, and the middle lovelies were particularly bright and funny that day. The grand finale to the day was a cancelled meeting and plopping into bed at 11:40, only to realize that I’d smacked the wrong button on my alarm clock that morning and it was really only 10:40. That was just icing on the cake!
The Lord hears our cries, especially when we see and ask for help in the places we’re poor. Try Him: cry out and see how He answers.
A Seed To Plant: Spend some time in prayer asking God to help you see the areas where you are poor. He’s waiting to hear and answer your cry for riches in these areas.
Blessings on your day!
Copyright 2021 Sheri Wohlfert
About the Author
Sheri is a Catholic wife, mom, speaker and teacher. She uses her great sense of humor and her deep faith to help others discover the joy of being a child of God. Her roots are in Kansas but her home is in Michigan. The mission of her ministry is to encourage others to look at the simple ways we can all find God doing amazing things smack dab in the middle of the laundry, ball games, farm chores and the hundred other things we manage to cram into a day. Sheri also writes at JoyfulWords.org.