Devotion For Every Wednesday

Blessed….the poor

Matthew 5:3

“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for there is the kingdom of heaven.” 

Sunday afternoon I was sitting in my favorite coffee shop in Hollywood, CA, waiting for my family. The coffee shop is located at  the heart of Hollywood Boulevard where thousands of people from all over the world are visiting, and traveling around the town every single day. The famous Hollywood Walk of Fame is right next to where I am and I'm also only a few blocks away from the church that my family attends for worship. The richest town "Beverly Hills" is right below the Boulevard. Fancy shops and malls are mingled at the convergence of Beverly and Hollywood.  You can hit Santa Monica or Malibu Beach in 30 minutes. It is not exaggerating to say that Hollywood Boulevard is the most busy, vibrant, and populated place in this country...maybe even on earth.

However, on that particular Sunday, I noticed something that normally wouldn't get my attention.  Most people sitting or standing around me looked beat-up and burned out. Some of them must be working for the movie industry as script writers.  Others are wearing peculiar and sort of sensual outfits. It seemed that they were actors or actresses who were waiting for a chance to be spotted by their fans. I guessed that some others might have worked the night shift and just gotten off. There are a few homeless people passing by the shop. Among the exciting and extravagant appearances of the town, I saw more worn-out and drained faces which I was usually not aware of. Behind the richness and luxuriousness of the city, loneliness and brokenness are inherent in the town which would be a more genuine and realistic observation of this life.   

At the most famous lecture, which could have been the first official teaching of Jesus on earth, the Lord says, "Blessed are the poor..." The very first blessings initiated with "blessed (are) the poor," are written in Greek.  It might not be an accurate interpretation to read the term "poor," as economic poverty.  Among the crowds, there must be socially and economically upscale people whose lives are more comfortable and secure than others on various levels. So, it is more appropriate to understand that the term "poor" indicates our inner condition. The concern of our Lord comes in the first place in regard to the state of our inner minds.  Our Lord sees into the depth of our minds and finds that we all might feel emotionally or mentally drained or isolated. It is known to the Lord that we need His healing to renew our minds.

Thus..."theirs is the kingdom of heaven."  The blessing of the Lord is His Kingdom that brings newness to people's broken minds. Most importantly God's kingdom is already ours.  We have already had the blessing made available to us. The only thing we need to do is to recognize the blessing by accepting it into our minds. 

Set your mind on high, on the Lord our Savior. That's the beginning of your healing.

These devotions were written by Jay on every Wednesday.  You can read his weekly devotion in the weekly E-newsletter.