To Receive, I Must Be Poor

Advent Week 4 Meditation for Dec 23
Read Psalm 23:1, Psalm 81:10, 16; Romans 8:32-35, 37

We often have trouble accepting gifts graciously and gratefully.  To accept a gift requires the acknowledgment that in some way I am  needy and incomplete.  Moreover, the giver has recognized my neediness in giving to me!

So, although I am pleased to be noticed, I may be embarrassed to be singled out to receive.  I am reluctant to admit my weakness and to give up the illusion of being independent!

Jesus announced that he was anointed to preach good news to the poor (Luke 4:18) and he said that the poor are happy (Luke 6:20).  It is only when I know myself to be poor and in need that I can open my mouth and mind and heart to receive the abundance God has to offer!

Consider: To receive God’s gifts, I must learn to feast gratefully. The result is freedom from spiritual poverty and death!

I much prefer a person who loves God enough
to take a handout of bread
to him who gives the handout in the first place.
Because the giver buys his honor;
but the beggar sells his.
(Matthew Fox, Meditations with Meister Eckhart (1260-c. 1329) p. 124

About Nancy Smith

Nancy Smith has 20 years’ experience in technical writing and management in software companies. She also has more than 20 years in Christian ministry as an educator, course designer, retreat leader, spiritual director, pastor, and coach. A United Methodist Deacon, Smith has her M.Div. from Boston University. She is a graduate of the Guild for Spiritual Guidance, and is certified in Spiritual Direction and Retreat Leadership from Boston College.
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