What Moves God’s Heart
God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him,
for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs
Matthew 5:3 (NLT)
Go Deep: There is no doubt that God has a special place in his heart for the poor. You can’t read too far in either the Old or New Testaments before you are convinced of that. But it is not poverty itself that impresses God—although he is always moved with compassion by people’s desperate condition—it is the utter dependence and complete openness of those who are without any other means of help that touches his heart. It is these who are truly blessed.
How are they blessed? They know they need God! That is simply and truly the best blessing of all. And when those who know they need God find him, they find everything. Furthermore, once they come to know God, they understand that without him they have absolutely nothing—pain, poverty, helplessness and hopelessness.
The poor are quite unlike the rest of us in that sense. When we find God, we tend to place him alongside everything else we have: our wealth, our conveniences, our abilities, our ingenuity, our relationships. We are not desperately dependent on God like the poor. When the poor get sick, they pray first, then they pray desperately. When we get sick, we go to the medicine cabinet for aspirin or to the phone to call the doctor, and if we happen to think about it, then we ask God. Or if the poor are hungry, they pray for provision. We go to the fridge and get a snack. It’s a matter of desperate dependence. They have it; we don’t.
My observation is that they who have so little reason for joy have so much more joy than we who have so much but have so little joy. I remember thinking that very thing as I was standing in an African orphanage for boys, watching the smiling faces of about thirty parentless ten-year-olds singing songs that expressed their hope in God and their longing for heaven. They were beaming from a source of Light like I didn’t know—not really. And I was convicted.
It’s a matter of desperate dependence.
Father God, afflict my heart with holy desperation! I’d rather have that than any earthly treasure that gets in the way of knowing and needing you.
Just Saying… The brilliant thinker C.S. Lewis once said, “A world of nice people, content in their own niceness, looking no further, turned away from God, would be just as desperately in need of salvation as a miserable world—and might be even more difficult to save.” May we find discontent with our own contentment if it is not borne by our satisfaction in God alone!