Faith Connections Theology on Tap November 21 - Living Poverty of Spirit: The Challenges and Benefits

On November 21, Bishop Hundt explored the notion of living in poverty of spirit with the Faith Connections Theology on Tap audience.

Living in "poverty" seems like a strange and frightening notion for many young adults who have grown up in a highly materialistic society that values the consumption of production over everything else.

However, there is no lack of Biblical references to living in poverty of the spirit. Consider the first beatitude: "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven" (Matt 5:3). What does it mean to live in poverty of the spirit? Why would anyone want to do it?

Living in poverty of spirit means giving up control to God. Giving up control requires us to pray, so that we can know what God wants us to do, and what He wants us to leave to Him. Bishop Hundt gave an example of Mother Teresa being asked why she spends time praying when she could be using the time to help more people. She responds by saying that if she doesn't pray, she would just be a social worker instead of being God's worker. She also recognizes her limits: "I'm doing my part, the rest is God's work."

We need to recognize that each person has a finite set of responsibilities assigned by God. We can neither become God by trying to do everything ourselves, nor can we fall short of His plan by ignoring Him when He calls us to work.

Living in poverty means accepting everything as a gift. Be grateful for everything and expect nothing but God's love. Wait with trust and an open hand for the work God assigns you every day. Be grateful for the day He declares your work finished and calls you home to His kingdom.

Living in poverty means savouring the day, not seizing the day.

The things God has made for you are infinitely better than the things people have made for other people. The devil tempts us with lesser goods.

Take time to reflect on what's best, and then follow the path to it. There you will find the kingdom of heaven.

Photo By: Michael David Dizon