To me the poor in spirit means humility. To be humble or truly gracious, and who do we know was truly humble, truly gracious? Except Him who left His natural home and life in order to assume a lesser condition. He left His place of History, glory, to enter into our history and carve for us a road leading back to His own history.
You know at Christmas I have often sorrowed over the fact that when He came and walked among us He couldn’t even find a place to stay in. A roof to cover His head, yet now I believe this to be a wrong thought. Can you imagine He who created the universe couldn’t create a mansion if that is what He wanted? No! He knew and prepared that shelter, that cave from all eternity. What earthly mansion could contain the glories of heaven? None of course! He was and is heaven’s glory.
For a period of time He became as a “pauper” (Him whom by nature is Lord and King) in order that He may teach and lead the pauper out of his shabby and dark world.
For a time He who was all became much less so that others might have much much more. Surely that is not the way of men but the way of God.
Can you imagine, if He had been born in different circumstances, the human person being so fallen would have had no hesitation in telling (when He spoke of poverty of spirit and poverty of material goods) that He didn’t know what He spoke about and if He had been a palace born, a palace dweller, how would non palace dwellers (which is most of humanity) be able to relate to Him? Can you imagine someone speaking up and saying “you don’t know what you are talking about, you were born a King and you have never gone without? You cannot have any empathy with us.” This could not be said of Him who is all but became lower so that He could have empathy.
So it is important to see that from all time His Father had assessed and determined the place, manner and time of his birth. It was no accidental birth which saw him born in so lowly a place. He who was ALL had to be born the lowliest in order that rebellious mankind may learn. No magnificent eloquence on His part would have convinced His listeners and us, but His example, bearing, lifestyle and words would. This was the divine pedagogy used to teach and show us that His love is so great, His compassion so limitless. His understanding so complete, that by following His ways will lead to that place where He will show Himself to us as He really is.
Humility means “be less” and aspire to great heights by His way.