Simply the Bible Blog

Daily Devotion and Podcast

Empty Pot


It’s my job to make coffee in the morning. Since I’m the first one up, and I love coffee, it’s a role I easily accept. We have a stainless steel thermal pot, and occasionally I’ve made ten cups when the pot was still half-full from yesterday. I return to the kitchen only to find my precious coffee all over the counter! Not to mention the coffee in the pot is lukewarm! The problem wasn’t with the coffee but with the pot that was still half-full.

Likewise, we are containers. It is God’s desire to pour His Spirit into us. But before we can be filled with the Spirit, we must first be emptied of self. As long as pride, self-will and the old life of sin remain in the pot, there is no room for the new life of the Spirit. Jesus knew this. He opened the Sermon on the Mount with a self-emptying process.

“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.”

Matthew‬ ‭5:3-5‬

This flies in the face of worldly philosophy that links pride and self-confidence to one’s personal happiness. But Jesus says that true blessedness comes from being poor in spirit. It’s when I know that I’m not “all that” that I can receive the wisdom that comes from above. I have true joy, peace and contentment, for I know that I possess the kingdom of heaven.

The same is true with the second beatitude. The world cherishes laughter above all else; it has great difficulty dealing with death; it turns its back on suffering. But Jesus tells us that true blessedness comes through mourning. That doesn’t mean that we are permanently “bummed out.” King Solomon tells us that there’s a time to weep and a time to laugh; a time to mourn and a time to dance (Ecclesiastes 3:4). But an occasional dose of godly grief is good for the heart.

“For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death.”

2 Corinthians‬ ‭7:10

We can be joyful, even in the midst of sorrow, because we know that God comforts all who mourn. He is near to the brokenhearted (Psalm 34:18).

The third beatitude is often misunderstood–even among Christians. Many think of meekness as weakness. They imagine that we are to be like Milton Milktoast and never stand up for anything. Wrong! If you want a good example of meekness, consider a horse. When it is wild, it submits to no man, but when it is broken, a child can lead it. Jesus had all power and authority, yet He allowed Himself to be led as a lamb to the slaughter. Meekness is really submission to God in every circumstance. It is the willingness to entrust oneself and one’s cause to God rather than to defend or vindicate oneself. Again, this attribute is not admired by the world, but it is highly valued by God. Those who possess it will inherit the earth!

Poverty of spirit, mourning and meekness will never be popular, but they accomplish a great work in us. They empty us of self and prepare us to receive the indwelling Spirit of God–the greatest blessing we can contain.

Now where did I put my coffee?

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