New every morning is your love, great God of light, and all day long you are working for good in the world. Stir up in us desire to serve you, to live peacefully with our neighbors and all your creation, and to devote each day to your Son, our Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

"A Liturgy for Morning Prayer," Upper Room Worshipbook

Used by permission from the Book of Common Worship, © 2018 Westminster John Knox Press. All rights reserved. This prayer appears in “A Liturgy for Morning Prayer” in Upper Room Worshipbook.

Today’s Reflection

CAN WE SURRENDER the mantle of trying to be, as someone has described us in our drivenness, “General Manager of the Universe?” Many of us are so accustomed to trying to be good – doing what is right, covering everything on our to-do list – that we live our lives, even our spiritual lives, at a frantic pace. We cram every minute of every day with activity and achievement, measuring our worth by what we earn or what good deeds we have done. But this beatitude [“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 5:3)] says that approach is all wrong. When we offer to God what we cannot be or do – our weaknesses – then the kingdom is ours. God says in this beatitude, “When you give up your illusions of control and power and acknowledge your absolute need for me, all that I have opens to you.”

The Power of a Focused Heart

From page 22 of The Power of a Focused Heart: 8 Life Lessons from the Beatitudes by Mary Lou Redding. Copyright © 2006 by Mary Lou Redding. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. http://bookstore.upperroom.org/ Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

What does Matthew 5:3 mean to you? Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

You would confound the plans of the poor, but the LORD is their refuge.

Psalm 14:6 NRSV

This Week: pray for the mind of Christ. Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section.

Did You Know?

In need of prayer? The Upper Room Living Prayer Center is a 7-day-a-week intercessory prayer ministry staffed by trained volunteers. Call 1-800-251-2468 or visit The Living Prayer Center website.

This week we remember: Mary Magdalene (July 22).

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Sponsored by Upper Room Ministries ®. Copyright © 2018 | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA


  • robert moeller Posted July 26, 2018 6:32 am

    I think of poor in the phrase “poor in spirit” as meaning having little, being brokenhearted, weak, or contrite. There God can work wonders for our weakness is God’s strength. We acknowledge that we are human, make mistakes, are not in charge and accept God as sovereign, creator, helper, friend, and ultimate supporter. Being “poor in spirit” doesn’t mean we don’t believe, it means we acknowledge our need for God. Yes, I believe I need God , not just now and then, but always, in all circumstances.

    Thankful for more rain, good meals, progress with the book I am reading and, while slow, progress with the model. Thankful that email connections to Anneliese have been restored and that I have a new photo taken long ago.

    Wish the comments were forwarded as they were only a few days ago. It makes following up with everyone so much easier.

  • Betsy Posted July 26, 2018 7:02 am

    The Message translates the poor in spirit as being “at the end of your rope”. It then goes on to say “with less of you, there is more of God”. I like that we must empty ourselves before we can be filled again with God’s spirit. I pray to be filled with Him and the grace available to us all.

    Marcy, your sweet words to everyone yesterday are like a sweet balm to soothe our concerns. Thank you for your patient responses and wisdom. I lift your health concerns up and pray He fills you up with his love and care.

    Traveling mercies for Jill, as she takes a final trip before school begins. Mary, Julie, Robert, April and others named in our hearts- peace and love to all.

  • Julie Posted July 26, 2018 7:57 am

    Thank you, Betsy and Robeert, for your keen insights as to the meaning of “poor in spirit.” I shall contemplate the phrase and your words.
    I echo wholeheartedly Betsy’s relief from seeing Marcy’s posts. Marcy dear, you go to such great lengths to assuage our collective fears. I am humbled by your fortitude. I will continue telling you about my babies. Chai is more my daughter’s baby and Tazzie is so attached to me that he must take sedatives if I am gone for any appreciable time. Chai is bigger than Tazzie and a champagne point while Tazzie is a natural. So Chai is mostly cream with brown points ( ears, nose etc like a Siamese). While Tazzie is a deep rich brown similar to sable with lighter shading in places. He is beautiful if I may be so bold.
    So another thing about what I believe God has placed in my heart: it is to start a shelter for a specific group of young people.
    Prayers for Jill and her family, Betsy and her family, Robert and his family, Connie and her family, Mary and her parents, and of course dear Marcy.
    Prayers and blessngs for all who have found this warm site
    Have a blessed day

  • Mary Ng Shwu Ling Posted July 26, 2018 8:53 am

    Matthew 5:3 means to me i need God every moment.

    Grateful for a small increment and confirmation letter from my company as well as evaluation from my manager of my past three months’ performance.

    May God help me in the challenges at work with a different race and a different culture so different from my previous job!

    • Mary Ng Shwu Ling Posted July 26, 2018 6:12 pm

      Grateful for Julie, Betsy, Robert and all the UR friends.

      May all have a great weekend!

      May God’s presence be so close to each and everyone!

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