Pause + Pray

What Is Spiritual Poverty?

person focusing through binoculars


Francis and Clare of Assisi prized holy simplicity or put another way, spiritual poverty. They pruned away everything that stood between them and God. Although our situation differs in complexity and economics from our spiritual parents, we can still simplify and declutter our lives. We can seek first God’s realm in our daily lives and long-range plans. We can discard everything that keeps us from experiencing God’s peace and sharing God’s peace with others. We can move from clutter to calm and from stress to peace as we simplify our lives.


Creative God,
I thank you for the gift of life.
I thank you for the bounty of creation.
Let me delight in your world,
Rejoicing in its beauty.
Help me to know what is truly important in life.
Keep my eyes on the prize of your loving presence
In every relationship and task, and
Let me prune away everything that keeps me from serving you and my neighbor.


Make an inventory of your life in terms of your schedule and possessions. What brings you joy? What awakens you to love and to God’s presence? What causes stress and stands in the way of your relationship to God, your neighbor, or kin? Begin to prune away all the clutter so that you might see God’s light shining in your life, and be God’s light to those around you.

Bruce Epperly

1 thought on “What Is Spiritual Poverty?”

  1. Yes, knowing what is truly important in life. For me, it is my faith first, and what remains of my family, second.

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