By John Braland, President of IMF's Board of Directors
When you were young did you dream about doing something great? Did you want to be a pilot or a fireman or astronaut or start your own business? Did you plan on getting married, buying a house, having children and taking that dream vacation to Hawaii or Europe?
Did you plan on getting fired, losing your house to foreclosure? Did you plan on moving two or three or four or five times? No. We all plan for the best but life always has failure and loss.
So how does a person of God respond to loss, failure, and disappointment? How does a godly person deal with all the loss and sorrow that life brings? Moses teaches us four valuable lessons in Psalm 90 about how to make the most out of every day.
Moses was a wanderer and didn’t have a home, yet he starts the Psalm by proclaiming that He alone is our dwelling place because everything else changes. “Lord, you have been our dwelling place throughout all generations.” Moses places his hope in what he knew to be true about God. He knew that God was his only safe and secure place of rest. Moses knew that no matter what life threw at him, ultimately his dwelling place was in the presence of the eternal God.
After Moses focuses on God’s eternal greatness he confesses human weakness describing the frailty and brokenness of life that originated from sin.
“3You turn people back to dust, saying, “Return to dust, you mortals.” 4 A thousand years in your sight are like a day that has just gone by, or like a watch in the night. 5 Yet you sweep people away in the sleep of death— they are like the new grass of the morning: 6 In the morning it springs up new, but by evening it is dry and withered.”
After reading a series of depressing verses we get to verse 12 where Moses petitions God for something very specific.
“Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.”
Give your best, for the best, every day you can. Tomorrow might not be better than today, so make today count. Focus on living every day for maximum impact. Paul said the same thing in Ephesians 5:15-16. God calls us to use every moment of every day to honor Him because we don’t know how many days we have.
When I look at the days I have spent and the days that may or not be in front of me I am challenged to make the most of the days I am given. I want to tithe the money I have been given for the glory of God to make disciples. I want to invest my time in building up other people.
What are you going to do with the rest of the time that you have been given? Are you going to spend it chasing unicorns and rainbows or invest it wisely doing your best to fulfill the purposes that God has graciously given you?
Finally, Moses cries out to God for compassion, love, and favor.
“13…Have compassion on your servants. 14 Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love, that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days. … 17 May the favor of the Lord our God rest on us; establish the work of our hands for us— yes, establish the work of our hands.”
While this life may be characterized by limitations and frustrations, we are not only able to pray that God will change us, but that He will change our life. We are to pray that God will use us for His glory and even accomplish eternal results.
People will come and go, seasons will come and go, good times and bad times will come, but God still sits on His throne. He was and is and forever shall be. God is still God so we can trust him even when we are wandering in the wilderness like Moses.
If you are not dead, God is not done with you. God still wants you to serve others like Jesus. He still wants you to pray for others. Seek God and when you see an opportunity, go for it. God may have prepared that opportunity just for you. May God bless the work of your hands because you don’t know how many days you have left. So let’s make the most out of every day.