“Happy New Year!” “Happy 2016!”
A new year? Already? Ready or not, 2016 is here. And, we can’t help being stirred to consider who we are and what we are doing as a new year greets us.
Let’s me invite you to join in a New Year’s ritual: taking a look at Psalm 90 as a guide for prayer and seeking God to live with wisdom in this new year.
Here’s the clincher of the Psalm: So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom (Psalm 90:12). This piece of sage advice falls right after this truth: The years of our life are seventy, or even by reason of strength eighty; yet their span is but toil and trouble; they are soon gone, and we fly away (v. 10).
But, how, exactly, do we number our days? Even if you don’t like math, it’s easy to apply this formula . . .
70 years – your current age. What do you get?
- Let’s say you are 40. Here goes: 70-40=30.
- Are you 50? 70-50=20.
- 70 – (your current age) = # of days you have left
Of course, if you are above 70 years, go with the other age listed, 80 – your current age? Older than 80! Yahoo! Congratulations on being blessed with so many years.
But, going back to our examples, what if you have only X (whatever you came up with above) years to live? Here’s a few great life questions to ask:
If I only have __X__ years to live, and I want to live with a “heart of wisdom” . . .
- How can I best use these days to draw near to God & trust him in all things?
- How can I best use these days to pursue and improve my relationships?
- How can I best use these days to do my work for God’s glory?
What other questions come to your mind? Maybe they are about your health, work, rest, children, parents, friendships, projects, goals, desires?
Wisdom continues to flow from Psalm 90 . . .
What should we yearn for? Return, O LORD! How long? Have pity on your servants! (v. 13).
Where can we find satisfaction? Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love, that we may rejoice and be glad all our days (v. 14).
How can we be glad? Make us glad for as many days as you have afflicted us, and for as many years as we have seen evil (v. 15).
How should we raise our children? Let your work be shown to your servants, and your glorious power to their children (v. 16).
How should we pray? Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us, and establish the work of our hands upon us; yes, establish the work of our hands! (v. 17).
Daryl Pepper, Associate Pastor, Grace Heartland Church