ARE YOU NUMBERING YOUR DAYS?
“Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom” (Psalms 90:12). It is New Year’s Day of 2021.Are you teachable, willing to learn from God or other godly people? How self-disciplined are you? I know that I want to be intentional with what I do, but I can get off course daily. Are you making the most of your days or numbering them? This sounds a little like the person in prison numbering the days with chalk on the cell wall before they get out or are electrocuted. This Psalm 90 is “A prayer of Moses the man of God.” He tells us that the Lord has been our dwelling place through all generations. 1,000 years in God’s sight are like a day that has just gone by. “All our days pass away under your wrath; we finish our years with a moan.” (v.9). Moses goes on to say, ”Our days may come to seventy years, or eighty, if our strength endures; yet the best of them are but trouble and sorrow, for they quickly pass away” (vs. 9,10). That’s hard teaching, especially since I am 73 years old as ticking. What to do?
We need a heart of wisdom the Psalmist says:
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!”(2 Corinthians 5:17). The Old Testament puts it very personally for the more weathered of us.
“Do not cast me away when I am old; do not forsake me when my strength is gone”(Psalms 79:11).For many of us this may speak to the present.
The year 2020 was a year of great travail, including the Covid-19 pandemic. The stock market was up because our economy continued to grow even though small businesses took huge hits and bankruptcies. Millions lost jobs and livelihoods. All of us were quarantined to stay home and not connect with life-giving family and friends as well as work. Restaurants and hospitality businesses took the biggest hits. You had to be an “Essential Business” to survive. The Government intervened decided if you live or die in a tragic way. Some states Governors just didn’t understand the serious ramifications of closing the economy, particularly the west states of Oregon, Washington and California. Left leaning states wanted more government control to the demise of multitudes.
So it is to number or count the brevity of our days on earth. We don’t necessarily have tomorrow, so we need to make the most out of today. How do we do that? What are our priorities? To whom do we go or where, with what, and how? For Christians the understanding, the confidence, and the tools to confront the world's bankrupt worldviews and to restore and redeem every aspect of contemporary culture, family, education, ethics, work, law, politics, science, art, music. …Are addressed in a life-changing book “How now shall we live?” written by the late Charles Colson, of Watergate fame and founder of Prison Fellowship Ministries. The book causes the reader to pause and re-evaluate priorities, or at least it should. Colson writes, “Moral crusaders with zeal but no ethical understanding are likely to give us solutions that are worse than the problems.”How about the way people are treating each other now in this broken and radically separated American society. “People who cannot restrain their own baser instincts, who cannot treat one another with civility, are not capable of self-government... without virtue, a society can be ruled only by fear, a truth that tyrants understand all too well.” Is this sending us toward the destruction of our Republic, to a Marxist society, denigrating our Constitution and our Founders documents? Our Constitution says, “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness,” as the framers attempted to identify a unique experiment of a country based on Judeo-Christian principles and moral self-governance. Colson said, “Christians who understand biblical truth and have the courage to live it out, can indeed redeem a culture, or even create one. This is the challenge facing all of us in the new millennium.” The question is, are we up to it or are many trying to destroy what has made us unique and good in the world, despite many bad policy decisions through our storied 200-year plus history.
“Genuine Christianity is more than a relationship with Jesus, as expressed in personal piety, church attendance, Bible
study, and works of charity. It is more than discipleship, more than believing a system of doctrines about God. Genuine Christianity is a way of seeing and comprehending all reality. It is a worldview” (Colson). We have dueling worldviews in our country at this time, vying for very different results. Our society as we have known it with all its warts and blemishes, sometimes tragic, have been better than others in addressing major questions of life.
So where does a person go for “truth.” Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6). He is the door or answer saying, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened” (Matthew 7:7-8). He goes on to say this door or gate is narrow and few find it, and that wide and broad is the gate or door that leads to destruction. So I am seeking God’s Word and promises on how to seek Wisdom. God also delivers His will for us through prayer, other godly people and circumstances. So I read and/or hear God’s word in the Bible, I meditate on it, journal it and try, with the help of the Spirit of Truth, who is God to put it into practice. The world does not have solutions that work. We who live with the Biblical world-view are in the world but not of the world. We are alien to worldly cultural thinking or beliefs. Have faith, but have it in the truth. I hope you are seeking the Truth and sharing it in a dark world that needs the light of the world- Emmanuel, which means “God with us.” This Season of Light of Hanukkah and Christmas in a New Year we can start afresh and be lifted above the fray to a better place. God there, it will never return void or empty if you have faith in it.