Perspective, perspective, perspective

Posted: December 15, 2013 in The Christian Standard
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I said to myself, ‘I will watch what I do and not sin in what I say.  I will hold my tongue when the ungodly are around me.’ But as I stood there in silence–not even speaking of good things–the turmoil within me grew worse.  The more I thought about it, the hotter I got, igniting a fire of words.  Lord, remind me how brief my time on earth will be.  Remind me that my days are numbered–how fleeting my life is.  You have made my life no longer than the width of my hand.  My entire lifetime is just a moment to you; at best, each of us is but a breath.  We are merely moving shadows, and all our busy rushing ends in nothing.  We heap up wealth, not knowing who will spend it.  And so, Lord, where do I put my hope?  My only hope is in you.  Rescue me from my rebellion.  Do not let fools mock me.  I am silent before you; I won’t say a word, for my punishment is from you.  But please stop striking me!  I am exhausted by the blows from your hand.  When you discipline us for our sins, you consume like a moth what is precious to us.  Each of us is but a breath.  Hear my prayer, O Lord! Listen to my cries for help!  Don’t ignore my tears.  For I am your guest–a traveler passing through, as my ancestors were before me.  Leave me alone so I can smile again before I am gone and exist no more.”  (Psalm 39)

Solomon, the wisest man to ever live, said this of life: Everything is meaningless.  Wisdom, pleasures, toil, advancement, riches and all the prestige and power that comes along with these things are meaningless.  Even folly, oppression and friendlessness are meaningless.  Nothing means anything without God.

Whatever we think we value, whatever we think we need or want, whatever we crave or obsess over, whatever we think we cannot live without, everything we chase after and dream about is all completely meaningless in the absence of God and His righteousness.

The godless make of their lives whatever they can and then they die.

But the godly are called to fear the Lord.  They are called to make of their lives the most that they can for the Lord.  They are far from perfect, but the Lord guides them, correcting them, leading them away from sin, or disciplining them if they choose to sin instead of submitting their will to correction and righteous counsel.

The discipline and punishment of the Lord is painful and something to be feared; and the fear of the Lord is healthy and leads to righteous decision making and living.

Our days are numbered.  Let us each take an honest look at our priorities and ambitions and submit them to the scrutiny of the Lord Almighty.  After all, our life on earth is but a breath.  We are here one moment and then we’re gone.


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