Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom. – Psa. 90:12 NIV
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Moses was the man God nominated to lead the children of Israel out of slavery in Egypt to the Promise land and he undertook this task for 40 years although due to some acts of dis-obedience, he was unable to enter the land as promised. There will definitely have been highs and lows during that period with Psalm 90, being the documentation of his reaction to one of those low periods. The low periods are usually the result of transgressing and/or disobeying the Almighty God with the consequence of their either been handed over to their enemies or being afflicted in some way or the other.
On this particular occasion and in an attempt to seek relief from the Lord, Moses in his prayer reminds the Almighty God that He has been the dwelling place of the people from time immemorial and his ability to terminate man’s existence in this realm with the slightest of actions is not in doubt, after all to Him, a thousand years is like a day just gone by – Psa. 90:1-5. He let God realise that his anger is consuming and terrifying the people as he has decided to focus on the sins of His people including those done in secret – Psa. 90:7-8. Because to Him, a thousand years is like a watch in the night, He is not able to notice that every second of the pain is like passing days and the entire life of man soon flies away in the midst of serving His punishment. In Moses’s opinion, man’s active years on earth is seventy or eighty years but if God does not relent in his anger, all those years soon pass away, spent in trouble and sorrow as the anger of the Lord, which according to him is as great as the fear that is due to Him, rages on – Psa. 90:9-11.
He thus appeals to the Almighty God, in the scripture for today’s devotion, to teach people how to number their days as that will enable them possess a heart of wisdom. If this is the solution to avoiding a life that is constantly under the effect of the anger of the Lord, then it is an advice that is worth looking into more deeply because many Christians today are under such situations.
The prayer points of Moses whilst appealing to the Lord to relent in his punishment and show compassion (Psa. 90:13-14) indicate the condition that one who is experiencing the anger of the Lord is in. He asked;
1. That the Lord should satisfy His people with His unfailing love so that they can sing and be joyful all the days of their lives (Psa. 90:14), which is an indication that such lives experience sadness in all forms due to the withdrawal of His love.
2. That the Lord should make His people glad for a time equal to that in which they were under His affliction (Psa. 90:15) which is an admission that such lives are likely to experience long periods of affliction.
3. That He should reveal His positive side to His people so they can know Him in that regard also is a statement indicating that such lives can be under His anger for so long that they forget the experience of His goodness.
4. That He should release His favour on His people so that the works of their hands may be establish is an indication that all that such people lay their hands on is failing.
No doubt there Christians today who have similar experiences that is already getting them frustrated with their spiritual life. Moses says that proper understanding of how to count their days will prevent such experiences. From all indications, it is obvious that Moses cannot be referring to learning how to count days in terms of numbering how many years, months and days but must be referencing the quality input in those days.
How are you living your days on earth? It is true that the punishment of the Lord will come when the Christian misbehaves but you need to realise that every time spent in doing wrong and remaining in the punishment of the Lord is a wasted time and cannot be credited to your advantage by the Almighty God. That the Lord is sanctioning you for misdemeanor will not in anyway increase the length of your days on earth meanwhile you will be assessed based on your activities in this realm during the entire period. It is not about spending seventy years but what fraction of the years is spent in doing the Will of God.
A Christian that is properly tutored and is aware on how to number his/her days will see days spent from the perspective of how many of those days was spent doing His Will. That will be wisdom applied as all those spent transgressing and under penalty of the Lord becomes a complete waste. What fraction of the time you have spent in this realm can be regarded as positive before the Almighty God? That is the real number of your days spent. Apply wisdom in living your life. Avoid incurring his anger by trespassing his laws, as it will not be how long but how well. May God grant you the wisdom to live quality life in Jesus name. Amen.