So teach us to number our days that we may gain a heart of wisdom. Psalm 90:12
I’d like to share a few thoughts to consider as we prepare for 2020. New Year’s gives us the opportunity to both reflect on the past year while considering how we want to spend the upcoming year. To help us with this insightful exercise, I’d like to pose this question, “how do you want to live the rest of my life?” I refer to this as “the dash”, the timeframe between birth and death. We see it on cemetery tombstones to frame one’s lifetime but do we seriously consider the possibilities that lay “on the dash”?
The subscript for Psalm 90 is “A Prayer of Moses the man of God” and deals specifically with the eternality of God contrasted with the mortality of man. The thrust of this magnificent prayer is to ask God to have mercy on frail human beings in a sin-cursed universe.
Moses remembered God’s protection, sustenance, and stability as He guided over 4 million people across the desert to God’s Promised Land. He was their dwelling place—their sanctuary in the desert (Ps. 90:1-2). Verse 2 says, “Before the mountains were brought forth or the earth and world was formed,
God was. Almighty God is dependent on nothing or anyone for sustenance or favor. He will forever be Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end.
Man, in contrast, was formed from the dust of the ground and came into existence after God breathed the breathe of life into his nostrils (Gen, 2:7). This life was spirit—it was that part of man that would never age and would, like its Creator, live forever. Then man became a living soul—with a mind, a will, and emotions. Man was dependent upon God for all things. God could be trusted to guard man’s life.
God can still be trusted today even in the midst of social, political, and financial upheaval. Even in the midst of calamity, the beauty of the LORD—His delight, approval, and favor—is still available to those who turn their hearts to Him (Ps. 90:17). In our frailty, God gives us His strength. “But the Lord stood with me and strengthened me, so that the message might be preached fully through me” (2 Timothy 4:17)
Each of us has been given life by God. We celebrate our beginning annually on our birthday—life before the dash. Our “earthly end”—life after the dash—represents the end of our mortal life and the beginning of our eternal life with Christ. God has created us for His purpose; it is in that place of created purpose, that we live our lives—we live our life on the dash. This is where the daily events of living take place and we become “God’s workmanship” (Ep. 2:10). As you prepare for 2020, make the most of your life on the dash. Like Moses, pray, “Teach us to make the most of our time, so that we may grow in wisdom.” (New Living Translation)