Ps 90:12 says,
“Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.”
What are we planning?
In personal development seminars or workshops, the one commonly addressed topic is “Goal Setting.” In other words – What is your goal in life? Or What do you plan to do in your life? Some usual answers are
- I want a to have a rewarding career
- I want to make lots of money
- I want to be recognized in the society
- I want to be the No 1 in my profession
- I want to be live long
- I want to look attractive and beautiful/handsome
The list can go on.
These are great ambitions in life and there is no harm in aspiring to such things, but they are very myopic and woven with uncertainty. Let me explain.
One of the critical elements in planning is the time dimension. When we say we are planning for our future, we refer to our future on this earth. But the irony is that no one knows the length of one’s days. This makes all our lofty plans a mere speculation.
Jesus narrates an interesting story in the Bible (Luke 12:16-21) about a rich man who planned meticulously for his life and had gathered enough wealth to enjoy the rest of his life. But one day, he had a dream in which God calls him a fool and asks him what would happen to his plans if his very life were to be taken away that night.
We are always busy making such grand plans and trying our best to accomplish them. But we fail to understand that those plans are only temporary.
The numero uno reason for misery
The number one reason for all the suffering in this world is greediness and selfishness. No one is born greedy, but we grow up to become one through circumstances and by our wrong choices and plans. All the adverse reports and news (robbery, killing, rapes, slavery, extortion etc.) are due to some people who want to accomplish their selfish goals and desires one way or the other. They don’t care about others. However, if you get an opportunity to question such people, you will be surprised to know that they are victims of wrong choices and bad lies. They took the wrong road not knowing that their cozy road leads down to destruction. They were blinded to the truth and acted without wisdom.
Path to peaceful living
The panacea to all sufferings in life lies in Ps 90:12. Moses, one the greatest leaders of Israel, who had everything at his disposal makes a humble plea to God to give him the wisdom to number his days so that he could live a life filled with wisdom. The phrase “number our days” refers to the brevity of life.
Every person on this earth is wise enough to know that he is a mortal and has a fixed number of day to live. But the irony is that we try to forget this truth and plan to live like immortals. We try to hoard wealth and gain fame as if we are going to last forever.
How many of us would want to kill or rape or murder if we knew that tomorrow might not be ours? None. When we forget this simple truth, we release chaos into our society. Satan has been very successful in deceiving us and keeping us from understanding this reality. That is why we need to ask for God’s support.
In Ps 39:4, King David asks God to show him how brief his life on earth is. He goes on to say that life on earth is just a handbreadth (so short). In James 4:14, we get a real picture of our life on earth. Life is compared to a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Job 14:2 – life is short-lived and is like a flower that comes forth and withers soon. James 1:10 compares a rich man’s life to a flower that sooner passes away.
We are just sojourners
The Bible says that our life on earth is temporary. The average lifespan is around 70-90 years (thanks to some medical advancement). Bible teaches us that death (on this earth) is the not the end of everything. It is the beginning of a new life which we can either spend with God in heaven (2 Cor 5:1) or in burning hell (2 Thess 1:9). The life we get to live after our first death is an eternal life. The choice of where we live (heaven or hell) our eternal life depends on the decisions and plans we make here on this earth. Are we too bothered about making plans for our sojourning period or eternal life?
When we understand that our life is short and we are created to be with God for eternity, our perspective of this world – work, money, love, charity, anger, jealousy, fame, relationship, etc. will never be the same. We will never be selfish and greedy. Moses understood this truth and he wanted this wisdom to help him lead God’s people in a just and righteous way.
Truth shall set you free
Eternal life, Heaven, and Hell are as real as you and me. Jesus is coming back again to take with him those who belong to Him (John 14:2-4). The big question – Are you included on His list? There are no lucky draws that can help us spend our eternity with God. It all depends on what we do while we live on this earth.
If we can diligently plan every phase of our temporary life, how much more should we prepare for our eternal life? Like Moses, you need to ask God to teach you to understand how short our life on earth is. We need to come under his blood that cleanses us from all guilt and sin and live under his grace each day till we walk into eternal life. Allow Holy Spirit to teach you the mysteries of God and how to plan for your eternal life.
1 Chron 29:15
We are here (on earth) for only a moment, visitors and strangers in the land as our ancestors were before us. Our days on earth are like a passing shadow, gone so soon without a trace.
I pray that this message is a blessing and will help you live Wisdom-full.