January 01, 2017

A Good Place to Dwell

Psalm 90; Matthew 6:25-34

Lord, you have been our dwelling place . . . . Before the mountains were born . . . you are God.

—  Psalm 90:1-2

Did yesterday seem “old” to you? Is today truly “new”? We know something of our past: our country of origin, family members, childhood experi­ences, illnesses, times of healing, sins, forgiveness. But knowledge of the future is beyond us. On this New Year’s Day we hope for the best, even newness—but we worry too: What will happen to us and our world in the coming year?

The good news is that beyond all the good and bad of our past, there is a steadying certainty: Before the mountains were formed (how long ago was that?), and even before the earth came into existence (before there was a tomorrow to think about), God has “been our dwelling place.” Note that the psalmist uses present tense verbs for God—“have been,” “are.” That’s because the ticking of a clock, the passing of a day, and the changing of a year do not affect the Lord of heaven and earth.

For that very reason Jesus Christ, the Son of God, counsels his followers not to worry about tomorrow but to be concerned about being right with God today. As it is for the birds of the air and the lilies of the field for which God provides every day, let us rest in the assur­ance that every new day is God’s gift to us.

Do you think of each new day, month, and year as God’s gifts to you?

Everlasting God, “teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” Take my worries about tomorrow, Lord, and be my refuge all the days of my life. Amen.

About the author — Arie C. Leder

Dr. Arie C. Leder is the Martin J. Wyngaarden Senior Professor of Old Testament Studies at Calvin Theological Seminary in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He previously served as pastor at Ebenezer Christian Reformed Church, Trenton, Ontario, and with Christian Reformed World Missions in Latin America. He teaches courses on the Pentateuch and on historical books of the Old Testament.

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