January 02, 2013

Counting Our Days

Psalm 90

Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.
—Psalm 90:12


According to a statistic published some time ago, the average life span of people in the United States is 25,550 days (70 years). Some of us are already past that number, while others may never reach it. My calculator tells me that as of today I have lived 28,080 days. Perhaps you want to check just how many days you have already lived.

As we count our days, we are reminded that they are limited. As someone once put it, “Life is a temporary assignment.”

That’s why the psalmist asks the Lord to help us number our days—so we will realize we have been given only limited time here on this earth. The psalmist wants us to remember that what really matters is how we use the days he gives us.

And that raises some important questions: How will we use the remaining 364 days of this year? Will we use them in the way the Lord wants us to? Will we use them to serve him and to serve the people God places on our path? Are we willing to use our gifts and talents, our resources and our time to build his kingdom in whatever place he puts us?

We are not given another year simply to take up space. Wherever we may find ourselves, God wants to use each one of us. Ask yourself today, “How does God want to use me?”

Father in heaven, help us to understand that you have given us another year to serve you. Make us faithful in our calling. For Jesus’ sake, Amen.

About the author — Arthur J. Schoonveld

Rev. Art Schoonveld is a retired minister in the Christian Reformed Church. Before retiring in 2001, he served churches in California, Illinois, and Michigan. Since his retirement he has worked part-time for the denomination and has served as an interim pastor. Art and his wife, Anita, have four children and nine grandchildren.

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