February 06, 2014

Counting Our Days

Psalm 90

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


Arriving in a foreign country without knowing your precise destination is complicated. In a time before the Internet was available everywhere, I once arrived in a large foreign city after losing the directions to my hotel. I asked a number of people for help in finding my way, but without the exact name of the hotel or street, they were unable to guide me. So for a few long hours I experienced the feeling of being truly lost.

Often in life we think we are heading in the general direction of our goal, but still we end up lost. Though we might start out well, we can quickly lose interest in seriously considering the next actions we must take.

In order not to lose track of where we are going and why we are going there, the psalmist encourages us to “number our days.” The writer is not talking about simple math—counting the number of days that we might potentially live. No one knows that but God himself. Rather, the psalmist wants us to realize that nothing in this life except living for God should be our ultimate goal, or the ultimate treasure we have in mind. Money, fame, possessions—none of that will last. As a popular saying goes, “When you die, you can’t take it with you.”

When we number each day with God as our main focus and guide, we gain wisdom for this life and the life to come.

Almighty God, you are the source of all life. We know that each day of our lives is a gift from your hand. Help us live each day in the light of your Word. Amen.

About the author — Jason Zuidema

Jason Zuidema lives in Repentigny, Quebec, with his wife, Anna, and their three children. He is a graduate of Calvin Theological Seminary and currently serves as executive director of the North American Maritime Ministry Association. He is the author of a special Seafarers edition of Today devotions published by ReFrame Media in 2012.

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