In Christ

7 “But now, Lord, what do I look for?
    My hope is in you. Psalm 39:7

Even as we count our fleeting days, it’s imperative that we rely on Christ to see us through those days. We can easily become discouraged and saddened by the events of our lives and all the horrific things happening in the world. We can even become depressed that we have not done the best with our gifts and talents up to this point in our lives.

Let’s not forget, our hope is in Christ. Our hope isn’t in systems or politicians or even family members.

Our hope is in Christ.

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6 “Surely everyone goes around like a mere phantom;
    in vain they rush about, heaping up wealth
    without knowing whose it will finally be. Psalm 39:6

This verse completes the previous two verses by acknowledging what is obvious about what is happening all around us: people clamoring about trying to get ahead without considering the consequences of thinking ahead. When people have those “epiphanies” about where did the time go, they then realize how much of life they wasted.

Legend has it that Admiral Rickover, when interviewing junior officers, asked them two questions: (1) have you given 100% in everything you did? and (2) why not?

Those really aren’t bad questions in moving forward with our lives. We cannot change the past, but we can do something about the days ahead of us

Continue to meditate on verse four and do it for a month. It will certainly alter for the good what we are now doing.

  “Show me, Lord, my life’s end
    and the number of my days;
    let me know how fleeting my life is.

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A Fleeting Life

4 “Show me, Lord, my life’s end
    and the number of my days;
    let me know how fleeting my life is.
5 You have made my days a mere handbreadth;
    the span of my years is as nothing before you.
Everyone is but a breath,
    even those who seem secure. Psalm 39:4-5

If woke up every morning for a month and asked this question, how would it change the way we live?

  • Would we waste time or find more productive uses of it?
  • Would we ignore that phone call from a friend because we just didn’t want to talk?
  • Would we get angry at the annoyances of our life?

I think we know the answers to those questions (and countless others that could be asked). So, here’s the challenge for the month of July: ask the Lord to show you your life’s end and the number of your days. Ask that He would reveal himself throughout the day to you with the answers to those questions.

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Gathering Thoughts

2 So I remained utterly silent,
    not even saying anything good.
But my anguish increased;
3     my heart grew hot within me.
While I meditated, the fire burned;
    then I spoke with my tongue: Psalm 39:2-3

Prior to David making a profound request about his life’s work and meaning, he considers carefully what he’ll say. He’s, as they say, gathering his thoughts. We don’t know if it was an hour or a week that he remained silent and thought about his next words. It’s apparent that he not only that about what he would say, but as he mulled it over, it eventually had to come out.

Our tendency is to blurt out what we’re thinking without considering the consequences. It’s a tough balance between stating what needs to be said and considering what should be said. Our speech won’t be as profound as David’s was, but with a little more thought, our words can be much more “measured” and considerate. Blurting our immediate thoughts is rarely helpful.

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Watching and Observing

1 I said, “I will watch my ways
    and keep my tongue from sin;
I will put a muzzle on my mouth
    while in the presence of the wicked. Psalm 39:1

Whether we know it or realize it, the “world” is watching us. They are watching us for authenticity and realness. They know to know that what we have to offer them is real and not just some gimmick.

So what does this mean? It means that we need to especially guard our tongue. It’s so easy to become complacent and to think that what we say will just have no real effect on how others think about us. But as I stated above, people are watching us – perhaps not consciously but certainly subconsciously.

Are you building others up?
Are you using foul language?
Are you criticizing your bosses?
Are you badmouthing coworkers?

Oddly enough, those friends and relatives “watching” us don’t expect perfection. Oh they may gleefully tell us when we mess up, but deep inside they’re rooting for us to succeed. They will probably never say it. but the point remains, they’re carefully observing us.

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