Summary: If you want a life that counts, number your days.
Title: Numbering Our Days
Text: Psalm 90-:1-17
Thesis: If you want a life that counts, number your days.
In his sermon, Spending Time, Bryan Wilkerson cited the Five for Fighting song, 100 Years lyrics as a window into the way humans think of the time of their lives:
I’m 15 for a moment…
I’m 22 for a moment…
I’m 33 for a moment…
I’m 45 for a moment…
I’m 99 for a moment…
With every stanza the singer moves through the years of his life noting that he has 100 years to spend… time to buy, time to lose, time to choose. It seems he has lots and lots of time until it occurs to him that with each passing year his 100 years are being eaten away until at last he is 99 for a moment, and then he has no more time to buy or lose of choose.
God has entrusted a number of things to us… one of them is time. If it is true that everything belongs to God and if it is true that one of his good and perfect gifts to us is the gift of time, we want to be responsible stewards of this gift.
I recently overheard a conversation between our daughter and our daughter-in-law. They were discussing the merits of artificial verses real Christmas trees. What interested me is that they were not discussing the convenience and lack of mess related to an artificial tree… they were discussing the, for lack of a better term, morality of cutting down a tree that took years to grow so it could decorate their homes for three weeks and then tossed. They discussed Christmas trees as renewable resources… they discussed them as essentially crops that are grown, harvested and replanted. In that case, a Christmas tree is like wheat or corn or any other renewable resource that can be grown for consumption and then replanted.
Unlike Christmas trees and other renewable resources… time is not a renewable resource. Once it is used… it is gone forever and can never be replenished or reclaimed or reused.
This morning I am 58 years, 7 months and 9 days old… I have lived 21,389 days. They are spent days. I’ve used them up one way or another. I can never relive a single one of those days. They are days of accomplishment and regret. Among them are memorable days and others not so. There were days of pleasure and days of pain. There were good days and bad days and there were lots of “just another day” days. Whatever kind of day each of those 21,389 days was… together they serve to remind me if I want my remaining days to count and have meaning, I need to be diligent in the way I spend the time of my life.
Our text today encourages us to make the most of our time be reminding us that human life is temporal.
I. God may be eternal but human life isn’t!
“Before the mountains were created, before you made the earth and the world, you are God, without beginning or end. [However] Seventy years are given to us! Some may even reach eighty… but soon they disappear, and we are gone.” Psalm 90:1-2 and 10
Every day we are reminded of the temporal nature of human life. Some of us read the obituaries every day just to make sure we aren’t in there.
Early New Years morning Broncos Cornerback, Darrent Williams was murdered outside a club in the SoCo (south of Colfax) district of Denver. He was 24 years old. He was known as a good guy with a promising career and a bright future… the key word here is “had.”
The first ten verses of Psalm 90 are devoted to marking the contrast between the eternity, power and sovereignty of God and the frailty and temporality of man. The Psalmist says we are like dust or like dreams that are swept away or grass that flourishes and then withers.
The point of the passage is not to drive us to the despair reflected in the lyrics of the group Kansas who gave us Dust in the Wind.
I close my eyes, only for moment, and the moment’s gone.
All my dreams, pass before my eyes… dust in the wind.
All they are is dust in the wind. (And then as the song concludes the lyrics become more personal and dismal…)
Dust in the wind, all we are is dust in the wind…. everything is dust in the wind.
The point rather is to remind us to make the most of the time God gives us.
II. We are wise to make the most of our time in this life.
“Teach us to make the most or number our days, so that we may grow in wisdom.” Psalm 90:12