Teach Us To Number Our Days

Teach Us To Number Our Days

Deacon John Low - 17 December 2022

Weekend Devotion: Teach Us To Number Our Days

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Brothers and Sisters, as the year is coming to an end, what is on your mind? We may be counting God’s blessings through the year, thinking of our new year resolutions or busy preparing for Christmas season. But, as another year passes, God convicted me with the prayer of Moses, the man of God, in Psalm 90. <Psalm 90:12>, Moses prayed “Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.”


Here, we know that counting our days is not arithmetic, like how we countdown to our holidays, or counting how much money we have in our bank. Moses prayed to God to be taught how to number his days, because as human beings, limited and sinful, by nature we will not consider how many days we have left in this world. We will only count to the next big event in our life, for e.g. our wedding day, our birthday, or our child’s due date. Hence, Moses plead with God to teach us in numbering our days, so that we may truly gain a heart of wisdom.


It may seem a little solemn or morbid to talk about numbering our days especially when Christmas is around the corner. But without so, we may live on year after year, yet without God’s wisdom in us. Through the bible, God had already revealed to us that our days on this earth are short and fleeting. Life is brief and fragile, we all know the day of our physical birth but we will never know the day of our physical death. Hence, without numbering our days, we will never learn how to truly value our life and living on earth. In <James 4:14>, we also read, “You do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.”


So yes, we know, life is short, the world also tells us that we only live once, and we have to live it to the fullest with no regrets, but is this God’s wisdom? If it is not, what is the heart of wisdom, the 2nd part of <Ps 90:12> Moses prayed for, when we number our days?


Firstly, when we read the entire chapter of Psalm 90, we see that the psalm begins with Moses addressing God as Lord, the dwelling place throughout all generations. Then in the later verses, he spoke about how God had created this world, including us human beings and the judgement of man under God’s wrath. No matter how great, rich or mighty one can be or want to be, one day he will be returned to dust. From here, how do we gain a heart of wisdom? The verses make known to us that our God is not just a deliverer, a provider, but our God is an All-Sovereign God. He is our creator and we are mere mortals, created beings. All of our days are under his sovereignty; hence a heart of wisdom will come upon us when we live our days under the sovereignty of God. For we know that above all things, all our plans, all our ideals, all our desires, there is this sovereign and almighty God whom we ought to submit to.


Secondly, when we continue to read further in verses 4 to 6, and 9 to 11, we are being informed that our God is an Eternal God. Unlike us, our concept of time is different from His, He is above time and in fact, He created time. (v4 tells us that) Our thousand years to Him is like a day gone by, a watch in the night. Knowing this helps us to realize importantly that there is an eternity awaiting us after our days in this world. Our physical bodies may be returned to dust, but our souls live on. Knowing eternity gives us more wisdom as we number our days, we do not just know that we live once, but we live eternally. Hence as believers, we can then truly appreciate the joy of our salvation, for we know we belonged to the eternal kingdom of God and make Christmas even more meaningful. Whereas for non-believers, the best gift for you, not just this Christmas, but eternally is our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I pray that as we know eternity, we will all come to realize the purpose of our existence and our eternal hope in the days we live.


Lastly, knowing God’s sovereignty and eternity, as we number our days, God wants us to value today, or rather each day we live. Our sinful nature always leads us to worry after worry when we think about our future, but when we truly understand the value of our every moment on earth, it is about today. Today, God wants us to live in His promises and in obedience to Him, not wasteful living and drowning ourselves in insignificant and trivial matters that will come to pass. I pray that we do not need to wait till our old age to realize this, but value today for God has ordained our time on earth to taste and experience his goodness.


And may all our lives be like how Moses had prayed as he concludes the Psalm, that we are satisfied only by God’s unfailing love, not what this world can offer and may God establish the work of our hands, so that our time in this world can be used to witness and glorify our Lord and our Savior.

Deacon John Low

John is an ordained Deacon, who has been serving The Blessed Run Church. He is married to sister Rachel and they have two lovely sons, Noah and Jonah.

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