(Discovering Inspired Religious Treasures)
Psalm 90:11 & 12—If only we knew the power of Your anger! Your wrath is as great as the fear that is Your due. Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.
As I prepare this devotion it is early March. Snow is on the ground and the wind chill sends the temperature into the single digits. Even though it’s cold you are probably getting anxious to put your backside on the topside of some machine and go loosen up some dirt. Old farmers called it spring plowing; we call it racing. However, you don’t just jump on your bike or quad and start racing. You’ve probably had that machine of yours in various stages of tear down in order to build up; searching for a secret formula that will allow your machine to handle better and go faster than it did last season. In the off season you are investing time, money and effort for the racing season that is before you. That’s all part of racing. You have appointed the days of off season to preparing for a new season of racing.
I have found that the Hebrew language holds some treasures for us. For instance, the Bible verses above are a prayer from the Book of Psalms which asks God to “help us number are days.” The Hebrew word for number is manah. Now if you remember your Sunday School lesson about Jonah, you may recall that God “appointed” a fish to swallow Jonah. Jonah must have been nasty because three days later the fish threw up Jonah on the shore of Nineveh. The word translated as appointed in the Jonah story is the same word translated as number in the psalm.
You see, we are not just to wait passively for our days to come. Like a racer, we should be using them to prepare for the future. All so we may be prepared for the purpose God holds for each of us. Maybe your chuckling at that last line and thinking what would God want to do with me? God has a plan for you; He knows you better than you know yourself. After all, God created you. I think He even wears a t-shirt with your name on it. He’s a fan of yours.
The Book of Acts reveals much about the missionary journeys of Paul. As you read it, you see who Paul prays about, what God wanted him to do, where God wanted him to go and what God wanted him to say. Near the end of Paul’s days on earth he wrote this: For I am already being poured out like a drink offering, and the time for my departure is near. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day—and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for His appearing. Friend, number the days before you. Appoint them to the purpose of preparing for the good race, the purpose God has in store for you.
Prayer: Lord, help us to number our days. Help us to consider what purpose you might have reserved for us in the work of Your Kingdom. May we be prepare, filled with Your Spirit and ready to run the good race. In Jesus’ name now and forever, amen.
See you at the AWRCS Races,
Pastor Al Kimmel, RFC Chaplain (#003)