Wednesday, December 5                 Psalm 90                            Sandy Swann

Lord, you have been our help, generation after generation. 2 Before the mountains were born, before you birthed the earth and the inhabited world— from forever in the past to forever in the future, you are God. 3 You return people to dust saying, “Go back, humans,” 4 because in your perspective a thousand years  are like yesterday past,  like a short period during the night watch. 5 You sweep humans away like a dream, like grass that is renewed in the morning. 6 True, in the morning it thrives, renewed, but come evening it withers, all dried up.7 Yes, we are wasting away because of your wrath; we are paralyzed with fear on account of your rage. 8 You put our sins right in front of you, set our hidden faults in the light from your face.9 Yes, all our days slip away because of your fury;    we finish up our years with a whimper.10 We live at best to be seventy years old, maybe eighty, if we’re strong. But their duration brings hard work and trouble because they go by so quickly. And then we fly off.11 Who can comprehend the power of your anger? The honor that is due you corresponds to your wrath.12 Teach us to number our days so we can have a wise heart.13 Come back to us, Lord! Please, quick! Have some compassion for your servants! 14 Fill us full every morning with your faithful love so we can rejoice and celebrate our whole life long. 15Make us happy for the same amount of time that you afflicted us— for the same number of years that we saw only trouble.16 Let your acts be seen by your servants;  let your glory be seen by their children. 17 Let the kindness of the Lord our God be over us. Make the work of our hands last. Make the work of our hands last!

We are asked to speak about Christmas gifts – things we want, things we need, things we wear, things we read.

In Psalm 90, Moses talks about the beginning of time, “numbering our days, and returning to the lord for eternity.”  But it is the days between birth and eternity that count.  It says you’re not ready to live until you are ready to die.  In other words, don’t just count your days, but make your days count.  How you spend your time/days determines how you spend eternity.

Some folks might think speaking of death and being ready for eternity might not be something we would approach during the Christmas season.  Christmas is to celebrate the birth of Jesus.  But did not Jesus’ birth really show God’s way of preparing us, his children, to come home and spend eternity with him?  Think about it.  Jesus is the greatest Christmas gift ever.  He is all about the stuff we need, want, wear and read.  Spend your days like it says in Psalm 90:14-15, “Oh satisfy us in the morning with your loving kindness that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days.  Make us glad according to the days you have afflicted us.”

Wait, “Make us glad in the days you have afflicted us that we may sing for joy and be glad all of our days?”  That, my friends, is what it is all about.  We have our good days and our not so good days.  Both of these are the times we must lose ourselves in the will of God and give ourselves over totally to God.

So as we enter this time of Advent, let us be aware of the greatest gift of all, Jesus, and why we celebrate Christmas every year.  It is not the same old story every year, year after year, but a renewing of our selves each year, to gain the wisdom, the sorrow, the joy, the change, the essence of our souls.  So don’t just count your days; make your days count.  How you spend time determines how you spend eternity.

“Oh satisfy us with your unfailing love, that we may sing with joy and be glad all our days.”  Psalm 90:14

Prayer: For those that are looking for hope in the midst of despair.