“Hear my prayer, Lord, and listen to my cry; come to my aid when I weep. Like all my ancestors I am only your guest for a little while”.
Ps 39:12 GNB
In most people’s faith there is a mixture of confidence and fear, trust and confusion, peacefulness and doubt. They jump from being positive to questioning God’s care, from “Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine” to “Lead, kindly light amid the encircling gloom”.
So the author of Psalm 39, after all his depression and despair, asks God to hear his prayer. By doing so he acknowledges his dependence on God’s grace despite all his sufferings and questioning of God, and the fear of God’s judgment which he has expressed.
The Old Testament had no knowledge of a heaven after death. So earth was where God and his rule were effective for the ancient believer. Hence the poet could declare that his life on earth was a temporary stay in God’s dwelling. He was merely a sojourner.
It is good to be aware of the transience of human existence. Our years pass swiftly by, even though people are generally living longer. It is important, therefore, to make the most of the years you have. Get to know God better as the years go by. Enter ever more completely into fellowship with Christ. The two most important things for a Christian are faith and love – faith in God, however much of a struggle that may be from time to time; and love for God and one’s fellow human beings – and that can be a struggle too! So do not become too attached to earthly things, however precious you may feel them to be. You are preparing to be a guest elsewhere!
PRAYER THOUGHT Lord, I am glad to be your guest – here and in heaven.