The Secret to a Satisfying Life: Psalm 90
“The man or woman who has found joy in Jesus isn’t desperately searching for joy anymore, but desperately doing anything and everything to have more of him. They now see every desire and longing through the lens of having already discovered and secured their greatest treasure.”
Have you ever run out of things to pray about? It sounds silly, but sometimes I get stuck on what or who to pray for. When this happens, I can always turn to the book of Psalms to guide my prayers. Psalm 90 has been a tried and true psalm for my prayer life since it is one of the most poignant psalms about life with an eternal perspective. The psalmist gives a powerful acknowledgment to God’s authority over life and time.
Creation, life, and death are the themes the author draws out in these seventeen verses. The author reflects on creation, reminding us of God’s authority over the lands he formed and the generations he planned to exist. Another reminder follows this to point out God’s ability to wipe out his beloved people, which instills in us a reverence for our fearful, almighty God. Then praise rises in the form of gratitude for life as one experiences the afflictions of life in a broken world. Finally, the psalmist closes the prayer by asking for a blessing of wisdom and favor in their work for as long as God grants them life.
Something strange and beautiful I experience as I read through various psalms is reading the psalmists’ words but feeling as though I have already prayed the exact sentiment to God or have already written that thought in my journal. The creator of Psalm 90 writes, “we bring our years to an end like a sigh.” Anyone else
Each year is a testament to God. We are guaranteed “trials of various kinds” (James 2:1), but there’s a secret to not letting these challenging experiences break us. “So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom… Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love, that we may rejoice and be glad all our days” (Psalm 90:12, 14). Did you get that? The secret to a happy life is satisfaction in God. No job, title, relationship, accomplishment, or whatever may be your heart’s deepest desire can truly satisfy you. Only the Bread of Life and the Living Water can fill and sustain you. This requires a relationship with God. The psalmist tells us when this satisfaction should occur: “in the morning”. If you start your day going straight to work, you will be unsatisfied. Does your alarm go off and you immediately get ready for the gym? You’ll be unsatisfied. Do you open your eyes and directly begin taking care of little ones? You’ll be unsatisfied. In the morning you need to do the only thing that will bring you the lasting joy that will sustain you for the remainder of the day. You must meet with the Lord alone. You must read his word and pray. Only then can you do the work that he has for you and be fulfilled in it.
“Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us, and establish the work of our hands upon us” (Psalm 90:17). God gives us work, but it is for his glory. God gives us bodies to maintain, but it is for his glory. God gives us people to take care of and love, but it is for his glory. We are made to work but make sure your priorities are pointing you in the right direction. Remember to have an eternal perspective because this is just another year on this earth, yet it is a vapor in light of eternity. Brothers and sisters, 2018 will be full of things trying to steal your joy, but if you begin each morning being filled by God, you will be satisfied. My prayer for you as you enter 2018 is that you will stop looking for satisfaction in people or things or your accomplishments and that you’ll recognize you’re able to have full joy and satisfaction in a relationship with God.