“So teach us to number days that we may get a heart of wisdom.” (Psalm 90:12)
How many days do you have left on earth? No one really knows the answer to this question except for God. (Hebrews 9:27) Designed within each one of us by God is a desire to survive discouragement, illness and even approaching death. Spiritually and emotionally healthy people are willing and even want to remain physically alive as long as possible.
I led an excellent study by the ministry “Compass-finances God’s Way” called Set Your House in Order. This study is designed to take an individual or a couple through five weeks of bible study and practical applications to prepare for the inevitability of death – whether it is tomorrow or 50 or more years from now.
One of the exercises the study suggests is to estimate the number of days you have left on earth. As you can imagine, this exercise was very sobering. Assuming I live to 90 years old (and this may be generous!) at 365 days in a year, I will have lived for 32,850 days. At fifteen, the current age of my oldest daughter, I had lived for only 5,475 days. At 30 years old, when this same daughter was born, I had lived for 10,950 days. As of today, by my best calculations, I have lived 16,689 days and I may have about the same number remaining.
The psalmist said, “The years of our life are seventy, or even by reason of strength eighty; yet their span is but toil and trouble; they are soon gone, and we fly away…So teach us to number days that we may get a heart of wisdom.” (Psalm 90:10, 12)
Why is it important to number our days? Set Your House in Order says, “Numbering our days helps us to realize the brevity of our lives on earth and helps us make wiser decisions about how we use the time and resources entrusted to us.” (p.76, Facilitator manual)
Now it is your turn. Consider the average length of life of people you know around you as well as the ages of your parents and/or grandparents. This may give you an idea of approximately how long you may live. Then multiply this number by 365 days to get the total number of days you may live. After this, take your age and multiply it by 365 to get the total number of days you have already lived up to this point. Subtract the two and you now have an idea of approximately how long you may have left if you live to the age you put forward.
Did this exercise evoke any specific thoughts or feelings about life? Did it cause you to consider what you have done and what time you have left to do those important activities?
Allow me to encourage you to turn to Christ, your Lord and Master, and ask Him how He wants to use you in the days, months and possibly years ahead. You and I do not know how much time we have left on this earth. Whatever time we do have, may it be to love and honor Jesus Christ, who is the One we were made to worship.
William “Carey” Northington of One Master Ministries in Xenia may be contacted at www.OneMaster.org.