Searching for the Answer, living a lifestyle of repentance that pleases God
Searching for the Answer
¹ I said, “I will watch my ways and keep my tongue from sin; I will put a muzzle on my mouth while in the presence of the wicked.”
² So I remained utterly silent, not even saying anything good. But my anguish increased;
³ my heart grew hot within me. While I meditated, the fire burned; then I spoke with my tongue:
⁴ “Show me, LORD, my life’s end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting my life is.
⁵ You have made my days a mere handbreadth; the span of my years is as nothing before you. Everyone is but a breath, even those who seem secure.
⁶ “Surely everyone goes around like a mere phantom; in vain they rush about, heaping up wealth without knowing whose it will finally be.
⁷ “But now, LORD, what do I look for? My hope is in you.
⁸ Save me from all my transgressions; do not make me the scorn of fools.
⁹ I was silent; I would not open my mouth, for you are the one who has done this.
¹⁰ Remove your scourge from me; I am overcome by the blow of your hand.
¹¹ When you rebuke and discipline anyone for their sin, you consume their wealth like a moth— surely everyone is but a breath.
¹² “Hear my prayer, LORD, listen to my cry for help; do not be deaf to my weeping. I dwell with you as a foreigner, a stranger, as all my ancestors were.
¹³ Look away from me, that I may enjoy life again before I depart and am no more.”
Life Is Short (39:1–6)
The psalmist held his tongue so he would not speak any evil, but then he has a divine revelation that he cannot keep inside—he has to speak up. He passionately confesses before God that life is fragile and fleeting. He realizes that those who seem secure and store up wealth are doing so in vain, for it could all disappear at any moment. We may likewise have moments in life when we come face-to-face with the frailty of human existence. Being confronted with our own mortality puts a lot of things into perspective, and it helps us realize what is truly important. In the short time we have on this earth, let us devote our lives to knowing God and serving Him with all that we have.
Meditate on the psalmist’s confession about the frailty of life. What priorities might you need to reorder in view of this truth?
Final Plea (39:7–13)
Desperate to find meaning in his life, the psalmist declares that his hope is in the Lord. He understands that his present suffering is God disciplining him for his sin, and he humbly pleads with God for salvation. He longs for forgiveness and restoration so that he might enjoy life in God’s presence again. He realizes that life is too short to be burdened by sin, and he wants to live out his short time on earth in accordance with God’s will. True joy, in the end, does not come from anything this world can offer. It comes from being in right relationship with our Lord and Creator, and finding our identity and purpose in Him.
Why is confession a necessary practice in our walk with God? Search your heart and spend some time in confession today.
Father, make my heart sensitive to sin so that I can live a lifestyle of repentance that pleases You. Help me not to waste this precious life You have given me but to use it to bring more people into Your kingdom. In Jesus’ name, amen.