“You, indeed, have made my days short in length, and my life span as nothing in Your sight. Yes, every mortal man is only a vapor.” (Psalm 39:5 CSB)
Well, that’s not exactly an encouraging thought, is it? Anyone like to think of his or her life as a “vapor?” Someone who lives 60, 70, 80, or 90 years or more would like to think that there was at least some degree of substance to his or her life, some legacy. The human perspective says it is so. History books seem to be saying that some lives have had real substance, real impact. The eternal perspective says something different, though.
In the eternal scheme, a life really is little more than a vapor. It is like the “dash” between the dates on a grave marker.
While this thought might be somewhat distressing and depressing for some, the psalmist’s point is not to produce that effect but rather to remind us of the importance of forsaking sin and seeking God. A few verses later he wrote, “My hope is in You.” Our hope for a significant life, one of substance, one that has a legacy to it is found only in a personal relationship with the Lord.
Lord, Teach us to number our days rightly, so we may gain hearts of wisdom. Amen.