I ran across a quote yesterday that really struck me. It goes like this, “Our culture diverts our attention from the present…its over-extension and compulsive busyness sends us searching for quick ways for life to be better.” How true! We certainly live at a time, perhaps more than any other, when we are led to believe that we can have bigger and better. We can have a better TV or car. A better job. A better spouse. In general, a better life. And, we are told, it is simply up to us to pursue this better life.
The net effect of this kind of thinking, however, is that we can become entirely unsatisfied with today. If something better lies before us, how can we be content with what we have right now? The irony here is that the only day we get to live is today. As promising as tomorrow might sound, our only reality is this day. And yet, because of culture’s promise of the future, many of us are left without any real joy or peace in our current reality.
So what are we to do? Psalm 90:12 says, “Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” Do you know who penned these words? Not King David or any of his skilled musicians, who spent much of their lives enjoying the fulfillment of God’s promises. No, this Psalm was written by MOSES, a man who spent 40 years in the hot, dry desert while looking forward to the Promised Land. Rather than being overcome by his longing for “what might be”, Moses wanted to see God in his current situation. So what did he do? He PRAISED. He wrote, “Satisfy us each morning with your unfailing love, so we may sing for joy to the end of our lives.” (Ps. 90:14) Moses realized that the key to joy was the daily reality of God and his unfailing love towards him.
The single greatest antidote I know to discontentment with today is choosing to praise God for His goodness and His gifts. Praise causes us to stop and look around at what we do have- both in the physical realm and the spiritual one as well. When we recognize all of God’s tremendous blessings, we can recapture joy for today!
Psalm 103:2-8 Praise the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits-- who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's. The LORD works righteousness and justice for all the oppressed. He made known his ways to Moses, his deeds to the people of Israel: The LORD is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love.
May you find JOY in the Lord TODAY!