Lord, let me know my end, and what is the measure of my days; let me know how fleeting my life is. . . . For I am Your passing guest, an alien, like all my forebears. Psalm 39:4 & 12c
Whenever we find ourselves in a place that fills us with peace, contentment, and joy, we can find ourselves imagining how we can own the moment or that place. Could we buy a home there? How could we get there more frequently? Can we find a way to make sure each of the days of our lives are that blissful? Essentially, we want to figure out how to recreate that moment and place instead of just enjoying it for what it is . . . a wonderfully fragile moment to be savored.
This scripture reminds us that we own nothing. “You have made my days a few handbreadths. . . . Surely everyone stands as a mere breath. Surely everyone goes about like a shadow.” God owns everything; we are only “passing guests” in this world. When we grasp that truth, we are free to stop our anxious striving for more, for euphoric fulfillment, and for ownership of life. As God’s guests in life, we are free to accept God’s care, trust in God’s provision, and be respectful of God’s creation. What a wonderful way to live! Like our ancestors before us, if we can come to terms with the brevity of life—if we can let go of our restless desire for permanence in this world—then, perhaps, we can get on with living it to the fullest.
As a “passing guest” in God’s world, what can you let go of in order to live more fully and freely?
Lord, I say I want it all. I act like I want it all. I anxiously strive to own everything I can—even life itself. Help me to let go of those fruitless pursuits. Help me to claim my role as Your guest in this world. Forgive me for my anxious overreaching, and help me to live fully in the blessing of this moment. In Jesus’ name, I pray. AMEN.