Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love, that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days. Psalm 90:14
According to psychologist Meg Jay, our minds tend to think about our future selves similarly to how we think about complete strangers. Why? It’s probably due to what’s sometimes called the “empathy gap.” It can be hard to empathize and care for people we don’t know personally—even future versions of ourselves. So in her work, Jay tries to help young people imagine their future selves and take steps to care for them. This includes working out actionable plans for who they will one day be—paving the way for them to pursue their dreams and to continue to thrive.
In Psalm 90, we’re invited to see our lives not just in the present, but as a whole—to ask God to help us “number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom” (v. 12). Remembering that our time on earth is limited can remind us of our desperate need to rely on God. We need His help to learn how to find satisfaction and joy—not just now, but “all our days” (v. 14). We need His help to learn to think not just of ourselves, but of future generations (v. 16). And we need His help to serve Him with the time we’ve been given—as He establishes the work of our hands and hearts (v. 17).
How might you grow in taking care of your future self? How does keeping the bigger picture of your life in view help you to better serve others?
Dear God, thank You for the gift of life. Help me to cherish it with the time I’ve been given. Thank You that when my walk with You on earth is over, I can look forward to an eternity of fellowship with You.
The superscription of Psalm 90 says that it’s “A prayer of Moses the man of God.” The description “man of God” is a term used some seventy-five times in the Old Testament to refer to one who’s a spokesman for God. Therefore, the term is used for the many prophets who ministered to the Israelites (see Judges 13:6; 1 Samuel 2:27; 1 Kings 12:22; 13:1), including Elijah and Elisha (2 Kings 1:9; 4:16). As a title of honor, it’s applied often to Moses (Deuteronomy 33:1; Joshua 14:6; 1 Chronicles 23:14; 2 Chronicles 30:16; Ezra 3:2) and David (2 Chronicles 8:14; Nehemiah 12:24, 36). That Psalm 90 is a song written by Moses (around 1526–1406 bc) makes it the oldest of the 150 psalms. Besides this song, Moses also wrote “The Song at the Sea” (Exodus 15:1–18) and “The Song of Moses” (Deuteronomy 31:19; 32:1–43).