A Tale That Is Told

W. Terry Varner
November 1, 2015

Many of the writers of the Bible speak of the majestic theme of immortality. However, probably no writer wrote more in depth on the subject than Moses in Psalm 90. In a very humbling manner the ancient servant of God unfolds for our meditation many truths concerning man’s finite nature. At the same time Moses points us to the infinite God as the only source of life, godliness, and immortality.

Moses writes “[We] spend our years as a tale that is told” (Ps. 90:9). Life is indeed finite. Yesterday is vanished forever. It will never return. We only have memories of yesterday’s joys and sorrows, hopes, and disappointments. What we enjoy now—this very minute—we enjoy by the token of God’s goodness. In one sense these years (life) are ours. The real question of the finiteness of our life is how am I living life now?

In another sense, these years (life) do not belong to us as each day and each year is a personal gift from our God. Our “years” are private possessions. These all belong to us in a very intimate way. They are as personal treasures and they are related closely to our personal joys and hopes. They are a gift from God in which we may seek joy and fulfillment; however, true joy and fulfillment for all mankind is found only in God through Christ.

If we should seriously examine life we will find that our years are as a gold mine filled with precious treasure. Yet, our years are like a fast flowing stream. The length and number, the joys and sorrows, and the labor and leisure vary from person to person (cf. Ps. 90:10). Life is given to each individual wherein we may seek peace, joy, a fulfilling life, and forgiveness in Christ.

How do we spend our years? This has always been man’s responsibility. “[We] spend our years as a tale that is told” (Ps. 90:9). Think seriously about what Moses is meaning. Think of your life and think of the tales that you can relate over the years you have lived. Life is really like a tale. It is a story that is quickly told. Then suddenly, and it seems only a little later, we awake from our “dream” and discover that life is almost lived. We cannot recall all of our past life, even this past year. This should lead us to seriously and carefully examine whether we use our time and life as the Lord requires of us.

Each day we live, we live with a door of opportunity in which we may seek to grow in the knowledge and the grace of Jesus Christ our Lord (cf. 2 Peter 3:18). Daily we have opportunities to take the time for prayer, study, meditation, self-examination, and importantly self-correction. To those who have never obeyed the gospel, there is our Lord’s ever precious call to “come” to Him for “rest” (cf. Matt. 11:28-30). God has always given urgency to our obedience. Solomon wrote, “My son [my daughter], give me your heart, and let your eyes observe My ways” (Pro. 24:26).

At some point, time will be no more. We will enter eternity which has always been. Now is the time for each to make amends with his Creator and with our fellow man. Moses pleads, “So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts to wisdom” (Ps. 90:12).

How have you spent the years of your life allotted to you? Obey God and seek Christ.