‘I have set the Lord always before me…’ (Psalm 16:8)
Read Psalm 16
‘The good old days…’ ‘The grass is always greener on the other side…’ How many times have we heard phrases like this said – how often have we ourselves used them? Usually we say things like this when we are disillusioned in some way, when things haven’t gone our way, when we’re just fed up with something or when we’re just feeling sorry for ourselves and bemoan our lot in life. Yet the reality is that every generation will talk about the good old days and we will all for time to time believe that the grass is indeed greener on the other side. But are the older days always better and is the grass always greener – or are we deluding ourselves?
Early Church Father Augustine once confessed to God, ‘Thou hast made us for thyself and our souls are restless until they find their rest in thee…’ and we get an overwhelming sense of that in our Psalm today. Here the Psalmist has turned from all the pleasure and vanities of the world around him to seek the presence of God because he knows that only then will he find true contentment. Yet it is more than that for what we have here is effectively a believer’s testimony, expressing his overwhelming faith in God for the present and his hope in God for the future – indeed for all eternity. In fact a closer look might reveal some Messianic hope in this Psalm, when the Psalmist speaks of the Holy One not seeing decay and eternal pleasures at God’s right hand – certainly in Acts 2:30-31 Peter appears to allude to that.
However, for us today the Psalm is a reminder that no matter what we might gain, achieve or attain here on earth, no matter what we might desire, seek or aspire to, until we know the Lord in our lives we will never find true contentment. Only when we set the Lord before us at all times, seek His counsel and pursue His ways, only then will our lives be truly fulfilled.
Lord we give You thanks for all Your goodness and blessings, for Your constant presence with us every single day and for the joy and peace we know as we walk with You. Help us to remain on the path You have set before us knowing that in You and with You we have all we need in life. Amen.
Question Of The Day: Who were the parents of Jacob and Esau?