Tuesday, October 04, 2011

It's Never Too Late for God to Bless You

Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread,"
How would you feel if at the age of 40 you have made a colossal mistake, lost your temper, done something that has ruined your life-career, forced you into ignominious exile? And then you have spent 40 more years there in obscurity, so now you are 80 and your life-work is nil.

Just being a good sheep-herder, that's all you have accomplished--except you have left behind a poem that is read at almost every funeral in the world thereafter: Psalm 90. And in that poem you have pretty well shut the door on yourself at being at 80 years old (vs. 10), far too old for any meaningful career. "We live for seventy years or so (with luck we might make it to eighty), and what do we have to show for it? Trouble. Toil and trouble and a marker in the graveyard." (Peterson version; actually, when Moses finally found a grave, there was no "marker," but the Resurrection Lord remembered where he was buried, for we read of Moses' special resurrection in Jude 9!).

Forty years of repentance finally fitted Moses for a world career beginning at the age of 80. Keep your wits about you and your heart warm, and it is never too late for God to bless you. And for younger people below the age of 80, there is tremendous Good News in the story of Moses. For sure, he knew all about discouragement as the result of failure. In his prayer, he prayed, "Your anger is far and away too much for us; we're at the end of our rope. You keep track of all our sins; every misdeed since we were children is entered in Your books. All we can remember is that frown on Your face. Is that all we're ever going to get?" wrote Moses in his poem (vss. 7-9).

At this time just before his beginning of success, he had a dark view of God's character, saw Him as, well, our Enemy writing down all our mistakes and sins, to hold them against us. Moses always saw God as a Divine Stickler for righteousness, but he finally came to see Him as not the "frowning" One but as the One "merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness" (Ex. 34:6), the One who always gives what He demands--"the righteousness which is of faith" (Rom. 10:6).
--Robert J. Wieland

From the "Dial Daily Bread" Archive: January 29, 2001.
Copyright © 2011 by "Dial Daily Bread."

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