Hello my friend. This Psalm 49 is a strong reminder of the difference in values between people whose trust is in God and people whose trust is in others, in things, in achievements and in wealth. It’s a good reminder, especially in a time when we are in the midst of a prosperity hitherto unknown. We’re sometimes uncomfortable when it comes to thinking about how possessions and power and even privilege can become idols and we lose the purpose of life altogether.
I was touched by a statement written in an essay by a very spiritual, Christ-loving student. She said, “I wonder, Monty, if you had a bit of wisdom to share with me. I struggle with contentment, horribly. Is there anywhere in Scripture where I can see how Paul could say, ‘I have learned the secret of being content whatever the circumstances’ (Phil.4:12). I sometimes feel so greedy, I am always wanting or needing more! I do think I bring my husband down, because I so often ask of him things he can’t give me, i.e. a bigger home, new car, more in-style clothes.”
What a refreshing acknowledgment of need. Psalm 49 deals with that very issue. Vs. 10, “All can see that wise men die; the foolish and the senseless alike perish and leave their wealth to others. Their tombs will remain their houses forever. Man, despite his riches, does not endure; he is like the beasts that perish.” And vs. 15, “But God will redeem my life from the grave; he will surely take me to himself. Do not be overawed when a man grows rich, when the splendor of his house increases; for he will take nothing with him when he dies, his splendor will not descend with him. Though while he lived he counted himself blessed–and men praise you when you prosper–he will join the generation of his fathers, who will never see the light of life. A man who has riches without understanding is like the beasts of the field.”
How important to be reminded of the deceitfulness of money, of things, of this strange hunger within us to acquire. I think of Solomon who wrote, rather bitterly, in Ecclesiastes 5:10, “Whoever loves money never has enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with his income. This is meaningless.” So then I turn to Job 22:15, “Let the Almighty be your gold, the choicest silver for you. Surely then you will find delight in the Almighty and will lift up your face to God. My feet have closely followed His steps; I have kept to His way without turning aside. I have not departed from the commands of His lips. I have treasured the words of His mouth more than my daily bread.” We need to remember the foolishness of spending money on bread that never satisfies, and allow God to be our greatest treasure.
“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matt.6:21).
“O Lord, help us all to face this peril with courage and honesty, the danger of being lured into pursuing idols. Thank you for those whose hearts hunger after you; cause their cups to overflow with praise and thankfulness. Bless my friend who is alongside, Lord and those in whatever kind of deep need. You are able!”
Thank you, partner, for your faithful prayers. We trust in the Lord. Cheerio!