Let us take an honest look at ourselves. Consider our possessions - what do we have in this life that God did not give to us? Some WILL and DO say, “well, I worked hard for thus and such, so I deserve it!” This is all fine. But where did you get the knowledge, wisdom, and expertise to not just perform that job or service and do it correctly so that someone would reimburse with either a salary or some sort of monetary compensation? Who opened the door for this employer or that one over there, to make a place at his or her organization so that a job can be had? Who put it in the mind of the two or four people interviewing you, that this is the person who should be hired, instead of the other 49 of the 50 who had the same qualifications?
You know who did everything just spoken of above? God did. He is not only the One Who makes these appointments of His Providence but He provides the means for us to have good things. The good things we eat, come from God. The warm home in the winter, and cool in the summer home we live in with our families, comes from God. The vehicle we drive, which takes us safely to our job and back or to visit family for Easter and Thanksgiving, comes from God. Did we work for it? Yes. Did we work hard for it and show up on time and obey the rules? Yes. Did we manage it properly, so bills could be paid, yet still family time be made special? Yes. But it was all because our loving Heavenly Father smiles His Grace, Love, and Goodness upon us! As the half-brother of our Lord Jesus – James says “Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow" (James 1:17).
Some will say, doesn’t the evil and wicked or even the non-believer in this world do just as well, or even better financially than most of God’s people? Yes, this is true. The same sun that shines on us, shines on them. The same rain, and snow etc….also falls on them. God loves even them, just as He loved us before we repented, got saved and became Christians. In fact, God leaves the doors open for those who are lost to come to Him and make peace, before it is too late. If we want to be really good Christians, we will pray for the wicked to turn to Christ.
In Psalm 103 verse 5, we have yet another reason for us to “bless the Lord” – because of that delicious chocolate bar you just ate or the running shoes you just put on for gym class. He is generous beyond measure and we cannot outgive God. Speaking of this, the second part of this verse is even more instructive. We always hear that “youth is wasted on the young”. This is true. A lot of us did things in our youth, which wasted so much time, or channeled our energies into the wrong direction that we all wished we could do it all again. Of course, this is impossible, but the experience of misspent youth can help mold us into even better Christians and witnesses for the Lord. There are many Fourth Quarter Christians like myself, who are in the best years of our lives. We are living proof of our “youth being renewed….” as the verse says.
Designed by the Author of Life for those who are seasoned, this is actually more of an exhortation the follower of Christ who has followed Him for a long time to stay the course. We stay the course not just because He gives us the good things we described above, but because He is the Source of Our Strength. Towards that, He reminds us in Isaiah 40:31 of this truth:
Yet those who wait for the LORD
Will gain new strength;
They will mount up with wings like eagles,
They will run and not get tired,
They will walk and not become weary.