Scripture: Psalm 102
Key verses: (23-28)
23 He has broken my strength in midcourse;
he has shortened my days.
24 “O my God,” I say, “do not take me away
at the mid-point of my life,
you whose years endure
throughout all generations.”
25 Long ago you laid the foundation of the earth,
and the heavens are the work of your hands.
26 They will perish, but you endure;
they will all wear out like a garment.
You change them like clothing, and they pass away;
27 but you are the same, and your years have no end.
28 The children of your servants shall live secure;
their offspring shall be established in your presence.
Reflection: This Psalm is a plea for help from God. The plea could be for a range of reasons, from an individual request for healing, or a king asking for help on behalf of his people, or an individual praying for his nation. “He has broken my strength in midcourse; he has shortened my days,” the Psalter writes. It almost sounds like the Psalter has resigned himself or his people to a short life. He is honest in his request for a longer life.
However, he quickly transitions to a reminder of the endurance of God. God created the heavens and the earth, the day and night, the sky and the land, all living creatures, and called it good. The Psalter reminds us that God will live as we humans come and go. Humans are spoken of in days, and God in spoken of in years.
There is hope in the long reign of God, and the future is trusted in God’s care. There is a hint of the promise to Abraham in the last verse, “The children of your servants shall live secure; their offspring shall be established in your presence.” God will take care of the future generations. We can live confidently and securely in that knowledge.
Prayer: Dear God, we know that you reign forever and ever, as we pass through this world like worn-out garments and clothes that are changed. We have hope in your compassion and security of the future generations. Give us the strength to keep this faith. Amen.
Author: Amy Speas
[Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].