Keep me safe, O God, for in you I take refuge. I said to the LORD, “You are my Lord; apart from you I have no good thing.” As for the saints who are in the land, they are the glorious ones in whom is all my delight. ~ Psalm 16:1-3 (NIV)
Have you ever seen pictures of families abandoning their homes to escape wild fires, hurricanes or other natural disasters? Often times these survivors are only able to escape with the clothes on their backs and whatever possessions they can carry. They cling to small but priceless things like photo albums, pets, family heirlooms and other items with strong sentimental value. Watching them makes me wonder, “What would I try to take with me? What is my most valuable possession?”
Jesus had a unique perspective on this question. He told people, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal.” (Matthew 6:19-20).
Hearing Jesus’ words makes me realize that one day I will have everything taken from me. It might not be in a natural disaster, but one day death will separate me from all my earthly possessions. That is a sobering thought. So how can I hold onto anything of value in my life?
Psalm 16 offers hope for the future. King David wrote these words to describe the coming Savior, Jesus Christ. So the words of this song are at the same time David’s and Jesus’ words. In verse 2 David shares his most valuable possession. “I said to the Lord, ‘You are my Lord; apart from you I have no good thing.” David valued his relationship with God more than any other thing in his life. Not even death could sever this eternal relationship.
David lists some of the great parts of a relationship with God. The Lord was David’s refuge. He could go to God in prayer at any challenging time or in any difficult situation. David was also part of a community. He enjoyed the company of others who shared a common faith and hope in God. And finally God protected David from false claims and empty promises of other phony gods. A relationship with God was all that David truly needed.
The Lord offers the same relationship with you. God valued you so much that he sent Jesus into the world. Jesus gave his life on the cross to restore God’s relationship with you and all of mankind. He also destroyed two of our biggest enemies, sin and death.
As you consider all the ways that God has blessed you in your life, remember only one of those blessings will be enjoyed in this world and in heaven. It is your relationship with God. Value it and enjoy it.
Dear Lord, thank you for giving me so many valuable things in my life. I love my family and enjoy all the comforts of life that you graciously give to me. Forgive me for the times I have valued these gifts more than you. Help me to treasure you and my relationship with you more than anything else in my life. Amen.