READING: Psalm 67
Some people see blessings as the reward for their hard work. Others view blessings as the means to prepare for a prosperous retirement; they save for the “rainy days” to come in the future. Still others see them as a sign of significance and power, making sure that others know just how much they have.
The psalmist, on the other hand, tells us clearly why God blesses us: He blesses us so that His “way may be known on earth, [His] salvation among all nations” (Psa. 67:2). He looks on us with favor so that via our blessings, the nations might know His name; He produces the harvest in our fields so that He might draw to Himself the peoples of the earth. The goal – repeated twice in the psalm for emphasis – is: “Let the peoples praise You, God; let all the peoples praise You” (Psa. 67:3, 5).
This text, then, challenges us to consider how we might invest our blessings eternally. We might, for example, set aside funds to do mission trips . . . or to increase our giving to God’s church . . . or to support the work of missionaries . . . or to assist in Bible translation . . . or to train the next generation of pastors and missionaries . . . or even to move overseas and support ourselves as cross-cultural workers for the rest of our lives. The option we do not have is to spend the money on ourselves, buying temporary stuff that brings only fleeting excitement.
Frankly, Pam and I work hard to support God’s work among the nations, but this psalm pushes me to ask again, “Do we receive God’s blessings graciously, and then truly, sacrificially give them so the peoples will praise Him?” Perhaps it does the same for you.
PRAYER: “God, remind me daily that Your blessings are not for my sake.”
TOMORROW’S READING: Psalm 100
*devotion first published in 2017