This verse is taken from:
Psalm 103. 14-22
Thought of the day for:
3 April 2024

Having considered man’s failure and need of ‘pity’ or mercy, the psalmist now moves on to contemplate our frailty. In verse 14, if our composition is but dust, in verse 15 our comparison is but grass. For a very brief period, out of the dust of the earth blooms the grass, but having flowered it soon returns to dust. How hum­bling this is for even the so called greatest of men. Alexander the Great, who conquered most of the then known world, died as he approached his thirty-third birthday and as his brief life faded and he returned to dust so did his mighty empire fracture and fall, before also crumbling and decaying as do all men and their accomplishments.

The comparison to grass reminds us of our total dependence for the seed to be planted, the rain to water and the sun for heat and light. Our maker, of course, is in control of all this. He knows and understands us as He created us from that dust and controls our every breath. Not only are we at the mercy of His provision but also His protection. At any moment, ‘the wind’ of illness or accident or bodily failure could remove our tender shoot of life and we would be ‘no more’, v. 16. It was the Scottish poet Robert Burns who, having inadvertently walked on and ‘crushed’ the ‘slender stem’ of the ‘bonnie gem’ of a flower in the meadow, mused, in his ‘Ode to a Daisy’, that it was now beyond his power to save it.

However, from the seeming sadness and bleakness of our fragile lives the psalmist now turns to praise and triumph. We have a God whose mercy is not just for our little time here below but is everlasting; He has an eternal throne, power, countless angelic ambassadors and a boundless kingdom. This is all to be shared with His ‘children’, those with whom He has a ‘covenant’ and ‘who keep his commandments’.

There was a far greater than Alexander who walked this earth, also for about 33 years. Men thought He too had been cut down like the grass, but His kingdom shall know no end. He has triumphed and risen from the dead and, through Him, so shall we. Today, let each of be humbled by our grass-like frailty but let us also ‘bless the Lord O my soul’ for His eternal provision.


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