Psalm 73: A Moment Of Clarity

Read Psalm 73:1-28

A Moment Of Clarity

But as for me, my feet had almost slipped;
I had nearly lost my foothold.
For I envied the arrogant when I saw the prosperity of the wicked…
Till I entered the sanctuary of God;
then I understood their final destiny.
(Psalm 73:2-3,17)

Haven’t we all had those moments when we’ve envied the prosperity of the wicked? We see the lavish lifestyles of the rich and famous—the luxury cars they drive, the jewelry they wear, the vacations they take, the enormous homes they own—complete with walk-in closets the size of the average living room—a gaggle of sycophants who tend to their every need, hang on their every word, and stroke their bloated ego.

And what did they do to come by such prosperity? Certainly nothing worthy of eternal accolades! For that matter, they did nothing to add any real lasting value to this world either except to look cool, rap out a few trashy lyrics, catch some air on a half pipe, shoot the ball through a hoop, or perhaps appear on one of the thousands of reality shows on TV these days and get famous for being famous. It’s not like they discovered a cure for cancer or solved world hunger or even made life better for even just one of the billions of people on this planet who could really use a helping hand.

So that’s my rant! And my point is, we sometimes look at how people like that live, and we envy. Perhaps we think, “Am I missing something? How come living the righteous life doesn’t bring those kinds of rewards?” After all, shouldn’t doing the right thing, living the holy life, doing our best to honor God have some payoffs here and now?

I’m reminded of the story of Henry C. Morrison, who after serving as a missionary for forty years in Africa, became sick and had to return to America. As his ship docked in New York harbor, there was a great crowd gathered to welcome home another passenger on that boat. Morrison watched as President Teddy Roosevelt received a grand welcome home party after his African Safari. Resentment seized Morrison and he turned to God in anger, “I have come back home after all this time and service to the church and there is no one, not even one person here to welcome me home.”

Then a still small voice came to Morrison and said, “You’re not home yet.”

And neither are you!

Dear friend, don’t get so earth bound. Heaven is your real home, and it’s way beyond any of the ephemeral stuff the rich and famous enjoy for this brief season on earth. Next time you’re tempted to envy, come into the sanctuary—that place of intimacy with God—and allow the Holy Spirit to give you that moment of clarity—and pray for that moment to become a deeply ingrained way of thinking for you.

“God destines us for an end beyond the grasp of reason.”
—Thomas Aquinas