You Can’t Take it With You

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People, despite their wealth, do not endure;

They are like the beasts that perish.

This is the fate of those who trust in themselves,

and of their followers who approve their sayings.

They are like sheep and are destined to die;

death will be their shepherd

(but the upright will prevail over them in the morning).

Their forms will decay in the grave

far from their princely mansions.

But God will redeem me from the realm of the dead;

he will surely take me to himself.

Do not be overawed when others grow rich,

when the splendor of their houses increases;

for they will take nothing with them when they die,

their splendor will not descend with them.

Though while they live they count themselves blessed –

and people praise you when you prosper –

they will join those who have gone before them,

who will never again see the light of life.

People who have wealth but lack understanding

Are like the beasts that perish.  Psalm 49:12-20

I needed a reminder this morning that you can’t take it with you. Bitterness was overcoming me, as yet another person misunderstood me, misunderstood my pain, made me feel confused and angry. And I needed a reminder of what is important.

We can’t take it with us. Not our wealth, not our health, not our jobs, or accomplishments.

And I do not envy the fate of those who trust in themselves. I do not envy the ones who prosper and are praised in this lifetime, but have no understanding of the life to come.

We take nothing when we die. And so all who understand, all who know the truth, stand on the same footing. Whether rich or poor, healthy or sick, strong or weak, we stand side by side, joined by our knowledge, joined by our understanding, joined by God’s grace and mercy towards us.

I can’t take my health with me. But understanding, by God’s grace, will save me.


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