He remembers that we are dust.
As for man, his days are like grass;
As a flower of the field, so he flourishes.
For the wind passes over it, and it is gone,
And its place remembers it no more.
But the mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting
On those who fear Him,
And His righteousness to children's children, - Psalm 103.14-17
Just recently I read a book about the terrible American Dust Bowl. It was all about the destruction of the Great American Plains and the beginning of the Great American Desert which began nearly one hundred years ago. It told the story of how unwise farming methods destroyed the so that the grasses dried up and turned the land to dust and then the winds came and blew the dust away. The dust caused problems from Oklahoma to the American east coast. It caused widespread death and destruction.
I imagined the images from that book as I thought about this passage. In just a short time the beautiful natural grasslands of the American west were wiped away.Where there was once life now there was nothing but death. Where there was once fertile ground there was not nothing but dust.
God uses that image to remind us of the brevity of our lives. We live our lives, we grow and flourish, and then we are gone and the dust returns to dust. All about man is temporary and is quickly gone.
But the mercy of God never goes away. It always remain. It goes on forever and ever. That is why Paul reminds us to keep our eyes on the invisible and eternal things of this world and not the temporary visible things.
All that we see around us and all the people we know will soon be gone.
So let us look to God's eternally abiding mercy.