“So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom” (Ps 90:12, KJV).
Our days on this planet are so short that the psalmist described them this way: “You have made my days as handbreadths, and my age is as nothing before You; certainly every man at his best state is but vapor” (39:5). James writes something similar: “For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away” (Jas 4:14).
But let’s not underestimate what can be accomplished by that vapor! Some old steam locomotives were more powerful than some modern diesel engines. When ordinary water is heated to its boiling point, steam vapor produces power by its rapid expansion. If you watch a tea kettle when the water begins to boil, the “vapor” mentioned is the invisible gap between the water and the mist. Your little time between birth and death can have a serious impact if it is directed, as vapor in a steam engine, by applying it to move God’s way.