Though he wrote twenty-five hundred years ago, the writer of this psalm obviously had experienced the “rat race.” The theme is still appropriate and relevant today. Men and women keep frantic paces just to keep their family financially solvent. They rise early and rush off to the office. They work long hours, and, when they finally arrive back home, they are too exhausted to sleep. So they sit up late, usually in front of the television, until at last sleep comes. Meaningful dialogue is nonexistent. The focus is on the job, not home, on the paycheck, not relationships. For what? Solomon knew the answer: nothing. The bread of their labor is sorrow.
But God “gives His beloved sleep” (Psalm 127:2, NKJV). When we follow God’s way, we do not have to get caught up in this “rat race,” for God will provide what we need, and He can do it so that we have meaningful time with our families. Then the bread of our labor can become joy, not sorrow, and we can rest, not run.