Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. – Psalms 37:4 (ESV)
It’s a simple but powerful thought. To delight is to find enjoyment in, to celebrate, to find satisfaction in someone or something. There is intentionality in this verb. The outcome of delighting, celebrating and finding satisfaction in the Lord is that he will give you the desires of your heart!
Here’s how this works: When I first fell in love with my wife we had our own preferences and convictions on various issues. However, as we grew in love, sharing the same space and time, I began to be more considerate of my wife’s likes and dislikes. After years of marriage, I can safely say that the things that matter to my wife also matter to me … at least most things.
This love-relationship dynamic also applies to our connection with God. When we love someone, their desires become ours. When we delight in God, we get in touch with his heart and his desires become ours. Therefore, we get what’s on our heart because it’s on his heart!
How to delight yourself in Jesus
Here are five ways that we can delight ourselves in Jesus.
- Practice His Presence. If I want a healthy marriage then spending quality time with my wife is a no-brainer. How much more so is spending time in God’s presence vital to the growth of my relationship with Him. I deliberately try to include him in every aspect of my life, not just the churchy stuff.
- Protect your heart. For any relationship – human or divine – to be deep, real and growing, it must include these three components: confession, repentance and forgiveness. God will not listen to my prayers if I harbour sin in my heart. God already sees. Bring the sin and shame into the light, turn away from thoughts and practices that steal your peace and make sure you don’t harbour grudges.
- Crack open the Bible. God has given us a beautiful love letter. Delve into it and feast on his thoughts towards you! Let Bible teaching from others be a secondary source of nutrition. There’s nothing like going to the source for your own sustenance and inspiration. This year I’ll read Matthew and Hebrews four times each in various translations. You can do something similar.
- Hang around like-minded people. Let your key relationships be with people who have the same passion to delight in Jesus! “Choose your friends, choose your destiny!” Take the risk of being accountable to trusted friends.
- Start taking risks with God. Take a course on how to hear the voice of God. He’s always transmitting; we need the right receiver. Pray for people who are sick; prophesy as you feel nudged by the Holy Spirit. You’ll begin to build your own story with God. It’ll be full of awesome ups and downs!
If you want a successful 2019, then make delighting in Jesus your priority!