“Delight yourself also in the Lord, And He shall give you the desires of your heart” (Psalm 37:4, NKJV).
Wow! That’s some promise, isn’t it? Just delight in God, and He’ll give you whatever your heart desires!
There’s just one problem: delighting in God isn’t exactly natural for us sinners. In fact, in Romans 7, Paul describes an internal battle that makes it impossible for us to truly delight in God.
So what’s the deal? Is God taunting us? Does He purposely dangle a carrot in front of us that He knows we can never reach?
No. As Paul goes on to point out (Romans 7:24, 25), Jesus is able to deliver us from this battle. All we have to do is accept His victory and cooperate with the Spirit as He transforms us into the image of Christ—and into people who truly delight in the same things that delight God.
But cooperation isn’t a passive endeavor. We can encourage this transformation by choosing to participate in certain activities. For instance, we can:
- Submit to God—rather than fight Him as He does His job of cleansing and remaking us.
“If you return to the Almighty, you will be built up; you will remove iniquity far from your tents. Then you will lay your gold in the dust … Yes, the Almighty will be your gold and your precious silver” (Job 22:23-25, NKJV).
- Cultivate the Attitude of a Learner—by seeing God’s Word as the treasure trove of wisdom He intended it to be.
“Let Your tender mercies come to me, that I may live; for Your law is my delight” (Psalm 119:77, NKJV).
“Blessed is the man who fears the Lord, who delights greatly in His commandments” (Psalm 112:1, NKJV).
- Meditate on Scripture—rather than rushing through a quick reading. We don’t get as much nutrition from food that moves too quickly through the GI tract. Similarly, we glean more from passages of Scripture that we take the time to really think about.
“But his delight is in the law of the Lord, And in His law he meditates day and night” (Psalm 1:2, NKJV).
- Memorize Scripture—and make it truly part of our psyches.
“Receive, please, instruction from His mouth, and lay up His words in your heart … For then you will have your delight in the Almighty, and lift up your face to God” (Job 22:22-26, NKJV).
“I delight to do Your will, O my God, And Your law is within my heart” (Psalm 40:8, NKJV).
- Get to Know God—really know Him, not just know about Him.
“Now acquaint yourself with Him, and be at peace; thereby good will come to you” (Job 22:21, NKJV).
“Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who trusts in Him! … Those who seek the Lord shall not lack any good thing” (Psalm 34:8-10, NKJV).
- Expect to Enjoy God’s Presence—rather than seeing our time with Him as a chore on our to-do lists. Can you imagine dating someone with that attitude? How much more should we look forward to an audience with the King of the Universe!
“They feast on the abundance of your house; you give them drink from your river of delights. For with you is the fountain of life; in your light we see light” (Psalm 36:8-9, NIV).
- Enjoy God’s Gift of the Sabbath—our very own weekly date with God Himself!
“If you turn away your foot from the Sabbath, from doing your pleasure on My holy day, and call the Sabbath a delight, the holy day of the Lord honorable … then you shall delight yourself in the Lord” (Isaiah 58:13, 14, NKJV).
- Focus on Spiritual Things—and disappoint Satan by looking up, despite his many attempts to distract us.
“The ones sown among thorns; they are those who hear the word, but the cares of the world, and the delight in riches, and the desire for other things, enter in and choke the word, and it proves unfruitful” (Mark 4:18-19, RSV).
What delights does God have waiting for you today?