Psalm 37:4 (NKJV) Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart.
In Psalm 37, there are many instructions for successful Christian living. Such as do not fret (v1), trust in the Lord (v3), dwell (v3), feed on His Faithfulness (v3), commit your way (v5), trust (again v5), rest (v7) and wait patiently (v7). These are some examples. It is solid food for the soul and satisfaction to our heart when in the application of these words in our everyday life. However, verse 4 is the most important of them all. “Delight yourself also in the Lord…”
It is tucked in the directions but nevertheless has the most impact. To delight in this passage is not in relation to my actions towards God but my relational position in the Lord. It is an effeminate word of a womanly position. It means soft and pliable. It would be the submissive. God desires a relationship with us first and foremost. Grace makes it possible in that our actions are now viewed through our heart rather than as a requirement. Righteousness is established through Jesus Christ – again a passive acceptance not a commanding takeover on our part. Every other motive and intention should be through the heart. Do you delight in the Lord?
Isaiah 61:10-11 (NKJV) I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my soul shall be joyful in my God; For He has clothed me with the garments of salvation, He has covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decks himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels. For as the earth brings forth its bud, as the garden causes the things that are sown in it to spring forth, so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all the nations.
One of the hardest things to accept in salvation is our helplessness. In a world of victims fighting for victory, it is given to us just like that. We are covered in righteousness at the whisper of His Name and handing Jesus all our sin and shame – the Lord makes us His Bride. The bride is soft, elegant and radiant. She is the receiver in the relationship while the bridegroom the giver. It makes sense in the Bible. In real life, there is a fight for equality. Owe no man anything but love does not apply to God. I owe Him everything but all He expects is love. My humanity struggles with that at times and I fall into a frenzy of doing and then feel empty inside. Have you left your first love? You thought you were following but somehow tried leading? The Lord God is the righteousness and praise that will spring forth from the nations, as well as in the individual life of His People. We must choose to delight in the Lord first rather than wearing ourselves out trying to earn free love, a gifted salvation and making the robe of righteousness heavy in our own misgivings.
This is not a word to the lost and broken but the worn-out believer. Those who give to the Kingdom but do not see the return. At least not as full satisfaction or exceeding abundantly more than we can thing, ask or imagine. You can work yourself to death for a church or ministry. You can serve on every committee. You can give all you have and more to the poor. You can do it all and never be fulfilled until you become the loving bride who delights in the bridegroom. Delight is a high degree of pleasure or enjoyment. It is marked by joy and rapture. The kind of pleasure that is gratifying. It is liking God on a personal level apart from anything else. We live in covenant with God not under contract. To experience a rapturous delight that is filled with ecstatic joy. Hard workers must become heart worshipers.
Psalm 51:11-14 (NKJV) Restore to me the joy of Your salvation, and uphold me by Your generous Spirit. Then I will teach transgressors Your ways, and sinners shall be converted to You.
There are times when this must be our prayer as believers and followers of Christ. When stress, worry, and burdens overwhelm us – it is a clear sign that softening is needed. God desires us and it is our pleasure to delight in Him. God will do it. He will handle all that falls under His Authority and Power. We must prioritize our relationship with the Lord first and then let all the details fall into place. Who wants to be discontent and dissatisfied? Those who do for the Lord and lose their desire just for Him will become discontent and dissatisfied quickly which will not send the right message to others. I believe the greatest message of our life is not spoken but lived. It is my privilege to delight in my first love simply because He is faithful to me.
It is not human nature to be passive. The aggressive and competitive nature of people often gives way to a passion for success. God has promised to make us successful in all we do if we love Him with all our heart. I love God. Do you? He loves you. Sometimes throwing up our hands in surrender is the absolute best choice. God – today I delight in You! I know I have a million things to do. I know that I want to follow Your Instructions as well do you. But today just for this moment, I choose to delight in You. Forgive me for taking for granted my first love. Forgive me for forgetting that You are my strength. Teach me to follow. Teach me surrender all over again. I can’t do a thing without you and surely wouldn’t want to. Thank you Lord for being you and loving me when I am me!
Psalm 35:9 (NKJV) And my soul shall be joyful in the Lord; It shall rejoice in His salvation.