Delight yourself in the LORD; And He will give you the desires of your heart. - Psalm 37:4
What do you desire? Do you want more things… such as homes, cars, clothes, money? Do you want to be admired by others? Do you want to be better looking or more desirable? Do you just want to be loved?
The funny thing about our desires is that they are a moving target. When you were a baby, you just wanted to be held and fed and nurtured. As you grew into a young child, your desires broadened. Of course, you still wanted to be fed and nurtured. But now, you wanted toys, and friends, to play games and to be entertained. As a teenager you started to notice the appeal of the opposite sex which opened up a whole new level of desire. Perhaps you always wanted a particular car and once you got it, realized you wanted a different car. Our desires are fickle and as you get older, your desires change. Desire is a natural part of who we are. But it is, like every part of our being, something that must be surrendered to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. 1 John 2:17 tells us “The world and its desires pass away, but whoever does the will of God lives forever.”
God promises to give us the desires of our “heart” if we delight in Him. The word for heart in Hebrew is lēḇ which refers to the seat of our emotions, passions, and desires. It is from the “heart” that our desires spring. As Christians, we focus so much on trying to tame or keep under control those desires which we know to be contrary to God’s laws. And we should, indeed, keep ourselves from fulfilling those evil desires. But God wants to go deeper. He wants to set us free from sin. He offers us a NEW HEART… with NEW DESIRES. In Ezekiel 36:26 He promises, if you are willing, He will “give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you.” With this new heart and this new spirit, we will find that our desires line up with God’s plan for us. And the one desire that trumps all others, is our desire for God. To know Him. To feel His presence. To be made clean, clothed in Christ’s righteousness, and granted access to God's presence. And like King David, we will sing “As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God.” - Psalm 42:1
The word “delight” in the Hebrew text is עָנַג (ʿānaḡ) means to be soft or pliable. When we are stubborn and refuse to repent, we are incapable of delighting in the Lord. Delight (ʿānaḡ) is a feminine verb; in the context of a woman who is delicate and effeminate, one who gives herself completely to her husband and takes pleasure in his touch, his glance, and his attentions. In a spiritual sense, we are to have the same “delight” in God. Do you see? If we do not desire Him, He will not – cannot – fulfill our desires. God created us to love Him and be loved by Him. That is our whole purpose. The first commandment, the one on which all other commandments hinge, is “you shall love the Lord your God with ALL YOUR HEART.”
My friend, if you have struggled to let go of some hurt or resentment, let it go and give it to God. If you are holding on to some secret sin or unholy habit, repent of it today and turn away from it. If you are consumed with a desire for more stuff, confess it and let it go. Turn your gaze, your attention, and your heart towards God. Make Him your first priority of every day. Delight yourself in Him. And if you do, I can promise you this without a shadow of a doubt… He WILL give you the desires of your heart.
Give it a try... taste and see that the Lord is good!