Psalms 37:4 (NLT): Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you your heart’s desires.
I recently got into a discussion with someone on this verse. This person was explaining to me how scripture is not true and applicable to our lives. In other words, God’s word doesn’t work; I’ve tried it, but I didn’t get what I wanted.
Well, like most people, this person in particular was looking for what God could do for him or her and nothing else. However, if you look back on verse 4, we can see that there is a condition to be met here. Take delight in the Lord and then he will give you your heart’s desires.
So, in order for this scripture “to work” in our lives, we must first delight in the Lord.
Okay, so if I delight in Lord, He will give me everything I want? I will be rich? I can be famous? I can live a multi-million dollar mansion?
Maybe. Maybe not. No, most likely not.
Well, when we delight in the Lord, then our wants and wishes should line up with the word of God. I don’t think fame and wealth is what we should be seeking for happiness. I believe “to delight in the Lord” means we are to have a committed relationship with our Lord. We don’t have to be perfect, but we must me seeking Him and trying to live out His word.
But there is more to this than verse 4. Let us take a look at more of Psalm 37 in order to get a clearer picture.
Don’t worry about the wicked
or envy those who do wrong.
2 For like grass, they soon fade away.
Like spring flowers, they soon wither.
3 Trust in the Lord and do good.
Then you will live safely in the land and prosper.
4 Take delight in the Lord,
and he will give you your heart’s desires.
5 Commit everything you do to the Lord.
Trust him, and he will help you.
6 He will make your innocence radiate like the dawn,
and the justice of your cause will shine like the noonday sun.
7 Be still in the presence of the Lord,
and wait patiently for him to act.
Don’t worry about evil people who prosper
or fret about their wicked schemes.
8 Stop being angry!
Turn from your rage!
Do not lose your temper—
it only leads to harm.
9 For the wicked will be destroyed,
but those who trust in the Lord will possess the land.
10 Soon the wicked will disappear.
Though you look for them, they will be gone.
11 The lowly will possess the land
and will live in peace and prosperity.
12 The wicked plot against the godly;
they snarl at them in defiance.
13 But the Lord just laughs,
for he sees their day of judgment coming.
14 The wicked draw their swords
and string their bows
to kill the poor and the oppressed,
to slaughter those who do right.
15 But their swords will stab their own hearts,
and their bows will be broken.
16 It is better to be godly and have little
than to be evil and rich.
17 For the strength of the wicked will be shattered,
but the Lord takes care of the godly.
18 Day by day the Lord takes care of the innocent,
and they will receive an inheritance that lasts forever.
19 They will not be disgraced in hard times;
even in famine they will have more than enough.
20 But the wicked will die.
The Lord’s enemies are like flowers in a field—
they will disappear like smoke.
Don’t worry…trust….commit…be still in God’s presence…wait patiently…stop being angry…control your temper…
These are all things that will help us take delight in the Lord. In other words, if we have a close relationship with the Lord we will be striving to trust, wait patiently, controlling our temper, etc.
Furthermore, did you notice that it said it is better to be Godly than rich? Oh, how many of us think that if we are truly blessed by God than we will be rich and have material things?
Lies. Lies. Lies.
As much as I liked the whole “desires of your heart” thing, I became very grateful for verses 8-20 as well seeing as during my discussion with “this person” I was beginning to get angry. The “us against them” mentality was raging inside me…then I remembered that the time for this person’s judgment is coming and for all those who mock my Jesus. It is easy to like this thought. After all, they are mocking Jesus. But we (and especially I ) need to remember that Hell is not what we want for anybody. We want all to come to Jesus. In all honesty this is not my natural inclination. I want them to pay, I want them to get what they deserve. Then I am reminded of what I deserve and the grace that has been show to me. Then I’m not so quick to “pull the trigger,” so to speak.
It may seem like the “world” is winning right now. With everything going around in our country, between new laws on marriage, sex change operations, race wars, police wars, and such, it is easy to think that Christianity is doomed. But we know the victory is already won and one day this will all pass away. We just need to keep on keeping on until then.
Be Blessed and Be a Blessing,