“Delight yourself also in the LORD, and He shall give you the desires of your heart.” Psalm 37:4
“Our Lord gives the answer to a difficulty continually perplexing honest Christians- “How am I to learn to love God?” Our Lord gives the answer, “Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” Act for God, do and say the things that He wills; direct your thoughts and intentions God-ward; and, depend upon it, in the slow process of nature, all that belongs to you- your instincts, your intelligence, your affections, your feelings- will gradually follow along the line of your action. Act for God; you are already showing love to Him and you will learn to feel it.” Charles Gore
Most of us want God to give us the desires of our hearts. According to this Scripture, though, we must first delight ourselves in the Lord.
What does it mean to delight ourselves in the Lord?
In this Scripture, the Hebrew word for delight is ‘anag (aw-nag’), which means to be happy about, take exquisite delight, to make merry over, make sport of.
From this definition, it is clear that delight isn’t a feeling. Delight isn’t the same as adoration or admiration. We can adore or admire someone from afar, but this isn’t so with delight.
Delight is a verb. It requires an outward response. To delight in the Lord, we have to do something.
What is it that we need to do?
When we delight in a friend or our spouse, what do we do? We enjoy spending time with them. We look forward to speaking with them. We are excited just knowing we are going to see them at the end of the day. Talking about them is our favorite subject. When people bring up that person, our eyes light up.
Shouldn’t this be the same way we are with God? Shouldn’t we make time every day to spend with our God, the One who created us? The One who saved us? The One who redeemed us?
We need to have an ongoing conversation with Him throughout the day. Ask Him for help with the problems we have. When we are discouraged or happy, share it with God. He loves to listen to His children.
Wait on Him and listen for His response. We can’t have a real conversation with Him unless we listen as much as we talk.
The more we spend time with God–talking to Him and listening to Him–we begin to delight in Him. We start looking forward to spending this time with Him.
As we do this, our desires change. Instead of having human desires, we exchange our desires for His. Then and only then can He give us the desires of our heart.