“Discouragement, distractions, and lies.”
A while ago in my Bible study class, the teacher said these were three main things that would keep us from doing what God called us to do.
The one that has been on my mind lately is distractions.
This past week I heard a speaker on Christian radio speaking about this verse:
“Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.” Psalm 37:4 ESV
My thought was that I want to delight in the Lord—to stay in that mindset and soulset–but it seems that too often I’m distracted from delighting.
When I looked up the word delight this is what I read: “Something that gives great pleasure or enjoyment.”
Some days I find great pleasure and enjoyment in my relationship with the Lord. Other days I’m distracted from that.
Not only does the Word say that I’m to delight in the Lord, but in looking up verses with that word, I’m also to delight in these which are connected to my great God, which show that I’m delighting in Him. The bolding is done by me.
–delight in revering your name. Nehemiah 1:11
–whose delight is in the law of the LORD, and who meditates on his law day and night. Psalm 1:2 NIV
–My soul will rejoice in the LORD and delight in his salvation. Psalm 35:9
–Great are the works of the LORD; they are pondered by all who delight in them. Psalm 111:2
–I delight in your decrees; I will not neglect your word. Psalm 119:16
—Your statutes are my delight; they are my counselors. Psalm 119:24
–for I delight in your commands because I love them. Psalm 119:47
–When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my delight. Jeremiah 15:16
As I looked up verses with the word delight, what struck me was how many there were that said God delighted in me. He wants me to take pleasure in Him the way He takes pleasure in me.
So as I pondered this subject of delighting in the Lord, I realized that what can keep me from it on any given day is to find more delight in the things of this world than I do in the Lord.
One of those “other delights” is food. I confess that I ponder, praise, and partake of food too much, and I’m not just talking about nourishment. At times I’m delighting in it more than in the Lord, and it even keeps me from delighting in Him.
My mind is more focused on “What can I put in my mouth that’s tasty?” than “What can I eat spiritually today that the Lord will provide that will help me through this day and draw me closer to Him and allow me to know Him better?” On too many days opening the refrigerator seems more important than opening the Word.
It’s not that God doesn’t want me to enjoy food, but He doesn’t want me to get more pleasure from it than I do from Him.
In the definition of “delight” it says “great pleasure.” I believe God wants me to find pleasure in certain things on this earth, but to find my greatest pleasure in Him.
Other distractions are TV and radio shows, reading books and magazines, time with friends and family, going on the Internet and Facebook, going shopping, exercising. At times I invite Him into these pursuits, but other times they draw me away from Him.
None of these other pleasures are evil, but when they come above the Lord and what He’s calling me to accomplish in this world, they’re hurting me and my relationship with the Lord. The main thing is that I need to put them in their proper place. We’ve all heard it before: prioritize.
I am called to be a writer. My desired goal is to write every day. I don’t. I had every intention of posting this blog days ago. I have a project that I should have sent out a while ago, but the above list of things have distracted me. When I write—because I write about spiritual matters—I am delighting in the Lord. I’m seeking Him wholeheartedly. I’m asking Him what to write and how to write it, and I’m learning new and wonderful things about Him as I search His Word. And I sense He delights in me as I’m going through the process.
The Olympic runner Eric Liddel put it this way about his running, and I could say something similar about writing: “God made me fast. And when I run, I feel His pleasure.”
Writing is one of the main calls I have on my life, but the things of this world often keep me from it.
What is your gift? What is one of the main things God has called you to do? When you do that, you are delighting in the Lord, and He delights in you at the same time. I pray that distractions of this world will not get in your way.
Today let’s embrace and live out this verse: “I delight greatly in the LORD; my soul rejoices in my God.” Isaiah 61:10
A book connected to this subject is Desiring God by John Piper
Song: “My Delight Is In You” Christy Nockels