Children's Ministry Blog
Krystal's Blog will be a place to discuss current events, topics of interest and importance to the families of our church and access to helpful resources for parents all cast against a spiritual backdrop. Check it out at http://dbchildrensministry.wordpress.com.
Delighting in the Lord – Transparency in Late Night Reflections
March 19, 2015
Unfortunately, I don’t do too well at picking up social cues. Sometimes it’s hard for me to take a hint. Although I am analytical and reflective, socially I can be a bit clueless at times. So, that’s exactly how I feel at this moment. I feel as though something that I should have known, been aware of and fully internalized weeks ago is just now finally hitting home.
On February 15th I shared a sermon, “Our Response to the Greatest Love There Is”. It was Valentine’s Weekend and I was feeling giddy and full, swirling in the whirlwind of love. Sentiments of love were popping out my pores and I was ready and willing to share with anyone that would listen what an awesome God we serve and how He deserves no less than our very lives. In fact, I talked about how we can react to His undying, unyielding, unfailing and undeserved love (1. Accept His gift of salvation, 2. Love Him through a lifestyle of worship, and 3. Love others with His love).
But, it’s funny how quickly a great sermon gets filed away and we get side-tracked by the demands of our daily lives, the desires of our flesh and the disillusionment produced from current situations. To an extent, that is what has happened to me. I deposited the word that God had given me and assumed that I was done. That from there, God would work on individual hearts to convict, compel or captivate as He saw fit. So yes, I left it all on the altar so He could do the work. Little did I know, that work would be done on me.
To be clear, for the past month, I have heard the question being flipped back on me. With the announcement of our 21-day corporate fast, “Krystal, what is your response?” Enjoying an evening of painting with a wonderful friend, “What are you doing with my love?” Then tonight, “Do you seek to please me?”
Each inquiry made me think. But tonight’s actually prompted me to some level of action. It was earlier this evening that I was reminded of the 4th verse in Psalm 37, that is sometimes taken out of context, “He will give you the desires of your heart.” This is good news, right! The Lord will bless me. He loves me and will provide for me and my wants.
Yes, I am guilty of it. I loudly boast the “b” clause but sometimes forget the first part- “Delight yourself in the Lord; And He will give you the desires of your heart.” As a matter of fact, let’s back up a bit and look at the verse before and the verse after,
3Trust in the LORD and do good; Dwell in the land and cultivate faithfulness. 4Delight yourself in the LORD; And He will give you the desires of your heart. 5Commit your way to the LORD, Trust also in Him, and He will do it.…
Darn! It’s not true that God is my personal genie and whatever I want He will gladly blink it into existence? There’s some level of responsibility on my part? Oh yes. There’s an “if…then” relationship going on here. For, it says that IF I:
- Trust in the Lord (implies obedience, faithfulness, submission)
- Do not what I want but what He has defined as “good” – for my flesh often doesn’t desire to do good
- Abide in the place where He has set me (Lord, am I still here? Single, Child-less, fill-in-the-blank for yourself)
- Grow in the areas that He has called me to wholeheartedly serve in
All leading to delighting in Him…
THEN, He will give me the desires of my heart.
I believe the entire “if” clause embodies what it means to love God and maintain a lifestyle of worship. It means disciplining my self to the point in which what He has asked and requires of a relationship with me is second-nature, becomes who I am and what I do. In fact, it means letting go of my agenda and fully committing my life into His hands.
I feel like I do this. There are periods where I am on fire and seem to get it right. But then those periods of willfulness come in and I don’t quite hit the mark. What happens? I’m reminded of the fact that doing good isn’t a passive undertaking. To the contrary, it requires hard work (sounds like something I’ve said before, huh). It means daily dying to the flesh, which is easier said than done. The only effective way of daily dying is by counteracting my natural inclination towards sin with a daily abiding in Jesus. For, immersion into His word, communing with the Father and being strengthened by the Holy Spirit is the only way that I will be able to stand. But too many times I forfeit the opportunity of “delighting” myself in Him and trade in quality time with the Father for the momentary pleasures of this world (in this case binge watching Hulu, chatting on the phone, numbing my taste buds with unhealthy food).
This takes me back to the question that God threw out at me tonight, “Do you seek to please me?” Unfortunately the answer is not always “yes”. In fact, too many times the answer is “no”. This brings to mind something else from tonight. I left my evening class just so tired. All I could think about was my bed. I was having an internal struggle because I knew the commitment to spend quality time with God each night during this corporate fast was going to go unfilled. Although not materialized into an intelligible thought, there was a desire to somehow get the strength to spend that time with Him. But how? I was just so tired.
But, isn’t that how He works! He gives you strength and a yearning to do what your body doesn’t feel up to. Like writing this blog post right now (which isn’t a quick 5 minute task). So, I came home and decided I’d read a few pages in the book I’ve avoided for the last year “Sassy, Single, & Satisfied” (the journey I’m taking as I read that book is best saved for a later date- lol). But that’s where tonight’s question came from. The last page was talking about being a lover that aims to please- me loving God so much and showing it in very real ways that He can’t help but be moved by. Thus, taking me back to the passage in Psalms- how to be an awesome lover.
It is not enough to say that I can’t love Him fully and completely in my own strength. For at times I say that but don’t pair with it the intentionality of pressing into His presence, exposing my vulnerabilities and inadequacies and explicitly pleading for His grace to empower me in those areas where the frailty of my human existence outweighs my desire to do right by Him.
So, this too is a lesson for me. In order to love Him in the way that He wants, needs and requires me to love Him I need to boldly ask Him to help me, teach me, mold me so my love is pleasing to Him, brings Him joy and glorifies His name. Yes, this is what my response to the greatest love there is needs to be- daily delighting in Him and loving Him passionately, by the power of His grace.
Hopefully the transparency of my late night reflection triggers something for you. Feel free to share, as it may encourage others.
Questions? Comments? Email me at email@example.com.