So proud of my daughter’s recent devotional… Courtney Coiro, Houghton College
“Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.”
(Psalm 37:4 ESV)
This summer I read a book I’d heard murmurs about for years, Desiring God by John Piper. Piper’s premise is “God is most glorified in me when I am most satisfied in Him” (10). Reading this book made me aware that my thoughts about living in relationship with God were incomplete. God created us to enjoy relationship with Him and wants us to be his children, not merely his servants. Delight is central to the purpose for which He created us.
God’s intention for human existence is found in Genesis 1 and 2. One element in this design may seem hidden because it is so unexpected: God created us to delight in His provision and in our relationships with one another and himself. This is what it means to be “human.” We notice this design in everyday life—each person is seeking her own happiness. We can call this selfishness, but it is really evidence of a divine desire, which only God can satisfy. Because this good urge has been twisted by sin, we seek happiness in other places. Piper says this yearning for happiness is not to be suppressed but “to be glutted—on God!” (21).
The necessity and inevitability of such joy for the child of God appears woven throughout the Bible: “delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart” (Psalm 37:4, ESV). The wonderful mystery is that God can become the desire of our hearts; the more we seek Him, the more He is our only satisfaction in life. David praises the Lord: “in Your presence is fullness of joy; in Your right hand there are pleasures forever” (Psalm 16:11, NASB).
This duty of seeking divine delight is not limited to God. He gives us pleasure foremost in Him, but he also blesses us through his amazing creation. When Frederick Buechner first read of St. Francis being so in awe of nature that he overflowed in praise to the Creator, Buechner described the monk as “making a marvelous and holy fool of himself” (80). Initially, Buechner couldn’t understand this unabashed revelry, yet later, so impressed by the sheer goodness of things, he also felt compelled to erupt in praise (84-86). If we open our eyes to the glory that surrounds us, we also can find delight in God and bring pleasure to our Father’s heart.
Abba God, open my eyes to your glory. Thank you for creating me for holy delight! Let my deepest desire be to find satisfaction in your love.
Buechner, Frederick. The Sacred Journey. New York: Harper One, 1991.
Piper, John. Desiring God. Revised and Expanded Edition. Sisters, OR: Multnomah Books, 2003.