Monday, February 6, 2012

150 Days of Psalms - Psalm 37

How to get whatever you want!

Oooo. That sounds awesome doesn't it? Unfortunately, many people view God as kind of a Genie in a Lamp. You don't need to bother Him when things are going well. Then when things go wrong, or maybe just when you want something nice that you don't have, you rub the lamp, out pops the genie and you get to make a wish!
I don't want you to think I am comparing rubbing a genie's lamp and making a wish to praying to God and getting the desires of your heart. A genie in a lamp is totally make believe, but you really can get your heart's desires. Here's how it works.

Do not envy those who do wrong v.1
Trust in the LORD v.3
Do what is good v.3
Take delight in the LORD v.4
Commit your way to the LORD v.5
Trust in Him v.5
Be silent before the LORD v.7
Wait expectantly v.7
Turn from evil and do what is good v.27
Wait for the LORD and keep His way v.34

Delight in the LORD.
Have you ever watched a groom as the wedding was beginning. He comes out of the side door and stands there at the foot of the altar waiting for his bride. He looks a little nervous - maybe like he's going to be sick. He looking intently at the back door of the sanctuary. There might be a little drop of sweat on his brow. His complexion is a little pale.

But then the door opens! Everyone turns to see the bride, but many times I keep watching the groom. He lights up! His eyes sparkle. The color rushes back into his cheeks. He breaks out into a funny grin. He is totally delighting in the sight of his bride. (Excuse me for a moment while I chase a rabbit. THAT is why the bride and groom aren't supposed to see each other before the wedding. Not for good luck or to prevent bad luck, but so the two of them will have that wonderful "THERE YOU ARE!" moment on their wedding day - and everyone gets to see their joy and gets to celebrate with them.) The grooms delight is not in what the bride may give him. SHE is the gift. SHE is his joy.

So anyway... all of that to give an example of someone delighting in someone. If I truly delight in the Lord then my desires will be His desires. I'll pray "Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven." The things I will ask for will be the things that God wants to see happen. My delight won't be in the things I may receive or even in the answer to my prayers. My delight will be in the Giver - not the gift.

Then God isn't a genie in a lamp - He is the One I delight in. I want to be with Him. I will be able to say with the psalmist "The little that the righteous man has is better than the abundance of many wicked people" (v.16) because being a righteous man - having a relationship with God - is far greater than the riches of the world.

God promises: the desires of our heart v. 4, for our steps to be established v.23, He will not abandon His faithful ones v.28, the righteous utter wisdom and speak justly v.30, and more. Read through this Psalm again and see how God blesses. But delight in HIM, not His blessings.

1 comment:

Phyllis Hobson said...

I love the overview and depth of comments you made on Psalm 37. I, too, saw the "instruction manual" of the first few verses:

Trust in the LORD, and do good;
Delight thyself also in the LORD:
Commit thy way unto the LORD; trust also in him;
Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him:
Cease from anger, and forsake wrath

When I read those this morning I thought of how by just making my life reflect those qualities, how much better, peaceful, tranquil, at rest I would be. When you look over that list, it truly concentrates on my relationship with God. Yes, the "second part" of each of the verses gives the benefit that God wants to provide, the blessings He wants us to have. But the real benefit is the relationship. After all my years of marriage, it's not what Jerry (hubby) can give me or do for me, but it's the relationship we share that I cherish.