“Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart” (Psalm 37:4).
Oh, how we love this verse! It is probably one of the most quoted verses in the Bible. We all love the idea of God giving us our heart’s desire, but as I study this verse, I see a set of instructions we must follow to make this reward of “heart’s desire” possible.
If we look at verses 3-7, we see that we are to trust, delight thyself, commit, and rest.
Before we can delight in the Lord, we must trust Him. We must trust that He is a faithful God. We must trust that He hears our prayers for our children. The New King James Version expresses verse 3 this way: “Trust in the LORD, and do good; Dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness.” Get your spiritual nourishment from the knowledge that He is faithful. When we live each day with the knowledge that He is faithful, when we consume (feed on) His faithfulness, our faith will soar.
When we study this phrase in Hebrew, there are not two definitions. “Delight thyself” is together almost as if it is one word. The definition from Strong’s Hebrew-Greek lexicon is: aw-nag
“A primitive root; to be soft or pliable, that is, (figuratively) effeminate or luxurious: – delicate (-ness), (have) delight.”
When we are soft and pliable to our Lord, He molds our heart’s desires to match His own.
The ongoing process of delighting ourselves (being soft and pliable to Him) is committing our ways to Him. We ask God to order our steps daily for Him to lead us. If we do this and trust in His faithfulness, the Word says He will bring it to pass. We live in a society that doesn’t believe in making lasting commitments, but we must be women of our word. We cannot fight for our own way and our own agenda. Our children are desperate to see our actions match our words.
And finally, we must rest. This can be the tricky part. We cannot allow ourselves to get anxious in the process. Verse 7 says, “Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him:” He will renew your strength while you wait and rest. (Read Isaiah 40:31.)
What is it, my friend, that your heart desires from God? The return home of a lost child? The healing of your family? The assurance that God is ordering your steps?
Trust Him, be soft and pliable, commit every step to Him, and rest. This is truly delighting yourself in Him. He will bring it to pass.