“All the ways of a man are pure in his own eyes,
but the Lord weighs the spirit.” – Proverbs 16:2
I was speaking to my fiancee recently about our shared struggle with wasting time. We both realized just how pampered we are living in a country where even as members of the low-income class, we are so rich and have access to everything we need. Both of us grew up with tight budgets and yet we have always gone to sleep with full bellies. Add that to the countless luxuries accompanying the computer age. We live with endless entertainment options at our fingertips. We were bound to become spoiled.
I decided to take action. I listed all the things we need to cut out that waste our time. To much Youtube? Cut. To much time on Facebook? Cut. Spending to much time eating out? Cut. After setting my sights on cutting out everything n my life that hinders me in my goals my fiancee graciously reminded me that the reason we are led into fruitless activities is that we delight in those things over God. Our problem is not just our external lifestyle, but our inward joy.
We all have a tendency to make excuses for the things in our life that we feel are good. We may watch certain movies or shows or listen to podcast’s that contains much foul language and inappropriate humor. We can convince ourselves that enjoying that form of entertainment is ok because it does not make us feel bad or convicted. In the past and evenly recently this has been the case for me. There have been things I have enjoyed that is so carnal and worldly, with little desire for God. Of course, they must be cut out, yet if our only solution is to try to stop doing those things without taking the time to purposefully pursue God we will only live in constant moralism. We will only ever live for our own self-actualization and self-righteousness rather than the glory of God.
Consider the Psalm:
Delight yourself in the Lord,
and he will give you the desires of your heart. (Psalm 37:4)
Notice that Psalmist tells us to delight. He does not say when you delight, or if you delight, but he tells us to delight ourselves in the Lord. When we delight ourselves in the Lord He then grants us the desire of our heart, that is Himself. I have found I am most aware of God’s omnipresence when I am regularly taking time to meditate on His Word. His attributes of love and justice become very real to me because they are at the forefront of my mind. I also become more aware of my failures and distractions. Hear the psalmist when he says:
Your word is a lamp to my feet
and a light to my path. (Psalm 119:105)
When we meditate on God’s word we can properly enjoy Him because we will know Him. We will learn of who He is and what He is like. We will know His ways, and upon beholding His glory we will find our hearts delighted.
The second way to delight in God is through prayer. We must pray regularly. Without ceasing according to 1 Thessalonians 5:17. It is when we pray that our knowledge of God comes alive. In studying we get the head knowledge of God. In meditating that head knowledge becomes a heart knowledge. In prayer, the truths of God that have filled our hearts are poured out to God as a drink offering.
I know I need to do a better job of auditing the delights of my heart. Scripture is clear that my heart is deceitful and so is yours (Jer 17:9). Let us walk in purity as God has redeemed us from the impurity of sin and desires to wash us and present us before himself blameless. Most of all let us take pleasure in the Lord our God, thanking Him for all He has done and grower nearer to Him day by day.
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