Contending for the faith | Making Disciples | Equipping the Saints for Ministry

by Rayola Kelley

Q: “That verse in the Bible, Psalm 37:4 which says, ‘Delight yourself in the Lord; and he shall give you the desires of your heart’ is simply not true. I know because I am a Christian and no desire of my heart was ever granted by God. I have had nothing but problems all of my life. So, how do you explain that?” 

A:   Romans 3:3-4 is clear, “For what if some did not believe? Shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect? God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar, as it is written, That thou mightest be justified in thy saying, and mightest overcome when thou art judged.” In short, you may feel you have a right to call God a liar because He did not give you what you desired, but the Bible is clear that you need to judge such contrary conclusions about God as being lies, and whatever God has declared you must say to it “Amen, so be it, for it is so!”

      The problem with your deceitful conclusion is that it is based on ignorance towards God and not faith towards Him. It is important to point out a couple of facts. First, Psalm 37:4 is a promise. Promises of God have conditions attached to them. Hebrews 6:12 declares, “That ye be not slothful, but followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises.”God’s promises are not obtained overnight. The significance of being patient is that it points to unwavering faith that keeps advancing towards coming into a specific promise of God. The faith walk speaks more about the importance of the journey than the promise. The reason for this is because walking by faith allows a person to discover God in greater measure, for a revelation of God is at the end of every one of His promises.

      Secondly, this brings us to the actual condition. We are commanded to first, “delight ourselves in the Lord.” Clearly, in order for the Lord to give us the desires of our heart, we must first delight ourselves in Him. What does it mean to “delight” ourselves in the God of the Universe?

      According to Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance, “delight” in the Scripture points to one being soft or pliable. Clearly, “delight” in this Scripture means to have a proper attitude towards the Lord, and being tender before Him. How can one delight in someone whom he or she is not tender towards? To approach God in hardness due to personal agendas and unbelief, in arrogance because of self-serving ways, or in casualness due to lack of respect and ingratitude will not end in delight for either party.

      This tenderness also points to being effeminate, which is marked by delicacy or over- refinement. The reason we are to be delicate in attitude and approach is because we realize the only way we can delight ourselves in Him is when we bring delight to Him.

      The only reason God can answer the desires of our heart is because they are His. He is the One who puts the right desires in our heart so that He can honor them. However, they can only be revealed when we seek to delight Him by doing His will. In summation, these desires will line up to His will. We are told by 1 John 5:14, that He can only answer the prayers that are in line with His will. It is for this reason that it should be the heart desire of every Christian to seek out God in order to delight in doing what is right, acceptable, and perfect to Him.

      If your desires are so important that you have slid into a state of unbelief towards God and now are judging Him because He has not bowed down to them according to your standards, I suggest that you begin to delight the Lord. In order to bring delight to Him, I would suggest that you discern the real spirit behind your attitude towards Him, repent of any unbelief and a possible angry attitude. In other words, admit that it is not God who has failed you in His promise; rather, it is you who have failed to meet the required holy conditions of His promise. Keep in mind these conditions are what ensure a right environment. A right environment will maintain the integrity of our attitudes towards God, as well as a healthy relationship with Him.