A spouse. A sports car. A house on the beach. A multi-million-dollar salary. What do these have in common? They are all wants I've heard fellow Christians contend God will provide because "He gives the desires of your heart."
God's promise here, found in Psalm 37:4 (NIV), is an encouraging one. Yet far too many who stand on it for desires like the aforementioned remain in waiting. Consider the lifelong single man or woman who has craved companionship and intimacy for what seems like forever, yet still remains single. What do we make of this promise in his or her case? Will God come through, even in the midnight hour, to deliver a spouse? He might, but not because of their yearning.
Hear me out. I'm a Bible-promise guy. My book, Activating the Power of God's Word, is all about declaring His promises over your life. But we must understand that doing so is not some magic solution to get all our wishes granted. Rather, we declare God's promises to get our lives and wills into alignment with His truths.
The Real Truth
Here's the real truth about Psalm 37:4 that you can count on.
Like almost all promises in God's Word, this one too begins with a conditional statement: "Take delight in the Lord," David instructs. In his next breath, he reveals the result of such delight: "and he will give you the desires of your heart."
The first clue to understanding God's intention is "delight." It means, "satisfaction," which itself is fully defined as "fulfillment of one's wishes, expectations or needs." In other words, the Scripture says to find the fulfillment of your desires in the Lord—the person of God, made up of His characteristics of goodness, love, faithfulness and so on.
The second clue is "heart." To be sure, it doesn't mean feelings or fixations. No, in Hebrew, "heart" is the entirety of a person.
Put together, these clues reveal a depth to this promise that far surpasses merely receiving everything you want. It's this: When you fully find your satisfaction in who God is, who you are is transformed more and more into His image. Consequently, the desires of your heart are received because they are met in God Himself.
The Source of Your Satisfaction
What does this mean, then, for you who yearn for a spouse? A nicer home? More money? Certainly, make your requests known to God; He absolutely enjoys blessing His people. But once you do, be careful not to live with your contentment hinged to receiving any blessing. Instead, live with your satisfaction in the one who is all-sufficient—who truly completes you, who is your shelter and hiding place, who is the source of your worth.
From today forward, stand on the promise that who you are is fulfilled in who He is.
Kyle Winkler (kylewinkler.org) is the creator of the popular Shut Up, Devil! mobile app. His latest book is Activating the Power of God's Word: 16 Strategic Declarations to Transform Your Life. Kyle holds a Master of Divinity in biblical studies from Regent University. Connect with him on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
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