Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart.
Who hasn't been comforted by this simple scripture? It is a favorite among most everyone, those who are suffering and those who are in a season of calm. This scripture puts the believers mind at ease, reminding them that their God knows their heart and will satisfy its longings in his time... IF we delight in him.
The delighting in the Lord part of this scripture is the tough part. Receiving the blessing in the second part is easy. Who wouldn't like to be given what they desire? But the scripture clearly qualifies this outpouring of blessing by first telling us that we must delight in the Lord before we ever see the desires fulfilled.
This is the true test of faith. Will we find joy and peace in God, taking pleasure in his presence, when we aren't receiving a "benefit" from doing so? When we are suffering, in pain or enduring loss will we still be able to boldly proclaim that our help comes from the Lord and we are delighting in his holiness?
When we quote this scripture we often rush to the second half of the sentence, finding comfort in the promises to come but we are missing the true greatness of this scripture: delight is found in the Lord. Delight isn't found in blessings or circumstances or answered prayer, even though all of those things can be cause for celebration. Our true joy and our true contentment comes from delighting in the Lord, no matter what we may be enduring, be it difficulty or abundant blessing.
If we are waiting to receive the blessing so that we can then delight in the Lord we will spend the rest of our days in a constant state of expectation. But what do we have to wait for? The true blessing has already been bestowed on us with the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. When we come to the realization that we have nothing to wait for, nothing more that we must be expecting to reach a state of fulfillment, God can fill us with the desires of his heart. The desires that he places in us will not be fleeting or temporary. They will not be dependent on our circumstances or what the world deems as desirable. They will be for the furthering of his kingdom and the magnificent plan he has for you and I to be a part of spreading that message.
First, we must set our heart on the ultimate blessing and sacrificial lamb. We must find true delight in the Lord. Without this critical act of obedience we miss out on receiving God's desires in our hearts. Ultimately, we'll miss out on the extraordinary plan God has in store.
Don't make the mistake of focusing on what your heart desires. Focus on your heart's delight - our savior and Lord, Jesus Christ - and he will take care of the desires of your heart.