There are some things that cannot be done simultaneously. One example is loving God and being selfish. The psalmist put it this way: “Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.” (Psalm 37:4)
Some think this means God will give you whatever you want, but it actually means that when God is my joy, then my heart’s desires come from Him, not from my sinful self. This has much to do with prayer, because if I delight in Him I’m more apt to pray from my heart’s desires, and what He has put in my heart is acceptable to Him. (Proverbs 15:8)
Delighting in God affects my emotions. It is a joy-filled thing. “Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory.” (1 Peter 1:8)
Today’s devotional reading tells of a man who determined to go to bed thinking about his love for Jesus, for he knew that our sub-conscious minds never sleep. Rather than worrying about problems or thinking about work, talking to God with a focus on his love for Him set him free from those toss-and-turn nights. He told of waking up each morning with the same words running through his mind.
The psalmist seems to have discovered the same thing . . .
O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land where there is no water. So I have looked upon you in the sanctuary, beholding your power and glory. Because your steadfast love is better than life, my lips will praise you. So I will bless you as long as I live; in your name I will lift up my hands. My soul will be satisfied as with fat and rich food, and my mouth will praise you with joyful lips, when I remember you upon my bed, and meditate on you in the watches of the night; for you have been my help, and in the shadow of your wings I will sing for joy. My soul clings to you; your right hand upholds me. (Psalm 63:1–8)
Prayer is taking the joys and burdens of our hearts to God, but it is also simply delighting in Him, loving Him, enjoying His eternal presence. Some interpret the Song of Solomon as more than a love story between a man and a woman, but also a description of the relationship God is building with us, a relationship of loving intimacy . . .
My beloved speaks and says to me: “Arise, my love, my beautiful one, and come away, for behold, the winter is past; the rain is over and gone. The flowers appear on the earth, the time of singing has come, and the voice of the turtledove is heard in our land. The fig tree ripens its figs, and the vines are in blossom; they give forth fragrance. Arise, my love, my beautiful one, and come away.” (Song of Solomon 2:10–13)
Like any other love story, this one develops through ‘quality time’ spent together, by listening to what He says and by expressing my love for Him. I’m finding that the more I talk with God, the more I want to talk with God. Communication with Him, even as I am asleep, is a delightful part of knowing Him.