That's why the simple instructions provided in Psalm 37:4 are so helpful: "Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart." That's the order of life -- my delight in God is meant to come before my desire for stuff. But given the way my life often looks, I'd be tempted to say that I thought this said: "Delight yourself in the desires of your heart." Nope, that's not it. God wants to be the delight of my heart, and to come before any other desires.
Yet in the midst of those instructions, it's encouraging to see that God's desire to beat any competitors in our hearts is not a dismissal of the many good things we're involved in and surrounded by. God is no kill-joy! This psalm goes on to unpack the many ways God provides for those who depend on Him. And as we delight ourselves in God, trusting Him and relying on Him (Psalm 37:3, 5-9), He promises to give us the desires of our heart! Does that mean anything I ask for? I don't think so. But I do think it means that as we delight in Him, He will bless us -- and our families and our ministries -- and our weekends and our weekdays -- in ways that reflect the extravagant love of His Father's heart for us! I just need to keep those wonderful gifts in their place as I delight in Him above anything else I desire.
© 2010 by Ken Peters