July 30, 2021 — Praying for the desires of your heart; How’s that working out?

“I was talking with one of my neighbors last night about praying,” Stan commented.

‘Prayer and praying are big subjects,” I responded. “Which part were you talking about?”

“The unanswered part,” Stan said. “My neighbor was expressing some frustration with unanswered prayer and what he called an empty promise.”

“Empty promise?” I replied. “What empty promise?”

“He was pointing to what he said was an empty promise in the Book of Psalms where it says that God will give us the desires of our hearts if we delight in Him.”

“It does say that, doesn’t it?” I asked.

“It does,” Stan replied, “but I think the first part is the absolute key, the first part about delighting in the Lord.”

“In what way?”

“In order for me to delight in the Lord,” Stan said, “I think it’s essential that I know Who it is I am delighting in.

“Remembering,” I commented, “that Jesus said that eternal life is knowing Him and God the Father.”

“Exactly,” Stan replied.  “And if I am growing in my knowledge of Jesus and God the Father, my delight in them will also be growing.  From that I will know more clearly what is on the heart of God and I will have on my heart the same desires as God.”

“So,” I said, “then God will give you the desires of your heart because those desires will be the same as the desires that are on His heart. Is that how you think it works?”

“Bingo and Amen!” Stan replied. “That’s what it seems to me. If I truly delight myself in the Lord, my heart will be aligned with His, and what I pray will be in accordance with His will.”

“Seems kind of like that if a person complains that God is setting out empty promises in His Word, that person might be some distance from delighting in Him.”

“It does, doesn’t it?” Stan replied.


Bible verses to consider:

Delight yourself in the Lord; and He will give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:4.

Ask, and it shall be given to you; seek, and you shall find; knock, and it shall be opened to you. For every one who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it shall be opened. Matthew 7:7-8.

Prayer:  Thank you, Father, that you want to show me what is on your heart so I will pray in accordance with your will.  I confess that too often I pray in accordance with what is on my heart without regard for whether or not the desires of my heart agree with yours.  Please forgive that foolishness and help me in following every step of your lead as you show me what is on your heart. Please, Father, show me when my prayers are self-focused and not in accordance with your will. Help me so that the desires of my heart are only the same as the desires of your heart.  Thank you I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.

Think on this:  Do you think there are any empty promises in God’s Word? Why or why not? How would you describe “Delighting yourself in the Lord”? Do you see yourself as delighting in the Lord in all things? If no, why? What is not to delight in? If you would like to have greater delight in God, how do you think that is going to happen?

One thought on “July 30, 2021 — Praying for the desires of your heart; How’s that working out?”

  1. Great devotional. For years as new Christian, my understanding of Psalm 37:4-5 was focused on the desires of my heart part rather than delighting in the Lord. I ultimately learned that I was to delight in the desires the Lord gives me. I finally put the horse before the cart rather than the other way around.


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