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Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Desiring God Wednesday

What do you treasure most?

John Piper, in the introduction (yep I'm still in the introduction) to "Desiring God" says, "Christian Hedonism does not make a god out of pleasure. It says that one has already made a god out of whatever he finds most pleasure in."

Hmmmm....convicting, at least for me.

Piper also says, "God is not worshiped where He is not treasured and enjoyed."

Psalm 37:3-5a
"Trust in the LORD and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. Delight yourself in the LORD and He will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the LORD..."

Notice the words in bold, dwell, commit...those are words of endurance not just a haphazard way of doing things.
  • Trust - In the original Hebrew this word is "batah" and means to attach oneself, confide in, feel safe, be confident, secure. The basic idea signifies firmness or solidity. Denotes a confident expectation.
  • Dwell - In the Hebrew, this word is "sakan" and means to reside, inhabit, abide, to rest.
  • Commit - Here the Hebrew word is "galal" and means roll oneself upon, to be rolled (in blood), be dyed red.
What I think Piper's point is, is that we are supposed to have a joy about us as we trust in God. We treasure not the things God can benefit us with, but that we treasure Him! God is our Treasure! And we learn to do this by gazing at God, not just glancing at Him (Thanks for the word picture Grace P.).

I'll leave you with a prayer from "The Valley of Vision: A collection of Puritan Prayers and Devotions" titled "God Enjoyed":

"Thou incomprehensible but prayer-hearing God,
Known, but beyond knowledge,
revealed, but unrevealed,
my wants and welfare draw me to thee,
for thou hast never said, 'Seek ye me in vain'.
To thee I come in my difficulties, necessities, distresses;
possess me with Thyself,
with a spirit of grace and supplication,
with a prayerful attitude of mind,
with access into warmth of fellowship,
so that in the ordinary concerns of life
my thoughts and desires may rose to thee,
and in habitual devotion I may find a resource that will
soothe my sorrows,
sanctify my successes,
and qualify me in all ways for dealings with my fellow man.
I bless thee that thou hast made me capable
of knowing thee, the author of all being,
of resembling thee, the perfection of all excellency,
of enjoying thee, the source of all happiness.
O God, attend me in every part of my arduous and trying
I need the same counsel, defense, comfort I fount at my beginning.
Let my religion be more obvious to my conscience,
more perceptible to those around.
While Jesus is representing me in heaven, may I reflect Him on earth,
While He pleads my cause,
may I show forth His praise.
Continue the gentleness of thy goodness towards me,
and whether I wake or sleep, let thy presence go with me,
they blessing attend me.
Thou hast led me on and I have found thy promises true,
I have been sorrowful, but thou hast been my help,
fearful, but thou hast delivered me,
despairing, but thou has lifted me up.
Thy vows are ever upon me,
And I praise thee, O God."

Let me hear from you,


Anonymous said...

No big deal, but I am curious why you focused on three verbs in Ps. 37:3-5a, but passed by on "Delight".

In the context of Christian Hedonism it would seem the verb "Delight" would be the first one to be noticed.


jenmom said...

Fair question. I guess what I was trying to get across (maybe didn't do a very good job of it) is that when we treasure something, that's where our focus is. That's the thing we hang onto and spend our energy on the thing we "delight" in.
Trust in, commitment to, and learning to dwell in the Presence of the Lord should bring us the greatest delight, and joy in our lives.
That may not make much sense at this late hour either, but it is where my thoughts have been as I've been reading this week.