Guest Author: Sherry Thomas
I was asked on a job application to list a Bible verse that is my life’s theme or my favorite verse. (Yes, the job was at a church.) Well, I have a lot of favorite verses. When someone asks me out of the blue it’s hard for me to pick. But the one the Lord called to my attention was:
One thing I have desired of the LORD, that will I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in His temple. | Psalm 27:4
Desire is a powerful word. It conjures up all sorts of images and because of today’s media, there is a negative connotation to it. However, in the truest sense of the word it means to wish for or to have a longing for something. This is not a fleeting want like you are passing by a Sonic and it’s after 8pm so you crave a half-price Banana Cream Pie Shake – I’m just saying… A desire is something that you spend time thinking about and often actively trying to obtain. If I think back on my life I have desired many things. To name a few: cool friends, a particular job, a husband that doubles as my best-friend, well-behaved children, a healthy lifestyle, the ability to eat a Banana Cream Pie Shake and it not affect the scale, and the list goes on…There is nothing wrong with these desires. When I look at my list, God has given me most of these things over time and I know that He too wanted those particular things for me. But the problem with these kinds of desires is, “and the list goes on…” Independent of God, we tend to chase after things in the world that are not meant to satisfy. Left to our own devices, our desires tend to be never-ending and ever-changing.
King David a.k.a. “the man after God’s own heart” wrote the above psalm with a remarkable perspective: ONE THING have I desired of the LORD and THAT will I seek. Granted the one thing he desires is broken up into three parts but the end goal is the same: an intimate relationship with God. David says he wants to 1. Live in God’s house (relationship), 2. Behold or gaze upon God’s beauty (intimacy), and 3. Know God more fully (intimate relationship). Some might find it weird to think of wanting to be intimate with God but my favorite definition of intimate is: marked by a warm friendship developing through long association. God already wants that intimate relationship with us – much more than a warm friendship He wants us as His children! This truth is evidenced by the fact that He sent His only Son, Jesus Christ, to die on the cross for our sins. Now, the good Lord is waiting for us to want that intimate relationship with Him. If you still can’t relate to this idea, think about this: You can’t get intimate with someone you don’t know. Ask yourself this, “Do I even have what God would consider a relationship with Him?” If the answer is no or I don’t know – we need to talk!
I have another favorite verse that I would like to relate to this:
Delight yourself also in the LORD and He shall give you the desires of your heart. | Psalm 37:4
Did you notice that “desires” is plural? It’s not that we are not allowed to desire multiple things but God tells us in this verse that if we can make Him our first priority, He can give us everything our heart desires. The beautiful part is that when we make Him our priority, when we spend time with Him, behold His beauty and inquire in His temple, our desires automatically become aligned to what He has wanted for us all along. If you are anything like me and scared of the unknown, you may wonder, “What if I don’t like what God wants for me?:
…I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. | John 10:10
God doesn’t want you to just exist, but to live abundantly. May His great name be glorified!