Live Devotedly with Great Delight!
Lisa Cooke

Live Devotedly With Great Delight! By Lisa CookeI love the New Living Translation of Psalm 119:111. It says, “Your laws are my treasure; they are my heart’s delight.” These words beautifully capture the author’s inner passion toward the ways of God. They express his devotion, his commitment to all God has revealed of Himself. To call God’s laws a treasure and a delight indicates that an attitude of honor and reverence toward those laws has been embraced.

We who love God know that it follows that we should love His ways, for God and His ways are not separate. Barnes, the commentator, states “Every command of God is in fact a testimony of His as to what is right.” Our God is a God of truth and righteousness and His ways or laws reflect His nature. We fully trust that His ways are the highest and best, and by walking in His ways, we express our devotion to Him.

Philippians 3:14 is the rallying cry for those whose choice it is to follow God’s ways. We make the “upward call of God in Christ Jesus” our goal and with each new day pursue afresh this high calling. But let us do this with delight because we see this goal as a treasure God has made possible for us to seek.

The enemy of our souls persistently tries to steal our joy, particularly in doing the will of God. He will subtly try to get us to focus on perfectionism or draw us into the rigidity of legalism, where we exchange delighted submission for mechanical obedience. Losing our joy results in a loss of strength as well, making loving and living God’s ways difficult. It is not God’s intention for us to lead lives of drudgery in trying to please Him but rather that our lives be a testimony to the world that serving God is life-giving! We are not ignorant of Satan’s devices and can readily recognize when our joy level is not where it should be. When joy is low, allow the Holy Spirit to restore to you the attitude of delight in “following hard after God” as the King James Version puts Psalm 63:8.

We should nurture this paradigm of delight in the laws of God as a treasure on a daily basis so as not to lose momentum in our pursuit of His high calling. Below are listed a few ideas:

  • Persistently put yourself in remembrance of the great value found in living life God’s way. No other way satisfies that inner longing for peace. Jeremiah 6:16 says “Thus says the Lord: ‘Stand by the roads and look, and ask for the ancient paths, where the good way is; and walk in it, and find rest for your souls.’”
  • Honor the sacrifices you make as you follow God’s will as love offerings to Him. He is mindful of every gift, great or small that you through your obedience give to Him. “For God is not unjust. He will not forget how hard you have worked for Him and how you have shown your love to him…” (Hebrews 6:10 NLT). When you yourself are also mindful of the gifts you give Him, you will see yourself as one who loves God. He wants us to see ourselves the same way that He does.
  • Live your life in the liberating grace of self-forgiveness. Often we humans will agree with God that He forgives us, but somehow we don’t forgive ourselves. We actually exalt ourselves above God when we do this! Of course that is not our intention, but we must believe what God says about our sin, that the blood of Jesus cleanses us from all unrighteousness. We may have to consciously forgive ourselves when we fall short of our own expectations, trusting that God is at work within us to will and to do of His good pleasure (Philippians 2:13). God, who begins the good work in us, will “continue His work until it is finally finished” (Philippians 1:6 NLT).
  • Let the rewards that God promises in His Word to those who do His will be an encouragement to you as you make your choices in life. Deuteronomy 5:33 in the NIV says “Walk in obedience to all that the Lord Your God has commanded you, so that you may live and prosper and prolong your days in the land that you will possess.” His faithfulness to fulfill His promises to us is dependent upon His personal veracity. Remember that He is the rewarder of those who diligently seek Him!

When the goal is a treasure to you, you find great delight in pursuing it. I pray that we all make the will and ways of God our great treasure, and that we find ourselves delighting in the quest for all that God has for us.