Looking for joy in all the wrong places


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

The verse above is usually thought of in terms of “If I delight myself in the Lord, then He will give me whatever I want…that boyfriend, or relationship, or job, etc.”  And you know, sometimes the Lord does bless us with things like that…and those things do make us happy.  But Father has taught me something else over the course of my 33 years.  If I delight myself in Him, then the desires of my heart will be Him. Though the things that the Father chooses to bless my life with make me happy, sometimes they leave me frustrated and unsatisfied. I get frustrated with people because so many times I feel like I need them to make me happy. Then when they aren’t there for me, or unresponsive, or distant, I get mad and think they don’t care. When in actuality the problem is more about me.

God is teaching me a very valuable lesson that I will continue to learn for years to come. God is teaching me that He will never give me anything in life that will give me more pleasure than I can get from Him alone–no relationship, nor friendship, nor husband, nor family, nor sports car, nor curve flattering new jeans, nor child. No, nothing on earth will give me more joy than Jesus. I’ve had to learn this lesson the hard way many times through hurt feelings, loneliness, frustration, bad attitudes, harsh tongue, etc. Thank goodness that God is so faithful in loving me just the way that I am, but also teaching me and guiding me and molding me into the person He would have me be.  Sometimes these lessons are hard to learn and may cause some hurt in our lives, but how great our Father’s love for us that He continues to mold us into His likeness!

My challenge to each of you (as well as myself):  Each time we get frustrated by each other, hurt by each other, desperate for each other, needy for each other, or anything else that causes us to stray from showing God’s love to each other…each time this happens, let us take a look at our lives.  Are we looking for joy in all the wrong places?  Are we truly seeking out the Father and delighting in Him?  When Jesus is the delight and passion and pursuit of our hearts, then His love will show in our lives and all those things we thought made us happy will fade away in light of Him.



About the Author

brookewbankBrook Ewbank

I’m a single, 33 year old, ordinary girl loved by an extraordinary God. I am an OK State and SWBTS alum. I am currently serving the Lord in California and helping co-direct a non-profit for refugee women called Himalayas By Hand. I love Jesus, the Oakland A’s, the OSU Cowboys, refugees, football, Needtobreathe, and other awesome things.  I’m a small town girl with big city dreams just trying to love God more and love others more.  You can find me on Twitter: @brookonthemove or @himalayasbyhand.

  • Kristen C

    Thank you for writing this! Psalm 37:4 is one of my favorite verses, but it so often is twisted to seem more like a “genie in a bottle” verse – if I delight myself in God then He’ll give me whatever I want. Thank you for reminding me that only God can be my truest delight.