Saturday, February 13, 2016

A spark of enthusiasm

I know you've heard the verse before. Some of you even have it committed to memory.

Take delight in the LORD, 
and he will give you the desires of your heart.
~Psalm 37:4
I spent years holding onto that verse, expecting God to give me what my heart wanted. I would pray faithfully, for a while, because I somehow had the idea that if I asked enough times, God would give in. Then, when begging through prayer didn't work, I'd try something that pretty much amounted to bribery.

"Do You see how good I'm being God? I'm following all Your rules. 
If You want it to continue, then just give me what I want."

To me, "take delight in the Lord" meant "follow all the rules." And "He will give me the desires of my heart" amounted to Him handing over whatever I wanted at any given moment. And I was often angry that it didn't work out the way I planned.

I was reading a passage in Haggai today about the rebuilding of the Lord's Temple by the Israelites. When they discussed rebuilding the temple among themselves, they decided that it really wasn't the right time. They just weren't feelin' it. It wasn't a desire of their heart.

God sent a messenger to tell them to get on it. "Is anyone going to ask Me if it's time? You are spending so much time doing what you think you want, you aren't listening to Me. Start building!" and they did.

The Bible says they did it because they were afraid of God. Their fear was understandable. They still lived under the old covenant. Unlike us, they were still being rated on performance. But what interested me most about this story is in the 14th verse of chapter one.

"So the lord sparked the enthusiasm of Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and the enthusiasm of Jeshua son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and the enthusiasm of the whole remnant of God’s people. They began to work on the house of their God, the lord of Heaven’s Armies,"

They changed their minds to agree with God... and were they miserable about it? Did they drag their feet and have to force themselves to get up every day to do His will? No! It says He "sparked the enthusiasm" not just of the leaders, but of the group of people involved.

You can tell from the beginning of the passage that the Israelites didn't want to rebuild the temple. They weren't praying daily for God to please let the right time come soon. But when they heard God's voice and agreed with Him, He gave them a desire in their heart to do His will.
My favorite view of Praise and Worship
is from the sound booth.

I am in charge of the A/V department at church. I find, train, and schedule volunteers, design lighting scenes, record and edit services for online viewing, and often run the presentations from the sound booth during services, among other things. It is a time consuming and often frustrating position to be in. 

Considering all the other things going on in my life, all the reasons I have to say, "Sorry, I don't have time." why do I do it? Because I love it.

God put a desire in my heart to help my church share His Word this way.
He sparked my enthusiasm for this area of ministry.

I truly believe, and I did long before I ever read that passage, that God wants us to enjoy what we do in life. God did not create us to be miserable. If you aren't enthusiastic about your job or your area of ministry, or maybe even your family situation... you have to ask yourself two things. 

Am I delighting myself in the Lord?

What desires is God putting in my heart?

Maybe He wants to put a desire within you to change your family dynamics. 

Maybe He wanted you to take that job you were excited about, but seemed like too big of a risk. 

Maybe that thing you used to love doing that now feels like an exhausting chore, is a thing He wants you to let go of to make room for something more fulfilling.

Maybe, that area of ministry that you want to be a part of, but you just "don't have time for" will bring you more joy than you can imagine right now. 

Ask Him, and remember that God wants better for us than we can ever even dream of wanting for ourselves.

Glory belongs to God, whose power is at work in us. 
By this power he can do infinitely more than we can ask or imagine. 
~Ephesians 3:20 (GWT)

You make known to me the path of life;
in your presence there is fullness of joy;
at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
~Psalm 16:11 (ESV)

Take delight in the LORD, 
and he will give you the desires of your heart.
~Psalm 37:4 (NLT)


  1. Wow, Thank you Kindall for those words of encouragement. Keep up the good work.

    1. Thank you! Sorry I never responded here! :-) Appreciate you reading and commenting!