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Sermon 6/24/07
 Psalm 37:4-5 – Delight Yourself

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Delight Yourself

Delight yourself also in the Lord, and do good; dwell in the land, and He shall give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him, and He shall bring it to pass” (Psalm 37:4-5)

We are privileged to hear some wonderful accounts of how God works in the lives of people like you and me. Recently, we heard the story of Don Eddy, who told us about the difficult time he had with his employment. Even though he knew God would give him the desires of his heart, it was literally decades before his “dream job” came to him. He reached the point of wondering whether he had heard God correctly, and then suddenly, God reached into his life and changed it. Here’s his story:

There was a time in my life where I became consumed with my work. I would think about my work and what had to be done almost all of the time. I was working twelve hours a day, five days a week, and on the weekends if I didn’t do some work I was thinking about what I would do on Monday. My relationships with God, my wife and children were suffering and I couldn’t see it, until my wife said to me, “I want my old Donald back.” Then I realized what was happening to me. If you make time for the big things in your life the small things will fit in. I turned my work load around and made God my first priority and my family my second. My work was now third.

A few years ago I was offered a supervisory position for the company I started my career with 25-years before. I was not unhappy with my current job but prayed about the decision and felt God telling me to make the move back to the first company I worked for. For about a year the job went smoothly and then it took a turn I had not expected. The pressure became intense and my work hours increased dramatically. I started to ask God why He had brought me to this job. I did continue to read the Bible, pray daily and still lived in a relationship with God.

Over the next 2-1/2 years I kept on asking God for guidance about my job but I was not receiving an answer. I simply did not understand why my work-life took such a wrong turn and was starting to question God as to whether I had heard him correctly the first time. The one answer I did receive was, “Son, you have made the right decision.” I continued to try, but I found myself getting angry with God for leading me to a job I hated going to every day. At the end of those two and one-half years, I had faith that God was in control but still had not received the answer to my question of: “Why did he lead me here?” I was at the point I would yell to God for an answer to my question and then finally the answer came. I was offered and accepted a promotion to a job that I considered to be my dream job 25 years before.” Don also has been given a wonderful ministry in his church – He had to wait on the Lord for a long time, but he did wait and God has given him “the desires of (his) heart.

One of my all-time favorite composers is George Frideric Handel, who lived from 1685 to 1759. Each year I telephone local organizations in the area to see if by any chance they will present Handel’s “Messiah” during the Christmas season. Sometimes they do, but all too often more than a year passes in which we do not hear Handel’s wonderful music.

The following is a quote about Handel from actsweb.org, an organization that shares a variety of interesting topics that are quite helpful: “The year 1741 was a very depressing one for George Frideric Handel. His latest opera failed. His Italian opera company in London had disbanded. That same year Queen Caroline passed away and the commissions Handel had received for composing music for royal occasions all but dried up. A stroke experienced several years prior not only affected him physically, but affected his music. It seemed as if he had lost the genius that made his music so popular.

Late that year Charles Jennens, a poet known by few, sent Handel a manuscript with a request that Handel set it to music. When Handel read the copy, the words gripped him. Suddenly he came alive. Immediately he began to put the words to music. He labored all through that night and much of the following day. In fact, he worked day and night for 22 more days barely stopping to eat or sleep. When his composition was finished he sensed that it would be a true masterpiece. His Messiah was performed the following year and was an immediate success.

The words that Jennens wrote which inspired Handel and lifted him out of the pit of despair were about the Savior: "He was despised and rejected of men. He looked for someone to have pity on him, but there was no man. He trusted in God. God did not leave his soul in hell. I know that my Redeemer lives. Rejoice. Hallelujah!"

You may think that famous men like Handel have wonderful lives, full of good times and easy living. And yes he was well-known, just like the musicians and movie stars of today. But he was miserably unhappy for much of his life, and the reality is that so are today’s “stars” of stage and screen. Much like Don Eddy and his wife were unhappy with the way things were, so are the allegedly “famous” people of this world. And by the way, “fame” is not what everyone thinks it is. It’s not what people think about us; true fame is God’s way of looking at things. His opinion about your life is all that is important – forever.

The Handels of this world, the Don Eddys, and people like you and me – we all need to see and understand today’s Scripture, or life will never be right. David, the author of Psalm 37, who was famous though flawed like all of us, understood life. He said, “Delight yourself also in the Lord, and do good… and He shall give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him, and He shall bring it to pass” (Psalm 37:4-5).

If you want to succeed in life, your success must be more than doing well in the eyes of people. We must “delight” ourselves “in the Lord” or it is all in vain. And how do we do it? Jesus said: “Come to Me” (Matthew 11:28). He Himself is the Lord, about Whom David said, “Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him, and He shall bring it to pass” (Psalm 37:4-5). What is troubling you? Trust in the Lord.  Give yourself and your problem - to Him.

Things didn’t go so well for Don Eddy and they didn’t go well for Handel. But in God’s time and in His will, things dramatically changed for both men. It’s true for us all. The Lord intends something beautiful for you. He will do it – in His time.

Lord, like Don Eddy, I commit my life and my desires - to You. In Jesus Name. Amen.

Ron Beckham, Pastor
Friday Study Ministries

www.FirstChurchOnTheNet.org
www.FridayStudy.org
Write to: Letters@FridayStudy.org

"While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us" (Romans 5:8)
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