Leaning Hard

Psalm 34:7a (Amplified)
Be still and rest in The Lord; wait for Him and patiently lean yourself upon Him…

Today  I was thinking of a verse I learned when I was a teenager.

Delight yourself also in The Lord, And He shall give you the desires of your heart.
Psalm 34:4 (New King James)

In my hopeful and grasping youth I took this to mean if I was a Christian God would give me what I wanted. In time I discovered that is not the way of things…

I’ve come to believe something far more precious and deeply personal about this verse.

Delight: a high degree of pleasure, or satisfaction of mind; joy.

Knowing Jesus can bring a high degree of pleasure, satisfaction and joy into our lives.

More than we have known in the past…

More than we know today…

More than tomorrow will hold…

Discovering Him is never-ending. I’ll never arrive, never completely roam the depths of His great love, never fully see every beautiful facet of His character in this earthly life.

But I’ll live and die trying.

Sink deeply into His nearness…listening for Holy Spirit’s whisper, finding comfort and direction and conviction in His Word.

The best and scariest times of my life are now.

Delighting in Jesus means letting go…

Of my past hurts
Of my past failures
Of the way I thought things would be
Of my forecast for the future
Of my rights
Of my pride and sense of control
Of my own ideas of what is best
Of my crutches and props

There is something about Him. Something different and outstanding about Jesus. When we sit with Him…get still and rest and wait…we begin to discover Him in fresh ways, new ways, life-changing ways. There, in our most honest moments, we find pleasure…release…joy..in The Lord.

Our hopes  and ideas for what we need become a sweet offering laid at His feet. In His nearness…in His love and grace…we find a connection and freedom that cannot be found elsewhere.

We take delight and Jesus re-works our heart, often without us realizing it.

Desires for His best-laid plans take shape within us.

We begin to want what He wants.

Our ready hope begins to merge and align with God’s will for our lives.

Often so different from what we had planned. Often changing and rearranging us. Stretching us beyond our comfort…beyond our abilities…beyond what we currently believe about ourselves and Him.

Smile…I’m learning to savor this surprising realization that I don’t have it all figured out. And I don’t have to.

Maybe you feel a burn on the inside today. Something you feel like you need…some plan in the future you must see come to pass…some release you are waiting on.

Maybe you aren’t really sure if it’s you or God.

My encouragement is only this: Be still and patiently lean yourself upon Him.

These seasons of waiting…of wanting…of needing…have the potential to make us supple in His hands.

We don’t have to live holding on.

We can learn to be with Him…imperfect as we are…and let His perfection and grace and kindness become our greatest joy. Our pleasure.

We can let go of outcomes and measurements and answers.

In time He takes hold of our hard-leaning shoulders and turns us toward Him, eye-to-eye. After we learn to rest and wait and lean a while, Jesus begins to move us.

But by then we don’t care so much where or how or if it looks the way we imagined.

We are loosed from our own expectations.

We accept impossibility as our new familiar. Except now we know the One who moves us…speaks to us…and does the impossible in us.

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