Praying for Your Deepest Desires
"Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you your heart’s desires." (Psalm 37:4, NLT)
Persistent prayer tests your desires. When you start praying for a breakthrough, you're going to find that your prayer evolves and develops as you hone in on what you really want.
Everybody has desires. The reason you have desires is because God put them in you. All God’s gifts are good, but a desire can be misused, abused, and perverted. Fire is good in the fireplace, but fire in the wrong place can burn a house down.
There are good desires in your life, and there are bad ones too. There are appropriate and inappropriate desires in your life, helpful and harmful, constructive and destructive. When you pray persistently, your desires are filtered, and God reveals which desires are good and which are not.
Persistent praying also shows the difference between a whim and deep desire. If you ask God for something just one time, that's not a deep desire. It's just a whim. God is not in the business of fulfilling your every whim. As your heavenly Father, he is more interested in taking care of your deepest desires.
Ultimately, God does want to give you your desires. But he just wants to make sure that he's your first desire and everything else is secondary. As you pray persistently, your heart is turned more and more toward God and the things he loves. Then you begin to desire those things that honor God and keep him first in your heart. There is almost nothing that God won't do for the woman or man who puts God first in every area of their life.
The Bible promises, "Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you your heart’s desires" (Psalm 37:4 NLT).
God is not stingy. He's waiting on you to ask! Delight yourself in the Lord. Give him your attention as you pray persistently and filter out the whims so that you are praying your deepest desires.
Talk It Over
What is something you prayed for that God didn’t provide, but now you see that it was just a whim? Did God provide something else instead?
In what ways do you take delight in the Lord?
How can you keep track of your prayers so that you can see how consistently and persistently you have prayed for something?
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This devotional © 2021 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.