by Brooklyn Lovelace
LORD your God is with you, He is mighty to save. He will
take great delight in you. He will quiet you with His love.
He will rejoice over you with singing Zephaniah
Over the past year and a half
or so, God has been teaching me so much about prayer, and
about His love for me, and about what He wants to hear from
me when I pray. This is one of my favorite verses because
it gives such a tender picture of the way that God cares
for us. It tells us first of all that God is with us, and
He is mighty to save.
Before my dad became the pastor
of First Baptist Church of St. John, he was unemployed for
a year and a half. During that time, prayer and trust took
on a whole new meaning for me. God taught me to trust Him
for literally everything. He taught me that He is always
there for me, and that all I had to do was tell Him my need
and simply trust Him to provide without worrying or being
afraid. It was not an easy lesson to learn, but He came
through every single time we were in need, and I learned
to depend on His faithfulness.
God is always there for us,
and He is always able and ready to save us when we are in
need or in trouble. He is mighty to save.
The second thing that verse
says is that God will take great delight in us. Another
one of my favorite verses is Isaiah 63:9, In
all their distress He too was distressed, and the angel
of His presence saved them. In His love and mercy He redeemed
them; He lifted them up and carried them all the days of
God has taught me that what
concerns me concerns Him. He cares about my feelings. He
wants me to tell Him when I'm scared and ask for His help.
He wants me to come to Him first when I don't know what
to do. He wants me to tell Him when I am grieving and let
Him cry with me and comfort me. He wants me to tell him
when I'm hurt, and let Him hold me and remind me of His
love for me. He wants me to share my passions, dreams, and
plans with Him and let Him be an intimate part of them.
He wants me to ask Him for the things I need and trust Him
to provide them for me. He wants me to tell Him about my
joy when something wonderful happens. He wants to be my
Just as your father or closest
friend shares in all of your feelings and all of the most
important events in your lives, God wants to share in them,
too. He takes great delight in you! You are His child. He
wants to walk through each day with you.
One thing that I do in my quiet
times is journal my prayers to God. I am very specific when
I tell Him about a need or ask Him for guidance in a decision.
A lot of times I will look back months later and see prayers
that God has answered that I did not even realize! And He
always works in a way in which I cannot possibly deny that
it was Him who answered me.
When we first moved here, one
of the very first things that I looked for was a voice teacher.
I began praying for one the minute I heard that we were
moving. I sat down in my quiet time one morning and wrote
out a prayer to God telling Him what I wanted in a teacher.
I was very specific in my prayers. I asked God to go before
me and prepare for me a teacher who was a Christian woman.
I asked for someone who had had good training and was very
knowledgeable. I asked for someone who would push me hard
and really stretch me both musically and vocally. I told
God that I really wanted someone at Missouri Baptist University,
because that is where I want to go to college, and I wanted
to be able to try out the music program. And I also knew
that voice lessons can get really expensive and I knew that
money would be an issue. So I just told God that I did not
know what to do and asked Him to work it out.
Well, I found a teacher online
at the MBU website and contacted her. She said she would
be willing to listen to me, but I got the impression that
she was too busy to take me on as her own student. But she
said she would at least listen to me.
Well, the day came, and I went
and sang for her. She listened to me, and then looked at
me and said, "So what exactly do you want?" I
told her I really wanted a voice teacher for my senior year.
And she said that she wanted to take me as her own student.
She has turned out to be an amazing teacher. She is so knowledgeable
and has taught me so much! She has pushed and stretched
me and taken me out of my comfort zone. She is a Christian.
She is a teacher at Missouri Baptist. She is everything
I asked for in a teacher!
But God wasn't done yet. My
new teacher looked at me and told me, "I want to teach
you for free."
WOW! God answered each of my
requests to the letter. When I looked back at what I had
written, I was so amazed to see that He so lovingly gave
me every one of my desires.
God really does listen to our
prayers with His whole heart; He gives us His full attention
when we pray. How amazing that we can talk to the God who
created the entire universe, and how precious to know that
He listens intently to our every word. God takes great delight
So what should our response
to God's great care and delight be? The answer is found
in Psalm 37:4: Delight yourself
in the LORD and He will give you the desires of your heart.
God wants us to take great
delight in Him!! He wants us to get to know Him through
His word, to talk to Him, to seek His face and His heart!
In our prayers, we must not only tell God about our needs
and lives, but also let Him tell us about Himself. John
16:23-24 says this:
In that day you will
no longer ask me anything. I tell you the truth, My Father
will give you whatever you ask in My name. Until now you
have not asked for anything in My name. Ask and you will
receive, and your joy will be complete.
God is not a magic genie.
The purpose of our prayers is not to get Him to grant our
every wish. There is so much more to knowing God than that!
This passage from John says that God will give us anything
we ask. Does that mean we can ask for anything we want,
and He will just hand it to us? No! It says God will give
us whatever we ask "in His name." He wants us
to pray for more of His Spirit, to know Him more, to become
more like Christ, to understand His Word. We delight in
the LORD in the same way that He delights in us - we care
about the things He cares about; we get to know how He feels
about everything in our lives; we surrender our hearts to
Him; we seek to become like Him. When we delight in Him,
our desires become His desires. He will give us the desires
of our hearts because they will be the desires of His heart.
And the more we get to know Him, the more we want to know
The verse in Zephaniah also
says that God will quiet you with His love and rejoice over
you with singing. God's love is unchanging. He will love
us no matter what.
The everlasting love of God
was displayed over and over in the Old Testament. One chapter
of the Bible where it is evident is Jeremiah 32. Here, God
is telling Jeremiah to proclaim His judgment upon the people
of Israel and Judah. They have strayed from God and turned
their backs on Him. Despite all He did for them, delivering
them from the Egyptians and bringing them into the Promise
Land, they still turned their backs on Him. He tried over
and over to correct them, and they refused to listen. They
went so far as to set up their abominable idols in God's
most holy temple and defiling it. They even sacrificed their
own sons and daughters to a false god. In this passage,
God is furious with them, and He is pronouncing discipline
You can hear the sorrow in
God's voice. All He ever wanted for them was what was best
for them. He wants to take them in His arms and love them,
but they will not let Him.
But even in God's wrath and
judgment, His love is still unmistakable. Listen to what
He says at the end of this passage:
are saying about this city, "By the sword, famine and
plague it will be handed over to the king of Babylon; but
this is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: I will surely
gather them from all the lands where I banish them in my
furious anger and great wrath; I will bring them back to
this place and let them live in safety. They will be my
people, and I will be their God. I will give them singleness
of heart and action, so that they will always fear me for
their own good and the good of their children after them.
I will make an everlasting covenant with them: I will never
stop doing good to them, and I will inspire them to fear
me, so that they will never turn away from me. I will rejoice
in doing them good and will assuredly plant them in this
land with all my heart and soul. Jeremiah 32:36-41
Even though they have done
so much to hurt Him, God still loves them. And even while
He is telling them that He must discipline them, He tells
them that He will bring them back to their land and bless
them once more.
What amazes me is that God
does not say, "I will rejoice in doing them good once
they have learned to be perfect. Once they stop making mistakes
and sinning, then I will bless them."
God says that He will never
stop doing good to us. He always rejoices to do good things
for us. The Israelites do not deserve God's forgiveness,
and neither do we. But He gives it freely.
Nothing you can ever do can
make God love you any less. He longs to do good things for
you, if you will but let Him.
God rejoices over us with singing
and quiets us with His love; without condition. That is
so much more than we deserve.
The LORD your God is with you,
He is mighty to save.
He will take great delight in you. He will quiet you with
His love. He will rejoice over you with singing.
© 2010 by Brooklyn Lovelace. All rights reserved. KenLovelaceMinistries.com