My granddaughter, Miss Jenna-Marie, was born last week. She’s the spitting image of her mama (my daughter, Jess), and her brother, Joshua, which brought on all kinds of “circle of life” feelings on my part. Fueling these cyclical thoughts was my wife’s aunt passing away a few days before my grandchild was born. So it was a crazy roller coaster of a week for everyone, emotionally speaking.
When I was holding Miss Jenna, and then would look at Joshua, who turns five years old in a couple weeks, I felt my heart would explode with love at times. My beautiful wife, Laura, is such an amazing “Nana” (she laughingly refuses to be called “Grandma Weddle”), and is the most encouraging, uplifting, loving and devoted lady a man could have as matriarch of such an amazing family.
Additionally, my daughter and son-in-law are protective, caring and patient, and would do anything in the world for their kids.
So all these thoughts are swimming through my head, and while—as discussed in previous blogs—I’ve struggled with depression since I was a teenager, I was overwhelmed with delight, as you can see in the picture below.
Miss Jenna is just so delightful. That’s the word which kept going through my mind: “delight.” Everyone who came into the hospital room were captivated by her charm. All who have visited my daughter since she returned home have the same look of wonder on their face.
“What a joy!” they say. “What a treasure. She’s beautiful, Jess, just like you and her brother!”
With all this joy going around, when my supervisor asked me last night if I could do the devotions today for our weekly staff/prayer meeting, I naturally had to include something about my granddaughter. I curiously did a Google search for “Bible verses on delight,” and discovered a few:
“For the Lord takes delight in his people…(Psalm 149:4a).”
This made me stop for a second, as I don’t feel like I bring anyone “delight.” Oh sure, my family loves me, but when you struggle with depression and self-esteem issues, you feel like you’re extremely undelightful to most people. But to think God Himself takes delight in me? That’s hard for me to come to grips with, as unlovable as I feel at times.
The more I studied this, however, the more I realized my and my wife’s feelings for our grandchildren are infinitesimal compared to God’s love for us.
Take the loving feelings you have for the person you absolutely cherish the most in this world, and multiply it by infinity, and it’s still but a shadow of the delight the Lord takes in us, His children.
Keeping this in mind actually helped me last night, believe it or not. I had to meet someone right after work at our house in the country, which is about 20 minutes from my daughter’s place in town. My wife went straight over to see the grandkids and help my daughter, who is still recovering. She called and asked me if I was coming back into town once my business was completed.
“I don’t know, babe,” I told her. “I’m really tired and have a headache.”
“Ok, well, I hope you can make it,” she said. “Joshy wants to see his Poppy (my “grandpa” nickname) really bad.”
In doing this study on delight, I suddenly recalled the look of happiness on my grandson’s face when he sees me. “Come play in my room with me, Poppy!” he’ll say, running down the hall, KNOWING I’ll follow him.
And then that word hit me: “delight.”
“Joshy takes delight in seeing me,” I smiled to myself. “My visits are a delight to him.”
And before I knew it I was halfway into town. Just that one word, “delight,” helped me realize how loved I am, and gave me the strength to step out of my comfort zone and have a great couple hours hangin’ out with my family.
“The Lord takes delight in those who have respect for him. They put their hope in his faithful love (Psalm 147:11).”
As I stated this morning in my devotion, I’m going to try and make it my life’s goal to entwine these feelings of being a sheer delight to my Heavenly Father into my spirit. If I can grasp onto the fact that God watches my every move with joy, just as I do my children and grandchildren, it’ll transform my life.
And yours, too.
“The Lord directs the steps of the godly. He delights in every detail of their lives (Psalm 37:23).”
God is not some mammoth, heavenly combat boot, waiting to squash you into jelly the minute you leave this world. Likewise, He’s not an uncaring Father, sitting on His throne, eating grapes and bonbons, fully oblivious to our pain.
Yes, I will agree, it sometimes feels like we’ve been left here on Earth to fend for ourselves. When torrential storms hit our mind, emotions, family or bank account, we feel alone. But we’re not. The Lord uses trials to strengthen us, to be certain, but He sets the limits on how much pain the devil can inflict on us. For more on this, read the first two chapters of the biblical book of Job.
Seize this thought: God takes delight in you, no matter how unlovable you feel.
“He took me to a safe place. Because he delights in me, he saved me (Psalm 18:19).”