A Prayer for Hoping in God’s Delight
His delight is not in the strength of the horse, nor his delight in the legs of a man, but the Lord takes pleasure in those who fear him, in those who hope in his steadfast love. Ps. 147:10-11
But, “Let the one who boasts boast in the Lord.” 2 Cor. 10:17
Dear heavenly Father, once again I come before you as a repeat offender—a man suffering from doxological dementia and memory lapse; one of your children who gives you many opportunities to demonstrate the wonder of your “immense patience” (1 Tim. 1:16). It’s like I’m a perpetual candidate for summer school in the gospel.
Why is it that every time I feel a little disconnected from you and every time I get appropriately disappointed with me; every time I experience the accusations of the enemy, and every time I see other believers more zealous, missionaries more passionate, and young converts more committed than me—why is it that my first default mode is to lace up my running shoes and get busy for you?
Instead of running to you for mercy and grace, I start running to do something to assuage my guilty conscience, feed my bruised pride and calm my disquieted heart. Foolishly and arrogantly, I try to be my own savior.
But as this Scripture says, you don’t find any pleasure or delight in the strength and movement of my “legs”—that is, in what I can do for you. Rather, you find great pleasure as I only boast in what you’ve done for us in Jesus.
Indeed, where can we find your unfailing, unwavering, unending love? Only in the gospel of your grace; only in a righteousness outside of us; only through our union with Christ. This is so counterintuitive—so contrary to the way I’m wired and the way the world, literally, works.
Father, to fear you is the beginning of wisdom, and we fear you the most when we hope most fully in Jesus. Should I forget where I parked my car, the address of my home, or even my own name, may I never forget this glorious gospel of your grace. But even if I should forget you, you will never forget me. Hallelujah, several times over! So very Amen I pray, in Jesus’ most grace-full name.