“Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you your heart’s desires.”
I got what I wanted!
At long last, I was leaving Starbucks with a swagger. Gone the walk of shame, confused dismay a thing of the past.
I. Did. It.
(Unless you know the history, you can’t quite grasp the significance of my elation today. So let me begin at the beginning.)
I live in a rural area. This means, for you uninitiated, no Starbucks. Not for miles. The mighty coffee giant had finally broken into the market in a city one hundred miles away – and I was hearing about it. All the cool folks were going for their cappuccino and latte fixes.
I was befuddled by it all. Double-double, grande, espresso – it was delightfully foreign and enticing.
Determined to join the cool folks, I stopped one day while doing errands. I was going to enter the coffee aficionado world!
What a day to try a new coffee – it was -34C, and just walking into the establishment must have dropped my core temperature a degree or two. My mind warmed, anticipating the pleasure to come. I entered grinning.
Not because of the temperature.
Because of the menu.
So. Many. Choices.
My mind reeled. Rebelled. Coiled up like a hibernating snake.
“May I take your order?” The voice was a little too young, a little too trendy, and a little too chipper.
I had lost the power of speech.
“Grtph mifsh phwaba?” My mouth fell open and my attempt at communication ended in a gurgle of awe. The barista waited with a bored expression. That did me in.
Panicked, I scanned the board.
I swallowed hard and took another stab at it. Words came out of my face – I think they were words – and, order given, I collapsed against the counter in relief.
So far so good.
I watched as the barista prepared a cup and blasted ice into it. ‘What kind of poor sod orders a frozen drink on a day like today?’ I thought as I slowly recovered my power of observation. I was starting to take in my surroundings, making mental notes of where the beverages were picked up, how to add the fixings, where to sit.
I would not look like a country hick in front of these sophisticated city folks.
I got to the end of the counter and picked up my drink.
Yeah. You guessed it. The frozen one.
If I had a tail, it would have been tucked between my legs.
Fast forward five years. (Yes, it took me that long to muster the courage to go back.) I had dropped off my vehicle to be fixed and was waiting for the shop fella to pick me up when I saw them – delectably cold drinks, tantalizing drips of condensation tracing trails of refreshment onto the Starbucks logo.
It was July, +34C and I was uncomfortably hot.
I pulled myself together, and entered with visions of cool delights dancing in my head. I waited in line, listening with awe to the glib orders of the cool folks in front of me. I got to the menu board.
My mind retreated like a hermit crab into its shell. My mouth made noises.
And out I walked with a steaming hot beverage in my hand.
Today was different.
Fast forward another five years.
I googled the menu. I calmly chose my size and toppings and flavour shots while still in possession of some sense. I had no idea that there were so many delectable options because I had never taken the time to explore them properly.
I entered the premises hopeful.
And froze. (That dang menu, y’all. It’s so big.)
But not for long! I ordered.
And in due time, received my blonde hazelnut latte with oat milk and shaved chocolate on top.
And as always, there is a spiritual lesson to be had here. This precious promise of God giving us the desires of our hearts has a caveat – we need to first take delight in Him.
Which means – stop and do the research first. Find out what He is like, a little more about the menu, about what is expected in His establishment. Because it is in the digging, in the exploration, in the amazing up-close-and-personal research that all the glorious delights are laid out at our fingertips.
And as we allow our hearts to be impacted by what we find, we will discover that our heart’s desires align more closely with His beautiful plans for us.
Pursue God’s ‘menu’ with me?
Father, what delights You have waiting for us in this journey! But we need to get to know You and Your options before we really understand what You really want for us, and what we are capable of. Teach us! Amen.