by Emily Conrad
This morning, I sense a deep unfaithfulness in my heart.
I long to get to work. I want to do the jobs God has given me to do because I love them. But spend time with the God who provided these opportunities in the first place?
Honestly, I’m tempted not to, but I’m pausing here to do just that. To put in the time, to wait a while, to forget not all His benefits.
That phrase, forget not all His benefits, is from a favorite psalm of mine which I’ve written about here plenty of times before (in fact, I wrote a short story about it, too), Psalm 103.
The psalm explains how God forgives, heals, redeems, crowns, and satisfies us.
He satisfies our mouths with good things.
Taste and see that the Lord is good, Psalm 34 urges us.
I saw someone comment about a wine tasting they went to. She wrote that she preferred the cheaper wines to the more expensive ones they sampled. The person leading the tasting said the preference was based on what her palate had adjusted to.
My palate has adjusted to the gifts–writing, friendships, creation, career opportunities. I’ve tasted and seen that they are good. I’ve made banquets of them, invited guests to enjoy them with me, served them up with a flourish and enjoyed every morsel.
But the Lord Himself?
He’s the more expensive wine, the better gift, the One I was supposed to be savoring.
He, Himself, is chief among the gifts He’s given us.
How could I allow my palate to adjust to lesser things?
I need a palate cleansing desperately.
So for a few moments, I set aside everything else.
The gifts can wait. I want the Giver.
I open my Bible, I reflect on the Psalms, and He realigns my heart with His by reminding me of all His benefits.
I find the words of praise coming easier already.
This is what He’s done. This is who He is. Nothing else compares.
So, here’s to Jesus, who loves me with an everlasting love. Here’s to the One who died that we could live, to the Lord who multiplies His thoughts about us, who hears us in our troubles, who sees us in the mire, who sweeps us into His holy arms and calls us beloved.
I’ve tasted and I’ve seen that the Lord is good, and I will sing His praises.
May my words glorify Him, may my use of the gifts He’s given me bring honor to His mighty name.
And so, my prayer for myself and my prayer for you:
May we never accept a gift from Your nail-pieced hand, Jesus, without willingly laying it back at Your feet in worship. When we go to work or play, may we do so with a cleansed palate. May we pick up on the flavor of Your love in it all, and may that remind us not of lesser loves, but of how the sweetest time of our day is the time we spend with You.