A couple of weeks ago I had an opportunity to do something I rarely get to do. Jan and I stayed with our six year old grandson while his mom took his older brother to one of his commitments. For some reason Ryan was into grandpa this early evening. We sat on the couch together and I fed him while we watched Scooby Doo.
After he had eaten, he snuggled up to me and we gave all our attention to the gang and the Mystery Machine as they solved the mystery. Later when his mom and brother returned she asked how things went. My response was, “It was delightful!” And I then explained why it was delightful.
Since then I’ve been thinking about this trio of related words delight, delightful, and delighted. And to my surprise, I have noticed other people using the words that I hadn’t noticed before. Think about the three words delight, delightful, and delighted – pleasant and positive, aren’t they?
So I looked up the definitions. As a verb delight means “to please greatly” and as a noun “great pleasure.” Delightful means “causing delight, very pleasant, lovely, and greatly to one’s liking.” Synonyms include congenial, enjoyable, pleasing, and what I meant when I said my grandson was delightful: darling. A short definition of delighted is “feeling or showing great pleasure.”
After looking up the definitions I remembered a verse from the Bible that used the word delight. I looked the word up on biblegateway.com and I was partially right. Delight and delights are used not just once, however, but 105 times in the Bible; 91 of which are in the Old Testament!
Many of those verses point us in the direction of things in which we should delight and things in which we should not delight. Two of my favorites are Proverbs 10:23, “A fool finds pleasure in wicked schemes, but a person of understanding delights in wisdom,” and Proverbs 18:2, “Fools find no pleasure in understanding but delight in airing their own opinions.”
The verse I remembered that used the word delight is Psalm 37:4 that declares, “Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.” That isn’t a promise that if we delight in the LORD we will always get what we want, but that delighting in the LORD is a challenge filled with God’s promises. I’ll leave it up to you to give some thought to what is involved in “delighting in the LORD.”
In reading the verses in Proverbs I was encouraged by two that tell us that God delights in us (see Proverbs 11:20 and 12:22). My summary take on these two verses is that God delights in us when we follow his ways. And perhaps following his ways is one way we delight in him.
I’m challenged and encouraged to delight more in my life, to be delightful to others more often, and to be delighted as much as possible. Perhaps you too are challenged and encouraged as well.
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