If you’ve ever seen a wedding, you know the scenario: the bride appears, the first notes of the Bridal Chorus ring out, and every head turns in unison to watch her walk down the aisle towards her groom. Every head except mine. I watch the groom.
I study the delight on his face, the intensity of his love, his penetrating gaze that drinks in her presence, the way every fiber of his being is aware only of her. I long to be looked at this way – and so do you. We all yearn for someone to savor us with delight.
Few Christians understand the extent of God’s delight in them. We don’t believe that we bring Him joy when we draw near. But that’s what He says. Look:
Isaiah 62:4-5b It will no longer be said to you, “Forsaken,” …But you will be called, “My delight is in her,” … For the LORD delights in you…and as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, your God will rejoice over you.
Zephaniah 3:14-17 Shout for joy, O daughter of Zion! Shout in triumph, O Israel! Rejoice and exult with all your heart, O daughter of Jerusalem! The LORD has taken away His judgments against you, He has cleared away your enemies. The King of Israel, the LORD, is in your midst; You will fear disaster no more. In that day it will be said to Jerusalem: “Do not be afraid, O Zion; Do not let your hands fall limp.” The LORD your God is in your midst, a victorious warrior. He will exult over you with joy, He will be quiet in His love, He will rejoice over you with shouts of joy.
Throughout the whole Bible all who have joined themselves to the Lord are portrayed as His bride, somehow feminine in their relationship to Him. Men, women, children – all believers – are recipients of this bridegroom’s delight.
God’s joy in His people is portrayed as joy in them as a collective group (Zion, Israel, Jerusalem, the church) and also as joy for the individuals within that group. This is important. God rejoices over each person who turns from unbelief to belief. (See Luke 15:7.) We experience God’s joy not only collectively but also individually. If you have chosen Him as Lord, then He rejoices over you.
- Do you believe God’s face lights with delight when His people (His “bride”) approach Him?
- Do you believe God’s face lights with delight when you approach Him?
- What might make you hesitant to believe God’s delight in you?
And an Important Suggestion
Read through the Zephaniah verses above and – if you have accepted Jesus as your Lord and Savior – welcome Him also as your bridegroom. Read these Zephaniah verses out loud, and, as you read, substitute your name for each phrase that refers to God’s people: daughter of Zion, Israel, daughter of Jerusalem, Jerusalem, Zion.
Personalized, I would read Zephaniah 3:14-17 like this:
“Shout for joy, LYNNE! Shout in triumph, LYNNE! Rejoice and exult with all your heart, LYNNE!”
The LORD has taken away His judgments against ME, He has cleared away MY enemies. The King of Israel, the LORD, is in MY midst; I will fear disaster no more.
In that day it will be said to ME: “Do not be afraid, LYNNE; Do not let YOUR hands fall limp.“
The LORD MY God is in MY midst, a victorious warrior. He will exult over ME with joy, He will be quiet in His love, He will rejoice over ME with shouts of joy.
Stay as near as you can to the truth that God has taken away His judgments against you, is quiet in His love, and rejoices over you with shouts of joy. Learn to notice God’s delight in you. Drink it in. And ask Him to etch the reality of His delight deep into your heart.
Noticing God’s Delight (Start Watching Bridegrooms)
© Lynne Fox, 2010, 2018