John Piper has done much to further the cause of Christ, but in many circles he is best known for his quote “God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him.” This concise statement has so much depth that it spawned the fantastic book “Desiring God”, study guides, curriculums, and most likely a refrigerator magnet or two. But when we strip away all of the peripherals, the underlying principle is still the same—God really is most glorified when He is the sole object of our delight (Psalm 37:4).
I read the book, and I understand the concept. If I were given a test on the reading, I would score well on comprehension. Allowing this knowledge to affect my daily life is something completely different. Most days, the distance between theory and application is farther than I can travel on my own. Through my children, God has provided a tangible object lesson that helps me understand this spiritual truth a little better.
Caroline, my 23 month-old, is learning to talk, and this education process is equal parts maddening and adorable. On one hand, she has learned to scream the phrase “I WON’T IT!!!!” (the phrase is actually “I want it”, but somehow she’s picked up a Southern accent … so “want” sounds like “won’t”). These three words are used often and they are always delivered with great passion. When this girl wants something, SHE WANTS IT. It doesn’t matter whether she’s at home, in church, at the grocery store, or paying a visit to the Our Sister of Silent Servitude Convent—everyone is going to know she wants it–whatever “it” is. At the other end of this intensity pendulum is the way she says my name.
Like her daddy, she is not a morning person. She has already shown that she loves sleeping in, and for this I love her beyond words. However, due to work and school schedules, during the week we are all up before we care to be. On the days that I haven’t abused the snooze button on my alarm clock, I have a few spare minutes to go into her room and get her out of her crib. Without fail she is bleary-eyed when I get there, but as she rubs her eyes and sees that I’m reaching out for her, the sweetest smile breaks across her face and in a voice as light as spun sugar she says “Heeeey, Daaa-ddy”. I melt every single time.
Since she’s not even 2 years-old, she has no concept of delighting in our Heavenly Father. I pray that one day she will accept His gift of salvation, but until then I have the daily challenge of being the father worthy of her delight. As her Daddy, her Abba Father, I can truly say that these mornings are my favorite moments. I can’t help but think that this is just a fraction of the joy that God feels when one of his children shows Him the same affection.
Yet again, I’m amazed how this little child teaches and inspires me.
During a recent Sunday worship service, her big sister gave me further insight to how our Heavenly Father is most glorified…
(Part II tomorrow…)