a high degree of gratification or pleasure : JOY
Do you delight in the Lord? How about your spouse? In This episode, we talk about the joy of delighting in the Lord and your spouse rather than simply existing with them. God is not looking for a dry and grey relationship with us and neither is our spouse. Let’s learn to delight in each other and the Lord!
[Jennifer] Welcome to the Marriage After God podcast.
[Aaron] We’re your hosts. I’m Aaron.
[Jennifer] And I’m Jennifer.
[Aaron] We’ve been married for 14 years.
[Jennifer] And we have five young children.
[Aaron] We started blogging over 10 years ago, sharing our marriage story in hopes of encouraging other husbands and wives to draw closer to God and closer to each other.
[Jennifer] We have authored over 10 books together, including our newest book, “Marriage After God,” the book that inspired us to start this podcast.
[Aaron] “Marriage After God” is a message to remind all of us that God designed marriage with a purpose.
[Jennifer] To reflect His love.
[Aaron] To be a light in this world.
[Jennifer] To work together as a team.
[Aaron] Using what He has given us.
[Jennifer] To build His kingdom.
[Aaron] Our hope is to encourage you along your marriage journey.
[Jennifer] As you boldly chase after God together.
[Aaron] This is Marriage After God.
[Aaron] Welcome back, we’re Aaron and Jennifer Smith, your hosts of the Marriage After God podcast. We have a fun topic for you today. A light one and we think you’re gonna enjoy it. We’re excited to share it with you all. And hopefully it inspires you in your relationship with God and your spouse.
[Jennifer] Yeah, before we jump into it, which we’ll do shortly, Some of my closest girlfriends were praying recently for the men in our life, husbands, fathers-
[Jennifer] You’re welcome. Just really wanting to lift up our men who are leading our families. Also, bearing the weight of care for everything that’s been going on in our nation, in our world, because just by nature they’re protectors, providers, it’s on their mind, and we care about them. And so as they consider everything that’s going on and how it will impact the family, and how they navigate it with us, we just felt concern to bring them before the Lord and pray for them. And I just love that we had the opportunity to do that. But with that, I wanted to also say Aaron and I want to recognize that there’s just a lot going on right now. And I mean, we’re only a few weeks into 2021 and it’s already been historical and I’m not talking about just the memes. That’s not funny.
I thought it was funny. The memes are pretty historical.
[Jennifer] Aaron was just sharing some with me.
[Aaron] And hysterical.
[Jennifer] No, anyways, this is serious. Just this first part’s kinda serious. Because Aaron and I, just like you guys, we get to navigate what’s going on in the world around us and respond to it. But because we also have an online presence and this platform of a podcast, we wrestle with questions like, hey, are we gonna address that thing that happened? Do people wanna hear our opinions? Does God want us to speak to that issue? And it’s just, I know for me personally it’s a lot, but we do wrestle.
[Aaron] Yeah. It’s not something that we just pretend isn’t going on. But I think what we’ve landed on is that the most important message is that of Jesus Christ and drawing people back to the Word of God. Would you agree?
[Jennifer] Absolutely. Yeah, and the reason that I wanted to share this is just so you guys know our hearts is that we are navigating and wrestling those things and you don’t see all of those things happening. And so I thought it’d be nice just to address it and let you know that we are watching, we are praying, we know that there’s husbands and wives out there who are impacted by some of the current events that are happening, whether it be political, or a natural disaster, or any sort of crisis. We know that those things are happening. However, like Aaron just mentioned, we’re gonna stick to the things that God has purposed in front of us and the stories and the experiences and the things that we can speak to in His truth to encourage you, because that’s what we created this podcast for is to encourage you guys.
[Aaron] Well, and I would reiterate that we firmly believe that the Word of God, that walking with the Lord, is the response to whatever is going on. We talk about it in the platform of marriage and that aspect of life, but it’s not like your job and politics and your marriage and your parenting and your friends and your church are all separate things in boxes that get dealt with differently. We deal with it all the exact same way. Now, that doesn’t mean that we have all the answers, but what it does mean is we know who does, and we know who to run to, and we know what the Word of God says. The Bible is the eternal Word of God. It’s living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, cutting through to the bone and marrow. It discerns the hearts of men. So that’s what our mission is, like you said last episode, Jennifer, is our ministry is to the church. Now we have ministries outside of that as well, but our main one pretty much for our whole marriage and life has been ministering to believers. And so in these times, we’re not the ones equipped to bring up political commentary. We’re trying to be equipped to bring up what the Word of God says and encourage you in that.
[Jennifer] Now, being a marriage podcast and knowing that Aaron and I, we struggle and navigate some of these things, we can speak to really quickly and encourage those who are watching the news or experiencing these things happening and unfolding. So can we quickly just dive in for maybe a minute or two, how can a husband and wife-
[Jennifer] Process and navigate these things as a couple?
[Aaron] Well, what we could do, what our flesh probably wants to do, is get anxious, break down, feel overwhelmed. These are the natural responses to things that are out of our control.
[Jennifer] Or confusion.
[Aaron] Yeah, confusion or anger even. But you know what? The Bible addresses all of those things. And I think, well, we can do one thing is we can share the things that we’re coming across and that are giving us anxieties.
[Jennifer] Like if I’m reading the news and something just strikes a chord in my heart and I can’t let it go, like it’s just sitting with me, I can bring that to you and say, “Hey, I’ve really been thinking about this. It’s kind of consuming my mind, can you-
[Aaron] Pray for me.
[Jennifer] Pray for me or help explain it to me or whatever I need in that moment.
[Aaron] And that’s what we’re supposed to do is bear each other’s burdens. So communicating about it, not just holding it in, not just saying, “If I bring that up, it’s gonna cause something,” or, “I can’t talk about that,” but like going to your spouse, going to your church, and just saying, “Hey, I’m dealing with something about this thing that I saw, or this thing that I heard, or what’s going on in the world.”
[Jennifer] Another thing that you can do that we do is commit to praying for the things that you see and hear. Don’t just scroll past it, don’t let your heart become desensitized to it.
[Aaron] Which is a good encouragement for me because, I mean, I haven’t had social media on my phone for a little bit, but when I did, I would see something going on in the world and I’d be like, “Oh, that’s horrible,” and then I’d scroll right past it.
Bummer it, yeah.
[Aaron] But stopping and saying, “I can’t be there, I can’t like physically help, but I can pray. And I know that I know a God that can help and has a plan for this,” that’s good. Something that would be really helpful probably for the entire world is to take breaks away from consuming the news. Right?
[Jennifer] Yeah. I would say even in today’s era of the way the internet works is even taking a break from actively engaging. If you’re one of those people that leaves comments and dives in right away, hit the pause button, be slow to speak, be slow to dive into those things until you’ve wrestled and processed with God, with your husband, with your family, and get your heart right.
[Aaron] Yeah, just speaking about this idea of taking a break, I was speaking to someone from Compassionate International, which by the way, you should check them out if you haven’t, and he was just sharing how every year him and his wife take turns going for a couple of days, three days I think, to be off all technology.
[Jennifer] That’s cool.
[Aaron] Little hiatus. Not everyone can go away, but we could do that at home. Let’s say, “Let’s put this stuff away for a few days.”
[Jennifer] I think the goal is balance.
[Aaron] It’s balance, yeah.
[Jennifer] And speaking of balance, it’s even, in regard to God’s Word, are you consuming outside resources and information more than you’re consuming the Word of God?
[Aaron] That’s convicting to me ’cause the answer is yes.
[Jennifer] Well, we need to bring some balance, then.
[Aaron] We need to switch that around, yeah.
[Jennifer] Another one is don’t let current events polarize you in your marriage. So when it does come time to talk about it, don’t allow that thing to be the source of contention between you and your spouse. You’ve got to remain unified. Yeah, don’t let it cause division, as the Lord says. A house cannot stand that is divided.
[Jennifer] Right, but if the foundation is the Word of God, then
Run to it, yeah.
[Jennifer] you’ll be able to move forward from there.
[Aaron] And there’s a word that believers should remember is were we’re to endure, as Paul tells Timothy, as a good soldier.
[Jennifer] Well, things are going to happen. There’s gonna be more news, there’s going to be more historical events unfolding before us.
[Aaron] Yeah, especially if you know anything about the Bible and what it tells about coming-
[Jennifer] The end.
[Aaron] Yeah, the end. The Lord’s return. And I wanna end on some Scripture. This is, I read this today and I thought it was incredibly powerful.
[Jennifer] And when you say end, you mean end this section so we can jump into today’s fun topic.
End the session, yeah. We haven’t gotten into the good part yet. But this is really good. This is Isaiah chapter 35. “The wilderness and the dry land shall be glad. The desert shall rejoice and blossom like the crocus. It shall blossom abundantly and rejoice with joy in singing. The glory of Lebanon shall be given to it. The majesty of Carmel and Sharon; they shall see the glory of the Lord, the majesty of our God. Strengthen the weak hands and make firm the feeble knees. Say to those who have an anxious heart, ‘Be strong, fear not. Behold, your God will come with vengeance. With the recompense of God, He will come and save you.’ Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf unstopped. Then shall the lame man leap like a deer and the tongue of the mute sing for joy. For waters break forth in the wilderness and streams in the desert. The burning sands shall become a pool and the thirsty ground springs of water. In the haunt of jackals where they lie down, the grass shall become reeds and rushes. And a highway shall be there, and it shall be called the Way of Holiness. The unclean shall not pass over it. It shall belong to those who walk on the way. Even if they are fools, they shall not go astray. No lion shall be there nor shall any ravenous beast come upon it. They shall not be found there, but the redeemed shall walk there, and the ransomed of the Lord shall return and come to Zion with singing. Everlasting joy be upon their heads. They shall obtain gladness and joy and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.” This was written thousands of years before Jesus came, and Jesus was the answer of this. He is the way that we walk on. He’s the highway that shall be there called the Way of Holiness. The early church, before they were called Christians, were called the Way because they followed Jesus. So be encouraged by that.
[Jennifer] Man, that was really good Aaron. Thank you for sharing that. And I just feel like I have to meditate on that this week and really just let my heart absorb it. Okay, we’re gonna move on. Aaron and I would love to encourage you guys to leave a star rating review for this podcast if it has impacted you. If you have time, you can even leave a written review. These are so impactful. Not only do they help people find the Marriage After God podcast because of algorithms and the way that social media and all these platforms work, but it also really encourages us. And today we wanted to share some of those encouragements that you’ve left for others to find.
[Aaron] Yeah, this one is by user, I think it’s Agibb90. “You all are one of my favorites. Love Aaron and Jennifer and all the materials they put out, whether they’re daily emails, Instagram posts, one of their amazing books, or an awesome podcast. They are an excellent source of God’s knowledge for your marriage or for life. So glad you’re all back. Keep doing what you’re doing.” Thank you, that was encouraging. There was another one, and these are recent ones, so I just wanna thank you for everyone that’s taking our call to action and going and leaving a review.
[Jennifer] So this one was a five-star by jones_k10. “This podcast is beneficial, encouraging, and practical. Aaron and Jennifer honestly share their story and wisdom with men and women. I love how the couple speaks to each other and their listeners. They don’t hide behind the messiness of life. They tell it how it is and give practical advice to apply to your life. This podcast is a wonderful way to start each morning on a positive, encouraging note.”
[Aaron] Nice, thank you so much.
[Jennifer] That was so encouraging.
[Aaron] Yeah, our messiness is encouraging to people. I love it. So we just wanna thank everyone for keep sharing these episodes. It really blesses us and I think it gets a lot more people to hear about the show. And one last note before we move on to the topic is we want you to be one of the 114,000 people that have joined our free prayer challenge. It’s 31 days and we send you an email every day with a topic for you to pray over your spouse. You can choose either the husband route or the wife route, whoever you’re praying for, and it’s completely free. Just go to marriageprayerchallenge.com, marriageprayerchallenge.com, and would you just join this massive, growing movement of marriages that are praying for their spouses?
[Jennifer] All right you guys, did any of you see the Christmas star?
[Aaron] The movie?
[Jennifer] No. It was in the headlines for a while in December, but I heard about it. It’s the conjunction of Saturn and Jupiter, and it was-
[Aaron] Oh, you’re talking about the awesome space event.
[Jennifer] Yes, and it was one that I asked Aaron to go chase after. So we jumped in the car and we drove south and we were driving and Aaron goes, “I think that might be it.” And we saw something bright in the sky for like 30 seconds and then cloud coverage.
[Aaron] Well, we were chasing the clouds ’cause we’re driving down, I’m like, it said it was supposed to be in the lower horizon,
[Aaron] and I’m thinking, “You mean the lower horizon where all the clouds are at?”
[Jennifer] I know, it was crazy.
[Aaron] Right, we’re in the one place in the world that’s not gonna be able to see this today. And we literally had to pull over because we saw it and were like, “There it is!” And it was like 30 seconds.
[Jennifer] And then it disappeared.
[Aaron] Yeah. And then it was gone.
If that was even it.
I think it was but we must’ve missed it ’cause they were like right next to each other, they weren’t like one thing.
[Jennifer] I don’t know.
[Aaron] It was pretty cool. Probably with the telescope would’ve been more amazing. I saw pictures online that were way more incredible. You know, it’s funny when you bring this up I feel like we’ve chased a lot of like celestial things.
We have, we have. We’ve spent a lot of time look up, I think, Aaron. But that’s why I brought it up because I love that time with you when we’re just standing side by side looking up. I don’t know why, it’s so fun.
[Aaron] Usually quiet, yeah.
[Jennifer] Well, yeah. There was this other time where we drove to another place very close to our house, I think it was like 10 minutes away, and we-
[Aaron] Yeah, this was a couple years ago, right?
[Jennifer] We were trying to watch the super blood moon rise, and there was gonna be a certain time where it was gonna be the biggest, and so we were just sitting there waiting for it.
[Aaron] That was a cool one.
That was cool.
Because that one looked massive, it was huge, and we watched it rise over the hills.
[Jennifer] It was so cool.
Yeah, that was a fun one.
And then there was another time where my brother texted me and said, “Hey, at this time,” I think it was like 9:38 PM, “Starlink is gonna fly over the house. You gotta run outside and look at it.”
[Aaron] If you don’t know what Starlink is, it’s like hundreds of satellites all in a line. They look like a belt.
[Jennifer] I think it was 400.
[Aaron] By I think Tesla?
[Aaron] And we were literally standing there and we were like, how do we know we’re gonna see it?
Yeah, we ran out there.
How, we don’t see anything? And then all of a sudden we just-
[Jennifer] It’s cold, it’s dark, we’re in our pajamas. I don’t even know if we had shoes on, but it worked.
[Aaron] Well, and then all of a sudden, we saw one little light moving. We’re like, oh, looks like a satellite, okay. And then another one, and then another one, and it went for like 20 minutes. It just kept going.
[Jennifer] We had kinks in our neck from staring up and just sitting out there, and then-
[Aaron] That was actually pretty incredible also with how in sync they were. They were perfectly aligned and just moving at the same speed.
[Jennifer] But they looked like stars.
[Aaron] But they looked like stars moving through the sky. Big ole belt of stars, but they were satellites. That was a fun one.
[Jennifer] It was super cool. So anyways, we just wanted to open up this topic-
[Aaron] There was another one that you didn’t right down.
Which one, which one?
[Aaron] The super eclipse that we saw.
[Jennifer] Oh yeah, that was really awesome. Was that 2017?
[Aaron] That was, I don’t know when that was.
[Jennifer] I think that was 2017. The Great American Eclipse.
[Aaron] That’s what it was.
We saw that tonight.
It literally landed, like our region was the most visible. It was right above Madris but whatever. It was close and it looked awesome.
[Jennifer] That was pretty remarkable.
[Aaron] Yeah, ’cause I got video of it and you can see the burning ring around the moon.
Not just that,
And the sun, that was amazing.
but the eeriness of the whole town just going gray, like dark.
[Aaron] And then the birds stopped chirping all at the same time, like they thought it was nighttime.
It was kinda creepy.
It was amazing. We’ve seen lots of sky things.
[Jennifer] Yeah. But my point in sharing all of this is that I love standing side by side doing something with you and getting to interact with you in that way, just being present. And that’s kind of what we’re gonna talk about today, but even more specific, this idea of delighting in one another. And when I think of the word delight and enjoying something, I think these times with you, among a lot of other times in our marriage, but.
[Aaron] I just wanna read this Scripture that reminds me about these ideas of us looking up and just looking at God’s creation. In Romans 1:20 it says, “For His invisible attributes, namely His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived ever since the creation of the world in the things that have been made, so that they are without excuse.” When we look up you can’t deny the Creator. I was just telling Elliot the other day-
[Jennifer] Our son.
[Aaron] Yeah, our son.
[Jennifer] I know you know that, I was just letting them know who are listening.
[Aaron] It was snowing and we were driving through it and we were talking about how it looked and everything. Looks like you’re going through a portal with the snow flying by you. So I said, “You know Elliot, there’s more galaxies in the universe than there is snow falling right now.” And just saying that statement blew my mind ’cause I was thinking-
I think his jaw dropped too.
[Aaron] Yeah, and I said, “And God knows all of the names of the stars within those galaxies.” He named them all. It’s just incredible that His infinite nature is perceived easily, His invisible attributes. The things that you can’t see of God, you can see clearly in nature.
[Jennifer] Yeah, and when we talk about this idea of delighting in each other and in the Lord today, I think I love doing these things with you, Aaron, and we’re gonna get into some examples later, too, of how to delight in your children. And sometimes it’s doing something, and being out in nature is such a big part of it because it’s like doing all three at once with our family, ’cause I’m delighting in you, I’m delighting in our children, and I’m delighting in the Lord by recognizing the things that He has created.
[Aaron] Enjoying His creation.
[Jennifer] Yeah, and talking about it and being fascinated by it and having wonders surrounding us. Now it makes me wanna just go look up at the sky with you.
[Aaron] Yeah, the first thing I think about when I hear the word delight is actually the opposite of it, which I believe would be not necessarily like being against something, but I feel like it’s more like just existing with something. Like gray. Like I think of the r gray. There’s no r, it’s not beautiful. So I would imagine just existing with you and we’re doing our thing and there’s no joy, I’m not excited or happy.
[Jennifer] No r.
[Aaron] No r. But I feel like delight is having my eyes open and seeing you, seeing my kids. So like you were talking about last episode, being grateful for Edith playing with your hair and just stopping in.
[Jennifer] Oh, I said daughter but I meant Olive.
[Aaron] Oh, Olive. I thought you were talking about Edith ’cause Edith does that, too.
[Aaron] And so delight is an intentional focusing on, right? I’m looking. I’m like, “Oh, look at you, look at this,” instead of just existing next to and just kind of moving forward and there’s no connection, there’s no depth, there’s no r.
[Jennifer] It’s like an appreciation, a recognition and acknowledgement.
[Aaron] And a longing for a desire. Like I want it, I like this. Things that I delight in, I want.
[Jennifer] Yeah. So I always love to look up definitions. Even if you kinda know what a word means, I like the definition. So, what does it mean to delight? To please someone greatly, to take great pleasure in, to give someone great pleasure or satisfaction. Delight is a verb, so it’s an action word, which I like.
[Aaron] Of doing something.
[Jennifer] Doing something, yeah. And I also went to the source, which some of the other words gave it a little bit more r, which I like, indulgently.
[Aaron] So I want more.
Give me lots of my family.
Give me all of it.
[Jennifer] Attractive, agreeable, and jovial, like friendly, enjoyable. I just like those words. I like being able to understand the scope of what it means to delight in.
[Aaron] Well, and all those words also give more ways of looking at this.
[Jennifer] Oh, and serendipitous was one of them, which is more like a happening by chance. This is just happening right now.
[Aaron] Right, like let’s go get in the car and look for the Christmas star.
[Aaron] That was serendipitous.
[Jennifer] That was very serendipitous, it was.
[Aaron] And it could’ve been a tedious thing. It could’ve been like, no, we have other things to do. I could’ve been irritated or frustrated which I’ve done in the past ’cause I’m sometimes a grinch. But we didn’t, it was a fun thing.
[Jennifer] Okay, so we’re gonna kinda break this down into three sections, delighting in the Lord first, delighting in your spouse, and then a brief section on delighting in your kids. So Aaron, why don’t you kick us off with the first one?
[Aaron] So I’m gonna read Psalm 37 verse four and it says this, “Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.”
[Jennifer] Okay, so do you wanna explain that?
[Aaron] Well, on face value it sounds like, I know many people have taken this, and it could mean this also, that if I delight myself in the Lord, then the desires I have in my heart, He’s gonna give me.
[Jennifer] But here’s the thing. When you delight yourself in the Lord, what’s actually happening?
[Aaron] Right. What do your desires become?
[Aaron] Right, because if you’re delighting yourself in the Lord, if you’re attracted to Him-
[Jennifer] If you’re agreeable.
[Aaron] If you’re agreeable to Him,
if you’re friendly with Him, if you’re following Him, wanting more of Him-
[Jennifer] I think our desires will start to align a lot more with His than just what our flesh wants.
[Aaron] The way I read this is He will give you the desires of your heart. So when we delight ourselves in the Lord, the desires we have will be given to us by Him. So He’ll give us a desire for His Son. He’ll give us a desire for loving each other. He’ll give us a desire to serve. He’ll give us a desire to be generous, a desire to long for more of Him, to long for more of His Word. So rather than I just have these desires existing in me and then boom, He gives me those desires.
[Jennifer] I’m sitting here smiling because,
[Jennifer] Well, I’ve never heard it that way before and it’s not in our notes. And so I’m wondering where you came up with that, and when you first-
[Aaron] This is how I’ve always looked at it.
I know, but also when you re-read it, you said, “I hear it this way.” It sounded exactly the same as how you read it the first time, so I was really confused until you started explaining it. But that’s really beautiful.
[Aaron] He will give you the desires
As in it’s almost like
of your heart.
you’ve got this empty bowl and you bring it before the Lord and you’re just delighting in Him, looking up at Him like a child, and He fills your hands and your heart.
[Aaron] Right, and of course there’s desires in me, that He can fulfill, right? But the Bible tells us that if we pray in His will, we have what we pray for, right? So it’s not that I desire a Lamborghini. That’s an easy one to just blow out of the picture. And God’s gonna be like, “Oh, you desire it? Here you go.” No, I believe that when we delight in Him, when we love Him, when we serve Him, when we follow Him, chase Him, want more of Him, not just that our desires become His desires, He gives us our desires. The ones that we have now are from Him, for Him, to Him.
[Jennifer] I kinda wish that this verse just had a period at the end of “delight yourself in the Lord,” because that in itself is so beautiful and enough. I mean, God’s Word is perfect and we don’t need to add or subtract to it. So we take the full verse for what it is. But remember we talked about delighting being a verb and it’s an action. And so this is a call for us to delight ourselves in the Lord. Like that’s that’s a good thing for the Christian to do.
[Aaron] The other thing I think about is, like I said, God doesn’t just want us to believe Him and exist with Him. Like, “Okay, great. You believe my son, you got my Word. You wanna be a Christian and you wanna follow me? Cool.” No joy.
[Jennifer] End of story.
[Aaron] End of story, no. He wants us to delight.
[Jennifer] Okay, I have to admit this. I love all the little, I call them treasures, that I find in God’s Word or when I’m trying to research something that’s in His Word and I’m using other resources. I call them treasures because I feel like it opens up my understanding of who God is and what He’s doing. And I find it so fascinating. It makes me think of an archeologist,
how they, and I tell Elliot, I tell all my kids this analogy because I think it’s so wonderful, but someone who’s digging out in the desert and they come across an old community or village and they are finding all these pieces that are proof, like a vase or a coin whatever that proves life existed in that area from a certain time period. And to them, they’ve got this little toothbrush in their hand and they’re trying not to break whatever’s underneath. And they’re uncovering this artifact. Like that’s how I feel about delighting in the Lord, especially when it comes to His Word. I don’t, I just don’t-
[Aaron] No, I think that’s a good point, ’cause it makes me think of the showbread in the temple. It was 12 fresh loaves of bread and they would stay fresh until they were consumed, even if it was a week. It was like a miracle they would stay fresh. But there was 12 loaves of them, right? And the priests had to eat all of it, they couldn’t leave any of it behind, they had to eat every single bit of it. And it’s like this picture of-
[Jennifer] I feel like I would be really good at that job.
[Aaron] ‘Cause Jesus says, “I’m the bread of life.”
[Jennifer] I like bread.
[Aaron] And then Jesus says to the devil, He says, “Man does not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.” We live on that bread. We wanna consume all of it. And that’s another thing we’re delighting in the Lord. Oh and also if you think about it, that bread probably was delicious.
Yeah that’s what I’m saying.
Like warm, gooey bread, delicious bread and tastes delicious. And that’s what the Lord’s Word is. So on that idea in Psalm 1 starting in verse one it says, “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers, but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on His law, he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season and its leaf does not wither. In all that He does, He prospers.”
[Jennifer] I love that verse.
[Aaron] Yeah, God’s law, God’s Word, the law of Spirit, the law of truth, we delight in it.
[Jennifer] And it benefits us because I love this picture being a tree planted by streams of water. You have everything that you would need to be fruitful, to prosper, to do what you were supposed to do, to do what you were created to do, and so yeah.
[Aaron] So I have a question for you, and this may be rhetorical. Maybe everyone knows the answer. But maybe someone listening doesn’t. Can you delight in the Lord and not delight in His Word?
[Jennifer] Do you want me to answer that?
[Jennifer] I was waiting for everyone else to chime in, jeez. I think you can delight in the Lord. I mean, just based off of the one Scripture that we read earlier from Romans 1:20, when we talked about being out in nature and seeing His creation, I think that there’s times that you can delight in the Lord.
[Aaron] Apart from His Word.
[Jennifer] Apart from His Word.
[Aaron] But can you delight in Him and not delight in His Word?
[Jennifer] Well, I would add to that by saying that-
Like “I don’t like His word, I don’t love His word.”
No, you would have to delight in His Word because it says that Jesus is the Word. And you brought up the showbread and how Jesus is the bread of life.
You nailed it.
[Aaron] I don’t think we can separate our love of the Lord, our delight in Him, from loving and delighting in His Word. So if we wanna delight in the Lord, we must also delight in His words, what He says, what He speaks, what He’s written down for us. And that’s how we get to know Him.
I just put some practical things here for delighting in the Lord and that’s the first one is just getting in His Word, reading it, being…
[Jennifer] Well, that’s how we’re encouraged as Christians in our faith. And I also put the word explore it. And I mentioned earlier about getting into a word study or looking up the Hebrew or the Greek or the root word or whatever’s gonna help you define and understand and uncover the meaning of the word. Not that we need anything extra because God’s Word is perfect, but all of those extra resources do help in my opinion to bring clarity and just treasure.
[Aaron] Yeah, use those cross references in your Bible. Those have been a huge blessing to us. When you find out how a verse is connected to another verse, you’re like, whoa, that’s really awesome. Another way practically to delight in the Lord is through praise and worship.
[Aaron] Just singing songs of joy in Scripture and doing it with other people also. How often do we just have worship music playing in the background?
[Jennifer] Yeah, if you guys need to know some good go-to, Shane & Shane is so good.
[Aaron] I love Shane & Shane, yeah.
[Jennifer] Are there other ones that you wanna share?
[Aaron] I’ve been really enjoying Red Rocks Worship.
[Aaron] Yeah. But yeah, just singing to the Lord.
[Jennifer] Talking and discussing the Scriptures with others, whether it be your spouse or another family member or friend, sometimes just sharing the things that you’re learning about can be a huge encouragement to our faith. But it’s also delighting in the Lord because you’re sharing something you’re learning about with someone you love.
[Aaron] Sharing about what God’s doing in your life, how He’s blessed you, how He’s taught you, how He’s led you, protected you. Those kinds of things, those bring glory to God. They bolster your heart. They actually bolster the person listening. Those testimonies is adoration.
[Jennifer] Another thing is being impacted by His great design of creation. And we kind of talked about that when we were talking about stargazing, but this is another reason why I just love gardening, the gardening season, because you’re out there and you’ve got the warm sunshine on your back and you’re pulling those weeds. And then you look down and see a huge red strawberry. And you’re just like amazed that this thing looks so perfect. And then your kid comes up and snatches it and takes a big bite and they’ve got juice running down their face. And then they offer you the other half and you taste it and it’s just so tasty. We get to delight in the things that God has created.
[Aaron] And I’d say your gardening. You’ve had some really awesome revelations through it with your own relationship with God.
[Jennifer] Yeah. Especially about pruning.
[Aaron] Yeah, pruning and weeds and growth. Awesome things to be able to put our hands in the soil and think of God.
[Jennifer] Another really random one is I know Aaron, you already brought up worship, but something that I love to do is I’ve been rocking babies for a while, rocking babies to sleep.
[Aaron] A little while.
[Jennifer] Like eight years.
[Jennifer] And on nights that it just seems a little bit harder and it’s dark and I’m holding this upset baby, and they’re starting to calm down, I’ll start singing spontaneous prayers or saying spontaneous things for my adoration for God. And I love those times. They’re so memorable to me as a mother to be able to hold a child and relate your heart as the child to God, your Father. It makes my whole heart just melt and surrender before Him.
[Aaron] So there’s infinitely more to say, I would imagine, about delighting in the Lord. So I would just encourage our listeners to dig in and just figure out what it means in their life to delight in the Lord, delight in His salvation, in His works, in where He’s led them, what He’s done for them. But what are some thoughts on delighting in our spouse? ‘Cause they’re probably similar but different, right?
[Jennifer] Yeah. Well, we just spent a couple of days at the coast for a few days and I love it because we live inland now, so we don’t get to the coast very often. When we lived in California, it was a much shorter drive.
[Aaron] And we can get there in like 50 minutes with the traffic and 30 minutes with no traffic.
[Jennifer] So now it’s like once or twice a year we get to the coast and it always makes a huge impact on my heart. Standing before the ocean, it reminds you how small you are. But it becomes a really great backdrop for those moments of just being together, delighting in you, Aaron, and participating in life together. I don’t know, I just thought about that.
[Aaron] We always love little adventures.
[Jennifer] Yeah, no agenda.
[Aaron] You probably have heard an endless, if you’ve listened to our podcast for any length of time, we do a lot of adventures. We just like being with the family, going for walks, going to the coast. And so being together, doing those different things. We work from home, so we’re in the home a lot. So being out of the home is fun. It’s different.
Yeah, one of the other examples I put down here is just, we do this little hike at Sawyer Park where it’s along the river bed and our kids love to throw rocks in it. And just spending that time, I don’t know if I talked over you when you were talking, but I used the word no agenda, and I love those moments because it gives me time to see you and see our children in God’s light, and-
[Aaron] And watch me kick my foot through the ice into the icy water
Yeah, that was funny.
[Aaron] and have a soaking wet foot.
[Jennifer] Which just happened recently. I posted on my Instagram a few weeks ago, a picture of, I think it was from Christmas day, actually. You were climbing on the rocks with the kids.
[Aaron] Yeah, that was the day I kicked that ice.
It was a really cool picture. And I remember just standing, the reason I took the picture was ’cause I was just standing there and looking at you guys and just being so grateful for you. And even though you weren’t right there next to me, I just, I was delighting in you.
[Aaron] You were…
[Jennifer] I was enjoying it.
[Aaron] Enjoying from a distance.
[Jennifer] Yes. I remember another time where before we had kids, we ran up to the back hill on my mom’s house, ’cause it kind of overlooked our town, and I remember the sky was just blown up with r. Orange, pink, purple, blue. Bright on one side, super dark on another because there was a storm rolling in. And we just sat there and kinda did a 360 slowly, just looking at all of it, just amazed by it. Do you remember that?
[Jennifer] That was cool.
[Aaron] Other times of us just delighting in each other is we have these hammock swings, you sit in them. It’s not a lay down hammock, it’s a sitting hammock.
[Jennifer] Been a big hit.
[Aaron] We love them. They’re better than regular hammocks I think. But we can just sit and we’re swinging back and forth, sometimes in tandem, sometimes opposites, just talking with each other, watching our kids play in the backyard. More so in the summer. Right now it’s a little cold and I have the hammock swings put away. Sitting and just being present with each other, talking about whatever, whatever’s going on in life, good things, bad things, the children, ideas. Oh, thinking of ideas one of the things that we probably talk about the most is just whimsical dream ideas that we have.
[Jennifer] Like starting a donut shop.
[Aaron] Or inventing a silent podcast chair. You’re like, “We should do that, we should invent a silent, we’ll make it so it doesn’t…” We have these little dream talks about things that will most likely never happen but they’re fun to talk about.
[Jennifer] So another way that we delight in each other which every couple listening should be delighting in each other in this way is…
[Aaron] Tickle fights.
[Jennifer] No, that’s not what I was gonna say. Is being intimate with each other.
[Aaron] That is the next note! Tickle fights! It’s physical.
[Jennifer] Yeah, being physical-
[Aaron] It might start with a tickle fight.
[Jennifer] Yeah, being physical with each other and here’s the warning is when you’re not delighting in each other physically-
[Aaron] It affects everything.
[Jennifer] It affects everything, it really does.
[Aaron] So we challenge you to physically delight in each other.
[Jennifer] I know we use the word-
[Aaron] This is the PG version.
[Jennifer] Yeah. I know we use the word being spontaneous or doing spontaneous things together, but even if it’s scheduled, like date night, our date nights are scheduled, that’s delighting in each other. I love, especially now that-
[Aaron] We look forward to them.
[Jennifer] We look forward to it because we have a house full of kids who are very young and needy, and so for us date night is our time to delight in one another.
[Aaron] And the way we’ve dealt with it when we can’t go out is we tell our kids, “Kids, you have to go to bed and you have to stay in bed ’cause me and mommy have a date night tonight.”
Yeah, in our room.
In our bedroom.
[Jennifer] That’s cute. Oh, speaking of serendipitous, serendipity.
[Aaron] I like that word.
[Jennifer] Do you remember we went-
To Serendipity in New York.
Yeah, in New York.
[Jennifer] There’s this little-
[Aaron] It’s probably closed down now.
[Jennifer] I don’t know, there’s this little restaurant, and this is probably our fourth or fifth year of marriage, but there’s-
There was a movie about it.
[Jennifer] Yeah, but I think the restaurant existed before then.
[Aaron] Yeah, I think they made a movie
Based on it?
called “Serendipity.” I think it was about the restaurant. I could be wrong.
[Jennifer] Anyways, we went to that little place.
[Aaron] It was a cute place.
[Jennifer] It was so cute.
It was fun.
It was super fun.
[Aaron] We got frozen hot chocolate.
[Aaron] That was years ago. Oh my goodness.
[Jennifer] Okay, so we’ve been talking about a lot of good, fun memories about how we’ve spent our time delighting in one another. So follow me on this. I’m gonna list, not in full detail, but just some moments we’ve shared together that I feel like we really delighted in each other, but those moments came really-
[Aaron] They were tightly knit with hardship.
Tightly knit with hardship. So, okay, so unpacking for our honeymoon. So we get to our honeymoon spot and we’re super excited, up in the hills in Julian, California, but then not being able to consummate our marriage. So all this energy, excitement, hope, love, just togetherness.
And it didn’t work.
[Jennifer] We jumped in bed together. I think we might’ve even watched something on TV, I don’t remember, but that night just being so brokenhearted and disappointed and frustrated over the fact that we experienced pain in that coming together and it didn’t work. Okay, so that’s one memory. Another one was sitting at the end of the dock in Malawi on that lake. There was like a gazebo thing over us.
[Aaron] What was that lake called?
[Jennifer] It was Lake Malawi.
[Aaron] Lake Malawi, yeah, it’s long. 365 miles along, yeah?
The water was super clear, and there was rful fish swimming all underneath us. And I remember just sitting there, it was a warm day, and we talked a lot, but we also just sat quietly a lot.
[Aaron] And we’d been out for a couple months, three months now.
[Jennifer] Doing missionary work.
[Aaron] And so we were tired and emotionally drained.
Super tired. But it was still good just to be there. I remember that being such a pivotal point in our marriage for some of the things that we’re talking about. And then shortly after that, like hours later-
[Aaron] I rolled our truck.
[Jennifer] Oh yeah.
Like flipped it upside-down.
That was crazy and life-changing and hard.
[Aaron] Everyone lived.
[Jennifer] Okay, do remember the time that we were visiting my aunt in Connecticut and we were in her backyard and she had a hammock off in the distance and we went and sat on it together ’cause it was just a spin day and we wanted to have fun?
[Aaron] And we were childless, it was just me and you. And we sat in the hammock.
It was our first year of marriage.
And it broke?
[Aaron] We fell straight to the ground.
[Jennifer] That’s not as dramatic or hard, but it’s just funny that we’re experiencing this nice, delightful time together and then… Okay, one more. Okay, I remember we-
[Aaron] In our apartment.
[Jennifer] a few years married, no kids, in our apartment, and we had this fireplace. And I love the ambiance of a fire.
[Aaron] And this wasn’t a gas fireplace.
No, it was like
I was like a real wood burning
you build a fire.
[Aaron] fireplace, yeah.
[Jennifer] And we had been putting it off for a while, but it was a gloomy day and I think I begged you, “Go get some wood, let’s make a fire.” So you come back and you
set it all up and it’s so perfect and we had a leather couch that my dad had given us, and so we kinda were spooning on it, watching the fire, trying to relax. It’s all dark and moody. And then after a few minutes, we’re like coughing.
Billowing. The house is just filled a smoke.
[Jennifer] Filled with smoke because something with the chimney flue.
[Aaron] The flue was either clogged or it wasn’t open. I didn’t know how to do it. Or maybe it wasn’t a fireplace anyway.
[Both] I don’t know. Okay, so all this to say I think it’s important to recognize the value and significance of delighting in each other all throughout marriage because when trials and challenges and hardships come, and they’re inevitable, it does require a lot more energy and effort to delight in those moments, which you’re not even thinking about ’cause you’re thinking about the hardship. But when you’re going through hardships, at least for me when I’m going through something hard, I do reminisce about the times that we have shared together, that we have delighted in each other. And the times that I’m not remembering, you remind me. You bring it up.
[Aaron] So practicing delighting in the good times makes it more possible to delight in the hard times.
[Aaron] Good advice.
[Jennifer] I just thought it’d be fun to bring some of those other ones up, ’cause they were really good memories we had.
[Aaron] So what about delighting in our children? We’re almost to the end here and this is a good one because as parents, it should come naturally to just delight in your children, but they’re children.
[Jennifer] I think it’s a good thing for us to share about because for any of you who are parents, you know the role and responsibility that you have in your child’s life to teach them character and just what’s right, what’s not right. And things get exhausting pretty quickly, but it’s constant because they live with you and they’re not grown up tomorrow.
[Aaron] And they have 100,000 questions all at once.
[Jennifer] And I think amidst all of the being on guard to teach them and to raise them up to be good men and women, godly men and women, we need to remember to delight in our children, to jump down on the floor and get in their face and smile and-
[Aaron] Enjoy them.
[Jennifer] Enjoy them and experience happiness and appreciation for who they are, our children, not just what they do or don’t do or what they understand or don’t understand. Because it’s not about performance, it’s about presence, it’s about I’m your mom, I’m your dad.
[Aaron] You’re ours.
[Jennifer] You’re ours. And we can’t do that if our nose is stuck in our phone, or if we’re constantly working late hours, or if we are too tired. Parenting requires sacrifice. So even though you’re tired, you still need to find a way to delight in them, to sit close with them on your bed or cuddled up on the couch. Staying up late answering their questions.
[Aaron] Yeah, enjoying their stories or their creativity or whatever it is that comes out of them.
[Jennifer] There’s been a couple other times I know in my parenting that I just absolutely love the way that we’ve chosen to delight in our kids and be present with them. One of them, and I think it’s something the kids will remember because we do it every year, but sitting on the back porch during a thunderstorm and we’re like scared but we’re not, and we’re kind of amped up.
[Aaron] On the couches out there, yeah.
[Jennifer] Yeah, in the back. And the storm’s just kind of going crazy and it never lasts very long.
[Aaron] The wind in the trees, I love all that stuff.
[Jennifer] It’s super fun.
[Aaron] And the kids go,
[Jennifer] Yeah, but we’re bundled up and we’re holding each other close and we’re looking at each other in wonder and amazement and we’re just there. I just love it.
[Aaron] Something that I’ve recently adopted from some friends of ours is dance parties. I’m not doing them as often, but like the other night I just put on some on Spotify kids’ dance music. There was no words or anything, it just was like this pop music. And we just started dancing. And Wyatt does this jiggle butt thing when he’s dancing, with his legs. It’s so funny the way he dances. But Wyatt, Elliot, Truett, Olive, they were all dancing with me. And that was a lot of fun.
[Jennifer] I’ll say this about Olive, especially when it’s just you and her, like when you’ll randomly sway her around like a ballerina, she’s delighting in you. It’s written all over her face. She’s in a happy place.
[Aaron] She just grips my fingers really tightly while I’m spinning her. But that’s a lot of fun. She’s beautiful when she’s dancing like that. I mean, she’s always beautiful.
[Jennifer] Another time that we delight in our children is when we’re baking together, or making forts, or just being sneaky and giggly and silly at each other, with each other
[Aaron] Another one that’s a good… All of these are things that we have to like learn and practice and desire, but this one in particular is getting good at asking questions.. Asking them like, “How’s your heart? What’s going on? What are some ideas you have? What do you wanna be when you grow up? Why do you wanna be that? That’s interesting.
[Jennifer] Leaning in, like if they’re at the kitchen table or something, just leaning in and meeting them eye-to-eye and letting them share their hearts with you. Yeah, it’s so good.
[Aaron] But guys, just, we wanted to make this episode about just the idea of delight, delighting in the Lord, delighting in your spouse, delighting in your children. And it’s an action, it’s a verb. Finding the things to delight in, drawing them out, pursuing them, finding them, and delighting in them. And there’s plenty if you just have your eyes open for it.
[Jennifer] It’s good.
[Aaron] I wanna end on something. It’s a fourth point and it’s a surprise.
[Aaron] It’s a bonus point, yeah. Lastly, the Lord delights in you. Like we’re talking who we delight in, delighting in God, but God delights in us. Psalm 35:27 says, “Let those who delight in my righteousness,” so this is talking about us delighting in Him, “shout for joy and be glad and say evermore, ‘Great is the Lord who delights in the welfare of His servant,'” right? We’re servants of God. We’re servants of Christ. He delights in that. Proverbs 3:12, “For the Lord reproves him who He loves as a father the son in whom he delights.” The Bible calls us children of God if we’re in Christ. We’re heirs with Christ, right? And so He delights. If He reproves us, that proves that we’re His children and that He delights in us because that’s what a good father does. Another one, ssians 3:12, “Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved.” Think about that. So this isn’t quite the word delight, but, “holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with hearts of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.” Something interesting about this verse is the fact that we clothe ourselves with those things because of who we are. We don’t clothe ourselves with those things to become holy and beloved. So it says, “Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves.”
[Jennifer] Like we are holy and beloved.
[Aaron] He loves us. We’re beloved by the Father and holy because of Jesus.
[Jennifer] Yeah. So good. One of the verses that I wanted to share was Psalm 149:4. It says, “For the Lord takes pleasure in His people, He adorns the humble with salvation.” So again, not that specific word of delight, but pleasure.
Yeah. Which is one of the synonyms.
For the Lord takes pleasure in His, yeah.
[Aaron] Take pleasure in. He delights in us. And the only way that can be possible is because two things. We’re made in His image, right? ‘Cause He can delight in Himself. He’s the Creator. And also because of Christ, His Son with whom He delights, right? So we’re in Christ, therefore He delights in us. We’re made heirs, we’re holy and beloved, we are a holy nation, a priesthood. We’re His children that He delights in. And so I just wanted to encourage you with that, that God delights in you. Especially when we’re humbled and we’re walking in Christ and we have received His Son, He delights in us.
[Jennifer] So our challenge for you this week is to delight in your spouse, delight in the Lord, delight in your children, find those moments where you can get face-to-face, eye-to-eye, and let them know, those people that you love, that you just love them. There’s no agenda. It’s not because of performance. It’s just because of who they are and who created them. And we hope that this episode inspired you in those ways.
[Jennifer] So at the end of every episode this season, Aaron let me get away with, no, I had this idea just to encourage everyone to think about things that they’re grateful for. And we thought by sharing different things each week that we’re grateful for, we’ll kick off the conversation. So I’ll go first this time. Or, sorry.
[Aaron] I think you went first last time.
[Jennifer] Okay, go ahead.
[Aaron] Yeah, I’ll go first. I’m grateful for our friends and our community, the husbands and wives, the men and women that we fellowship with. God has really blessed us and just, we love them, they love us, they are real with us, we know them, they walk with us, they cry with us, they laugh with us. Just I’m incredibly blessed, we’re incredibly blessed by the people that we walk with.
[Jennifer] That’s awesome and I could just say ditto. No?
[Aaron] No, you have a better one.
[Jennifer] Okay, I’m grateful for the time that you give me. I feel like our whole marriage you’ve been so attentive to my needs in this way. So early in our marriage, it was doing art projects and just getting time away to be creative. Then when we moved, when we got married and moved, it was time with family. So getting plane tickets back to California or finding a way to meet up with them somewhere, or them coming to us and just giving us that space to have family time. Then there was a season of writing.
[Aaron] Yeah, like last eight years.
[Jennifer] Yeah. Writing books or working on Unveiled Wife stuff. Now it’s like a weekly thing where every Friday you give me time to work or make appointments or whatever I need to do on that day.
Meet with women, yeah.
[Jennifer] Meet with friends, yeah. So I really appreciate that, Aaron, and I think it’s a really beautiful thing that you’ve given me over our marriage.
[Aaron] Thank you. I love you.
So thank you. I love you.
[Aaron] So we wanna encourage you out there listening to say what you’re grateful for, to share it with someone, share with your spouse as you delight in them, share it with the Lord. And let’s just be grateful this year. So as usual, we’re gonna end in prayer and I hope you all join me. Dear Lord, we praise you and we thank you, for you are good and your love endures forever. Thank you for our marriages. We pray we would delight in you and delight in each other every day. We pray we would find creative ways to express our love and creative ways to spend our time together. We give you our anxious thoughts, our worries, our stresses, and ask that you would fill us with your peace. Lead us beside still waters. Lord, help us to be content. We pray we would delight in you more, individually and as a couple. We pray our souls would be satisfied just to sit in your presence and worship you. Please continue to strengthen our marriages. Give us eyes to see one another’s needs and how to help meet those needs. Draw our hearts close together and closer to you. In Jesus’ name, amen. We love you all. If you have time, please leave a review, a star rating. And also you guys are our share warriors. Would you share this episode in a Facebook post, in a Twitter post, in an Instagram post, in an email, a text message? However you’re going to do that, would you just please share this episode? We love you all and we’ll see you next week.