Wait, what if my heart’s desires are for something not Him? What if I want more money, more sex, more work, more security, more of anything out of God but not God himself? Why in all of creation would God give me something not God when my heart desires not God. Logically and theologically, that does not make sense.
In one true sense, God is a pragmatic God. That is, if he has given me His soft heart and now my heart’s desires are for Him and His glory. Jesus said, “Ask, and it will be given to you.“ 1 Okay, I am going to ask God for God and His glory. Guess what, He will not say, “No”, to me. He will give me exactly what my heart desires.
Likewise, God may be pouring His blessings on you, in you and through you despite you. Jesus said, “God shines the sun on the evil and good and pours rain on the just and unjust.“ 2 When someone close to you, be it your wife or your best friend, calls you out on your crap, we cannot dare think that just because everything is going awesome doesn’t mean it is awesome in your soul. Pragmatism should be the alarm, not the process, that something might be going on in your heart.
“I would say to Luella (and this is embarrassing, but important to admit), ‘If I’m such a bad guy, why is God blessing everything I put my hands to?’ God was acting as he was not because he was endorsing my manner of living but because of his zeal for his own glory and his faithfulness to his promises of grace for his people. And God has the authority and power to use whatever instruments he chooses in whatever way he chooses to use them. The success of a ministry is always more a picture of who God is than a statement about who the people are that he is using for his purpose. I had it all wrong. I took credit that I did not deserve for what I could not do; I made it about me, so I didn’t see myself as a man headed for disaster and in deep need of the rescue of God’s grace.” 3