If we realize our joy in God is lackluster, we must seek to discern what our hearts are prizing more than God. This is the pursuit of a saint determined to eradicate all idols from his heart, by the grace of God. This is the pursuit of the Psalmists. This, I believe, is the ultimate aim of the book of Psalms—to show us how normal believers in times past fought for joy in the living God. The only thing that can destroy a superficial joy in superficial gods (i.e., idols) is the life-altering and soul-sustaining joy found in the one true God. And it is this God that the Psalms offer to us as the remedy to all our idolatrous pursuits. More than any other book in the Bible, the Psalms persistently and passionately call us to prize the Lord above all else. And this, I believe, is the goal of the Christian hedonist.
Truth be told, if I had to point to one factor that has most encouraged my Christian growth in the last year, it would be the power of God’s grace made effective in my life through the study and memorization of passages from the Psalms. I wholeheartedly agree with Charles Spurgeon, who said, “The delightful study of the Psalms has yielded me boundless profit and ever-growing pleasure.”
In fact, Psalms has become my favorite book in the Bible. No other book has God used more repeatedly to encourage my soul in Him and to help me fight for joy in the Lord when all around my soul gives way. Psalms is a precious book, a spiritual feast, a God-breathed treasure trove of hope-instilling, idolatry-destroying, God-exalting literature. May I continue to treat it as the treasure that it is and feast on the truths it contains.