There is a special place in our hearts that is meant for the presence and worship of God alone. There is a throne in our lives that is meant for the authority of Christ alone, but for many of us, that throne is filled with crowned idols.
An idol is any person, object or activity that we consciously or unconsciously place before Christ or our relationship with Christ. Our idols can range from relationships to projects to objects, and interestingly, idols don’t necessarily have to stem from an evil, dark place, but they can also stem from good places turned into obsessions – good people, good projects, objects meant for good can become our idols if we do not exercise moderation in our association or use of them.
An idol is anything that we cherish more than Christ in our hearts; anything that we centre our identity, happiness and contentment on; anything that we relentlessly invest in and faithfully or obsessively spend time with.
They shift our attention from Christ, they take the place of Christ in our lives and they are easy to create and are a challenge to break down.
God is clear in His Word that we should not have any idol or god in our lives. His Word declares that He should be the first and only Being that we unashamedly worship and idolize because He is the Creator.
The Word of God through several references indicates that God wants to be first place in our lives.
“Do not turn to idols or make for yourselves any gods of cast metal: I am the Lord your God.” Leviticus 19: 4
Exodus 20: 3 – 6, “You shall have no other gods before me. “You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing steadfast love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments.”
“Son of man, these men have set up their idols in their hearts, and put before them that which causes them to stumble into iniquity. Should I let Myself be inquired of at all by them?” (Ezekiel 14:3).
One evening in prayer, the Spirit of the Lord spoke and gently whispered to me, “D, you have created many idols in your life. Break them down before they break you down.”
In defense I thought, “I do not have idols…I simply love deeply and sometimes obsessively….”
But with one honest look at my life, I couldn’t deny the harsh truth that the Spirit of God revealed to me.
When I honestly looked at my past relational life, I realized that I had a tendency to make an idol out of my dating relationships.
I found that my desire for a relationship with another was stronger than my desire to have a relationship with Christ. I found myself easily compromising who I was to remain in a relationship; I found myself looking for my partner’s approval of who I should be instead of finding my identity in Christ alone; I found myself obsessing over every word and action my partner said or did; I found myself going to extremes to make my relationships work ; I found myself seeking the advice and comfort of my partner instead of God’s guidance and comfort first; I found myself seeking relationships out of fear of being lonely….
I unconsciously made relationships my idols. That revelation placed my actions and thoughts into perspective. I asked God to forgive me and help me to realize when I was making something or someone an idol.
From that date, everyday, I am choosing the will and ways of God above all else and looking to Him for all that I need.
Our idols cannot fill the space in our hearts that is intended for Christ’s love and leadership. Our idols cannot bring happiness and contentment to our lives; they certainly can bring a temporal high but they never offer a deep-rooted joy. Our idols cannot protect or sustain us—- as everything that is earthly, they die, malfunction or end. Our idols cannot save us.
Do you have an idol? What’s your idol? What is standing between you and Christ? What are you secretly or helplessly worshipping? Are you willing to break down every idol in your life and seek a deeper relationship with Christ?
It is my prayer that you become vulnerable and honest with Christ so that He can begin His redemptive work in your life….
“Break down every idol….”
(c) 2013, Dentrecia Blanchette