Here’s a truth that the devil does not want you to believe. What you idolize will never love you back in the way that you want it to. What do I mean by idolize?
To love to excess; to love or reverence to adoration; as, to idolize gold or wealth; to idolize children; to idolize a virtuous magistrate or a hero. (Websters 1828 dictionary).
It doesn’t matter who or what it is. At some point, it is guaranteed to disappoint you and let you down. There is a reason for this. We were created to love God first and foremost, and nothing else is meant to take His place (Ex 20:3-5). I’m sure that as Christians, we know this. We’ve been raised to go to church, follow the rules, and say the right things. Yet how many of us have a secret or not-so secret love affair with something else that is not God? It may be even something that is good, like a spouse, a friend, a child, or even a pet. It probably doesn’t happen right away, but slowly over time, something else creeps in, and subtly turns our gaze away from the Lord. It begins to take up our time, our thoughts, and eventually, our lives. I have had friendships that have consumed me to the point that they became an idol in my life. Thankfully, the Spirit of God revealed it, and I was able to repent, and be set free. Yet it was a very painful process, because I had allowed it to have more precedence than it should have. I have been distracted by T.V. shows that I have had to purposefully stop watching because they were taking up too much of my attention and thoughts. It may be something different for you.
I have been studying the book of Lamentations recently, and I have been struck by how many consequences of idolatry that the Israelites experienced after the destruction of Jerusalem. Here are some of them from Chapter 1:
- like a widow
- weeping bitterly
- none to comfort
- no friends
- no food
There is a kind of suffering that is allowed by God to make us more like Christ, and there is another kind of suffering that is brought upon ourselves, when we have purposefully chosen to turn our backs on God, and pursue other lovers. Friends, idolatry does not just impact our relationship with God, but permeates every area of our lives. Sin affects our minds, emotions, bodies, relationships, and even our economic state. It is very serious in the eyes of God.
If there is something that you are holding in too high esteem right now, would you ask the Lord to reveal it to you? Remember that He is for you, and His only desire is that you would walk in freedom, and obedience to Him. Here are some questions to think about.
What do I find myself often thinking about when I allow my mind to wander?
What do I spend most of my free time doing?
What makes me the happiest?
It is not wrong to enjoy the things or people that God has created, but if they are hindering your walk with God, and you are spending more time on them than with God, there may be an issue. God is the only One who will satisfy our souls (Ps 107:9). Return to Him, for His steadfast love never ceases, and His mercies never come to an end (Lam 3:22-23).