Monday, April 4, 2011

The Ole Switcheroo

God has really been impressing on me lately the impact of false gods and idols in my life. When I was a little girl sitting in Mrs. Merrick’s sixth grade classroom, I remember looking up at the Ten Commandments posted over her classroom door and reading “Thou shalt have no other gods before Me” many times. As many times as I read it I thought things like this - How would that be possible? What other God would I have? That’s one commandment I can keep.

Maybe that’s where the deception began, I don’t know, but over the past several weeks as I have been reading my Chronological Bible and learning the woes of the Israelites, as well as participating in the study Made to Crave, the subtlety of false gods taking a place of authority in my life has become not so subtle.

It’s a continual game of exchange it seems.

Several days ago, I stopped by to visit with my mom. It was just before lunch time on a Saturday and I didn’t have the girls with me. My mom works during the hours that I am at home, so I don’t get as many opportunities to just visit with her like I used to, so on this particular day, I decided to take advantage of a few moments and drop in.

I entered through the front door, looked into the den to see Dad’s mammoth archaic big screen TV pulled out in the middle of the room sideways. Immediately, I thought I had interrupted one of Mom’s “cleaning fits” where she pulls heavy objects around the room with brute force. We have always said “if we can get our butts behind it, we can move it”, just a perk that comes with wide hips!! Mom came around the corner and I realized that she was NOT in the middle of a cleaning fit, so I asked, “What’s going on?” in an almost fearful tone. I’m just gonna shoot you straight here – you don’t mess with Dad’s TV if you value your life.

She answered, “It died.”

“Where’s Dad?” I asked, not wanting to encounter an irritated grizzly.

“He’s gone to get another one,” she answered as I breathed a sigh of relief knowing all would be well soon.

Assuming he had driven into town to purchase a new television, I was surprised when he pulled in the driveway a few minutes later with not only a TV, but my brother in tow. Why was my brother in tow, you ask? Because this TV was almost as old and almost as mammoth as the one that died. He somehow convinced mother that the TV he was getting would not be as large and occupy such a ridiculous amount of square footage as the old one, but when he and my brother heaved and hoed the thing inside, there was only a couple of inches difference in the size and the frame was silver instead of black.

They did the ole’ switcheroo and there wasn’t much difference.

Just as distracting.

Still serving the same purpose.

And I thought to myself – That’s what I do with gods. I get rid one and before I know it, I have replaced it with another, almost identical god.

Memories of Mrs. Merrick’s classroom come rushing back, and then I understood the answers to the questions I asked in the sixth grade.

Really these gods are no god at all, they cannot give me life. They cannot sustain me, they have nothing really to offer me.

They come in many forms:

The praise of people
Images to attain and sustain
False senses of joy from food
False senses of status from things
A deceptive sense of security in my abilities
A number on a scale
A perfectly clean house
Trendy clothes
The latest home decor
A number in my checking account
Seeking approval from others
Biblical knowledge without heart change
Serving self with an absence of self denial

God’s words to the Israelites through Joshua in Joshua 7:13

…Hidden among you O Israel, are things set apart for the Lord. You will never defeat your enemies until you remove these things from among you.

Many of the things I listed in and of themselves aren’t bad; it’s where I place their importance that places them in a position of god in my life. When the Holy Spirit points out one, He does that so that I will remove it and place God there, not so that I can do “the ole switcheroo”.

He’s really been working on me about this, so you’ll probably hear more on this in the days to come – just warning ya!!

My Creator God, the issue of false gods is one that I can no longer ignore. Please forgive me for all of the things I have placed on Your throne in my life. I have placed things there that don’t even live or move or breathe and looked for fulfillment from them. How ridiculous am I? I know – you don’t have to answer that – I already know the answer, and that answer is something I want to change. Please open my eyes to the images and statues to where my worship is focused, even worship that I am unaware of and help me to tear down those idols and place You, the One who died for Me in Your rightful place.

Royal Princess Daughter Of The King
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