As we wrap up our season focusing on the dangers and pitfalls of idolatry, you've now got enough knowledge and tools to go into battle. But there's something I'm concerned about.
We’ve identified and confessed our idols. So it’s time to move on to step 3: replacing them.
But how does this happen? The Bible tells us in Ephesians 4:22-24 “put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness” (NIV).
Now that we’ve defined and identified some idols, let’s look deeper into what waging war against them looks like.
Check this out, in Romans 12:1-2.
We’ve learned what an idol is, and have begun to uncover why our hearts are drawn to them. But what is it that feeds these idols in our lives? I’ve got a hint for you: it comes from our eyes.
Now that we've identified an idol, we can begin to wage war. But you have to know what victory looks like if you’re going to win a battle.
Let’s take the game of baseball as an example. What is victory in baseball?
- Number of strikeouts?
- Number of base hits?
Number of errors?
...it's in center field for everyone to see...it's who crosses home plate the most.
I grew up going to church. As in every week, multiple times/week. Idolatry was something we talked about often, and my understanding of them was rooted in the Exodus story. And if I’m being honest, every time I heard it, I thought, “Whew…good thing I don’t struggle with idolatry!” Let’s read it together. Maybe you’ll see what I mean.
I keep telling myself, "It's not that big of a deal. Don't worry about it." See, I've just been swindled out of some money. As in, thousands of dollars. And there's really nothing I can do about it. I tend to be a pretty good negotiator, but I've reached the end of those abilities with no meaningful conclusion. If I'm being honest, the only meaningful conclusion I'd like is to get my money back.
"Everything's pretty stressful right now," are the words I uttered to a friend just this last week. And it was true. We're in the middle of moving across the country, ushering in a new job, a new house, new friends, new church. New schools, new gym, and new rhythms. And it's all just...a lot.