Idol: a picture or an object that is worshiped as a god.
“You shall not make idols for yourselves or erect an image or pillar, and you shall not set up a figured stone in your land to bow down to it, for I am the Lord your God.” Leviticus 26:1 ESV
The Israelites made idols NOT because of their disbelief in God, but because of pride and control. After all, God had delivered them from oppression in Egypt and performed many great things in their sight. Yet they continually formed gods who would only secure war victories and riches; and who had no disapproval about their decisions or choices. The silence of their gods approved of their reckless lives.
The Israelites knew God, but had no control, or hopes of manipulating God; so they formed gods. Gods that weren’t so seemingly hard to please; gods that couldn’t chide, discipline or CORRECT them. Gods that inwardly they could boast they formed. It all points to pride. So, they could boast of their own riches, victories, and give no one else the glory. That is why God hates pride. Pride gives self-glory; and robs God of the glory, and credit He is due.
Even today we make idols, but unlike Biblical times; our idols aren’t wooden statues, but live in our hearts. An idol is something that in your mind or heart de-thrones the living King. The thing about idols is that the shift from a desire to an idol is quite a sneaky one. Sometimes our desire turned idol, is not in essence unholy. But, the focus we give it, is.To the extent that we ignore all that God does for us, to focus on the one thing He hasn’t yet done. The other thing about idols is it can be dangerous; if we aren’t awakened and recommit ourselves back to God.
So here are 5 clues that you may be harboring an idol:
1.When you experience ingratitude for an extent of time.
Now we all go through a spell of ingratitude, for whatever reasons. But in this example, this sort of ungratefulness is actual disappointment in God. And, sometimes bursts of anger or resentment.
2.When your mind is filled with same thoughts of wanting, daily.
When you can only think about how much you want this one thing. What life will be like when you have this one thing? Why isn’t God giving me this one thing?
3. When your conversations with God or prayers are based on one topic.
Sometimes certain urgent situations require constant communication. However, in this example, you can’t shut up about this one thing. Over, and over harping on an endless loop.
4.When your faith dwindles because God hasn’t given you this one thing.
You began to think God hasn’t given you this one thing because He isn’t able. Not, because it’s an idol. Or, not because your focus on it is unhealthy.
5.When you want that one thing more than you want God.
Before all you wanted was to develop a closer relationship with God. Your desires were all correctly aligned with God in mind. Nowadays, God’s a little further away.Because, your heart isn’t set on Him, anymore.
6. When our natural inclinations to praise and worship aren’t towards God.
This one thing takes all your time, attention, and fills your mind. You now worship that one thing. In your heart, you lift it up and behold it.
“But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” Matthew 6:33 ESV
If any of these clues rang true for you; go in prayer, and ask God to reveal it to you. I went through a spell of making marriage an idol. I thought about it all the time. I dealt with lots of discontentment issues because of it. I told God ‘He was enough for me’, but in reality, He wasn’t. I wanted validation from a man. I wanted a prince charming to rescue me while ignoring my Savior. After tears and prayers, God worked it out for me. And, I know He will do the same for you.
I love you, but God loves you more!