Exodus 20: 4-6
I used to think idolatry was about worshipping golden calves. That was, until God told me a previous relationship I'd had (that was still in my heart) was idolatry as I'd looked to this person for everything I should have looked to Jesus for. Although this relationship had finished 2 years before, it was still in my heart and so were the bondages of the idolatry. God challenged me to give it up. Believe me, I was wrestling. I came to this point, standing amongst the ruins of Dudley castle at a Cross Rhythms festival, that I said, "God, nothing within me wants to give this up. I can't even say that deep down I want to give it up. But what I can say is that though nothing within me wants to give this up, I ask you to go beneath that and take it away." He answered the prayer!
'You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.' Exodus 20: 4-6
His heart in executing this jealousy though is like a parent with a child with a splinter in their hand. He knows it's not a good thing, He knows it hurts, He knows it may for a brief time take over the way they see their hand and He knows it must come out. It doesn't belong there. The question is will we as His children submit our 'hands' into His hand to remove the 'splinter'?
Don't worry about who or what you've bowed down to. Or who or what you've 'kissed the feet of'. He covers us with His love, He pours His mercy and His grace over us as there is nothing He loves more than to forgive us. There's nothing He loves more than to remove our sins so far away that even He can't see them anymore. He doesn't remember them! They're gone! He's a great forgiver!
Run away from your other loves today. Run into His arms of love. If you think about it, it is perfectly reasonable that He should command this fidelity, even to our sinful minds. I mean, how would you feel in getting married, if your husband wanted to keep a lover too? Or if your children didn't honour you as their parents, but looked to another persons' parents, or if your parents didn't nurture you, but nurtured other peoples' children. It would hurt. It would damage relationship. It wouldn't work.
Put God first in your heart. Look to Him for all your needs. Ask Him first what He has planned for your life. Ask His opinion first, what He thinks of you. Love Him first. You won't regret it!The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.
View all Life Files by Heather Bellamy