What are you pursuing?
The thought of idols conjures up images in my mind of giant sculptures of stone with menacing faces. I think about certain people groups from around the world and time periods that worshiped such statues. And often find myself looking down upon those societies and think, "how can they put such trust in an image that has no relationship with them and cannot even respond to their pleas and requests." In those moments, the Spirit gently yet quickly reminds me of my own false gods and how I have elevated my own "statues", so to speak. I mean, seriously? Chips and salsa? Really? And I looked down on their statues because those images will not talk back to them, yet I drown myself in a bottomless chip basket? Why do I give in to the god of Pleasure?
I say I worship God and only God, but my actions often declare otherwise. I worry, I have control issues, I have turned to food, shopping, you name it, to ease my disappointment or pain in areas of my life, and these are just to name a few. Have you ever struggled with these desires? Or am I alone in this struggle? How could I so easily be deceived and sucked into these vices? I know they will never satisfy me, but I often find myself submitting to the same struggles and vicious cycles that I work so desperately to abandon. Why do I continually replace God in my own heart with lesser gods, just because things aren't going how I had envisioned they should? Only then to discover that God's way and timing was best.
God's love is all consuming. The reason He has a problem with idolatry is because He knows that other idols are full of empty promises that serve to distract us from the abundant life He longs for us to experience. Ezekiel uses the picture of a betraying spouse to show how God feels when we substitute Him for another. When we reject the love of God with a cheap substitute, God is the betrayed lover. Fortunately, we have a God that will continue to lovingly, relentlessly pursue us and draw us back toward Himself.
In what ways are we guilty of pursuing the idol of Pleasure? What things do we turn to in order to fill those empty places in our lives? If you have been on this journey, you know that this pursuit always ends in pain and emptiness. Instead, let's pursue the true lover of our souls and allow Him to be in control and tear down this idol once and for all.
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