By Rosalynne Martin
Imagine if the mayor of your city rang your doorbell and requested that you immediately bring all your fine jewelry to the door so that he/she could melt it and build a statue of gold for the citizens of your town to worship. Wouldn’t that be the most bizarre demand? Most of us would say, “There is no way I would worship an idol or a false god made out of gold.” Our culture is not involved in this type of idol worship like the Israelites were in early Bible days. However, is it possible that we have erected modern-day idols and do not know it? How can we recognize them or avoid making them?
Let’s take a look at the meaning of idolatry – it essentially means “Anything we value as much or more than Jesus.” To put it another way, anything in our life that has a higher priority than Jesus is an idol in our life. Please think about this for a second; this has a substantial meaning for all of us.
In what areas of our lives can we create idols? Here is a list of “things” that come to mind when I think about modern-day idols: our spouse, our children, our career, our body (good image or negative image), our home, our friends, our vehicles (car, boats, RV), our financial status (how much money we do or don’t have), our children’s academic progress/status – just to name a few. Are we showing more devotion and adoration for any of the above more than we do to Jesus? I challenge myself daily to want to be more Christ-like and to love the Lord with all my heart, soul, mind and strength, according to Matthew 12:30. What about you?
We are currently studying the book of Judges with the women’s ministry at church. Each week, we have seen a continuous sin cycle with the Israelites. One of the major slippery slopes the people were facing was idolatry. This recurring mistake has made me do some soul-searching and self-examination of how I may have dabbled in idolatry in my own life. Can we unknowingly build “innocent” idols in our lives and not even realize it?
Can you pause for one minute…ask yourself right now – Is there anything in my life that I value more than Jesus?
Can you pause for one minute…ask yourself right now –
Is there anything in my life that I value more than Jesus?
In Exodus 20, we are given the Ten Commandments and the very first commandment instructed by the Lord is to have “No other gods before me.” When my boys were learning about the Ten Commandments, I recall discussing the meaning of idols. In our lives, we may not be tempted to worship graven images like those described in the Old Testament. However, moments will arise that can cause us to put our trust in something or someone other than Jesus. In this moment, we have made that thing or person an idol without realizing it. We must continually set our hearts on Jesus and His work on the cross. How do we avoid the trap of idol making?
As we approach the holiday seasons of Thanksgiving and Christmas, I want to encourage you while encouraging myself to be more alert of modern-day idols and how they can sneak into our lives.
- Pray and ask the Lord to reveal any idol(s) currently in your life.
- Share with a friend and ask for accountability for the next 30 to 60 days.
- Post a personal testimony on social media or share with a group of people how you found freedom in an area of struggle. This step may be a difficult task to do, but you will be surprised how being transparent and showing your imperfections will encourage others.
“Dear Lord, I am thankful for the sweet sisters-in-Christ who are reading this post about modern-day idolatry today. Sometimes it is not easy to admit we love or trust in things more than You. Forgive us for where we have sinned against You. We want to love, adore, and serve You Jesus and not let any person, place, or thing be a hindrance in our lives. Allow us to have a willing heart to always put you first. Thank you Lord for the Missional Motherhood blog and how it is used each week to encourage, uplift, challenge, and strengthen the body of Christ. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”
Rosalynne is a wife, mom, educator, PTO volunteer, and mentor. She has nearly 20 years of experience in education, ranging from the pre-school classroom to higher education administration. At age 33, she became a first-time mom and left the workforce to become a stay-at-home mom. Her greatest joys involve serving in women’s ministry, choir, and children’s ministry at her church. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her college sweetheart/husband, experiencing fun adventures with their 2 energetic boys, and working part-time with ARISE2Read in Memphis, TN.