Tonight Scott Last challenged us to face our idols and destroy them. He explained that idols are something you sacrifice in order to gain something. For many of us Christians, that “something” we desire to receive is favor from God. This can be a Christians way of manipulating God and I know I have been guilty of this time and time again.
So how do we smash our idols? First, I think we have to name/identify them. For me in the past, my idols have been a relationship, a job or success at my job. Second I’ve found I need to ask God for forgiveness. I have to admit and apologize for allowing something else to take His place in my life. To guide me in my thoughts and actions, instead of giving him the authority over my life. Then finding accountability is an important step. I can’t tell you how much it has helped me to bring others into my mess. Asking those closest to you to share in your struggles, to encourage you, pray for/with you and keep you accountable to changing. Speaking of change, I think we have to repent. I know some view forgiveness and repentance as the same thing but for me they are quite different. Repentance is a turning away from our sin and moving forward with the desire to change. I have found comfort in Romans 8 where Paul says that there is no condemnation for those in Christ. That we have been set free from death! If we could just set our minds on things of the Spirit and not things of this world..makes sense, huh?
Scott reminded us that Christians are unfortunately known more for what we oppose than what we value and believe. How can we change that??
After dinner I had a chance to sit down with Hud and talk about some of these things and process through my time last year in Prague. I shared about my desire and hesitancy in moving back to Prague. He directed me to read Psalm 4:4- “Tremble, but do not sin.” The two feelings that can make us tremble- fear and anger. Two feelings I have felt at various times over the last six months. I love that Paul writes Tremble; yes it is okay to be fearful or angry, but…do not sin. Don’t act on those thoughts. This was an “a-ha” moment for me and one that I hope to encourage others in the community back in Prague with as they deal with their feelings of grief during a transitional time.
Lastly, when Hud ask me what specifically we could pray for together, I told him that I wanted clarity about my decision to go back to Prague. He said that when most people ask for clarity what they really need (and probably want) is faith. Trust that God knows our desires as well as fears and is in control of what’s to come. He’s got a plan and we just need to have faith in that. Faith, not clarity…honestly, that’s going to be easier said than done in the next few days.