June 12, 2007

Give it Up

We're at Day 3 of the obedience series. You can read the first two posts here & here.

Be careful not to forget the covenant of the Lord your God that he made with you; do not make for yourselves an idol in the form of anything the Lord your God has forbidden. For the Lord your God is a consuming fire, a jealous God.
--Deuteronomy 4:23-24
#3 - Obedience Requires Sacrifice. In order for God to build the monument that we talked about yesterday, some things in our life have to go. They're impeding progress. It's time for the idols to go.
Wait a minute, I don't worship idols!

Are you sure about that?

Maybe it's a TV show. (it has been for me).

Or a relationship.

Perhaps it's a habit.

Or a hobby.

It could be anything.

What's hindering us from experiencing true fellowship with God? If we're honest, we may already know the answer.

Whatever it is, IT'S GOT TO GO.

But I can't give it/him/her/that up! It's asking too much!

That's where God comes in. He's not asking us to do it alone. He created us, so He's well acquainted with our weaknesses. As David tells us, "for he knows how we are formed, he remembers that we are dust." (Psalm 103:14) I find such comfort in that verse. I realize it doesn't do any good to hide from Him, and I can be myself. It reminds us that we don't have a single ounce of strength. But God, in His marvelous, sweet and generous spirit, steps in and gives us what we need. Have you noticed that whenever He commands us to do something, He provides everything we need to do it?

Isn't that just like Him? Doesn't it blow your mind?

I can testify that I was thoroughly convicted about giving up those two television shows (and some other entertainment idolatry). I knew I couldn't do it in my own power, so I literally laid them at the altar. And, Praise His Name, He has done it! So far, not even a temptation. Now, I'm not stupid enough to think Satan won't start messing with me over it, but I can trust in His strength to fight the battle.

Still, it can be tough to obey an "invisible" God. In those situations, we should ask Him to provide us with encouragers - people who will walk alongside us, cheer us on, and give us a swift kick in the pants when we need it. I don't know about you, but I'm at a point in my life where I don't have time or patience for people who don't encourage me. If I'm going to seek the abundant life He wants to give, I have to surround myself with people who are like-minded.

God has given us all the tools we need, and He expects us to be obedient. It's serious business to Him. And that's where we'll meet again tomorrow.

Because of Jesus,

1 comment:

Holly said...

I agree that there are many idols that distract me and my focus, they eat up my time too. This is a struggle, but important to be reminded of the sacrifice of obedience.
Encouragement and accountability are so important too.

Good thoughts. Thanks for sharing!