I just love it when my pastor delivers a timely sermon on something I’m wrestling with in my own life. It’s such a great confirmation of God’s devotion to the church body and its growth as a community. It also encourages me that I’m not alone in my struggles, that the things I face in my daily walk are issues many of my brothers and sisters in Christ are dealing with too.
Last Sunday, Pastor Mark spoke about worship, but in particular, he devoted much of the sermon to the way we misplace our worship on false idols. And those of you who have been reading this blog for the past several weeks have read about my quest to unearth hidden idols in my heart, most particularly ones that misshape the one True God into something unlike himself. You can click here to read about what I’ve found thus far.
We spent the large part of the service going through the following, detailed list of questions, helping us to reflect on the potential idols in our life. I warn you, don’t approach this too lightly. Once you start asking yourself these questions, God might reveal things you hold dear, too dear.
Consider yourself warned.
Who/what are your external idols?
* Who/what is my Lord that rules over my life determining how I live?
* Who/what is my Judge I am living to earn the approval of?
* Where do you give the firstfruits of your wealth?
* Where do you give the firstruits of your time?
* What people and things take the majority of your life?
* What do you plan and pray for?
Who/what are your internal idols?
* What false beliefs do you hold about God?
* Which parts of Scripture do you deeply doubt or even disbelieve?
* Deep down in your heart who/what do you love, cherish, treasure, long for the most?
* Deep down in your heart who/what do you despise and hate the most?
* Who/what makes you happiest? Why?
* Who/what makes you saddest? Why?
Who/what is your mediator between you and God?
* Who or what other than Jesus do you use to get closer to God?
* Who or what if taken from your life would cause you to not walk as faithfully with God?
* How do you define yourself, especially when introducing yourself to others?
Where is your functional heaven?
* When daydreaming about escaping this life, what does your functional heaven look like and how is it different from the real heaven?
* On earth, where do you run for your safety or comfort as your hiding place (e.g. the fridge, alcohol, the television, a person, a place, a hobby)?
Who/what is your functional savior?
* What is your picture of hell in this life (e.g. being single, not having children, being poor, etc.)?
* Who or what do you use to save you from what you fear (e.g. a relationship, children, money, shopping, sex, etc.)?
What good thing has become a god thing?
* Which idols are in your life that when appreciated and/or stewarded correctly are means of worship but have become objects of worship (e.g. work, family, health, friendship, pleasure, leisure, hobby, etc.)?
* If you could obtain or change one thing/person in your life what would that be?
* What idols am I selling to others?
Amy’s Additional Questions
*What does your best friend or spouse say are your idols? (hint: ask them)
*What’s the number one topic in the books or movies that line your shelves?
*If your house was on fire, what would you carry out with you?