It was a Monday morning years ago, and I was enjoying the relaxed atmosphere of fellowshipping with about 20 other pastors in a room provided at a local bank for this weekly meeting. With all the seriousness and load of Sunday behind us for yet another week, Monday morning was a choice time for rest and enjoyment of fellow ministers' company.
Still, it wasn't all punch and cookies, especially during the time of prayer requests and the intercession that followed. This particular session started typically, with mention made of financial need, upcoming revival services, and concerns for various ministries in the community. And then, after a minute or so of silence, one man started quietly, "The Lord has been convicting me recently about a sensitive issue in my life." He continued, "He has shown me that I love to preach about Him more than I love Him."
No one said a thing, nor moved an inch. It was one of those moments when the convicting impact of a truth is so stout that there's nothing to be said. Each of us knew it to be so in his heart, as well, and asked the Lord to increase our love for Him.
Idolatry is a sin so subtle. The leaving of our first Love begins with gentle drifting, leading to replacing Him with look-alikes that our deceived hearts don't even perceive as substitutes. Eventually, we embrace them, and, unless we repent, must endure His rod of chastening, (Heb. 12:11).
Father, may Your blessed Holy Spirit grant daily diligence in refusing to even begin to stray from Your presence and fellowship. Increase our fear of sinning against You, and strengthen our resolve to repent when we do. Reveal the idols we've allowed to receive the worship You alone deserve, and grant the grace needed to tear them from our hearts.
In the Lord Jesus' Name,