Idols Within Reach
I know you’ve been anxiously awaiting since last week to see who our lady of conversation is for this week. Read last week’s post first, if you want to refresh your memory.
If you want the cliff notes, however, here they are:
- sometimes we chase dead-end deals that promised so much more;
- sometimes we go after falsely-labeled relationships and situations; AND
- sometimes we stay on those paths OR sometimes we make the choice to change.
Our partner in life I have been thinking about is Gomer. Don’t feel bad if you say, “Gomer Who?” She usually doesn’t make the Top Ten List of Women Portrayed in Church Dramas. (And you don’t hear about her in the Easter or Christmas play either.)
She is found in the book of Hosea. The cliff notes on her are:
- God told the prophet Hosea to go marry an adulteress woman named Gomer;
- Hosea does;
- drama ensues; AND
- God uses the on again/off again relationship of this prophet and an immoral woman as an object lesson of His own love for His chosen people (the Israelites) who continually reject Him for other gods.
Remember – that was just the cliff notes. Reading the entire 14 chapters of Hosea would be enlightening But, for now, I want to focus on the object lesson.
I first wonder how Gomer felt about being an object lesson. I mean, how would you feel if your name went down in history as an example of WHAT NOT TO DO?
Gomer had a wandering heart. It didn’t stay faithful. She chased dead-ends believing the grass was greener on the other side of the fence; that the one who loved her wasn’t enough to fill the desires of her heart; that surely there had to be more to life than being a prophet’s wife; and maybe that she deserved better than Hosea- or sadly believed she wasn’t good enough for Hosea.
So God chooses to parallel her unfaithfulness with his own people who had wandering hearts. They loved God one month, then chased other gods the next month. They repented another month, then decided the grass was greener where the idols sat on foreign soil. And a few months after the next call to repentance, the Israelites filled the desires of their hearts with any number of other religious acts toward gods other than their true Jehovah God.
Shame on them, we say. How could they do that? Commit idolatry time and time again?
My name isn’t Gomer, but I wonder if my life could be an ugly object lesson also? Oh, I don’t bow down to gold statues or offer sacrifices to unknown deities – but . . . maybe I should consider the definition of “idol” before I get any more smug.
One definition is: any person or thing regarded with admiration, adoration, or devotion.
I have to ask:
- Have I adored my own opinion more than God’s will for my actions, words, and thoughts?
- Have I devoted time to anything that kept me from having enough time to spend with God?
- Have I been so consumed with wanting people to admire me, accept me, or include me that I compromised godly convictions?
Basically, has anything become more important than God? If so – it fits the four letter word: i-d-o-l.
I’m just doing some heart surgery right now. How about you? And if we ever get to the point that we think we are immune to being tempted by potential idols, we are sadly mistaken. (Check out my thoughts about idols this week on my Facebook page: Karen Morerod Writer).
And for some additional thoughts on Gomer, check out Michael Card’s song: Song of Gomer.