I think I know what it might have been like to wake in ancient Judah, to go out of my house and not see the high places, the altars, the pillars to familiar gods that had been there the day before. There must have been a palpable buzzing of shock and anxiety, as well as guilt for feeling it. I can see myself there in the morning light, looking at the now blank horizon, with a basket on my hip and fear in my heart that my back up plan is gone, my hope of performing well enough to move the heavens to favor me with outcomes I long for is now rubble under the feet of some godly king who demanded the people return to worship the one true God.
I never wanted to worship other gods, I never meant to, but as he patiently and surely dismantles idol after idol, I feel it. I feel disoriented.
He tore down the sin-management ‘gospel’ I trusted to make me feel clean, which only ever left me with grime.
He tore down the theraputic ‘gospel’ I trusted to help me understand why I am the way I am and help me find a me I can feel better about, which only left me with crumpled lists I failed to achieve.
He tore down the idol of beauty I trusted to one day make me worthy, happy, respectable, and accomplished, which only ever left me distorted, disordered, and self-focused in shame.
He tore down any idea I ever had that I was wise.
He tore down any idea I ever had that it was my job to prove Jesus “works” to give you a great life.
He tore down any idea that I had about my level of biblical literacy. This is particularly hilarious and sad to me now.
He tore down my idea that being a good mother, an enough mother, a mother who can control her kids future by her performance is even a thing.
He tore down my idea that marriage would make me feel valuable and give my life meaning, and fix my insecurities.
He tore down my sense that controlling my body size would save me, or was even what he is asking of me.
He tore down my visions of finally being a brilliant educator and perfect organized home maker so everyone in my life would be happy and feel full of peace.
He tore down the idea that if I was good enough I’d have bigger and better square footage and net worth.
He tore down my idol of believing healthy living could keep me from dying.
The true gospel is beautiful, glorious, and almost incomprehensible in scope, but its also deeply unsettling. I stand with a basket, on a new day, and I am disoriented. I didn’t realize how much direction my life got from the factory of idols my heart pumps out. When they are gone, it’s a bit stunning.
Oh Father, let me be like the woman at the well who drops her basket and runs to town shouting, “Come see the One who told me everything I ever did, and loved me to the finish before I was ever born.”
Mindy Pickens a wife and mother who loves Jesus, her husband, their two daughters, coffee, books…and coffee. She spends her time homeschooling, tutoring in her homeschool community, and trying to figure out this whole home-maker thing. She’s a regular woman who is captivated by the gospel of Jesus Christ and is learning to surrender to the grace and goodness of God. Read Mindy’s posts here.