It’s possible to get so wrapped up in God, the Bible, your ‘quiet time,’ that you miss His Heart and religion creeps in. God becomes a mere idol and the effects can be devastating, especially if you’re in a family.
I have heard too many stories of people who got, or are currently planning divorce because their partner is getting in the way of their “ministry” (aka service to/for God). #SayWhat?! If you or someone you know ever thought, “I could do so much more for God, go further, faster.. if they didn’t hold me back…” , or if you were willing to serve God at any and all costs, look out, this post is for you.
5 Signs You May be Making God an Idol & Tips to Quit
- You’re annoyed when someone interrupts “quiet time.” The small moment in the day when you and God have an uninterrupted chat, to plan, laugh, cry, sing, whatever. Any disturbance can perturb, especially when it keeps coming..
Tip: Instead of snapping, try closing your bible and seeing the interruption as an opportunity to put God’s Characteristics into practice (e.g. patience, kindness, gentleness). Why bother reading anyway if we’re not going to Be like Him?
*If the interruptions come from children, try rising at 4am (haha, right), but if you’re a normal human who needs sleep, remember to lower your standards! Even 10 minutes is a gift. NB: Above all, the kids should know they’re the most important thing to you, which is so Jesus–totally tired but awake early and up late for “quiet time,” yet usually soon after “interrupted” to help others… (the truth is, they were never interruptions but preludes to Joy… ask Jesus…).
- You lost interest or reject old hobbies, music, activities…
Remember, God wants a relationship with you, not some holier-than-thou version. We’re Sons and Daughters, not robots or slaves, and if you stopped listening to certain music or hanging out with certain people because they weren’t Christian, then, Tip: Ask God to keep your heart warm and your spirit open for His Freedom and Outrageous Love. Ask Him to show up in and through your activities and trust He will reveal anything truly harmful for you (physically, mentally, spiritually, relationally).
- You’ve lost interest in basic life chores e.g. house cleaning, laundry, food.. (the: ‘Heaven-is-My Real Home’ mentality)
Tip: Remember God is Everywhere, from kitchens to playgrounds (Psalm 139). Serving and caring for others (or yourself) is doing that for Him (Mat. 25:40). As long as the last Day has yet to break, we’ve still got earth bodies that can do a lot more for others if we eat and sleep properly. Expand your understanding of “fellowship” and “worship” as God so identifies with us He puts it one-to-one. One Sunday while having an outer body joy/freedom experience with Him I felt a tug at my leg, “mom, baby has poop diaper.” I felt like a genie being sucked back into the tiny bottle. And I was mad.
Jasmine, God doesn’t need your worship…but your child does need that diaper change. (Ouch.)
4. You’d rather spend time/engage with God than rowdy kids or a partner that doesn’t always get it…
Sure, quiet moments with God can soothe frazzled ‘mom’ brains, and wounded hearts will always find safety with God, but any walls between you+God on one side and your family on the other are Red Flags.
Tip: Remember, God so identifies with us (e.g. Mat. 25:4, Acts 9:4, 1 John 4:20) that when we enjoy one another we are actually enjoying Him. And if we recognize God is the oven that refines our hearts (Proverbs 17:3), we’ll see our partners and kids as the greatest Warriors He assigned to us, helping our hearts be Heaven-ready. The kids especially can suffer so much by way of anger, impatience, sharp tongues, etc. as our dross comes out…
5. You’ve thought: ‘I could do so much more for God if they didn’t hold me back.. ‘
This is maybe the dirtiest trick in the book to wreck your family. If your enemy can get you to focus on self and your relationship with God, he can make you believe and desire the servant mentality as opposed to Co-Heir, all the while slipping heart-hardening religion in to further blind you…
If the Living God of Love becomes a mere Master or Idol you are eager to serve at all costs, alarm bells will sound in heaven!
Tip: Fight! A marriage/union is more than a bond that crosses all physical, mental, emotional, spiritual borders. It’s a mighty merging–in a workshop sort of way— of gifts and talents to rock the world for good (and the children are like arrows in your hand!-Psalm 127:4). You may feel held back, but the truth is God is making you even more like Him, which is so needed in this world…
You are being set up, jointly, for serious work you can’t even imagine, and its already happening now when you feel at your wits end…
Don’t let the enemy trick you into thinking you have a choice between God and your family because choosing your family, I think, is choosing God.
Families were meant to reflect Heaven’s Heart for the world: love, understanding, care, self-sacrifice, despite troubles, difficulties, misunderstandings, obstacles. The children are supposed to receive and know unconditional love, and be protected at all costs–even if that means the death of the parent. This was the Love fleshed out for us to touch in Jesus.
God Never wanted to be an Idol to which we would bow–no, we were all born to be Free–He wanted to be our Friend.
“No longer do I call you servants…but Friends..” (Jesus in John 15:15)
Did any of this resonate? Have a heart2Heart with God. He’s crazy about you, your family, friends, everyone, and is expert in gently revealing matters of the heart.
-On God’s Heart, check the #WildKidsWildGod -31 Days looking into God’s Heart series.
-On God’s Identification with humans see: Rejection, Anger, Empathy, Love–What they did to you, they did to Me [Part 1, Rejection] [Part 2, Blessing]
-On Maintaining Intimacy with the Kids Come.