Idol-atry-ize-ing: Repent

So if you’ve been following this little series (and this is the last entry) we’ve been thinking about how we (especially pastors) may be guilty of making our church, or the growth or success of our church, an idol.

That may sound crazy, but if I’ve been looking for satisfaction from my church, I’ve put it in the place of God. If I feel better about myself (or worse!) because of my church, I’ve put it in the place of God. If I pray for the growth of my church more than I praise my God I’ve put it in the place of God.

So if’ you’ve made your church an idol, what do you do? Repent.

Ezekiel 14:5 “I will do this to recapture the hearts of the people of Israel, who have all deserted me for their idols.’ 6 “Therefore say to the house of Israel, ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says: Repent! Turn from your idols and renounce all your detestable practices!”

Maybe read that again? Did you notice (1) That God considers idol worship a detestable practice? That means if you’ve made your church an idol He considers the way you lead your church detestable. Ouch! (2) That God wants to recapture your heart? He’s after your heart and if you’ve given your heart to your church, that’s a lousy substitute for God. Your heart should belong to Him. (3) That God commands you to repent. It’s not enough to realize that you’ve gotten things mixed up, God is asking you to turn from idolizing your church, from getting satisfaction from church growth, from enmeshing your identity in your role as pastor and to turn to Him.

So will you do it? Maybe turn off your computer and spend some time on your face before God, repenting and giving your heart back to Him…