Idols are like sneaky little pests. They don’t always show up in the tangible form of a golden calf or monkey. They quietly tip toe past us, make a cozy diminutive residence in our brains, set up a small shop in a dark corner of our heart, and begin to grow and multiply. Most of the time we don’t even realize they are there because we’re completely unaware of their existence… or equally as destructive, we fail to notice them because we’ve fallen in love with the idol – it has become part of what drives us and makes us (momentarily) happy. Either way, we’re blind to our idols and need the intervening love and grace of another to help open our eyes to see the things warring for our affections to be over and above Christ.
Idols are not made from scratch. Idolatry involves the distortion of already present truth. The truth is changed into a lie. The lie depends upon the truth it is distorting for its power, just as the counterfeit depends upon the authentic for its value. Our idols of God contain truths within them, making them all the more seductive to us. To be sure, God is love. To reduce God to love, however, is to change the truth into a lie.
Below is a list of questions meant to help you as you strive for building a culture of transparency and establish the habit of asking deep heart level questions, applying the Gospel to your life, and seeking Christ in community.
1. What do I worry about most?
2. What, if I failed or lost it, would cause me to feel that I did not even want to live?
3. What do I use to comfort myself when things go bad or get difficult?
4. What do I usually do to cope with disappointment or unmet expectations? What are my go to sources of release? What do I do to feel better?
5. What preoccupies me? What do I daydream about? What most easily comes to mind when thinking?
6. What makes me feel the most self-worth? Of what am I the proudest? For what do I want to be known?
7. What do I lead with in most conversations?
8. Early on in relationships, what do I want to make sure that people know about me?
9. What prayer, if unanswered, would make me seriously think about turning away from God?
10. What do I really want and expect out of life? What would really make me happy?
11. What is my hope for the future?