We are in the impassioned crescendo after-moments of the presidential election and I keep witnessing remarks on social media that are either completely jubilant that one candidate overtook another, or completely dread-soaked in fear. Now, because of this one event, the consensus is that all will be well or all will be lost based on the results. We are busy placing our allegiance stones high in a tower of trust in man, a terribly undeserving idol indeed.
In Revelation 2: 4, Jesus is speaking directly to His followers and does not mince words, of course, He never did. "But I have this against you: You have left the love you had in the beginning." (NCV) What He is saying is of upmost importance; asking us to remember who He is and how our love for Him has faded to a mist in the midst of this election season. Other passions have taken over our hearts and our devotion.
Have we placed Christ and our initial burning love for Him in a buried and rusting box and our faith in the latest shiny object instead? The world dangles its sparkle and lures us in and tells us it holds the answers we seek. It is exceedingly skilled at leading us away from our first love and misleads, convincing us that it offers the ticket to the land of deliverance from our woes. We get led astray and get on board, forgetting our ultimate desired destination is to be with God, not the world and its false promises.
This, my dear friends, is devotion misplaced. Salvation is offered by Christ alone. Our personal stone towers need to be toppled and the sooner the better. For our own good. Jesus told the Pharisees of His time down here the same thing. Don't put your faith in the things that do not warrant it; in their case it was the law. Truthfully, I tell you to put your faith in Me, He exhorted over and over. The law cannot save you, and man cannot save you, He reminded them - these are lifeboats full of gaping holes. They may keep you afloat for a little while, but will take you under before long.
Christ warned against false worship then and still does today. Don't put your trust in the world which will continue to disappoint and fade, instead, put it in the eternal God who remains the same yesterday today and always (Heb. 13:8). "Jesus answered, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. The only way to the Father is through me." (John 14:6 NCV) The only door to God is through God Himself. We must remember always where to place our devotion, in the One devoted to loving and saving us.
This applies to all sorts of things in life. It deserves deep examination - where does my personal daily-grind devotion reside? Admittedly, I often choose my own way thinking it will offer me peace and joy and fill me up somehow. I stack my day's-tower high with teetering stones of my own making like my need to be praised, desire to be right, and choosing sarcasm-dripped words that sting. My desire to fill my days with the many false and self-serving idols I cling to can take over if I am not careful. I am really trying, somedays are better than others, if I am being honest.
My urging today and each day is that we snap out of the world's lulling stupor we are all in danger of falling in and worse, staying in. As followers of Christ we are to stay alert, stay in His Word, stay devoted and awaiting His return. If I keep stacking the stones higher to the undeserving, leaving Him further and further towards the bottom, I have chosen to stay in the trance and certainly not kept Him in first place or as my first love. Let's resist the seduction of the false, choosing truth and our good God first, each and every time. Let's stay in deep, daily, and crazy love with Christ!
Question: What stone-stack in your own life needs toppling? Where is your devotion currently misplaced?