One of the teachings I really enjoy presenting is all on the idols of our hearts. This activity has helped me greatly. I invite women to look at areas of their hearts that may be “cordoned off” from God. That is to say, a wall or stronghold is in place, and no one, not even God, is allowed into that area of our lives, our stories. We are still “God” in those areas. We have firmly planted a DO NOT ENTER sign in that area of our hearts. As I pull different items from a heart shaped “pillow,” we examine unforgiveness, despair, addictions, generational darknesses(sin), ancestor worship, sin against womanhood, making idols out of spouses or other people, and combining faith in Jesus with other faiths or synchronism.
Then, my team and I supply materials for workshop participants to bring idols they can identify at this time to the cross of Jesus. We then pray for each woman as she shares this part of her story, and try to help her carry burdens, unforgiveness, and unmet desires to Jesus. This prayer time is a time of transparency, vulnerability and connection, woman to woman.
John Calvin has said, something to the effect that “our hearts are idol-making factories.” However, as followers of Jesus, we have the Holy Spirit within us, so “the beauty of living in the New Covenant is that we have the Spirit of God dwelling within us, empowering us to obey and cleansing us from our idols. Are we still tempted to worship things other than God? Sure. That’s why John tells his readers to keep themselves from idols (1 John 5:21). But the fundamental disposition of our hearts has changed. Our hearts are not primarily bent toward idol worship, they are bent toward obeying God. When we do sin, the Spirit convicts us of sin and draws us back to himself.” (Quote fromhttp://theblazingcenter.com/2014/10/are-our-hearts-really-idol-factories.html)
This is an activity I must continue to do throughout the rest of my journey in this life. Holding onto idols, false gods of security and significance, can lead to paralysis, fear, life becoming smaller and smaller, coupled with a lack of mental, spiritual and even physical health. It is worth it to have Jesus as God in taking all areas of my heart, no matter the hard work involved.
“If your god never disagrees with you, you might just be worshiping an idealized version of yourself.”
The LORD is my strength, my stronghold and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and he helps me. My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise him. Psalm 28:7