Exodus 20:3 You shall have no other gods before me.
It's a little frightening how many people believe that they have a good handle on this commandment from Exodus; we believe we have this one nipped in the bud. We lean on dogmatic statements about our monotheistic/Trinitarian God on Sundays, and then we venture into our week, pulled in a thousand directions by visible and invisible forces.
I carry an idol in my pocket, and sometimes I even unconsciously worship it. But that little idol or "god"-my smartphone-is tangible and can be turned off and set aside. Other little gods are more difficult to identify but still suck our energy and attention as powerfully as an ancient golden calf might. They go by the names Career, Wealth, or Industry-and that sneaky god called "I'm right."
When we are unaware of the power these gods have over us, we can be pulled by their invisible force to serve them. This commandment from Exodus reminds me to dethrone the gods that have power over me and set them back to the place of being tools for my use, so that I might go about the work of serving the one God.
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