How Many Gods Do You Have?
“They had worshipped other Gods.” – 2 Kings 17: 7 – 20
Most of us can’t keep ourselves from indulging in a healthy portion of idolatry.
Consider the cranky faith of the piety police—those who know all and wish the rest of us would catch up. They are always complaining, always whining, always correcting. Such joylessness must not know God. It is idolatry in a sneaky way.
Or consider the worries that crossed your countenance just this very morning. What if the oil runs out? How cold will I have to be in February? What if I slip and slide in the snow this year? What if, what if, what if, all meaning what if God’s promises are not true?
Our false gods are worry and joylessness. We can do better. Joy is the adoration of God in the great Beethoven hymn’s sense: “Joyful, joyful, we adore Thee.” Grace is the state of being free of worry. We are so convinced of the power of God’s forgiveness of all our previous idolatries and those, now systematized, which choke the earth, that we have faith in our future, humanity’s future, and today. Joy and grace trump fear and whining.
O God, relieve the burden from my shoulders and bring me into the house of grace and joy. Amen.
Donna Schaper is Senior Minister at Judson Memorial Church in New York City. Her latest book is Approaching the End of Life: A Practical and Spiritual Guide.