(or rather, tearing DOWN your idols.)

You’ll know what I’m talking about if you’ve been in a really good worship service.

That moment when the Holy Spirit moves. 

That moment when you really get why you’re there.

It can sometimes knock you off your feet. 

And yesterday, quite literally, I was knocked to my knees.

This happened right after we sang, “You Won’t Relent.”

The lyrics go something like this:

You won’t relent until you have it all.

My heart is yours.

And so on.  Oh man, what a powerful song (especially when my sister sings it)!

Anyway, as I was kneeling down, up on the stage (I sing too), praising God and thanking Him for knocking me down (it’s a good thing – you WANT to be knocked down), my dear friend comes up to pray beside me.

After a short time of crying and praying together, she whispers something along these lines in my ear.

I’ve been worried about you lately. 

That you’re spreading yourself too thin. 

That you’re not really listening intently for all that God has CALLED you to do. 

That you’ve got some idols in your life.

WHOA.

I could have gotten angry, but I didn’t.

I could have gotten offended, but I wasn’t.

Because…she was speaking TRUTH. 

LIGHT.

(And I so greatly appreciate her honesty.)

I HAVE been taking too much on.  My focus HAS NOT been entirely where it needs to be. 

And I have idols in my life that need to be torn down.

What is an Idol?

Anything in your life that you place more importance on than is appropriate.  <-my own definition.

It can be your job, a hobby, pornography, a relationship, a fitness goal, the love of money. 

Any one or, in most cases, a great many of those things. 

Idols take our focus off of God, our family, our friends, fellowship/love.  They beg for our allegiance to them first.

How Do We Tear Down Our Idols?

IDENTIFY:

You must first identify WHAT your idols are.  What are the things that you place too great of an importance on? 

If you give this serious thought, I’m sure you can name a few.  Because creating idols is in our human nature.  Even when God’s people were closest to him, being led by Him day and night in the desert, they turned to something else.  How much more so, now in 2012, living in a broken world, are we more vulnerable to creating idols!

ACT:

Do something.  Stop idolizing.  Create a plan of attack. 

Take the importance OFF of the idol and put it back on the things that matter!

048

————

Here’s me:

IDENTIFY:

One of my idols is this blog (or rather, ALL THE EXTRAS – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, blah blah blah).

In my case, it’s not sitting down each day to write a post that takes up my time.  I can write a post in 30 minutes while the kids sleep. 

It’s all the other stuff that comes along with this blog.   The social media.  Reading other people’s posts.  Company contacts. I’ve placed too great of an importance on all the extras.

ACT:

My plan of attack:

  • Continue blogging, but at less intervals. 
  • Limit blogging time and all that is involved to naptime only (2-4pm).
  • Limit my time on social media, especially if Travis or the kids are around.

031

————

I have other idols (exercising, OCD with cleanliness) and I plan to tackle those as well (posts to come!).  And I’m under no illusion that this shift of thinking will not be hard or second nature.  Far from it.  I just want to be purposeful in how I spend my time.

I share my own struggles out loud because I hope to inspire you.  To evoke thought and reflection on your own life and your own idols. 

Life is way too short to be focusing on anything but the best!  You know what “your best” looks like – what’s right for you and your family.  Listen to that inner voice.

Or be knocked on your knees. 

013

Either will work.

QUESTION:  What are your idols?  Are you willing to tear them down?

splendid…lindsay

  1. Pingback: Friday Countdown
  2. Justin says:

    Love this post, probably the first post I have read from start to finish in a while.

    It was awesome how open and honest you were, great stuff, will be back for more :)

  3. Sarah @ RunSingTeach says:

    Lindsay! Just found this post today. I think one of my idols is worry. What would I do if all of a sudden I stopped worrying and allowed myself contentment. I know that physical idols like facebook (and now instagram) can really take hold of my focus. (while at the same time connecting me in a positive way to an amazing circle and a renewed commitment to time with the Lord.)

    Either way, I’m so glad you have had this self-realization and will take time to take care of yourself and prioritize your needs. Your community of bloggy-friends loves you and wants the best for YOU. Regardless of what happens to tt.

    Be well. And I offer this prayer for you from the Book of Common Prayer.

    O God, in the course of this busy life, give us times of
    refreshment and peace; and grant that we may so use our
    leisure to rebuild our bodies and renew our minds, that our
    spirits may be opened to the goodness of your creation;
    through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

  4. Jen says:

    It’s a game. It is. Don’t lose yourself and your REAL LIFE. Seriously, stop blogging – I’m not joking. Stop for a month at least. You can always come back to it…I used to do it and now that I don’t – I realize just how liberating it is to be FREE and not be so narcissitic or not be sucking up or not be on the computer all the time. I can do what I want, when I want, think what I want – and not have to share everything. That leads to anxiety. Just be you. Just go for a walk. Just get something to eat and eat it without taking a photo. Think of what you really can be doing in life to make a contribution to society and be a better person.

    good luck.

  5. Meg says:

    Lindsay, I just have to comment again and say how much I think of this post throughout the days now when I feel pressure to be blogging/reading blogs or doing stuff like that. You have really helped me, Lindsay. Thank you x 10000000000000000

  6. Leonor@FoodFaithFitness says:

    I got rid of Facebook because I was convicted that it took up too much time. This is a great song! The enemy makes it so easy for us to get sucked in to anything that will take us away from the Lord. I am a fairly new blogger and now make it a rule that I cannot blog until my quiet time is done.

  7. Jentry Nielsen says:

    I love this post! So fitting in my life right now, you always know the perfect way to put things! Such an inspiration you are for your love of God and your family, these are the things that should be the biggest importance in our lives! We need to be reminded to take a step back sometimes and remember what’s important and what is not!

  8. Kelly says:

    Great blog post! Thank you for your honesty and sharing what the Lord has graciously laid on your heart. I wish more healthy living blogs would focus more on a balance between exercise, healthy eating, and life instead of such a stong focus on exercise and eating perfectly. Very inspiring post :)

  9. Meg says:

    WOW! Amazing post! So happy I read this this morning :) Thank you so much Lindsay <3 I have been wanting to tear down some idols – limit social media time in particular

  10. Sarah @ The Smart Kitchen says:

    I love this post. I have so many ‘idols’ that I don’t even know where to begin. Sometimes an ‘idol’ is the feeling that I’m NOT keeping up with all of the blog-reading and writing and whatnot that everyone else makes look so easy. I feel like if I DO let it go I will miss out, or people won’t read my blog or miss me. It’s all silly when you think about it, but even in this blog community where I feel so accepted, I can end up comparing and judging myself (not others). Not sure if that makes sense, but there is TOO much to be caught up with in this ‘world’…and don’t even get me going on the ‘real’ world idols…

    • lindsaymwright says:

      You totally make sense!! There is such a need for VALIDATION through blogging – a post to come! When we need that approval, there are almost no bounds to what we’ll do to get it. I have to tell myself that my only validation needs to come from Christ!

  11. Calee (@chimes) says:

    I. Love. This. Post.

    Regardless of anybody’s faith, we all create idols, or things that get in the way of what our true priorities should be.

    I am glad you didn’t say yours was porn. ;)

    I almost got to the point where blogging became an idol, but then I remembered WHY I started blogging in the first place: For me. Not to make money. Not to get a big audience. Not to get a job offer blogging for some big company. I blog to get my feelings on paper (or pixels) and to keep track of my recipes, keep myself accountable and to engage in conversations when necessary.

    Fitness is definitely an idol. I need to work on that. Because 5, 10 or 15 lbs is not going to matter in the grand scheme of things. How my abs look through my tank top does not matter. These things are and will constantly change. And giving up important things to have time to work on the last 5 or 10 lbs is not worth it. It’s not like I am bettering my health doing it.

    Thanks for this post!

  12. Heather @ Kiss My Broccoli says:

    I am so guilty of the very same things. I love the blog and I love what it has done for me over the last year and a half, but sometimes, I wonder how I get so caught up in “cyber world”. For someone who very recently didn’t know what a tweet was, I sure have become obsessed with having to be “plugged-in” to as many social media networks as possible. Sometimes I wonder what I would do with my days if there were no such things as Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, etc. However did we live before them, right? Lol

    I’ve been trying to make an effort to remain conscious of my friends and family when I’m with them, and limiting myself on my phone. It’s all to easy to get caught up in the never-ending feed of Instagram photos and end up ignoring the people I’m with. I’m getting better, but it’s still a work in progress to find that balance.

  13. Amy K. says:

    Wow, Lindsay, this was a fabulous post! I’ve been reading your blog for a couple of weeks now and this post just blew me out of the water. I LOVE how real you are. . and how you’re okay with admitting things about yourself that so many other people struggle talking about.

    In my church service (Lancaster, PA) this weekend we talked about Envy and how it affects your life and destroys others’ lives. This is so true of idols, too. The scary thing is that Satan wants to get us caught up in these things sooo badly. And for us it’s so easy to fall unknowingly into the pressures of secular culture.

    It takes a lot of courage to realize and admit our faults, but humbling ourselves (like you do on your blog) is the first step towards turning back to Jesus for help. Amazing Love.

    You’re awesome, Lindsay. :-) Your blog contains substance; keep up the great posts!

    • lindsaymwright says:

      Amy – thank you so much for your kind words and support! I totally agree that there is a battle being waged between the “world” and the “home”. I must remember my callings as wife and mama FIRST!

  14. Jess says:

    This is so powerful. The sheer thought of being knocked to your knees by His wisdom? Brings ME to my knees just thinking about it. You have left me with a LOT to think about, my friend. Thank you, a million times over, thank you. xoxo

  15. Janet says:

    Kristin,
    I am a new follower and I totally appreciate your honesty and vulnerability in this post! I also LOVE that song, as we sing it in our venue at church….and that’s the thing. I make time 6 days a week for exercise, I check FB everyday, the blogs I follow and email, but I haven’t been spending time w/the Lord and my husband, which are really the #1 & #2 in my life, but my actions haven’t shown it.
    I, too, need to make better choices each day- where I am putting my time.
    You are amazing and God has amazing things in store for you- after all, look at what He is doing with YOU and your influence (me & others who follow you).
    Have a wonderful day, and may He continue to give you wisdom and guidance!!! Hugs!!!
    Janet

  16. Paige @ Your Trainer Paige says:

    Darn you, Lindsay, this isn’t convenient for me to think about right now. I’ve got blogs to read, contracts to sign, tweets to send, reality shows to watch, and celebreties to read about!
    Oh, wait… :)
    AKA, this hits home for me right now!

  17. Allie Finch says:

    This is powerful stuff. What a great friend to bring this to your attention, & what a strong person you are to address it.
    My blogging mantra has evolved into “i live my life; i blog on the side.” This is my take on social media too. I just can’t commit to spending hours & hours online: reading several blogs, leaving comments, updating FB, making videos, using Twitter at all…so I don’t really know you all like you seem to know each other. I absolutely LOVE blogging & the community here, but I need my days to be mostly OFFline. I still love everyone; I still think about how people are doing & check in. It’s hard to say I’m not going to read everyone’s blog or at least not every day. I’m going to be selective – I NEED to be selective. We all do. It makes me sound like a jerk, but once we spread ourselves too thinly – or too virtually – life becomes so much harder & less fulfilling.

  18. Katie says:

    It’s crazy (or awesome) how the Lord works because I JUST had this conversation with Him this morning during my quiet time. I have the notes to prove it. I love you and will be praying that you can find some peace and really focus on what HE needs you to do today. Love you so much.

  19. christy says:

    Thank you Lindsay for making me stop and think, all of what you said makes so much sense, and hits home! I love your blog, your such an inspiration!! Thank you again :)

  20. STUFT Mama says:

    YOU, my friend are awesome. I’ve been spending WAY too much time on blog stuff and feeling so guilty about it. I need ot be knocked to my knees too. Thanks for speaking to ME today with this post. Lova ya lady!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! GOD IS GOOD!!!!!

  21. Beth @ Miles and Trials says:

    Very powerful and something that I have been struggling with in my life. As a new blogger I am contemplating how much time and effort to devote to social media. I want to find a balance and use my blog to glorify God, not distract me and take my time away from Him. Thank you for sharing your journey as it will help me and I’m sure others as well.

  22. Lisa says:

    Very well said! I think we definitely have things going on that distract us from what we should truly be focusing on. We all have idols and we need to let go of certain ones sometimes in life to make life more positive in fulfilling! Thank you for sharing this!

  23. Katie @wishandwhimsy says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you for sharing a post like this. I’m always encouraged when others are bold and talk about their faith. I can’t wait to read more as I struggle with idols of my own.
    I, too, had a great church service this weekend and have been contemplating its powerful message. Wishing you the best!

  24. Bonnie says:

    Well said, Lindsay…We all have idols, and I know I have some that need dealing with. I like that you said you need to identify them (that would be where I’m at in my processing) and then ACT – it’s not enough to know what’s wrong but we need a plan of attack to move forward in God’s grace.

    The best part of this post to me is that you have a friend who loves you enough to be honest with you, to speak truth into your life, and that you were willing to accept it. So valuable! Thanks for sharing today. :)

  25. Tina @ Best Body Fitness says:

    I’ve somehow never heard that song. It’s beautiful!

    And I feel like the past year has been all about God forcing me to take hard looks at things in life and the idols I had created. He has been working HARD to change me and it has been rough, but I can see the benefits. Thank God for His love, grace, guidance, and the joy and peace He provides. Hugs. Great, big, giant hugs.

  26. Tess @ Cross Country Cajun says:

    Wow – I think you just knocked me to my knees. I can’t thank you enough for this reminder that it is all for HIM and to praise HIM with our lives and all that we do. To live purposefully is not always the “status quo” way of living, but it is the way as followers. Thank you for sharing your story and your faith!

  27. Kelly says:

    I think we have all distractions that take away from where are priorities should be. I have spent a lot of time lately being angry over my two miscarriages. But I have realized that being angry takes too much energy. So instead I have spent the last 2 weeks focusing on how GREAT my life is and all the amazing things in my life. And I am a much happier person and a much better person. I believe God is there for us to help us heal and to help us grow. For me, my distraction has been anger and now that I have let that go I feel like I can get back and focus on the goodness my life does carry.

  28. Maddy Brown says:

    That was such an inspiring post about something we all struggle with daily! How sweet it is to have someone speak from their heart so you know you’re not alone in this battle! Thank you, Lindsay!

  29. Amy@ahealthyandhappyheart says:

    Power post Lindsay. Thank you for sharing your heart so we can be reminded of what is truly important in life. Jesus Christ! You are so inspiring and this was definitely a post I needed to read this morning. I have been struggling with the whole social media aspect as well…it is so easy to get caught up in technology. Praying for you as you tackle your idols head on.

  30. Heather says:

    Great post! I am going through something similar right now. I feel like pain is God’s megaphone, and He is really trying to get my attention! This is the second time in 6 months my foot has been injured so I can’t run, so I have to sit back and think WHY. What is God trying to tell me? I think I put too much emphasis on my running and think if I put that much time into my relationship with God instead how much stronger I would be. I don’t know the answer yet, I am still trying to figure out exactly what this means and what I am supposed to do, but praying I find out!

  31. Katie @ Peace Love & Oats says:

    This was an amazing post, I actually started tearing up at the beginning! I never thought about this, creating idols in our life. I think a big idol that a lot of us have is body image. It’s something that I, and I’m sure most women, think about many times every single day. For the past couple weeks, whenever I’ve started to put myself down I stop myself and say, “God made me. I am perfect how He made me, I am unique and I am beautiful.”

  32. Amanda Perry @ Sistas of Strength says:

    This is so wonderful. I’m so happy you shared as I think it’s something we all need to hear. I love where you say you could have gotten mad, but didn’t because it’s the truth. I was reading this and found myself nodding my head as I have been really trying to figure out my priorities in life. :) Thank you for a wonderful post.

  33. Bex says:

    You have no idea how strongly this spoke to me today. I’ve been incredibly run down with a cloud hanging over me constantly, and I couldn’t find anything tangible to attribute it to. Things will never feed us like love does. Time to re-organize my days and intentions. xo

  34. lindsay says:

    all i can say is yes, I’ve been through and am still letting go of certain idols. Wasn’t until GOD broke us both physically and spiritually that i let go. PRAISE HIM! Love you.

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