Girlfriend to girlfriend, I feel as though I should deliver this news with a bag of M&Ms. The dark chocolate ones are my favorite. I would even throw in a bowl of popcorn because the combination of sweet and salty is divine. Just imagine you and me sitting cross-legged from each other, diving into our individual bowls of goodness and me adding this word of warning.
If you are finally at the point of saying, “I will walk forward in my faith and declare ‘Jesus is worth being first place in my life,’” your enemy will get busy, too.
You see, your enemy has a name, Satan, and the idols that vie for your heart are some of his best weapons against you. He does not want you to move forward in your faith. He will be happy if you quit. It would be wise of me to tell you something I’ve learned the hard way.
Idols don’t go away willingly.
Have you ever had houseguests overstay their welcome? Idols don’t take too kindly to being asked to leave. In fact, they tend to band together with other idols in your life and do their best to bully you until you cave and find it easier to let them stick around.
Are you fearful? Worry will hang out there, too. Is weariness pushing you down like a heavy cloak? Anger is not far behind. Are you like me and self-sufficient? Your idol BFF is named pride. Remember, they are clever and what they want more than anything is to have first place in your heart. But they will also settle for second and third place. The more the merrier.
Your enemy doesn’t want you to consider Jesus.
Satan absolutely does not want you to consider Jesus. He has no time for any of that kind of contemplation. So he will do his level best to keep you so busy you won’t have time. When you aren’t busy, he will distract you by all the things that feel urgent and important. He will fan the flame of your fear of missing out and make you feel silly for carving out time to be with Jesus.
He will probably tell you not to bother.
But if you find a tiny bit of resolve and begin to fix your eyes on Jesus with intentionality, your enemy will not just slink away quietly. He will take another approach by subtly saying, Okay, consider Jesus. But you need this other thing too. Get you some Jesus, but hold on for dear life to your pride, your weariness, your fear.
It worked for the Israelites, remember? Don’t fall for it, friend. It might be the craftiest lie of all. You don’t need Jesus and anything else, not even coffee. And you know how I love coffee. Jesus is truly all you need.
Are you feeling in any way discouraged or defeated right now? I am. And if I’m truly being honest, I have to admit I’m pretty nervous, too. I hope you will see my heart is open and ready to trust God with an idol He is asking me to dethrone yet again.
Maybe your struggle is similar. Or perhaps the idol that sparkles the brightest on your shelf is something different. It really doesn’t matter what it’s called; the solution is the same for both of us. My need and your need is to know Him better. Period. So let’s do what girlfriends do best. Let’s hold each other up in prayer and walk together.
Oh, and pass me the M&Ms.
Excerpt adapted from Is Jesus Worth It? Igniting Your Faith When You Feel Like Quitting
Stacey Thacker is a wife and the mother of four girls. She is a Bible teacher with a passion to connect with women and encourage them in their walks with God. Her newest book, Is Jesus Worth It? is available wherever books are sold. You can find her blogging at staceythacker.com and hanging out on Instagram and Twitter, usually with a cup of coffee in her hand.