“Little children, keep yourselves from idols.” 1 John 5:21
Father, You are so glorious and merciful. You created every good thing, and still You would choose to redeem me and make me Your treasure. There’s nothing I could do to deserve this mercy in Christ, yet You lavish it upon me in ways too great to fully comprehend.
And yet my sinful heart draws me away from You to other things—sometimes subtly, and sometimes deliberately. This idolatrous world, my weak flesh, and our cunning enemy entice my heart to set my affections on aspects of Your creation instead of loving and honoring You as Creator. Why would I turn to an object of wood or stone or flesh or plastic or metal that cannot speak or heal or feel or understand or save? Because my sin blinds me to spiritual reality and makes me a fool.
Lord, rip off the blinders! Untangle the webs of sin that have encapsulated my heart and drawn me from You! Forgive me for my gross spiritual adultery and have mercy on me, a sinner!
Loving and sovereign Lord, don’t leave me in this wretched place, but give me a pure and undivided heart that comes before You in awe at Your power, majesty, glory, and mercy. Keep me from trying to quench my thirst with filthy water from broken cisterns, rather continually draw my heart to Christ, the all-satisfying wellspring of Living Water. Make serving idols so despicable and so unsatisfying to my soul that I would quickly confess the smallest step toward sin and run with all my might to the cross in worshipful repentance.
Keep me from worshipping the many good gifts You have given me instead of thanking and worshiping You for them. Keep me from the smallest hint of idolatry and remind me during temptation that to choose an idol is to reject grace and grieve Your Spirit. Remind me that the wicked worship of money, sex, power, family, possessions, or work is both worthless and tragically foolish, like trying to quench my thirst with a gallon of saltwater. Discipline me in your grace when I stray, and convict me by Your Spirit.
Lord, You know that even on my best days I sin against You. From my disappointment, fix the eyes of my heart continually on the grace You poured out on the cross. May that cross take away all shame and free me to worship You by drawing near in joyful repentance and fully hoping in the beautiful restoration You bring in Christ. More than anything, bind my wandering heart to You in joyful worship, knowing that for this reason I was created.
We pray all of these things in the mighty name of Jesus,