The Monastery of the Temptation, above Jericho

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The Idols in our Lives

Today's Psalms and Reading from Isaiah overlapped with the theme of idolatry.

Psalm 135:15ff:
The idols of the nations are silver and gold, the work of men’s hands.
They have mouths, but they speak not,
they have eyes, but they see not, 
they have ears, but they hear not,
   nor is there any breath in their mouths.
Like them be those who make them!
   —yea, every one who trusts in them!

And Isaiah 2:5ff
   O house of Jacob, come, let us walk in the light of the Lord. For thou hast rejected thy people, the house of Jacob, because they are full of diviners from the east and of soothsayers like the Philistines, and they strike hands with foreigners.
Their land is filled with silver and gold,
   and there is no end to their treasures;
their land is filled with horses,
   and there is no end to their chariots.
Their land is filled with idols;
   they bow down to the work of their hands, to what their own fingers have made.
So man is humbled, and men are brought low— forgive them not! Enter into the rock, and hide in the dust from before the terror of the Lord, and from the glory of his majesty. The haughty looks of man shall be brought low, and the pride of men shall be humbled; and the Lord alone will be exalted in that day.

A wise mother once told her children, who were speaking about how they *loved* this or that toy, or this or that shirt, or this or that possession, "Do not love anything that cannot love you back."

Well, the Day of the Lord is coming when all will be laid bare.  To what idols do we bow down?  Work?  Money? Leisure? The Future? Our car(s)? My house?  My job?  The boat?  My neighbor's possessions?  My fasting?  That which I have made with my own hands?

Tying these readings together, we can hear still the echo of Sunday's Gospel lesson, "Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth...but rather treasures in heaven...for where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."

What is your treasure? And therefore, where is your heart?

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