Things weren't going too hot for the Israelites as they wandered from Egypt to the promised land. Moses was on Mt. Horeb talking to God, but the people couldn't see them. They had lost sight of their God. They felt alone, abandoned, desperate for direction, and so they asked Aaron to create for them a new God that they could see.
We haven't been social distancing for 40 days yet, but even 10 days in I can kind of relate to them. I'm an extrovert. I love people, especially new people. Being with people is how I get my energy. Yesterday was the first day that I started to feel the toll that social distancing is taking on me. It would be so easy for me to numb the frustration, grief, confusion, and loneliness away by watching Netflix or mindlessly scrolling on social media, but God wants more from us than that.
The Israelites wandered the desert for 40 years. Jesus was tempted in the desert for 40 days. God uses the desert to purify His chosen people of the things that draw them away from Him, whether it be pleasure, possessions, or pride. We are His chosen people. Embrace this opportunity to be purified of the things that keep you away from Him!
Consider the question, do I believe that Jesus is who He says He is? Do I accept the testimony of Moses, the prophets, John the Baptist, and the Holy Spirit Himself? Jesus was born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died and was buried. On the third day He rose again to release us from the bonds of sin! Until we acknowledge that ourselves have idols, we cannot be free of them.
In my own life, Jesus has shown to be two big idols that I have in my life. One of which is work, and that's a hard thing to think about when you work for the Church. "Aren't I serving you Lord? How can my work be an idol?" But He showed me that in fact, I have been grasping at control. God is God and I am not when I allow myself to be His vessel, the passive agent through which His work is done. I try so hard to figure out the right thing to do in order to please Him, but that's not what He wants at all. He invites me to be faithful to Him, to be close to Him, and to follow where He leads.
Idols can only be cast down when we make room for God in prayer. I am not strong enough to pull them down myself, I must submit to His saving power.
What does this look like in your own life? I challenge you to spend 15 minutes in silent prayer today with our readings and give God the space to show you your idols and ask Him how He wants to save you from them.
-Amanda Nobis, Director of Evangelization