So Sad When Your God Falls On His Face

You know something is horribly wrong when your god falls on his face.
This is what happened to the ancient Philistines when they captured the ark of God from the Israelites.
They carried the ark into the temple of their god, Dagon, and left it for the night. When they woke the next day, Dagon had fallen on his face before the ark of God.
Being good followers of Dagon, they set him upright again and went about their day but the next morning, they found poor Dagon fallen on his face again – this time his head and hands had broken off.
Not a good look for a god.
The Christian God is clear about one distinction between following Him and following gods of our own making – known in ancient times as idols – known in modern times as “other religions.”
He says with eloquence in Isaiah 46 that the gods we fashion with our hands need to be carried around
but HE, the God who is and was and is to come, carries US.
He is not a god who needs to be propped up or fed or carted around. He is a living God who is sufficient to take care of Himself AND us.
He is not a god who needs His followers to defend Him – HE defends US.
“The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous man runs into it and is safe.” Proverbs 18:10 ESV
People can attack and disparage Jesus but His followers love and pray for them because He is capable of managing His own defense.
Because He’s real, He’s alive, and He’s powerful over all the earth.
But it’s easy even for Christians to fall into the trap of treating God like an idol.
Life gets hectic and we can begin to see God as just another relationship that needs to be managed. Is God getting enough time? Is God getting impatient? Is God feeling needy these days? As I tend to my family, my chores, my job, my health, my yard – shouldn’t I also be tending to God?
Here, though, is the truth that sets us free.
HE tends to us.
HE carries us.
This is what He says, “Listen to me, O house of Jacob, all you who remain of the house of Israel, you whom I have upheld since you were conceived, and have carried since your birth. Even to your old age and gray hairs I am he, I am he who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you.” Isaiah 46:3-4
He is the living God.
He does not dwell in my department of religion. He is not a ball I need to keep in the air or a wedge of my life’s balance pie or another message I need to return or another item on my to-do list.
He is the force that sustains me.
My attention does not sustain Him. He sustains me.
Sometimes I forget that.
Sometimes I lose that truth like a set of car keys in the rush of everyday living where all things seem to depend on me.
Now I am reminded that I do not serve a god who will ever fall on his face. I do not serve a God I need to defend.
I serve a living God, Jesus Christ, and He carries and defends me.
It is in the face of that truth that I fall down on my face– to worship, to find sustenance, to receive rest, and to remain calm in a world at war.


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3 Comments

    The Conversation

  1. Incredible, powerful, amazing.

  2. Carol says:

    You are so right. God is not one more thing to be done in my day. Everything should start with Him and His perspective. Thanks for the reminder…

  3. The BearPair says:

    Lori, this post is excellent & so timely for this generation… we do love our false gods, don’t we!