“gods At War” a book summary by Marcus White
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Martha gets a bad rap. For many of you in Food Service, I know you feel the same way because you’ve told me so. We all know that she is wrong for making the work of serving Jesus and the house guests more important then what Mary was doing, sitting at His feet and worshipping her savior. We all know Mary made the right decision. But we still have major empathy for Martha. Sadly, for me, there may be a deeper reason for that.
After reading this book and particularly how Idleman presents this passage in a whole new way, I’m likely not going to be able to say that anymore so flippantly. Martha’s issue when looked at it more closely is that she may have been worshipping the god of achievement as opposed to the one true God, sitting right there in her living room. Stated plainly, this act from Martha was perhaps a form of idol worship.
When we look at all our sins more closely, we realize that in fact we are worshipping one idol or another instead of worshipping God. In “gods At War” Idleman discusses the big ones that we see everyday in our lives; the gods of pleasures, gods of power and gods of love and he unpacks those further in each section with a specific look at several littler “g” gods under each of those.
As a food service manager for years now, I have prided myself with a strong passion for excellence. Even in food service ministry now for 15 years, that pursuit has strengthened but now under the banner of “for His Glory!” However, when I look more closely and if I am honest with myself, I have to say that much of my day is spent worshipping the god’s of achievement, success through me, even in ministry.
Simply stated, the book revealed a lot of areas of my life that can be summed up with the following singular truth, “what we sacrifice the most has the biggest potential to be a God replacement”. When I think of how much time and money I have spent on my kingdom with the god of entertainment and other gods of pleasure, my heart is heavy when I compare that to how much I have spent on His kingdom. When I think back to the start of my career and my young family, there is no doubt that I sacrificed a lot on the altar of success and achievement. The worse part in that is I am still guilty of that today serving in ministry. The cost of following Christ is high, He wants it all, but far too often I’ve held back on Him and spent more time and energy trying to attain the approval of others instead simply offering up my service as a sacrifice unto Him. It’s idol worship, plain and simple.
So how do I fix this? Idleman offers up a consistent solution throughout the entire book. “Idols are defeated not by being removed but by being replaced.” No longer can I settle for worshiping the little “g” gods who always over promise and under deliver. I must daily decide who is going to sit on the throne of my heart. As he put it, “every day is a trip to the orchard, every day the snake is waiting”. Today, will I seat the god of me on that throne again as I have done so many days before? Or will I choose the one true God, the Creator of the universe, the one who loved me so much He gave His only son for me? Lord, help me to choose you.