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Confessing My Idolatry

Yesterday I shared with you that as a child, I clung to Jesus as my safe place. He became my sanctuary. I’ve never gotten over the fact that He would call me to Himself (even knowing everything about me!) and demonstrate His love for me by taking my sins on Himself.

Experiencing this kind of love, why would I ever look for satisfaction anywhere else?

But I have.

Desiring a love relationship is a good desire. God is the one who came up with the whole marriage thing. It’s all His idea. But sometimes we get things turned a little upside down. Like when we start looking to our husbands to meet our deepest needs.

On the third night of our honeymoon, my husband woke up to the pathetic sound of a crying new bride. When he asked me what was wrong, I spilled out my complaint: “You fell asleep on me!”

Rather than being thankful that this worn-out man had driven hundreds of miles to get us safely to our destination (um . . . to be honest, while I napped), I focused on my hurt and took offense at his seeming insensitivity.

I was lying there beside him, in the dark, longing for what I wanted but wasn’t getting. I deserved “MORE!” attention . . . “MORE!” cuddling and quality time . . . “MORE!”

Whoa.

Get out the red-flag!

My little pity-party on our honeymoon night was a red flag signaling that I was looking to LeRoy for my security and happiness.

My husband had become my idol.   

I’m not saying it’s wrong to want attention from our husbands . . . that’s healthy and normal. That’s a good desire. But when I don’t get what I want and my reaction is sinful—that’s a clear signal that my good desire has moved into the demand category. And anything I’m demanding to have in order to be happy is something that is robbing God of His position as my satisfaction. When I’m fully satisfied in Him—I’m content.

The beautiful fierce woman is fully immersed in the forgiveness and love of Christ and He holds her heart so completely that she’s reached true contentment—in Christ. She’s not demanding that her husband be her all–in–all. She’s clinging to Christ for that. She’s looking to God to be her complete fulfillment and no one else. Her deepest desire is met by Christ.

In the book Fierce Women: the Power of a Soft Warrior, I include a list of the characteristics of a beautiful fierce woman. The first one listed is:

Her identity and value are rooted in her relationship with Christ rather than a relationship with a man. 

If you’d like the entire list, you can download that pdf here.

Are you clinging to Christ or have you seen a few red flags lately?

Anyone need to make an idolatry confession?

Image courtesy of kongsky/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

8 Comments

  • Michele Morin

    Whenever I read about the people of Israel giving their earrings, etc. to Aaron to make the golden calf, I’m reminded of my own skill at fashioning idols out of anything that’s handy. “Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it . . .”
    Thanks, Kimberly, for sharing your story.

  • Gina Burpee

    This is so true…a few years ago, the Holy Spirit revealed to me how I had made my husband an Idol. Loving to a fault, if you will. It’s looked different throughout the years to. Expectations, unbalanced time with him versus the Lord…but He always calls us back. Thank you for your honesty!

  • Kimberly Wagner

    Hello, Michele ~

    Yes, prone to sin . . . so thankful for God’s grace. Sending you the link to another post on this topic from a couple of years ago, in case you want to read additional thoughts:

    http://www.kimberlywagner.org/?p=2402

    Idolatry is something we all must continually be on guard against. It crops up so subtly, but thankfully Christ has given us the power to walk in holiness and provides grace for repentance.

    Good to hear from you, friend ~

  • kyrie

    Question:
    What if the husband is the one who is “Idolizing” in the marriage. How can a wife address that? It’s becoming unbearable. He twists every little thing into how I am disobedient/unsubmissive if I don’t meet his every *expectation*.

  • Kimberly Wagner

    Hello, Kyrie ~

    Good question. I hope you’ll check out the suggestions I have for confronting our husbands by going to the pdf that you’ll find by clicking on this link:

    http://www.kimberlywagner.org/?p=3885

    You might find that helpful. Also, are you and your husband involved in a biblical church body where you can find an older couple that might be willing to mentor you in your marriage relationship? I highly encourage that, young couples can learn so much from spiritually mature couples who’ve fleshed out the truth of God’s Word for decades.

    Also, in September our book for husband releases: “Men Who Love Fierce Women: The Power of Servant Leadership in Your Marriage”. That might be a helpful read for you and your husband to do together (if he is willing).

    Kyrie, I’m so sorry that you and your husband are in a difficult place. I pray that God will surround you with a network of mature believers that can come alongside you with true help.

    Pausing to pray for you now ~

  • kyrie

    He would never read such a book – he believes he is always right, so why would he need a book, you know? I wish it were easier to suggest it.
    Whenever I have tried to approach/confront, I am met with strong defense mechanisms which attack – accusing me of having no humility, etc. We all have issues which will never be fully resolved/healed this side of heaven, and so that is always thrown at me.
    My church leadership will not take action… they haven’t witnessed it directly and so its only my word against his.
    Last night he actually told me he prays that God will remove me, the thorn in his side. How does anyone respond to that??

  • Kimberly Wagner

    Oh, Kyrie, I am so very sorry. You are in a dark place, not without hope, but in a place of great need.

    Have you approached your church leadership? If not, don’t assume that they won’t listen to your appeals for help. Please reach out for support and input from a spiritually mature couple in your church who can come alongside the two of you and recognize red flags: manipulative statements, verbal attacks, demeaning insults, etc. You really need some objective and biblical help from people who know you both. It would help if there is a couple that he respects that you could spend time with.

    We are praying for God to step in and bring a transforming work ~

  • kyrie

    Again, I have approached them but they will take no action on anything that doesn’t have another witness to it, including his affair!

    He just wants us to communicate our way through it. I can’t go against his wishes – he manipulates that as well.