But the high places were not taken away: the people still sacrificed and burnt incense in the high places. – 2 Kings 12:3
King Joash began to reign overJudah at the age of seven and reigned 40 years overJudah before he was killed and succeeded by his son Amaziah. While Joash ruled, he did what was right in the eyes of God as had David while Jehoiada the high priest lived. The problem was that Joash failed to destroy ALL the idols within the boundaries of his kingdom. Thus, the Judeans continued to worship idols and offered them sacrifices and incense upon their altars. Joash was a good king after David’s heart but failed to follow the ways of God all his life, as did Solomon.
God’s Spirit speaks to me and says, “What idols or high places are still existing in your (my) heart? Are you fully committed to me?” I have been really taken back by this open, honest question from the Father. He stopped me in my tracks to take a good, long look at myself and evaluate where my heart is and to whom I am committed.
So many times we can go through the motions of life and seem like we (I) are doing the right things; however, there can be that one little area of our lives that we hold back from God. God didn’t send Jesus to die for part of us just as He didn’t die for part of our sins. If the Son of God died for ALL our sins, then He died for ALL of us, too!
I took a moment to look in my heart and see what areas weren’t fully surrendered to God. I do that “which [is] right in the eyes of the LORD” but have had a high place in my life that distracted me at times and competed for my love of God. It became an idol in my life. Thus, I’ve torn down that idol and demolished it with the help and power of God’s Spirit. I was not able in my own might or power to do so.
Thus, I urge one and all to ask God to do in us what David asked so long ago, “Search me O God, and know my thoughts, and see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting….[and then once the sin was identified, I prayed] Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness…wash me thoroughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. For I acknowledge my transgressions…” We have to let God show us what areas have to be torn down and surrendered to Him, so that we can do as the hymn states, “I surrender ALL.”
Father, I humble myself today and realize that You spoke to me about the areas in my life that are not in alignment with You. Thank You for loving me enough to care and speak directly to me about these issues. I don’t hide them from You, but I acknowledge my sin and present myself to You. Forgive me for holding back any area of my life, particularly those that had become idols in my life. You are my God, and You alone do I worship. Thank You for Your lovingkindness, mercy, grace, and forgiveness. Create within me a renewed heart and a right spirit. By the blood of Jesus, I accept Your love. In Jesus’ name, Amen.