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Monday, August 17, 2015

What are your idols? What has become more important than God in your life? - Daily Reflections August 17,2015


AM I AN IDOLATER?
 
What has the story of the rich young man to do with idolatry? Here is the connection: The second part of the first commandment deals with this problem: “You shall not place other gods (idols) before me.” In other words, whatever replaces God from the center of our lives becomes an idol. Idols are substitutes for God, imposters of God; they place Him from the first to the second place.
       For the rich young man, his wealth was his idol. He is not alone in this. Many of us also have different idols. It must not only be money that Jesus asks us to let go of in the Gospel today. It can be a person or a hobby that we are so attached to that it has become the center of our life, replacing God and His commandments.
     A good explanation and clarification comes from the famous sociologist, journalist and popular novelist, Fr. Andrew Greeley, who wrote: “The relative becomes absolute when anything religious — a symbol, a cult, an image, a philosophical system, an ideology, an organization, a legal structure — becomes more important in the practical order than the God these things are supposed to manifest. When the most important reality in my concrete, everyday religious life becomes a statue, a saint, a parish or church organization, my own position… or even a crusade of peace and racial justice, then I have become an idolater. I have taken something that is relative and made it absolute.”
       The rich man was asking for the only thing that really counts: to gain eternal life. And yet, he was clinging to something that was far from being eternal: wealth. And so does everything that replaces the eternal God. Wealth, fame, positions, persons are temporal and may even hinder us from reaching out to what is eternal. Fr. Rudy Horst, SVD
 
REFLECTION QUESTIONS: What are your idols? What has become more important than God in your life?
 
Lord, what an eye-opener! Thank You very much. Grant me Your grace and insight to always realize immediately when I put something or somebody as more important than You.

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