Monday, February 20, 2023

Bashing Your Computer With a Baseball Bat

Suggested Reading: Deuteronomy 12:1-8

There's a scene in the movie Fireproof that is memorable for its radical nature. In the movie, Caleb Holt has decided to make one last ditch effort to save his marriage before throwing in the towel by following the daily advice in a journal given to him by his father. He commits to 40 days of actively loving his wife in an attempt to save their marriage. When he realizes that pornography is one of the things disrupting his marriage, he takes the computer outside and bashes it to pieces with a baseball bat, then leaves a note in the place of the computer that reads, "I love you more."

When God instructed the Israelites how to conduct themselves when they took over the Promised Land, God told them, "Destroy completely all the places where the nations that you are driving out worship their gods...tear down their altars, smash their sacred pillars, burn up their Asherah poles, cut down the carved images of their gods, and wipe out their names from every place" (Deuteronomy 12:2-3, NLT). God didn't command this because he was afraid that the Israelites would turn to other gods, but because he knew they would. Anytime we allow anything a place in our lives that can compete with our devotion to God, chances are it will. The only thing we can do to remove that possibility is to completely remove the competition. You see, Caleb Holt didn't destroy that computer because he was following a journal's advice and just blithely decided he didn't need it anymore. He found himself in a place where the urge to go to that forbidden website was so strong he realized the computer was controlling him rather than the other way around.

No matter what it is that competes for our attention and affection, the only safe course of action is to completely remove it from our lives. Whether it is pornography, like in Caleb's case, or alcohol, or an unhealthy relationship, or that dream job, or your past, sometimes the only way to make sure it doesn't destroy your relationship with God is to completely remove it. And the thing is, you can't wait until it has control of you. At that point it is too late. You have to remove it from your life before it's too much for you to handle.

Don't wait to get rid of anything that threatens to damage your relationship with God. God will always have the power to bring you back, but life is a lot easier if you don't get that far.

Only Casting Out the Annoying Demons

Suggested Reading: Acts 16:16-34 There is a sentence in Acts 16 that has always bugged me. Paul and Silas were in Philippi as missionari...