A woman revealed that she had had a few abortions before becoming a Christian, marrying a godly man, and giving birth to their own healthy children. She explained that she had been tormented by her sin and did not know how to get out of the pit of despair she was living in. With tears streaming down her face, she explained how she had confessed her sin of murdering her own children to God and did believe that Jesus Christ’s death had paid her penalty and secured her forgiveness. Curiously, I explained to her that while her sin was rightly grievous, I did not understand why she was not enjoying forgiveness. She said it was because even though God had forgiven her, she could not forgive herself. I explained to her that she had become her own idol and the Lord and functional god of her life. In saying Jesus had forgiven her and she could not forgive herself, she was in effect saying she was a god above Jesus. Although her lesser God, Jesus, was forgiving, her highest god, herself, was not.This story (via: The Resurgence) greatly helped me realize what I so often do: set myself up as an unforgiving god above the true forgiving God. I am always amazed at the capacity of the human heart to create an idol of nearly anything.
And lest we fall in a cave of despair, consider these words:
Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! (Romans 7:24-25)And how should we confront the idol of self-elevation? Smash it, as we should with all of our idols.