Thursday, September 2, 2010

Idols of the Heart

Tuesday marked the beginning of my first bible study with the ladies of Calvary Baptist. We will be working through Idols of the Heart by Elyse Fitzpatrick. The main focus was on that of Rachel and how in Genesis 30 she says to her husband Jacob, "Give me children or I will die!". Clearly, she was jealous of her sister's ability to have children and the fact that she simply could not.

Obviously, there is much more to the story and the whole family is full of deceit and jealousy and strife between one another. Above all, for her to have her place and a position in her new nuclear unit, children were a must. She decided to take things into her own hands. I could definitely relate. I find myself much like Rachel (and my two-year-old daughter) in that I want to do it myself and do it my way.

We were given a study guide type list of questions to work through before meeting as a group to discuss. One of the questions was, "What in the chapter was the most convicting of sin in your life?" At the time, nothing stood out. Clearly, I'm a sinner and full of issues and areas where I need to become more Christ-like. On the side of my sheet, I wrote a list: apathy, laziness, prayerlessness, self-sufficiency. I prayed, asking the Holy Spirit to show me the heart issue; to help me fill in the blank of "Give me ______, or I will die."

I didn't really think too much more about it before our study that evening. We worked through the story of Rachel in Genesis and my eyes were starting to open. As my eyes were opening, my mouth decided to follow suit. The Holy Spirit felt it appropriate to show me what was going on as I was mid-sentence. Sweet. Nothing like a blubbering, sobbing female who can now only speak with a super high-pitched voice to get the discussion going. But it definitely became clear to me.

In many arenas of my life I am learning about the battle. In books I'm reading. In Sunday church services. In youth group. In my daily struggles with Malachi's death. It's a battle. Satan knows where I'm vulnerable and my primary weapon is God's Word. The more I expose myself to Scripture, the more prepared I am to face that battle. However, at the same time, Scripture is convicting. It forces you to change. You can accept it or you can reject it, but you are required to make that decision.

I've been putting up walls around myself. Trying to do things my way. Avoiding prayer and study of God's Word because I don't want to change. I'm afraid that it will be hard. Frankly, it will be. The last year has been evident of that. However, I think that the difficult process of change is worth far more than trying to handle these battles on my own.

My heart issue is "Give me easy or I will die. " It's kind of funny if you think about it. I'm almost 7 months pregnant, we're about to close on a house that will require A TON of work, and baby will be here before you know it. Not to mention taking care of that lovely two-year-old I mentioned earlier ;). "Easy" just isn't a part of this season of life. We've just had a few extra trials thrown our way...


  1. Thank you for sharing your heart. Oh how I need to pray that prayer you prayed and LISTEN. Your transparency and faith spurs me on to be open to God and others. Thank you Marissa for sharing.

    We think and pray for your sweet family a lot.
    Kelly Carr

  2. I can so relate to what you said about God's Word being your biggest weapon but also how it forces you to make a decision about what you're going to do about it.

    You know I've had trials recently, and it seemed like when those trials were happening, God's Word was just so evident to me. Prayer was easy. I found solace in these things. But now that I'm in the "aftermath" of the trials, it's harder to stay focused on Scripture and allow it to change me. Then it comforted, now it convicts. So it's so much easier to try to do things my way now. Know what I mean?

    I needed to hear this today. Thanks for the reminder. <3

  3. Thank you so much for sharing this post. I am writing this comment and then reaching for my Bible...something I have neglected for a long time in mourning my son's death. Sure I pray (it's easy sometimes when you have a "wish list"), but devotional prayer I have neglected. I admire your honesty and courage. Thank you for reminding me of what I should be doing right now...