What I’ve done is put in your notes fourteen questions to sort of help you think more clearly about why you do what you do, and help you discern the things that maybe have morphed from being just good thinks in your life to being god in your life. What I want you to do is sometime either this morning or later today or maybe even later this week, ask God the following questions. Ask Him to search your heart. Ask Him to expose what it is that is practically replacing Him as your sufficiency in your life. See what He identifies as the idols of your heart. Let me just give these to you. Ask God these questions:
1) Lord, what do I love the most? In other words, is there anything in your life that’s more important to you than God? Is it my children? Is it my spouse? Is it my position? What do I love the most?
2) Lord, what do I want the most? What do I really want? What is it that I crave? What is it that I desire more than anything else? Is it respect? Do I desire more than anything else that my wife will respect me? Or that my boss will respect me? Or that people in the church will respect me? Do I desire adoration? Do I desire people’s approval? Do I desire a relationship? What is it that I want the most?
3) Lord, what is it that I’m seeking? Is it financial security? If I’m single, is it really to get a husband or to get a wife? If I’m married is it to have children? I mean, what is it that I’m seeking? What are my personal expectations? What are my goals? What am I working for? What do I seek?
4) Lord, what are my hopes? What am I building my life around? What are my hopes?
5) Lord, what do I think I need?
6) What matters most to me?
7) Where do I find refuge? In other words, where do I turn for safety? Where do I turn for comfort? Where do I turn for rest, for refuge?
8) Whom must I please? Who is it that I’m constantly thinking about what they think of me? Who am I performing for? Who am I doing what I do for? Who is it that I feel I need to please that’s not God?
9) What can’t I live without? What is it that I just can’t live without? What is it? Air-conditioning? A new car every two years? What can’t I live without?
10) What makes me feel fulfilled? What is it that really fills me up? What gives me satisfaction? What is it?
11) Lord, what have been the things I pray for? What am I praying for? Do my prayers revolve around me getting what I think is going to fulfill me, make me happy? What do I pray for?
12) What do I think about most often? In other words, when thoughts occupy your mind when you have down time, what do you daydream about? What do you think about more often?
13) What do you talk about most? Lord, what is it that I’m talking about all the time? What is it that just bubbles out? What are subjects that I frequently discuss with my friends? That will reveal a lot.
14) Lord, how do I spend my time? How am I investing the minutes, the moments of each day?
So, if you’re going to repent from idols of the heart, you need to first expose a heart for repentance by honestly evaluating what may be replacing God in your life.
After finishing over 70 sermons through the gospel of John, we are taking a few weeks as a church to examine some common “heart issues” and be exposed to God’s word on those matters. The following is an excerpt from last Sunday’s sermon titled “Idols of the Heart” by Pastor Mike Summers. This sermon was the opening message from the current “Heart Issues” series.