Are we sacrificing God at the altar of religion?
What becomes more important to us than God? Sometimes it is what we want to believe in and what we choose to assume. It can be our legalism. It can be our comfort. It can be our platform. It can be our routine. We might take what truth we have learned about God, then refuse to let God prune and grow us.
We’re going to get faith wrong sometimes. We will misunderstand, misapply, and misprioritize. Whether or not we are aware, whether we choose a posture of humility or pride, matters. And our posture affects others. Instead of yielding to God, we project onto him. We make decisions then pray God blesses them. We take something we know God approves of then do it without confirming it’s what he approves for us right now. We go through the motions of faith instead of pressing into God’s presence and trusting him to grow us. We don’t mind challenging others and God, but we don’t want to be challenged by him and those he brings into our lives with challenges.
It’s not only those who try to follow God who are at risk of sacrificing him at the altar of religion. The same happens with many who reject or ignore him. The choice to set God aside often has more to do with religion than we recognize. It might not be a religion we easily identify. People often reject him thinking it’s based on a purposeful, intelligent choice. Yet it often has more to do with the personally-constructed or culturally-revered religion, a set of beliefs and a desired lifestyle and routine. We don’t want to sacrifice our perceived rights and control. We don’t want to follow a God based on the assumptions we have about him. We don’t want to learn and grow in a humble pursuit of him.
Do you see the commonalities both inside and outside the church and organized religion? The factors that invite us to sacrifice God at the altar of our different religions are much more common than we might want to admit. Those who claim to follow God don’t want to admit what they have in common with those who don’t and vice versa. But we are mistaken.
We need to be more aware. We need to invite an authentic, humble faith. We need to learn and grow every single day. We need to be honest about what and who we’re sacrificing.