I saw the video below on Tim Challies blog yesterday. I think it speaks very aptly to our nature as worshipers and how, in our fallen-ness, we tend to worship created things over the creator.
I think this guy is pretty funny in his take on this. I also think he, probably unintentionally, speaks to what happens when we turn from worshiping God to worshiping other things. We inevitable wind up giving our praise to silly, unimportant things.
Not that this is new to our generation. This misplaced worship is as old as mankind is. The apostle Paul tells us in Romans 1:20 that mankind worshiped created things instead of the creator of all things. But sports certainly fits into that category for many people today. I am a fan of Alabama football. Always have been. But I am well aware that 100,000 plus fans sitting in a stadium, dressing up in houndstooth and elephant hats to watch 18 year old kids play a game is undoubtedly a form of worship. Marriages have been broken up over the Alabama/Auburn football rivalry. Just recently Alabama fan poisoned and tried to kill the 130 year old trees at Toomer's Corner, which is a landmark and place of celebration for Auburn fans.
What leads to this kind of fanaticism?
We were made to worship. All things were made for Him (Col. 1:16). As His people, we exist for His praise (Isaiah 43:21, 1 Peter 2:9). Our fallen nature causes us to worship the creation of God instead of God Himself (Romans 1:20) but we were created to be people who worship. In our society, many people have taken the God given desire to worship and lavished praise upon men and women who play games.
Of course not everyone is a sports fan. And not every sports fan falls into the trap of allowing their allegiances to turn into idolatry. The problem is that it isn't just sports or other "unimportant" things that we find ourselves worshiping.
We can allow anything, even good things to become idols. We can worship our jobs, our marriages, our kids, or even our ministries. Any of these God given things can become an idol if we are not diligent.
Only God is worthy of our worship. Only He is deserving of our praise. Every good thing He has given us is meant to lead us to worship of the One who gave it.
For me sports was definitely an idol at one point in my life and recently God has pointed out a tendency in me to elevate my ministry higher than the One I minister for.
What created thing do you find you tend to worship instead of God?