When you look at the 10 Commandments from Exodus 20 — I like the way the first commandment is recorded in the New Century Version:
2 “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt where you were slaves.3 “You must not have any other gods except me.
Don’t be messing around with any other Gods. I am yours. Your are mine. I want this to be a very special and unique relationship.
4 “You must not make for yourselves an idol that looks like anything in the sky above or on the earth below or in the water below the land. 5 You must not worship or serve any idol, because I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God. If you hate me, I will punish your children, and even your grandchildren and great-grandchildren. 6 But I show kindness to thousands who love me and obey my commands.
All to often we find other things — such as our career, family, money, sports, scholastic pursuits, our own religious agenda — all sorts of things become the main focal point of life and God is “over there” in the event we need him.
Our lives too often become compartmentalized with religion being something we pull on the appropriate day (Sunday / Easter / Christmas) or at the appropriate times (Weddings / Funerals / Disasters). But God wants to be the number one. The one and only.
You must not have any other gods except me.
Pretty simple isn’t it. But it is a daily battle. One worth fighting.
To ignore God has consequences that crosses the generations.