Who Is Your God?
Every day we passed her --
Ken and I, and our new little adopted son. The little girl
couldn't have been more than 4 or 5 years old. She was painfully
thin. Each time we passed her, I would wince as I gazed
at her -- bony arms and legs; dirty, matted hair -- shoulder
length, with little waves throughout. She had beautiful
dark skin and almond eyes, but the grime of the street shone
across every exposed part of her skin. And her little cotton
dress was filthy.
She just sat there in the street,
next to her mother. The grown woman wore a hopeless expression
-- one of despair and anger. She sat slumped, holding a
tin cup -- begging for a few coins to provide for her and
her daughter. Or sometimes she just slept, leaning her head
down on her chest, or sprawling against the dirty street.
But not the little girl! She
was unsinkable! Though pitiful-looking on the outside, her
spirit soared within her. She was always singing. Before
we even rounded the corner and headed toward her particular
street in Bangkok, I would hear her little voice singing
words I could not understand. And she had a pet -- a dog
that sat faithfully beside her.
I made it a point to smile
at her as we would walk by every day. But she rarely met
my smile. She was oblivious to her situation, oblivious
to the passers-by as she sat next to her mother, with a
song on her lips, and hope in her eyes -- a hope unfulfilled.
One day as we passed, I noticed
a storeowner had given her a serving of rice, wrapped in
paper. Eagerly, she was unwrapping it. I watched her to
see what she would do. With her little brown hand, she found
the middle of the serving. She portioned out the rice evenly.
Her mother was sleeping beside her. With barely a glance
at her mother, she showed her dog the extra portion. Together,
they eagerly devoured their portions of rice.
Oh, precious Thai mother, where
is your god now? Daily you bow to him, lighting incense
in the temple. Faithfully, you sit in honor of him, worshipping
the golden images of a smiling god with empty eyes. Don't
you see? You cry to him, but he has no ears to hear you.
No voice to speak a word of comfort. Buddha is dead.
He cannot help you. He doesn't love you or your little girl.
He cannot help to fill the void that you have plunged into
-- the void of despair, of hopelessness. The god of your
parents is no god at all.
Must your singing child be
pushed into the void of hell as well?
Standing on the streets in
a small village in Mexico, I watched, horrified, as an old
man crawled painfully on his knees up the stone street.
His gaze was fixed in front of him, on the old Catholic
edifice at the end of the street. Blood oozed from his knees,
staining the street meaninglessly. He was in pain, I could
tell, but he kept on, shredding skin with every step --
hands clasped together, as if in prayer, and murmuring to
My young heart ached at his
"Shouldn't we help him?"
I asked. "He can't walk alone -- look, he's crawling
-- and he's torn his knees up from the journey. Let's ask
him where he needs to go."
"No, this is his choice,"
came the response. "He is doing his penance. He has
sinned and hopes that God will possibly forgive him if he
crawls to the church on his knees. He has probably been
traveling like this for many miles."
Precious old man, where is
your god now? Who is this god of judgment? What god do you
serve that demands outward acts of despair and torment for
his own appeasement? And where is your remorse? Is it falling
with your blood upon the dirty street, only to dry and fade
away in days to come?
It's true, you can't walk alone...and
this god of ceremony and tradition is not real. This god
is but a shadow of the true God -- its darkness was created
through Satan's deception -- and from the feeble attempts
of man to reach a holy God. But you will never reach Him
in this way. You will only find empty prayers and a barren
heart. It's only dead religion.
As I passed by the Jewish men
on the streets of Jerusalem, I looked into their angry,
empty eyes. Often they would mutter to me as they walked
by -- words of hate and judgment.
Oh chosen ones, where is your
God now? How He cried for you years ago, gazing over your
city. The God of the Universe is here, but who is your
god? A god of sternness and pride has built an idol
around your city. The enemy laughs as he deceives you into
but a blind existence. Awaken! You are so loved of God!
Does your persecution not point to Satan's indignance over
God's devotion to you?
Your observance of the law
is dead without belief in a Messiah who came first to you.
As I watch her children play,
I see my neighbor, robed in darkness, peeking through the
restrictions of her religion from the doorway of her home.
Her children barely notice me, and she avoids my gaze. Oh,
precious woman, you are a creation of God! You are a jewel
in His sight, meant to shine before the world as the individual
that you are.
Where is your god now? Does
he exist in your loneliness, in your subservience? Who is
he? Mohammed is dead, and the god you worship is
an evil fantasy of inconsistencies and deception. Your Creator
loves you! He IS love. For no reason would He desire your
death, or seek to reward those whose goal is to destroy.
It is Satan who seeks to steal, kill, and destroy (John
Unveil! Tear off the blinders
that Satan has so slyly applied. The true God is truly visible
-- He has no secrets within! He wishes to reveal all to
you, His beloved child. His arms are open wide to receive
anyone who embraces His Son.
As I enter some churches today,
I look around at the faces in the pews -- those in front,
those behind. Quietness fills the sanctuary -- not in an
attitude of worship -- but there is boredom, there is distraction,
and meaningless routine. Apathy is the mask that most are
Oh, fellow brothers and sisters,
where is your God now? Who is your god? What stands
between you and the passion of the One who sticks closer
than a brother?
Even empty devotion can become
an idol -- stealing the glory from the One who is deserving.
Look around. Other nations
may break God's law, but we are also a nation with many
idols. We may not sacrifice our children to an iron god
of long ago, but we do sacrifice our unborn babies to the
god of inconvenience. We sacrifice our children through
apathy to the gods of laziness and culture and self-absorption
We bow to the idols of selfishness,
sleep, pride, tolerance, and financial security.
We serve many masters, neglecting
the Master who is most worthy -- who calms the sick, heals
diseases, teaches the lame to walk, and the blind to see.
You have a God who loves you
so much, who sees you, and hears you, and reaches out to
Do you know Him? Is He your
Who is your God?
You shall not
make for yourself an idol in the form of anything
in heaven above
or on the earth beneath
or in the waters below.
You shall not bow down to them or worship them;
for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God,
punishing the children for the sin of the fathers
to the third and forth generation of those who hate me,
but showing love to a thousand generations
of those who love me
and keep my commandments.
© 2011. Faith Matters by Lygia Lovelace. All rights