Monday, September 10, 2007

The folly of the fool and the Idol Factory

It has been a very crazy month for us and I want to post an update of pictures and things we've been doing but in the meantime I want to share this little incident from my life...
Yesterday on my drive to and from work, I listened to the C.J. Mahaney "Idols Factory" message from the NA conference. What a blessing! I thought to myself how I can tweak one my own messages called "Feeding On Ashes" to incorporate some of the things he talked about. I thought about my friend who is experiencing the devastation on his marriage that he brought upon himself through adultery and how I could further encourage and exhort him with that sermon. And I thought about my children.
The pathetic thing is, I didn't think much about myself. Today I had one of those well-deserved smack-down-from-the-Holy-Spirit moments that helped bring home the message to my heart...
So when I got into work today and logged in, I tried to start Rhapsody (subscription music service) to enjoy listening to some tunes while hammering out some new code. When it wouldn't let me login because of some error, I started an online chat with the Rhapsody support. What ensued appeared to me to be a perfect example of incompetency in customer service and technical support. 
Essentially, my account credentials got messed up, the help desk guy reset the password, that didn't work, and then he suggested that I just wait for a little bit and then maybe it would work. I got "frustrated" with him and said some really cocky, sarcastic comments and then left him feedback indicating I was unsatisfied. It seemed to me he didn't know what he was doing and as a last ditch effort told me, "Just wait and it may fix itself."
The interesting thing is that I copied the text of the chat session because I was intent upon contacting the Rhapsody customer service to report an unhelpful employee and then to demand that I get some immediate technical help. About a half-hour after the chat session, I tried logging in with the new password and it did work. Then it hit me--I was worshipping something. I read back over the text of the chat and had these observations:

  • Listening to Rhapsody while I work (oftentimes Sovereign Grace music!) is a good thing--it's a blessing/gift from God to enjoy.
  • Wanting things to go smoothly is not a bad desire either.
  • However, I elevated that desire to an idol.
  • I acted upon the idolatry of my heart and reacted angrily (euphemizing it initially in my mind as "sarcasm" and "frustration") with him.
  • I assumed he was an idiot and had planned on making his job even more miserable by contacting Rhapsody again.
What a fool! No patience, no gentleness, no self-control, no kindness, and clearly no humility. What a self-righteous Pharisee! Another deep irony was that I had just listened to a sermon the previous morning by R.W. Glenn about hypocrisy and love. Well, maybe it wasn't such a deep irony: God used both sermons to expose the sin of my heart. God providentially arranged that I would listen to those sermons which would prepare my heart and give me new eyes to see the sin more clearly.

Make your little one a shining star! Shine on!

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