Confidence Men (12/27/13)

Read: Zechariah 10:1-11:17, Revelation 18:1-24, Psalm 146:1-10, Proverbs 30:33

Don’t put your confidence in powerful people; there is no help for you there. When they breathe their last, they return to the earth, and all their plans die with them.
(Psalm 146:3-4)

Magazines

Relate: There is only one reason a person would purchase a magazine like National Enquirer. Their headlines are so ridiculous that poor unsuspecting souls who are waiting in line at Walmart, Target, or the local grocery store are sucked in and find themselves needing to read on as it comes their turn to buy their stuff. I can’t really blame them since there are dumber ways to spend your money often relying on the same strategy like cigarettes and lottery tickets.

One such cover on one such magazine grabbed my attention a couple days before Christmas for the exact opposite reason its authors and editors probably intended. The article was entitled “Loved and Lost” and was a memorial of “great” actors and actresses who have passed away in 2013. Of the dozen or so actors shown, I recognized two. My mom was directly ahead of me in line and when I showed it to her she recognized a couple more. She named a couple movies they had played in and they sounded vaguely familiar as movies I will never see. (There are no good movies prior to the 90s not including mobsters or spaceships).

Our lower case saviors are plastered over our magazines everywhere you could turn. The science and tech magazines will show the greatest minds and innovators. The news mags will feature the latest hot politicians. Sports Illustrated raises our hopes in the athletic world and men’s and women’s interest both will have the newest actress or musician. If you’re not a fan of whoever is hot this week, don’t worry, their light will soon fade to be replaced by another. We make idols and place our confidence in who fail us on a consistent basis. What is worse, we love them for their failures in part because that excuses our own.

React: No politician’s law can change culture. No producer’s film can bring freedom. No athlete’s contract will end world hunger. Granted, the best of these do dabble in good works every now and then. The best of these efforts might play a part in shifting society for the better. Those who do deserve our recognition and gratitude. Drew Brees has done great things for a city struck by Katrina. Carter has done great things and not just with habitat for humanity. Movies like Hotel Rwanda, 42, Schindler’s List, and even Blood Diamond expose social issues and inspire change. These deserve our recognition and gratitude. But they do not deserve our confidence. That belongs to God alone. Only He can bring about a true and lasting change.

Respond: 

God, my hope is in You. Help me to keep it there. All too often I find myself investing more and more in those that I know are going to fail me. I find myself placing my trust and confidence in people or things or situations that I know are not of You. They will die. They will fail. They will fall apart. But You never will. You never will. Help me to lean more and more on You. Help me to end out this year and begin the next one squarely in the center of Your will.

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