Twenty Ways To Tell What Your Idols Are

Before we can eliminate the idols in our life, we must first realize what (who) they are.

We all have idols. We are all idolaters to one degree or another. We all are in need of repentance and restoration. We all are in desperate need to undergo serious spiritual alignment so that our passions are proportionally directed at God and not at a god or gods.

So, how then do we discern what are our idols? How can we become increasingly clear-sighted rather than remaining in their power?

Here are twenty questions that we need to transparently answer in order for our idols to be revealed to us:


1.What do we fear the most?

2.What, if we lost it, would make life not worth living?

3.What controls our mood?

4.What do I respond to with explosive anger or deep despair? 

5.What dominates our relationships?

6.What do we dream about when our mind is on idle-mode?

7.To what do our thoughts effortlessly drift towards?    

8.What do we enjoy day-dreaming about?

9.What am I preoccupied with?

10. What is the first thing on my mind in the morning and the last thing on my mind at night?

11. Where or in whom do I put my trust?

12. What occupies my mind when we have nothing else to think about?

13. Do we day-dream about purchasing material goods that you (we) don’t need, with money you (we) don’t have to impress the people you (we) do not like?

14. What do you habitually, systematically and undoubtedly drift towards in order to obtain peace, joy and happiness in the privacy of your heart?

15. How do we spend our (God’s) money?  

  • Jesus said, “Where your treasure is, there is your heart also” (Matt. 6:21).
  • Your money flows most effortlessly toward your heart’s greatest love. In fact, the mark of an idol is that you spend too much money on it, and you must try to exercise self-control constantly. Our patterns of spending reveal our idols. 

16. What is my real, daily functional savior?

17. What is my real – not my [professed] – god?

18. How do I respond to unanswered prayers?

19. When a certain desire is not met, do I feel frustration, anxiety, resentment, bitterness, anger, or depression?

20. Is there something I desire so much that I am willing to disappoint or hurt others in order to have it?

 When we ask ourselves these penetrating questions, there yields a continuity of our idolatry. The answers to these questions uncover the following:

  • Whether we serve God or idols
  • Whether we look for salvation from Christ or from false saviors
  • Whether we rely on our Deliverer or other pseudo-messiahs.   

In the next post, I want to talk about where within our being idols are conceived and what we can do to protect that place from idolatry inception.

Question: How else can you honestly assess your situation to ascertain your current idols? 


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6 responses to “Twenty Ways To Tell What Your Idols Are”

  1. Woah! I am almost afraid to answer these questions. Thank you for the post. Sanctification is awesome 🙂

    1. Oksana — I am glad you found it useful! It can be painful to assess our
      idols, but it is infinitely pleasurable when we replace them with Jesus
      — this is what I am practically aiming for in this post!  

  2.  Avatar

    All Q’s are excellent. How about this new one: what activity takes most of my awake time?

    1. Mariya — that is a good questions also — but if someone works full
      time — it might not be their idol — just a means of putting food on
      the table 🙂 but then again, we have to be vigilante and watch what
      motivates us to do what we do — and what brings us the greatest

  3. […] was born in Kazakhstan and now serves an assistant pastor in Orange, California, USA.  He blogged this list a week ago. Before we can eliminate the idols in our life, we must first realize what (who) they […]

  4. […] Discerning the idols of your heart. […]

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