And Jacob said to his household and to all who were with him, “Put away the foreign gods that are among you, purify yourselves, and change your garments. Then let us arise and go up to Bethel; and I will make an altar there to God, who answered me in the day of my distress and has been with me in the way which I have gone.” So they gave Jacob all the foreign gods which were in their hands, and the earrings which were in their ears; and Jacob hid them under the terebinth tree which was by Shechem. Genesis 35:2-4
When I turned thirteen years old I bagged up all my toys and rid myself of them. I determined I was no longer a child but becoming a man.
I never played with childish toys again.
To me, the toys held me hostage from moving forward into adulthood.
Years later I took a record collection of secular music and tossed them all away. I actually frisbee’d each one into a wood pile, breaking them all.
I felt this type music was not pleasing to God and held me hostage from moving spiritually forward.
For some this may all seem silly. Not to me.
Jacob’s family rid themselves of small idols and earrings, burying it all out of sight.
These things held them hostage from moving forward.
It was only after Jacob removed the idols from his household that God revealed Himself to him as God Almighty and rename Jacob to Israel.
Our lives are full of such idols today. Possessions, entertainment, hobbies, and leisure often interfere with the fullness of God.
The hardest part is burying it and moving on.