American Idle

I have a confession to make. Our family likes to watch American Idol. While I can’t endorse everything about the show and its past seasons, we have fond memories of some of the highlights. Like when Mandisa signaled “I’m believing God” and all Beth Moore Believing God readers or Bible study participants knew what she was doing. Or when Bo Bice sang out “How far is heaven?” Or this season, when the entire cast belted out Shout to the Lord before millions of viewers! Our home erupted with our own shouting!

We are spilt as to who we wanted to win this season. The boys like David Cook, who is still in the top two. Kenzie liked Jason with his dredlocks and Brooke with her folksy, wholesome charm. (And her spunk as she stood up to Simon who predicted that Hollywood would corrupt her strong morals.) My husband Todd works afternoons so he’s never actually seen the show. For me, it was a toss up between Brooke–who was eliminated a few weeks ago and David Archuleta–the fresh-faced teen, who still remains.

While I do have trouble with the name—I’d much prefer American Star or something of the sort—I love seeing these unknown singers compete over the weeks improving their performance skills and attempting to fulfill their lifelong dream. It makes me smile.

However, in the Bible, idols are nothing to smile about. Over and over again we are warned to have nothing to do with them. We are neither to make them with our hands nor to form them in our hearts. While the children of Israel may have had trouble with the former, being tempted to fashion golden calves and such, more often we modern day believers struggle with the latter. We set up secret, hidden idols. Idols in our hearts.

An idol is anything that we put in the place of God in our lives. It may be the attention of others, or money or material possessions. For some it is their career or their athletic ability. Others are addicted to television, romance novels or the Internet. With me it was food. (click here to see my 700 Club interview on Pat’s Skinny Wednesday)

I was idle for too many years about my idol. I sported too much weight on my female frame. I consumed too many calories and burned too few to boot! The result? I was sick and tired. Weak and miserable. But for years I refuse to take action. I sat idly by and it was killing me. Literally. When my cholesterol level skyrocketed over 300 and the chest pains became more frequent, I finally took action. God was ready and willing, as He had always been, to meet my every need. He daily supplied the strength. He lifted me up when I failed. Over 10 months and100 pounds later, food was finally put back into proper perspective in my life.


Me in August 2005, crushing my hubby!



And me……10 months later!!!!

It wasn’t hard for others to see that I had an issue with gluttony. But other secret idols of the heart can be more evasive. While handmade idols of world religions are easy to spot, these secret idols of the heart are not always so. Sometimes only we know they exist. So we procrastinate. We say, “Perhaps I’ll start tomorrow. Or next Monday. Or next month.” Before we know it, we can count the years we have devoted to our idols. Idle, wasted time.

Just as we are sometimes the only ones who know our idols exist, we are the only ones that, by God’s grace and through His power, can tear them down. We must stop being idle. Action is required. Just as a marathon runner takes one step at a time, we must too.

Are you ready to begin? The sound of an idol breaking is a beautiful one to God’s ears.

Hey…and while we are on the subject, my friend and fellow Proverbs 31 Ministries speaker Marybeth has made a request of me and I’d like to know if anyone else would be interested. She wants me to host a blog discussion about my weightloss—how I got started, how I kept motivated, what scriptures I memorized, what I ate, how I worked exercise into my mommy schedule, how maintenance is going, etc… These are items I certainly can discuss with her over the phone, but I would consider hosting a week long forum on it here if others are interested. After all, shorts and tank top season is just around the corner here in the Midwest! If you would be curious about this topic, would you leave a comment on this post stating so? Thanks!!!!

Idol-bashing blessings,



  1. Oh, my goodness! You are awesome! I had no idea that this was part of your testimony. I have heard you speak, and enjoyed your thoughts tremendously, but now I admire you all the more! Congratulations on losing, and keeping, off the weight. You are a beautiful woman of God!

  2. That would be awesome! I have lost over 60 pounds in my life, but now it is starting to come back. I need to deal with the heart issues.

  3. I am interested too! Congratulations on your weight loss! You look amazing! I have over 100+ to lose and it is so encouraging and inspiring to hear of others who have traveled the same road and faced the same idols and obstacles I need to face.

  4. Yes, I would be very interested. I am currently reading
    Gary Smalley’s book “Change your heart, Change your life” and am hoping it will help with my weight situation also. I have done many “diets” over the years and I am beginning to realize it has to do with my relationship w/ and trusting God but haven’t quite figured it all out yet to make everything click.

  5. I am currently in the battle to lose weight– which I am currently losing. The battle, that is, not the weight.!! Seeing your before and after pics is amazing– I want an “after” picture like yours. So far I only have the “before.” What did you do that made the difference?? I need help!!

    I am positive that a weight loss blog would be a huge magnet for many. Food is one of those things that is a struggle for so many of us. I know I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. But this is one I cannot seem to do. Please, please, do the blog.

  6. I would love to hear about your journey….I have lost 18 pounds in 7 weeks! :-) I want to lose 25 more. I would love to hear what scriptures you read and what kept you motivated. You look beautiful!! Please do the week long forum…


  7. Absolutely!

    Love this post, it spoke volumes to me. With each child it has been consistently harder to do what I know or need to do. Can’t wait to hear how you did it and did it WELL!

  8. Karen,

    I’m struggling with my weight and any help you can give would be so appreciated!


  9. Karen,

    You do look awesome! Thanks for sharing your pics. I would be very interested in a weight loss blog. I need help! and motivation!

  10. First of all, congrats on your weight loss! You look fantastic (and I’m sure you feel better too)! I would love to hear more about your weight loss journey as I’m on one myself. I’ve been doing Weight Watchers for about 6 months & have lost almost 35 pounds. While I’m very pleased with my progress so far, I’ve begun to self-sabotage my efforts. I’d love to hear your story & be inspired.

  11. Wow Karen, you look awesome..I mean, I’ve seen your pic before but I didn’t know your weight loss story. I’d love to hear more and learn what works for you. My issue is selfdiscipline to work out. I have a room w/ hand weights and a treadmill,but I dust it more than use it!

  12. Hi! This is Connie from Bolingbrook! And, yes, I would be very interested…and I have a friend who I think would be interested, as well. Thanks!

  13. Karen,
    I would love to know more about your weight loss journey. I have also fought a battle with the idol of food. My journey is still a work in process and could use a pick-me-up.

  14. I have been wondering the same thing and too afraid to ask. A blog on your weight loss would be great!

  15. I’d love to discuss this more. I also struggle with food….it seems to run in my family. My mom has kept off a 100+ loss for several years now. She looks and feels great. I’m not overweight, but I have a constant battle with about 20 pounds, and I know that it could get even more out of control in a second.

    Anyhow, thanks for being so open with us. You look great, and I’m sure you feel so much better (physically AND emotionally).

Leave a Reply to Joanie Butler Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *