Donald grew up in a Christian home and considered himself a believer. His mother and father were both faithful, hard-working members of Shank Lane Baptist Church. But Donald never felt like the Lord heard or ever answered his prayers. After graduating from the Harvard Economics School, at the top of his class, Donald was riding high. Several years into his career at Goldheim and Strasbourg Financial he was poised to make the biggest deal of his life. Before the negotiations began he decided to test the practice of prayer. Donald prayed like never before. He laid out all the particulars of the deal before the Lord and asked for a successful result.
Weeks later, after the contract fell through, Donald decided he was done with Christianity. For him, God really wasn’t there. Then, he had a brainstorm, he knew there was a god out there somewhere, but the Christian version just wasn’t the right one. Donald thought he needed a god that was interested in the same things he was, so he commissioned a local jeweler to create a god for him. This god would be ‘lord of finance’ and look the part. So the jeweler made a statue of a stately English gentleman with a hat, umbrella, and briefcase made of the finest gold. Donald spared no expense. He called his new god, Albertus.
Donald stationed the idol in his home office. He arranged flowers around the base and placed an offering cup at its feet. He prayed to Albertus and things seemed to pick up in his business life, success was finally coming his way. He attributed it all to his new god. Donald really believed he had landed on the truth, and that Albertus was actively blessing his life.
Just before his annual review in which he was sure to make junior partner, he prayed. Albertus was invoked to give him a larger salary, a nicer office, a prettier secretary, a newer car, and the finest clothes fitting his new station in life. On the day of his review, Donald received a call from his wife to come home right away. When he got there his house was a smoldering ruin. The fire department tried to save it, but they couldn’t. However, his family was safe.
Days later Donald walked through the rubble of his once-proud home and found the remains of Albertus. It hadn’t moved from where he’d placed it, the gold was gone, the offering cup and flowers were gone, nothing was left but the steel base. He wondered why Albertus hadn’t moved out of the house and away from the fire? Why he hadn’t stopped the fire before it began? Why he didn’t contact the fire department before things got too bad? Donald began to wonder if he was a god at all.
They lavish gold out of the bag, and weigh silver in the balance, and hire a goldsmith; and he maketh it a god: they fall down, yea, they worship. They bear him upon the shoulder, they carry him, and set him in his place, and he standeth; from his place shall he not remove: yea, one shall cry unto him, yet can he not answer, nor save him out of his trouble.Isaiah 46:6-7