Hebrews 13:8 – Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever. (KJV)
Exodus 20:3 – Thou shalt have no other gods before me. (KJV)
Cheerios: those tiny circles of toasted oats that have sustained the tummies of tons of kids of all ages through several decades.
They've also been little lifesavers for mothers who need something substantial as a snack for their tiny toddlers while waiting for appointments, sitting through a service, or in between meals.
They serve several purposes: a beautiful big bowl at breakfast; mixed with other cereals and spices, they make a super snack; strung together with a piece of string or coloured ribbon, they make an edible necklace or Christmas tree ornament.
The fact of the matter is that they've been around for a long time, unchanged and reliable.
There've been times when I tried other brands because they cost less or I thought they might be better than the original. But as well as not having the same taste and texture, they wilt when they hit the milk.
Nope — there's nothing like the real thing.
This is especially so in the case of our Creator, our God. Many through the ages have tried to imitate, better, belittle, or substitute for Him other gods, but they simply cannot stand up to His reputation. His is the ability, even today, to delight little kids with the magic of the story of His birth, to bring people to tears of sorrow and joy at His death and resurrection, to heal through prayer, to reassure in times of uncertainty, and to bring a peace that passes our limited understanding.
He has commanded that we have no other gods before Him: a request of trust, to believe in Him, that He is the "true thing".
Prayer: Lord, may we take Your commandment to heart, especially in trying times, when prayers seem slow to be answered and we may feel tempted to try putting our faith in something less superior. In Your name we pray. Amen.