Unseen to the evening church-goers scattered about the wooden pews, an ominous figure darkened the entryway of the little church. Smiling, the visitor viewed his underlings, Anger and Spite, whispering to a young married couple.
Across the room, Lust hung over the Sunday school director; pornographic images playing in his mind. Momentarily, his indignant wife jabbed him sharply as he gawked at a female choir member. Immorality stood behind another woman with piercing black orbs that peered out through the woman’s eyes.
Nearby, Jealousy and Strife drove their poison into a group of people criticizing the pastor’s sermon.
Satisfied, the tall creature turned to leave when suddenly he spied a lone figure sitting in the back; eyes closed; motionless. In his early fifties now and graying around the temples, the fallen one still recognized him.
A deafening shriek followed. Instantly, every demon surrounded the massive creature with cherry red eyes.
“What’s he doing here?” raged the vile one.
“He began coming last week. He sits there quietly and speaks to no one. Quite harmless,” answered Despair.
“Fools!” barked lord Nisroc. “He’s anything but harmless! Who let him in here?”
Trembling, no one answered.
“He should be dead! Four years ago, he was on the brink. What happened? Suicide!” screeched the fallen one.
An ugly creature inched forward covered with scales like dead flesh.
“It wasn’t my fault…he spun the chamber; rested the gun under his chin…then the Enemy spoke to him.”
Nisroc seethed swiping a formidable claw violently through the air.
“What’s so terrible about having him here,” asked Despair, timidly.
Nisroc glared at his underling.
“Look into him,” Nisroc bellowed. “What do you see?”
They stared at the motionless figure.
“Nothing,” Strife replied.
“Exactly,” responded Nisroc.
“Have you ever looked and seen nothing in a hapless human? There’s always something…a secret sin; a hidden agenda. In him, you see nothing. He is covered. Probe him and you’ll discover what blankets him.”
“What is it, lord?” queried Spite.
“Blood! That wretched Carpenter’s blood…and the man has receded deep inside.”
The demons gasped.
“He reeks of prayer, you idiots!” barked the vile one. “He meditates, constantly. He rarely speaks because he’s in continual communion with his Master. The Carpenter’s spirit thrives within him. Eventually, it will come out. Mark my words. It’s a dark day.”
The demons glanced at each other, doubtfully.
“You, doubt?” Nisroc questioned.
“Novices! The Enemy is clever. He uses your strengths against you. Remember:
At age 19, his wife suffered with terminal cancer. Who do you think allowed this to happen? He cared for his dying invalid wife for 12 years, praying, crying out to God, nightly.”
“It made no difference?” replied Bitterness.
“Correct,” countered Nisroc. “She withered away while he became disillusioned and embittered towards God. Her death came and he launched into a decade of futility and hatred. Resentment blossomed.”
“A foolish marriage followed,” added Loneliness, proudly. “It crushed him, stole his confidence and his ministry. Divorce and financial ruin bloomed.”
“Drinking profusely,” added Drunkenness, “he spent his money in bars on Saturday nights.”
“Illicit relationships,” hooted Lust. “Vainly, he prayed to a God who’d turned the heavens bronze.”
“Loathing his Master’s ways, bitterness burrowed into his soul,” remarked Nisroc.
“Sporadically, he held jobs, but only temporarily,” added Poverty.
“Alone, guilt ridden, he raged against God, which brings us to: a dark alley, a bottle of Southern Comfort and a .357 magnum.”
Nisroc looked at Suicide, condescendingly.
“Imbeciles! You’ve been had!” barked Nisroc. “The man’s pride was enormous. His Master wasn’t going to allow that pride to remain. His own word states: ‘I will BREAK down your stubborn pride and make the sky above you like iron…’ ” Lev. 26:19
Fuming, Nisroc railed, “You played into His hands. Better you had showered him with wealth. Instead, the Enemy allowed you to torture him knowing that when completely crushed, the man would abandon his selfishness and surrender to God. Now, he silently lives in another realm with that miserable Carpenter...a man of two worlds. He’s alive in the earthly, but lives in the heavenly. He possesses the power to mortally wound us. Worse still, he could distribute that power to others that we have worked hard to destroy.”
Demons hung their heads.
“He also sees things that others do not. Your actions here are no longer hidden,” affirmed Nisroc.
The vile imps turned their gaze towards the praying man. To their shock and terror, he sat; head upright, bright blue eyes staring straight at them.
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