Monday, August 26, 2013
Demoniac (pt 2) - The Salvation
10 And he begged Jesus again and again not to send them out of the area.
11 A large herd of pigs was feeding on the nearby hillside. 12 The demons begged Jesus, “Send us among the pigs; allow us to go into them.” 13 He gave them permission, and the impure spirits came out and went into the pigs. The herd, about two thousand in number, rushed down the steep bank into the lake and were drowned.
14 Those tending the pigs ran off and reported this in the town and countryside, and the people went out to see what had happened. 15 When they came to Jesus, they saw the man who had been possessed by the legion of demons, sitting there, dressed and in his right mind; and they were afraid. 16 Those who had seen it told the people what had happened to the demon-possessed man—and told about the pigs as well. 17 Then the people began to plead with Jesus to leave their region.
18 As Jesus was getting into the boat, the man who had been demon-possessed begged to go with him. 19 Jesus did not let him, but said, “Go home to your own people and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.” 20 So the man went away and began to tell in the Decapolis how much Jesus had done for him. And all the people were amazed.
One strange day, after over 20 years of growing chaos and insanity, I experienced peace. True peace... not the dark peace I'd lived with for so many years. This peace didn't come with compromise... I didn't have to scar my flesh or give anything. With one small water-made cross, I felt the light. And I felt both frightened and relieved. And for a while after this, the voices quieted. I thought they were gone. I began to feel comfort in the peace and light.
But the moment my guard was down and weakness set in - the moment the events the voices warned about came true - those voices were back. They had told me I'd always be abandoned by everyone but them. They had said no one would ever truly care. And the second those truths came to light again... the voices were back with the once comforting blanket of darkness.
And they were angry.
Chaos consumed. Anger, hatred, pain, destruction - it was all back with a vengeance. This time I began to recognize it for what it was - something evil residing within me. But even with this recognition, I found it so easy to slip back into that habit of allowing them to win. Those who had brought the light peace to me - I fought. I hated. I attacked. And yet, it wasn't me. Part of me that had been awakened by the light still lived - and tried to fight. Tried to love. Tried to plead. But whatever scratched and clawed and screamed within me recognized the good - the light - and a battle ensued. A vicious battle of light and dark, of chaos and peace, of good and evil, of me and the voices.
Just as the demons within the demoniac, the voices within me recognized God's light. And they did not want to be sent into an abyss. But they were - for now - I think. They weren't quieted so quickly as Jesus was able to free the demonic, but I have been freed. The voices have been silenced.
I wonder - yes, the freed man spread the news of what Jesus did for him, but did he worry as I do? There still resides within me a fear that the voices are still there... that they're hiding deep within, just waiting for me to be weak again. Just waiting for the world to prove them right again. Did this man feel this same way?
I asked in the first part of this (Demoniac - The Condition) if "selfishness and sin breed insanity" or if the reverse is true. This is difficult to say. For me, my insanity started at such a young age... caused by years of abuse. But, I did open the door. When God did not answer my prayers to be saved from my tormentors, I pleaded with anyone to save me. Was this a sin? Yes, I suppose it was. I may have only been 12 or 13 at the time, but I knew I was opening a door best left closed. I didn't know the consequences... but I knew it was wrong. So perhaps yes, it was my own selfishness and sin which bred my insanity.
We open ourselves up to chaos every time we sin. We're basically opening a door and saying - "Come on in, Satan! Make yourself at home!" The opposite is also true - every time we open our hearts to others, helping them in the name of God, we open the door for our Lord. Every time we pray and develop our faith with God, we open the door to the light.
I don't believe the devil and the Lord can both live within us... this is why when we're overcome with our own demons and voices screaming and clawing within us, prayer and patience and faith in God can chase those demons out. It can silence those cries. It can heal those scars.
So what does this all mean? What's the reality in today's world in regards to demonic possession? Demoniac (pt 3) - The Reality