The teenage girl came out of the bathroom with a big smile on her face. Blood streamed down from both arms from the sharp end of shower curtain rod that she had used to ‘cut’ herself, once again. “Ain’t I pretty?” she announced disdainfully to her counselors.
Though family, friends, and professional counselors have sought nearly every means possible to keep this girl from ‘cutting’ herself; writing profanity, with cuts, on her thighs, she has defied every attempt to help her find peace in a world of self-inflicted violence.
My prediction, unless she allows the love of Christ to heal her, she won’t see her sixteenth birthday. From the spiritual event filled with the light of Christ at her baptism a few years ago, she has steadily chosen to seek the ‘dark’ things of this world. It is true, her parents are worthless and their ‘parent’ card should have never been allowed to be punched, and it has left her angry and searching for answers why she was abandoned, but, she is loved; she was taken in and given a good home. She was spoiled rotten and does live an affluent life-style from the blessings those people in her life provide for her; but she has chosen to dwell on those things she doesn’t have verses all the blessings she does possess. If she had been left on the street, forced into Foster homes, and forced to live ‘hand to mouth’, her choices of self-degradation and physical harm might hold a bit of logic; but, none of those things have happened to her. Her steady streams of lies and false accusations about events, even sexual abuse have altered her relationships with those trying to save her. There are many other events that sadden all, but, I’ll not detail them. The pertinent question: Why?
She, like many Pilgrims have failed to respect Satan. This may sound blasphemous and biblically incorrect; but, believe me, it is one of the consistent mistakes all Pilgrims make as they experience their lives spin out of control and crash and burn at the feet of Satan.
The Apostle Peter directs our attention to how a Pilgrim should conduct a relationship with Satan:
“Be self-controlled ( sober) and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings. I Peter 5:8-9
All Pilgrims are enemies of Satan! Satan is God’s enemy. It might behoove all Pilgrims to be acutely cognizant that Satan desires to destroy our lives. His one mission is to leave us with a sense of failure and disappointment with who we are. If he can succeed, his ‘roaring’ and ‘prowling’ will become capture and eating us alive. Remember, God does not tempt, Satan tempts; but, he can’t devour unless we choose to fall before the ‘enticements’ and choose to sin. James 1:13-15
Now, back to the teenager’s story: when she chose to leave one home to move to another relative’s home, where all thought it would be more accommodating for her, present and in the future, she ran into the reality of life: she had to find a way to fit in with her peers and earn a new positon based upon who she was; and whom she wanted to become. She had to work her way past the ‘new girl’ in school. Evidently, she found this troubling and nearly insurmountable; she opted for those who welcome the ‘misfits’: Goths to start with. Take warning! Any Pilgrim parent who has a teenager that drifts into this disturbed group’s life-style, you are in for a nightmare. Its roots are in the Occult domain; next-door to Satan’s. Its focus is upon the ‘light’ one can find from darkness: it champions and nearly glorifies depression. The pain of emotional suffering, as a ‘collective’ group, empowers the relationship outcome. Their need for black, especially in dress, is a direct correlation to worship Satanic concepts. Its core value is derived from a separation from that which is normal. Seldom does a Goth fail to finally enter into the abyss of Hell’s beckoning: disfigure one’s self to ‘stand-out’ amongst Goth peers. Cutting one’s flesh to demonstrate the depth of suffering one is willing to endure gains ‘street crede’. Each cut is designed to inflict pain and suffering upon those whom they blame for the trauma in their lives. By cutting their own skin, often it ends up as a type of Goth ‘folk art’, provides them with a ‘sick’ type of psychological empowerment. The coup de grace arrives when the utter horror is seen by their loved ones as they are nearly powerless to prevent its intended outcomes.
Beware of those who want to pooh-hoo this fall from grace as a temporary ‘teenage-fad’, the teen seldom escapes with Black clothes spiritually un-burned. If they do make it out, its demonic imprint is only washed-out by the blood of Christ.
While the Heathens of this world fluctuates from dismissing the idea of evil, Satan and demonic worship and possession, or acknowledges Satan is responsible for every mistake and misdeed; “The Devil made me do it”; and is assigned a ‘playful’ place of spooks and hobgoblins freshly minted each Halloween, Pilgrims need to know Satan isn’t one to trifle with since his mission in your life is to break, steal, and destroy you.
Like any adversary, he needs to be respected. You should hate everything about him, but you should never disrespect him. If and when you do, it will be at your peril. How will he do this?
My opinion, he will catch you ‘cat-napping’: you only have one eye on your ‘spiritual fires’. For married couples, it may come from a shapely set of gams and the enchanting smell of strange perfume…or a ready hanky and the strong shoulder of ‘understanding’. It may arrive as a ‘life-ring’ in the midst of a storm you are certain you won’t survive. Perhaps, ‘Southern-comfort’ or some other exotic type of drug will dull the inexcusable failures of your perceived reality, whether they are lies or stone-cold truth.
Satan’s roar is just that; but, he is wily and a master illusionist. The sound can disrupt all in your life. Spiritual intentions run off into a ‘dead-end’. Staying connected to the King’s spiritual power reservoir: Holy Word, is sluffed off and your neglect drifts into many phases of your life’s journey: spouse, kids, job, etc.
It just takes a tiny slip that demonstrates your disappointment with God; and your evident discouragement, for the Devil to pounce. Even if you are 100% FDA inspected, he won’t take a ‘taste’; and if you are Christ’s favorite food: found to be 100% spiritually inspected, you will be too tough for Satan to eat.
Pilgrims, as long as you are alive, you will hear Satan’s roar. If you are dressed for the battles and the war, Satan, will move on to easier prey. How is this possible? Paraphrasing Paul, “You don’t take a knife to a gun fight.” Pilgrims must go to war wearing the proper armament to survive its bloody outcome. In Ephesians six, Paul tells us what to wear: a shield of Faith (should be of iron and your’s is Paper Mache); a helmet of Salvation (he delights in smashing your gourd-head each time you forget to filter Satan’s knowledge from God’s); a sword of the Spirit (and you show up with Darth Vader’s); loins girt with Truth (and you show up wearing a Jock Strap without a cup); a breastplate of Righteousness (your breastplate needs ‘Stop-Leak’); and feet shod with Peace (your warts and bunions demonstrate the tune of anger and malice you march to).. The teenage girl came to do battle with a Goth ‘peashooter’. Too many Pilgrims arrive without any spiritual arrows in their quiver for they compromised their accuracy by walking, not by faith but by sight (David used a Slingshot; you demand a tank battalion)
Kataaptidzo! Cart art tidzo (computer doesn’t make all of the correct Greek alphabet letters, so I improvised) is the word Peter used as a personal reflection of his own life, for it refers to something broken that is mended so it can be useful, again. Satan had had his way with Peter for he failed to be loyal to Jesus…three times; but, Jesus restored him and even gave him a greater ministry. The word means the same thing for a number of different usages: mend fishing nets; to set a broken bone, to find perfection amongst imperfection, and to move from little value to great value: i.e. a broken vase to a mended one that seems brand new. Pilgrim, what is it in your life that is broken because Satan has been messing in your life? You can’t find anything in this world that can mend it except the love of Christ. He holds the power to heal and make new. It is possible nothing you can do can change the outcome because it isn’t dependent upon what spiritual choices you choose; but, you can still discover healing…for yourself. It may be the best offer you will ever receive: when asked, forgive; give forgiveness where none is due.
Misery loves company! It is a ditty I have heard since I was a boy. Peter announces that all brethren are suffering for the faith. I guess that means we should all suffer for the same reason. Does it also mean if we aren’t suffering; we have become a slave to serve Satan while rejecting the idea of being a slave for Christ?
The teenage girl never knew her lot in life as a young Christian was to suffer. Do Pilgrims? My opinion, she never seriously considered Satan could harm her. She never entertained the idea she would cower at the first sign of a test for why she chose Jesus as her savior: her peer review was on parade and the self-image reflection she saw was too ugly in the light of what godless people considered beautiful; ergo, she doffed her ‘Robe of Righteousness’ and fled spiritually naked into the promised ‘feel-good’ darkness.
Pilgrim, how many times, how often have you emulated this biblically immature girl? One of the blessing of old age is I have lost much of my memory about by earlier failures. My problem, each Sunday the preacher trots them out, afresh, as he preaches a message from God’s word, and I stagger out of worship reeling as if I’ve been hit with a ten pound spiritual sledgehammer (by the way, this is how I measure the effectiveness of the message…how about you?)
The teenage girl, like Esau, traded her inherited birthright for a pot of porridge. I fear those who are trying to rescue her are muddled in a haze of mystic heathenism mixed with a dash of biblical salt (it makes the stinking stuff go down easier), and all biblical absolutes are being avoided at all cost so not to upset her too much. When the experiment fails, the girl will spend the rest of her life listening to the roar.
One more thing: Pilgrim women, never forget…Satan wants you fat! Why? God gave men an hour-glass shaped mind.
Pilgrims, I urge you to hate Satan as much as God and I do. I implore you to Respect him as much as I do.