I’ve been asking God what to write about this week. So many themes seem to be converging in just my everyday life recently. Each one of them designed to steal my inheritance, kill my heart and destroy my life, but miraculously turned by my loving Abba into deep, profound blessing. Hah! Take THAT, satan!
Can we talk about Halloween and the demonic? I feel like a major hypocrite here… Just being completely honest. I enjoy gathering with neighbors, dressing the kids up, going from house to house begging for candy. This is fun. I know that the event is rooted in demonic Druid festivals. The Druids used to (and some maybe still do) disguise themselves and rampage through the Irish countryside, bullying and extorting villagers into giving them some sort of ‘treat.’ If they were refused, they would quite literally butcher/sacrifice your livestock, making it next to impossible to support your family. This was their ‘trick.’ The Druids were also well-known for their witchcraft, satanic worship, and celebration of death.
A million miles away in ancient Mexico, the Aztecs were doing basically the same thing. Same time of year. Does anyone but me find that to be a little odd? Celebration of death during the same time of year, continents, ecological zones and vast oceans apart. Hmmm. Now, when the Catholics came and brought Jesus to the Aztecs, they tried their darnedest to transfer a pagan festival into one that glorifies Christ. They did a pretty good job in pagan Europe with Easter (ancient sex-orgy celebration – how else do you think rabbits and eggs ended up with the cross??), but something got lost in the translation here in the Americas. A festival celebrating death never really became a celebration of Life. I think at some point, All Hallow’ed Eve might have been a great holiday, as the Church changed the focus of death to an honoring and a reverence for the hallowed saints who had gone before us (All Saints Day Nov 1). Same thing in Mexico.
But modern day Halloween? Modern day Dia De Los Muertos? I’m pretty sure there has been a shift back to the pagan. And maybe those pagan roots never really withered and died. Maybe they were always under the surface, festering, growing, waiting for such a time as this.
Let me give you an example. I know a mom who, last Friday, went to read for her son’s class. One of the students in her son’s class also was in homeroom with him last year. This other student had loved my friend. Gave her big hugs whenever she was up at the school. This time was different. As soon as my friend stepped into the classroom, this student began glaring at her. My friend quietly sat at the front of the classroom, engaging the students and waiting for them to settle in for reading time. The glaring student literally could not keep still. She was poking her classmates, pushing them, aggravating them. The teacher stepped in. The bad behavior stopped momentarily and the teacher went back to her desk. But then the student took her shoes off and began poking and shoving her classmates with her shoes. My friend leaned in and, hand extended, asked for the shoes. “NO!” the little girl yelled, and threw a shoe at my friend. My friend knelt down in front of the girl and said, “You are a powerful young lady. And you have power to hand me your shoe instead of throwing it at me.” Immediately the little girl turned her back to my friend, clasped her hands over her ears and began kicking and screaming at the top of her lungs, “NO! NO! NO! NO! NO!” The teacher got involved again, took the girl to the corner of the classroom where she and the girl talked for at least 10 minutes. My friend began to read her book. When the teacher went to sit back down, the student stayed in the corner and glared at my friend the whole rest of the time she was there. My friend finished the book, and on the way out of the school, heard this from The Lord, “That was a demonic manifestation.” My friend was taken aback. “The demonic is responding to My Presence within you.”
I cannot help but think about the timing of this. We are quickly approaching a season where our culture has embraced death and the demonic. Chaos, anarchy, rebellion abound in the world, and in the classroom. It’s an open invitation for second-heaven (where the demonic realm is) flirtations, oppressions, if not all-out possessions. And we think it’s cute for our kids to wear the scent and image of death. Heck, I just bought a pirate hat with a Jolly Roger on it. See? Hypocrite.
Here is my prayer: Lord God Almighty, You are the giver of Wisdom. Only You are the author of Discernment. Our metroplex is truly petrified of ebola, and yet we pretend and disguise ourselves in costumes of death. We are so double-minded. Remove double-mindedness from me, Lord. Show me, reveal to me, what is holy and what is profane. You are LIFE and LIGHT. There is no darkness in You, Abba. The kingdom of darkness has no part in You. I am in You and You are in me. Reveal to me, expose in me, anything that is chaining me to darkness. I receive and pull on the combat boots of peace that drive out all anarchy and fear. You promised that I would trample on snakes and scorpions. May the Peace of Christ protect me from the venom of the enemy. May every place where my feet trod absorb the Peace of Christ.