The Demon in My Closet

I’m so glad Jesus saved me from the darkness. I close my closet door and lock the darkness inside, never to let the demon out. He no longer controls me.

I’m on a new journey with Jesus, and we get right to work cleaning house.

With a trembling voice, I apologize for my locked door and the demon inside. I’ve heard this is the demon who will separate Jesus and me. I double check that the door is locked and I join a small group just to make sure he believes my allegiance.

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Sitting alone, I hear a rattle. Is that the demon trying to open the door? I envision his claws scrapping down the door, longing to rip me to shreds. I whisper a prayer, Jesus keep me safe from this monster inside.

The leader’s voice booms, You wanna know what makes God angry? 

I gasp, because that’s exactly what’s living in my house. I stare at my closet door. I can see his snarling fangs through the door. The demon pacing to get free once again. I buy a new Bible, one that I can doodle in.

In community group, there are whispers. One in the group has been devoured. Why did she open her closet door?! We all stare at one another, and we know it could happen to any one of us. I can’t image how angry God must be with her right now, well, I’m sure he’s really disappointed. We schedule a special prayer and fast for next week.

I forget to fast.

I forget to pray.

Is that goo oozing out from under the door? I stub my toe. It must be because I’ve let too much sin in, and not enough Jesus. Oh, God, I’m not worthy to have you living in my home. I’m not WORTHY! Please forgive me!

I lean my back against my closet door. I’m ashamed at what lies on the other side. It’s my black stain. It’s what makes God angry. It’s what separates us. Tears slip down my face, because I’m constantly reminded, God hates sin! The vicious, snarling ten-foot demon panting at the key hole is lurking, always lurking.

I thought Jesus died to overcome my dark demon? Is this how I’m meant to spend my life? Caught somewhere in between the slobbering monster and Jesus forgiving me for it being there?

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I read of the old testament people, and their roller coster story. They bounce between blessings and disasters. When they’re not swimming in goodness, they’re trembling under the anger of God. And God’s anger was hinged on whether their demon of sin was in the closet or out, locked away or running free. Right?

So, does that mean when God was pleased with his people, and blessings and goodness were flowing, there was no sin present? Does that mean that no one was lying, cheating or having affairs? Most of my life that’s the version I believed, but that doesn’t make sense, because we know all have sinned. There is not one who is righteous.

What is it then? If there was still sin taking place among God’s people, but God was pleased with them, then what was it? What did God’s pleasure and anger hinge on?

I took a journey, and that’s when I discovered:

When I fed them, they were satisfied; when they were satisfied, they became proud; then they forgot me.

Hosea 13:6

You see, it’s not sin that stirs up the anger of God. His anger is stirred when we forget him. It’s when we don’t remember his benefits that we separate ourselves from His goodness.

I step back from my closet. I stare at the door that I’ve been polishing for so long. My hand trembles as I reach for the shiny knob. If sin is not the demon I’ve been avoiding for so long, then who is really hiding in the darkness?

I peer into the black, and as my eyes adjust, I brace myself, prepared to meet the grueling demon. Instead, I’m shocked at what I see. There, standing stiff and tall, is a selfish little child who doesn’t know how to love, and then quickly forgets when she’s shown how. This is of whom I’ve been terrified? This is what I’ve believed to be the evil to fear? I stare at her and she meets my gaze. Her skin translucent, and behind her hollow eyes I see fear. She wants to love God, but her love is weak, impatient, and forgetful. She wants to love others, but her love is selfish and conditional.

That’s when I hear Jesus whisper in my ear,

My dove, it’s my Perfect Love that completes your weak love. That’s what you must never forget.

In that moment, I’m engulfed in the sea of Love. I’m flooded with His delight. My dreaded closet forgotten, the door swinging on its hinges. The darkness is gone.

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