Sheep Skins

Sheep Skins

Indeed, the safest road to Hell is the gradual one.
Drew
Drew
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Forgive me, if this essay is offensive to anyone or even too disturbing of a subject. It has been put on my heart to write about evil and demonic influences. I pray that the message does not stir up trouble in the mind of you, the readers. I pray it makes you aware of the dangers ahead, especially for us Christians.

*******

Tell me, does a lion wait for its prey in plain sight? Does the lion lie down in the open? No, of course not. If the lion wants to catch and kill its prey, it must do so by a surprise attack. Evil, or its father, creeps into our lives with a similar predatory tactic. Evil perhaps is a more dangerous predator than a lion. If I may be so bold to claim, evil is the greatest predator of all. We, as ignorant as we are, are sometimes not even aware of previous scars or bite marks. Perhaps humans are the greatest prey of all.

Perhaps I should give a clearer definition of what evil is to me. Evil is the vague noun to describe demonic influence or the damned faction of the spiritual warfare. When I earlier said its father, I was describing the Devil himself. So, when I say that evil wants to conceal itself for the surprise attack, I am stating all demonic powers hide themselves so they may have influence without our awareness and the devil is the greatest in his ambushes. C.S. Lewis’ Screwtape Letters, a book of spiritual warfare from the perspective of a demon, addresses how evil wants to stay hidden: “Our policy, for the moment, is to conceal ourselves. Of course, this has not always been so.”

Evil desires to come in the form of many things we are comfortable or even enjoy. Again, in Screwtape Letters, C.S. Lewis explains evil’s reasoning in its subtly: “There are things for humans to do all day long without His minding in the least – sleeping, washing, eating, drinking, making love, playing, praying, working. Everything has to be twisted before it’s any use to us.” The more the prey thinks it is safe, the less chance the predator will miss its strike.

I am sure there are things you, the reader, may already start to think of for examples as daily practices that might be perverted easily: social media, T.V., and even eating (over indulgence). Even in the distractions, especially for us Christians, we may be susceptible to leaving Our Father. In the morning, we wake up incredibly tired and slowly get out of our comfy beds. We then race off to work or school because of the procrastination of our morning routine. During work, of course, we have no time sit still. After coming home from a long day of work and learning, we must absolutely see that show. After all, don’t we deserve a little distraction from that busy life? After our little me time, we are exhausted and need our sleep. In that whole day, where was the time with God, we Christians so desperately need? The less time we spend with The Father, the more susceptible we to demonic influence, especially in our daily practices. Our morning could turn into cursing the day before it has begun. Our work could be filled with frustration and ill temper. Our me time, when we get home, could become in need of such high standards of self-satisfaction and pleasure that we become addicted to those daily practices. Once, we are addicted to anything but God’s Word—it is a dangerous road. Thus, the alcoholic, drug addict, and porn addict are born.

But what about annual practices? What about those holidays we deem so sacred by the seal of tradition? Yes, I am referring to Halloween—and dare I say, Christmas and Easter. Do not misunderstand me. When I refer to Easter and Christmas holiday, I am not belittling the importance of Jesus’ birth or resurrection. I am condemning the practices of gift giving and Easter egg hunting for the sake of materialism—not generosity. These two holidays in themselves are not evil;it is what we humans do to pervert them that make them evil—yes, evil.

You know as well as I do, we get lost in that busyness of the holidays and the effect is often stress. Tell me, fellow Christians, who is it that wants us to be anxious and full of stress? So, answer me this question, can the devil truly use holiday rushes, such as Christmas and Easter to trouble our lives?

Now why have I not addressed Halloween? I have my own personal opinions on this holiday, but again, I want you, the reader, to think of the day, October 31st, and explain why we, as the Western Culture, celebrate it to such extents? Tell me, could the devil possibly use the day of Halloween to influence to such drastic evils? Be careful.

“Indeed the safest road to Hell is the gradual one--the gentle slope, soft underfoot, without sudden turnings, without milestones, without signposts,...Your affectionate uncle, Screwtape.”

― C.S. Lewis, The Screwtape Letters

Cover Image Credit: kameronbayneimages.com

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I'd Rather Be Single Than Settle – Here Is Why Being Picky Is Okay

They're on their best behavior when you're dating.
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Dating nowadays described in one word: annoying.

What's even more annoying? when people tell you that you're being too "picky" when it comes to dating. Yes, from an outside perspective sometimes that's exactly what it looks like; however, when looking at it from my perspective it all makes sense.

I've heard it all:

"He was cute, why didn't you like him?"

"You didn't even give him a chance!"

"You pay too much attention to the little things!"

What people don't understand is that it's OKAY to be picky when it comes to guys. For some reason, girls in college freak out and think they're supposed to have a boyfriend by now, be engaged by the time they graduate, etc. It's all a little ridiculous.

However, I refuse to put myself on a time table such as this due to the fact that these girls who feel this way are left with no choice but to overlook the things in guys that they shouldn't be overlooking, they're settling and this is something that I refuse to do.

So this leaves the big question: What am I waiting for?

Well, I'm waiting for a guy who...

1. Wants to know my friends.

Blessed doesn't even begin to describe how lucky I am to have the friends that I do.

I want a guy who can hang out with my friends. If a guy makes an effort to impress your friends then that says a lot about him and how he feels about you. This not only shows that he cares about you but he cares about the people in your life as well.

Someone should be happy to see you happy and your friends contribute to that happiness, therefore, they should be nothing more than supportive and caring towards you and your friendships.

2. Actually, cares to get to know me.

Although this is a very broad statement, this is the most important one. A guy should want to know all about you. He should want to know your favorite movie, favorite ice cream flavor, favorite Netflix series, etc. Often, (the guys I get stuck on dates with) love to talk about themselves: they would rather tell you about what workout they did yesterday, what their job is, and what they like to do rather than get to know you.

This is something easy to spot on the first date, so although they may be "cute," you should probably drop them if you leave your date and can recite everything about their life since the day they were born, yet they didn't catch what your last name was.

3. How they talk about other women.

It does not matter who they're talking about, if they call their ex-girlfriend crazy we all know she probably isn't and if she is it's probably their fault.

If they talk bad about their mom, let's be honest, if they're disrespecting their mother they're not going to respect you either. If they mention a girl's physical appearances when describing them. For example, "yeah, I think our waitress is that blonde chick with the big boobs"

Well if that doesn't hint they're a complete f* boy then I don't know what else to tell you. And most importantly calling other women "bitches" that's just disrespectful.

Needless to say, if his conversations are similar to ones you'd hear in a frat house, ditch him.

4. Phone etiquette.

If he can't put his phone down long enough to take you to dinner then he doesn't deserve for you to be sitting across from him.

If a guy is serious about you he's going to give you his undivided attention and he's going to do whatever it takes to impress you and checking Snapchat on a date is not impressive. Also, notice if his phone is facedown, then there's most likely a reason for it.

He doesn't trust who or what could pop up on there and he clearly doesn't want you seeing. Although I'm not particularly interested in what's popping up on their phones, putting them face down says more about the guy than you think it does.

To reiterate, it's okay to be picky ladies, you're young, there's no rush.

Remember these tips next time you're on a date or seeing someone, and keep in mind: they're on their best behavior when you're dating. Then ask yourself, what will they be like when they're comfortable? Years down the road? Is this what I really want? If you ask yourself these questions you might be down the same road I have stumbled upon, being too picky.. and that's better than settling.

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How Incorporating Organization In My Daily Routine Single-Handedly Changed My Life

And how it can structure yours.

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It would be a complete fabrication of the truth if I pretended that my life in any way has been picture perfect. Things are messy, life is messy, and my life becomes an endless cycle of self provoked destruction.

I've had short bursts of motivation as a last expedient to seize control of the downward spiral I have endured. But mostly they have diminished along with any motivation I have left.

None of these short term solutions have yet to salvage my mental, physical, and academic state. SO, as an attempt to overhaul my life, I decided the best way to strive for control, is to organize every aspect of my life.

Yes, this could become unhealthy if I used this tactic as a way to tear myself down or over analyze my accomplishments, or lack thereof. But I try to view my life as something I have a say in while considering that not everything will be perfect or completely satisfy my goals for myself.

To successfully enact this measure, I try to never go into a day unaware of what I must accomplish, what tasks/work I have to attend to, and stocked with a full calendar and set of alarms that prevent me from missing deadlines. Although mildly time-consuming to detail my life in advance, it is greatly beneficially outweighed through the amount of time this tactic saves me.

Recently, I have noticed how much happier I have been, and feel as if my life is back on track and it's future in my hands. This has allowed me to work an upwards of 50 something hours a week, see and manage friends, read and keep up with hobbies, as well as give me peace of mind and time to relax with loved ones.

I am grateful for the role that organization has played in my life and suggest that everyone incorporate some type of underlying structure in their lives, to realize that anything is achievable with proper organizational preparation.


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