My job brings me face to face with evil on practically a daily, and certainly a weekly basis. I’m in the jail frequently and communicate with people who are caught in the grip of evil all the time. That doesn’t mean that the people in the jail or those with problems as a result of the evil they have been involved with are inherently evil themselves, just that they have stepped into the trap which is set for all of us.
When faced with frequent interaction with evil in various forms, I find myself right in the middle of the stress and chaos of the battle that the people on the other side are losing. That doesn’t mean that I have to be a victim of the attack but it does mean that is wise for me to be aware of it and stand against it. If I walk naively with those that are sinking, they could conceivably pull me down instead of me pulling them up and if they resist my attempts to help them out of their free fall, then I have to know to let go.
Evil waits to devour us, but we are not hunted by an enemy that can make us do things; we choose. When we choose to compromise from what is True and Good, then the compromise leads us into consequences which often lead to a downward spiral of destruction unless and until we step out of the grip of destruction. Opposition is an affirmative decision, there is no middle ground. When the battle is raging all around us, we either attack through the ambush or the ambush successfully destroys us.
I used to be on a path that wasn’t as pronounced in its hopelessness as some that I find myself dealing with because of criminal charges, but my previous path was just as misdirected even if not yet as depraved. Without making a choice to stop the selfish and gutless lifestyle of compromise, my depravity would have been continually fed until it grew into who knows what.
Once I chose to step towards the Light in the middle of the darkness and began down a new path with the guiding presence of that Light, I was able to accurately look back and see the darkness that I had grown accustomed to. The Light was there all along but the thing that I lacked was courage. I was afraid to admit that my way had led me to nothing and too arrogant to give up life patterns and social habits that I was familiar with. Once enough was enough, the relief of the burden being lifted was liberating beyond my expectations. It was a step into Life and Light for the first time, leaving death and darkness empty-handed.