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Taming the Monsters we Face

The season of fear. Although people watch horror movies throughout the year, many put a great deal of effort and money into celebrating images of evil and death on Halloween. Long ago, this child was into it. Now I dislike it, and I reckon part of the reason is that I hate fear.

Have you ever watched a movie about werewolves, demons, or other monsters of darkness and then glanced around your home with unease? We know they are imaginary, but we still get the heebie-jeebies after watching a show.

Some people fear monsters from movies, but we have other things that are monsters for us. God lives in Christians, and he helps us tame them.
Pixabay / Lothar Dieterich
When people prepare for the "zombie apocalypse", I think most consider it as fun, but it seems that some really believe it's possible. (Are they really unaware that the zombie mythos is based on movies, and that it has little resemblance to zombie folklore based on Haitian voodoo?) The Centers for Disease Control used the fad to promote the more serious subject of disaster preparedness. Nothing to fear here, Horace.

Speaking of mythologies, there are several for vampires and werewolves, and they had significant differences even before the age of movies. Contradictory, even, such as which one needs the silver bullet and which only rises on the full moon. Other monsters are even less defined in legends. Nothing here worth a scare, Scarlett.

Adults have other things that cause fear in their lives, but those exist day and night. They're not supernatural, either. Jobs, money, bills, dishonest elections, illnesses, the weird woman in the apartment upstairs, and more. 

People can get confused when the Bible tells God's people to fear not, but it is also full of admonitions to fear God. What's that all about? It happens in two ways. First, unbelievers should by all means fear God. They are his enemies. Unless they surrender their lives to Jesus and accept God's love and forgiveness, they face the Judgment and a terrible eternity. 

Second, God's people should fear in the sense of having awesome respect for him, and loathe the thought of being disobedient. Our Father is not a vindictive tyrant that looks for excuses to slap us down. Someone said that when we give in to fear, we are putting faith in that thing and denying God's power. It is also denying our status as a child of the living God, and he has things under control. We can tame the monsters we face (occult or prosaic) because he lives in us and we're his children.

Whether we like it or not, scary monsters permeate our culture, particularly during this season. For example, the entertainment industry has a horror genre dedicated to scaring young and old while children dress up as zombies, vampires, werewolves, and other kinds of creatures on Halloween. Similar monsters show up in a myriad of popular books, songs, and the imaginations of many as children wonder if there is a monster under the bed. Even when we grow older, we still have our monsters—they can even take the form of “real-life” issues such as paying bills, safety and provisions for our family, big decisions, public speaking, and so on. What should our attitude be toward these “monsters”? Do we have a right to fear them?

To read the rest, sink you fangs into "Zombies, Vampires, and Werewolves—Oh No!"