Today’s reading is Luke 11:1-12:59.
“When the unclean spirit has gone out of a person, it passes through waterless places seeking rest, and finding none it says, ‘I will return to my house from which I came.’ And when it comes, it finds the house swept and put in order. Then it goes and brings seven other spiritis more evil than itself, and they enter and dwell there. And the last state is worse than the first” (Luke 11:24-26).
I have learned that making a change is not the same as quitting something. I’ve quit bad things a thousand times only to wonder how they got even worse later. Making a change means putting something in its place. Jesus uses the metaphor of spiritual possession to talk about a changed life. We may “cast out the demon” and tidy up the heart. But if we do not invite a different spirit to live there, the evil one will return with a vengeance.
I’ve learned that I invite the Spirit to dwell in my heart by spending time in God’s word, by spending time in vulnerable, intimate prayer, by spending time with others who are making changes, by calling someone and talking to them about what is happening when it seems the “evil spirit” is trying to get back in, by getting outside myself and serving others, by singing, by listening to others, by teaching others, by meditating on God. As these things change my life, I can’t describe the joy and peace they bring. In this case, the last state is much better than the first and even than the second.
I need to spend some time today inviting the Spirit to take residence within me so the evil spirits won’t have any room.
Keep the faith and keep reading,
PS. What did you get out of today’s reading?