“For the measure with which you measure will in return be measured out to you” (Luke 6:38).Will It Come Back to Haunt Us or Bless Us? – Roman Catholic Man
Let that sink in.
By the grace of God, I have become friends with a bunch of exorcists. My favorite thing is sitting around chatting with my exorcist friends while I pick their brain and listen intently to every word from their mouths. I’ve observed a phenomenon. Exorcists are granted by us some of the highest credibility of anyone in the faith world. I believe this is because we all know they must have the highest level of belief in supernatural realities.
One of the most fascinating teachings we receive from exorcists is the whole idea of “portals.” Turns out, we have a choice. We can open up portals to demons and torment, or we can open up portals to the river of grace and blessing. In other words, “For the measure with which you measure will in return be measured out to you” (Luke 6:38).
In general terms, our sins invite demons to move into our lives and our homes, while our acts of selfless charity open us up to blessing in our lives and in our homes. Why? Because Abba is a perfect Dad. Good dads will lead their children to strive to be the best version of themselves they can be. Their primary teaching tool is the use of “consequences” – good or bad – to our life choices. It is no different with Abba.
The whole story of the Prodigal Son is meant to illustrate this. Out, away from home, indulging all of his sinful lusts, the Prodigal Son finds himself in the middle of an economic depression and, ultimately, in the mud with pigs where he couldn’t even feed from the “pig leftovers.” He opened a portal to the tormenting demons, and all the “negative stuff” came pouring in. It is then that he “comes to his senses” and realizes “being home” with his father, following the house rules, is the “place of peace and blessing.”
At some point, we all must come to our senses and realize that Abba wants peace and blessing to flow in our lives. But, that will not come to those who choose to be that proverbial “spoiled brat” who believes we are just “entitled” to blessing, while we continue to opening up portals to demons.
What are some of the more common “portals to demons” these days, even among religious folks? Here’s what I see as today’s top five …
- Pride must get first mention. This comes in a multitude of forms, but prevalent today seems to be an arrogance that seeks to set one as superior to others. This can range from the leftist progressives who have “evolved” beyond most people to the snobby, elitist traditionalists who constantly remind everyone of their special knowledge of how we should worship.
- Lust gets second mention because Satan has been using this VERY effectively these days. Starting with easy access pornography, men, in particular, literally become addicted to the habit of viewing porn and masturbating. Homes and marriages are tormented by the many demons released into them by these many open portals.
- Detraction and calumny ranks very high. A person’s reputation is precious. There ability to positively influence others depends on it. Attacking and destroying a person’s reputation is severely grave as it, in essence, kills off the person’s ability to impact the world. As such, calumny and detraction opens portals to some of the worst demons in people’s lives. This is why Jesus stresses the need to love our enemies. Don’t publicly destroy a person’s precious reputation, or really bad consequences will come. Doug and I actually have a policy on our podcast to not “name names.” We warn, in general terms, about present-day evils, and those engaging in those evils can decide if this applies to them or not.
- Worldly selfishness is rampant, so it too ranks high. Listen, God wants us to enjoy our creature comforts. He delights that we delight in them. The problem comes when they rank higher than God and His will. When we just don’t seem to “have time” for God because of this, that or the other – usually noble – reason for “getting around to God” when we can. Addiction to our creature comforts can also blind us to the needs of those around us, and the dire need for passionate people of faith to fervently work at building the Kingdom of God in every way our time, talent and treasure positions us to do so. The demons this portal is opened to are the ones who start removing blessings from our lives. We must be generous, while we learn the supernatural reality that “we can never out-give God.”
- Faith seen as an electric blanket makes the top five. Flannery O’Connor once said, “What people don’t realize is how much religion costs. They think faith is a big electric blanket, when of course it is the cross.” When we “use” faith for its “feel good” effect, or to build our “personal brand,” while we remain removed from our parish family’s, in particular, “joint efforts” (demanding our sacrifice) to build each other up and to build the world up, it opens the portal to those demons that will work to leave us in a void of emptiness and meaningless and depression. Why? Because the portal to grace and blessing comes when we selflessly live outside ourselves, joining with the Children of Light to be a mighty force to push out the darkness in our world. Now we are living out our raison d’être; our reason for existence.
How do we close off the portals to demons and open up the portal to the river of grace in our lives? Exorcists are unanimous in their teaching that there is no more powerful exorcism than the Sacrament of Confession. We must be aware, though, that our Confessions must contain our “contrition.” In other words, we must confess while believing we are actually “done” with that sin(s). It is questionable whether the Sacrament has its proper effect if we are confessing while submitting to the belief that the sin still “owns us” … that we will likely commit it again. No, we simply must have the great RESOLVE to be DONE. Then, the demon portals will close and the river of grace will flow back into our lives.
Then He will restore our soul and lead us to the restful waters of His Divine Presence and His loving protection. Don’t we all want that peace which passes all understanding?