An Open Letter from a Housewife to a Demon

Dear Apsinthos,

You have plagued me long enough. Your bitter lies are like a cancer in my mind, like a poison to my soul, and I am done with you. Like most, at first I mistook your deceit and your whisperings to be the imaginings of my own mind. But I can see you now. I can distinguish your voice. I know you to be a very powerful demon, because I can sense your presence everywhere I go. I can smell your infection on the people I pass in the streets.

You told me that to be a housewife was to be a failure. A little lie. A common lie. A devastating lie for the mother of three young children. You told me that I need to make a name for myself. I need to have a career, accumulate money, and strive for awards and recognition. You told me that if I push myself into the spotlight and tie myself up in projects and busyness, that people will recognize my talents and I will feel valuable.

But what is the value of the opinion of mankind? How long does it last? How deep is its sincerity? How reliable is its memory? Am I to believe that striving after popularity is any less nonsensical than chasing after wind? Am I to accept that the fleeting approval of human beings is as valuable as a stable home, children who need me, and a husband who loves me?

No, Apsinthos. To trade my life of board books and crayon art for one of a lengthy resume and a multitude of plaques would be like trading a diamond for a bucket of salt. Greater magnitude is not always equivalent to greater value. I could have the admiration of three million strangers but it would not tip the scales against the love of my children. Should I trade an ocean of belonging for a passing cloud of flattery? You claim that career, high praise, and achievement will make me happy.

You lie.

You lie to so very many people.

Yet, while you are a very powerful demon, with hoards of lesser grunt-demons at your command, you are nothing to me. You are a fly that I shoo from my face. You are a spider whose webs I sweep away. The devastating black hole that sucks all my joy and hope into its crushing orbit, vanishes like dew on a summer morning when I pray.

You see, I am possessed by a much greater Spirit than you, and you – even you – can do nothing that contradicts His will. If I so much as speak His name, you scurry away like a roach when the Light is flicked on. If I say, “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief,” you vanish like a shadow at dawn.

I do not need the approval of humanity to feel valuable, loved, or understood. I know that I am valuable because Jesus Christ believed that I was worth dying for. I know that I am loved because over the course of thousands of years God spoke through prophets and children to write me a Love Letter. I know that I am understood because Jesus lived and suffered the same afflictions that I do, and His Spirit is in me comprehending every doubt and pang.

What power do shadows have beneath the face of a noonday sun? What strength do dreams hold once one has woken and perceived them to be mere fantasy? Yet I will not forget you as one forgets a dream. I have spoken to you, and you have spoken to me. I see your fingerprints in pop culture, media, and art. I smell your breath in the words that people say.

The funny thing about housewives is we are among God’s mightiest warriors. I will raise up children who are immune to your manipulation. I will be the supporter of a husband unthreatened by your taunts. I will be the fortress you cannot infiltrate, because my walls and my defenses are not of this world.

And so Apsinthos, I close this letter to you. I doubt that I will ever speak to you again, but I have no doubt that you will speak to me on numerous occasions. Nevertheless, when you do I will pray, and again you’ll be gagged and dragged off by our Master like the trespassing heckler you are.

Enjoy your futile mischief in this world while you can. Your campaigns to make this a bitter place and your power to poison the waters are drawing to a close.

Sincerely,

Jennifer

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