Friday, April 29, 2005
How I Got Here, Part 44
Well, got a fair amount of comments yesterday. I appreciate those who said “appreciate your post—it’s timely.” Guess that’s confirmation that I should tell this story, even though I was dragging my heels about it.
Megan—you asked how extensively I plot. I’d say I’m in the middle ground in this area. I know the premise, basic twists and definitely the ending twist of a book. I just don’t know all the details. These become clear as the characters are fleshed out and their motivations lead them to action. Although I have tried it, I simply can’t plot every chapter and scene of a book ahead of time. Just doesn’t work for me.
Okay, we return to our NES. We left off with a rather decent cliffhanger, if I do say so myself. Rats. Shoulda wrote that post today and left y’all hangin’ over the weekend.
One serious thing I want to say up front. This story is not typical. As a result of this experience, I don’t equate every bad thing that happens to me as the direct work of some demonic force. I try to keep a level view on such things. On the other hand . . . I’m a lot wiser about spiritual warfare than I used to be.
Final action in yesterday’s post—I prayed for God to show me whether the sense of oppression hanging over me and my inability to write was a direct spiritual attack. I can remember this prayer so well. I was jogging on the country road by our house at the lake in Idaho. I was up there by myself for a few days—trying to write some pages of Capture the Wind for Me.
The next day early in the afternoon I received a call from a writer friend (WF). I hadn’t talked to her in some time. She’d had to track me down, starting with calling our California home. She had no idea of what I was going through, including my hard time with writing. And she had no details of the current book I was working on.
“You’ll probably think I’m crazy,” she said. “But I felt so strongly that I needed to call you. I fought the feeling all morning, but—no, I’m meant to talk to you.”
Talk about a hook of an opener. She sure had me. “Okay. Shoot.”
“Well, I had a dream about you last night. And I’m supposed to tell you about it.”
Whoa. Those are prayin’ words. There had been numerous times in the past when God had led me to interpret a dream for someone. So when anyone says to me, “I had this dream . . .” I immediately begin praying for an interpretation if there happens to be one. I assured WF that the thought of God’s sending someone a dream with a message for me was not crazy to me at all. She didn’t know this about me (it’s not something I talked about), and was relieved to hear I wouldn’t want to send her to the loony bin.
“Okay, so here’s the dream. You and I were standing in a circle with a bunch of other people. I couldn’t see any of their faces. We were all praying in front of this building. I don’t know what the building is, but somehow I do know that it’s very important. It was made of brick and had a large front door with aluminum around it. Some of the bricks around the door were lighter in color than the rest of the bricks.
“Suddenly while we were praying, a black cloud of pure Evil came out of the sky. It swooped down, and I could see it was an evil spirit. And it wrapped itself around your neck and lifted you off the ground.” She drew a breath. “Brandilyn, I saw your eyes, and you were terrified. I immediately started praying for you. And that thing left you and came to me. I woke up in a terror I can’t even explain. I’ve never had anything like that happen to me before. All I could do was pray and say the name Jesus, Jesus, Jesus over and over again. And I recited scripture. And the fear passed.”
Oooookay. Myriad thoughts went through my head. The first of which was—WF may think twice before ever praying for me again.
There was no subtlety about the evil spirit part of her dream. I had been in the presence of spirits myself before. I know that feeling of pure evil. If you’ve ever felt it, there’s no denying it. I also knew that God had led WF to do exactly what should be done—call on the all-powerful name of Jesus.
But I wasn’t getting the building part. And I had to believe, if WF sensed it, that this aspect of the dream was very important.
“Describe that building to me again,” I said.
“Yeah, I feel really frustrated because I don’t know what it’s supposed to be.” WF said the same things she had before. The bricks. Some lighter in color around the door. And that large door with aluminum around it. “You know,” she added, “like the door on a grocery store.”
The knowledge hit me in the chest. How had I not recognized this? For a minute I could hardly speak.
In chapter one of Capture the Wind for Me, a tornado hits the town of Bradleyville. The old grocery store, made of brick, sustains some damage. Some of the bricks around the door are loosened and blown away. When the building is repaired, the new bricks are lighter in color than the old ones.
WF’s building was straight out of the book I was trying so desperately to write.
Well, God, guess I have my answer.
Yes, I was under spiritual attack. And I was going to have to pray, along with the help of some trusted friends, against this attack.
One thing I know about evil. Just like what happened in WF’s dream, it doesn’t like to be prayed against. And it’s likely to fight back.
Read Part 45