Wednesday, September 30, 2009

My Own Screwtape Letter

Earlier this week I had the opportunity to write my own Screwtape Letter. If you are familiar with C.S. Lewis' work The Screwtape Letters then this will ring a bell with you:

My Own Screwtape Letter

My Dear Wormwood,
I commend you for your persistent efforts. Our fellow is showing signs of stubbornness to our attacks, but I trust that through continued pressure he will soon be upon the breaking point, making a decision that will cause shame and separation from his King. Keep in mind that you can not afford to be too aggressive in the measures you choose to take. Instead choose attacks of a more subtle, prolonged nature that will prove most beneficial for seasons to come. Of course, you should always be ready to charge without caution, having studied our victim knowing when he is most vulnerable.

It appears that your increased work of complacency is providing adequate dividends. Our subject is most unaware of the dangers that accompany a tolerating attitude. Through my centuries of experience I have seen many extraordinary men and women crumble with decay as a result of their mediocrity. We know full well, dear Wormwood, their King desires for our patient to experience continued growth and renewal – we must not allow that to happen. Continue your work of whispering in his ear that he has achieved much in the spiritual realm, he will believe it. His satisfaction with current circumstances will allow us to usher in laziness and apathy. We may not possess much influence, if any, over one who is passionate, but much can be done in the life of the complacent.

Similarly, Wormwood, I approve of your crucial timing with the firing of our victim’s lust triggers. You are wise to note that in the company of others our person resists valiantly against our efforts to reacquaint him with his lustful passions. Fortunately for us, few of our Enemies followers truly believe in the power and strength they can harness through sincere fellowship. Therefore be encouraged to persevere in your efforts. When he is alone remind him of the pleasures he will experience through his fantasy world. Coax him down the long, lonely path of selfishness, pleasure, and pride. In the darkness of night he will be most susceptible to your schemes – turn your suggestive whispers to bold commands. You must show some resiliency here, Wormwood, for he will initially put up a bold fight for he knows firsthand how he should behave, but keep in mind the power of perseverance. The longer he is isolated the more prone he is cave in under the pressure.

Lastly, and perhaps of utmost importance when he caves be ready to suffocate with shame. Our fellow is highly prone to wallow in humiliation and guilt. How I desire for all stay in their cages of shame, for there they find no capacity for reconciliation. Howl over our patient and echo words of worthlessness. You know full well the magnitude such words can have over one who has reached their breaking point. Smother out any signs of confession or repentance – we have no hold over the reconciled. Fight with every ounce of energy to defeat our person with a feeling worthlessness. Above all he must never be reminded of the price that was paid for his life, for there he finds the power of humility and grace.

Your affectionate uncle
I would encourage you to write your own version of a Screwtape Letter. It's an eye opening exercise that is designed to help you understand your personal struggles with obedience to Christ. Let me know how it goes!
If you are interested in getting your own copy of The Screwtape Letters then check out this link: