We sit looking around an empty room, but it feels crowded with shadows of our forsaken past haunting our every thought. Of course we know we are not alone as we peer at the two-way mirror. We wonder if as much shame rests on the faces watching as the face staring back.
The reflection does not display surprise. I knew I would be back in this room. Habits brought me back to the place where I began. Darkness awaits. I knew this was a possibility.
We beg and plead for the Judge to set us free, but we fall back into the only world we know. Comfort is the ally of the evil one. We want back in the world, say we won't live of the world, but don't know how in the world we can live free. Ironically we are never surprised when a criminal returns to a life of crime, but are appalled when we fall back into sin.
They can put me in a holding cell. They can keep me in this interrogation room. But I already know the right things to say. And perhaps that is what scares me more than anything. I know what to say to get out. But there comes a time when words won't be enough. And I don't think even I am convinced anything I say has meaning.
Do you know how many people I have told that I am a changed man? That I don't want to live a life of sin and sorrow. So many people bought into my words only to find I am nothing more than a fraud. But what scares me is I bought into the lie too. Perhaps that is what startles me the most.
To be honest, I really don't want to be that guy — the one who feeds people lines that everyone wants to hear. I have a way with words, which is why my actions tend to shock people. I am a man whose words cover him like a trench coat. But when I reveal what is underneath, they are shocked by what they see.
The reality is I want to live as a professional but practice like an amateur. And that might be an overstatement. I want to live like the Son of God but hang out with His enemy.
We fear drugs and crime because they are immediate threats to ensuring eternal hope. But that is a small threat in the kingdom of Christ. The threat of comfort and conformity have already lulled most of Christ's followers to sleep.
Don't buy in? What is easier? Sitting on the couch and watching a movie or going out in a public place to have a date? Let's be real, Netflix would keep people in a confined area a lot longer than a prison cell. It's easier for her to come over. It is easier to watch a movie and talk. However, we forget it is easier for us to take our clothes off too.
We are lulled to sleep by the easy route, which is why divorce is so appealing. Has dating become nothing more than window shopping? I'll return this when I am done using it or it gets old. And if it doesn't function the way I want it too, I will find a newer model that does what I expect.
The problem is we can't seem to find that one person that conforms to our expectations. Instead of growing together, we create a list of what does and does not fit what we want. We seem so surprised that pieces do not line up correctly. Jagged edges form voids and cracks that we try to ignore so we don't have to sleep alone. As long as they can bring us to the point of euphoria, it will suffice. Sex turns into a weapon. Our partner's weaknesses become a means for indulging in our own sin. We break each other apart because we were only in the relationship for our own self-interest.
We returned to what we know and shouldn't be surprised where we ended up. On the other side of the mirror, people are talking about what we could have been. What we should have been.
One day I won't be in an interrogation room. I will be in a morgue. My words will no longer have meaning. My actions will speak for themselves. Actions tend to make a lasting imprint on our memory.
We will face final judgment, and we will be handed a challenging case to argue. We will not be granted a lawyer. Nobody will be watching. We will stand alone before the Judge. We, of course, can explain our case, but the evidence will be damning. So bad that there really will not be much for us to discuss. We will stand exposed before the Judge-- our history digitalized in video files that we cannot delete. There is only one User who can erase what we have done. But will those files be downloaded into permanent history, unable to be erased?
I sit in this room and wonder how long until I will be stuck here again? Oh, what I would do for freedom, but will disregard when I have it. Deals with the devil are easier in the short term, but painful eternally. If I am granted freedom, will I practice to be what I said I would do? A lot of unfulfilled promises led the gullible to think I would change. And I hate that the most gullible person was me.
Time to be what I have convinced others I can be. If I am granted freedom, I promise to live free.