A Pseudo-Screwtape Epistle: Poetic-Autobiographic Fragment #4

My dearest Wormwood,

Your patient cannot figure out what exactly to write about, regarding how you, his tempter goes after him. He is too afraid to plumb the depths of his heart–to trace his steps, his patterns, your claw prints all over them. The Enemy has given him a warning that tells him to be watchful and sober-minded because we prowl around like roaring lions, seeking someone to devour. This is true.

The Enemy has also warned your man that we have been liars from the beginning–and that we have been sent to steal, kill, and to destroy.

Nevertheless, you would do well to aim at him, where he is most vulnerable–his affections. His heart’s hands go after those things, and stay away from those things that appear to him as most pleasing, or unpleasing to his taste.

So, as far as it depends on you, keep his heart’s eyes away from the Son’s light, that he may grope for those things that would appear most satisfying to his cravings.

Keep away from his mind those terrifying words: “Fear not, for I am with you…” Fear is that little dark room, where we want him to live all his days. Keep him sitting there–thinking he is all alone, on his own; and this is what will happen: He will be discontent with all that the Enemy has handed him: wife, home, family, church, school, and most importantly, Himself. And so, with this discontent, or otherwise known as unbelief, your patient will no longer seek after the Enemy first, and His kingdom. Instead, he will go after created things.

Show him that these other pleasures will keep him happy forever. Keep him questioning his Father’s care for his life. He will then, finally, leave the Enemy’s light-filled territory altogether. He will turn inward, and depend on his emotions as the final authority for gauging truth. These feelings will toss his little boat to and fro against the tide of the Enemy’s promises. Show him that since the storms in his life are all the Enemy’s doing, there is no good in His purposes.

Your Infectionate Uncle,
Screwtape

A Pseudo-Screwtape Epistle: Poetic-Autobiographic Fragment #3

My dearest Wormwood,

Nothing tickles my gut more than to hear that the patient is wandering and searching for distinct meaning in his life. Your last letter is a promising cry to help the needy one. Alas, hope has sprung for us, where the grass is greener on this side of the fence. Truly, this is a tremendous opportunity to stray him from the Way he has aimlessly followed during yesterdays’ tense. Your patient is weak and frail. Bitterness betrays him.

You said in your last letter that the patient has turned his back on his so-called Shepherd. It is now time to deliver the goods to your man, so we will finally begin yielding the fruits of your labor. It will be good for him to finally see his former Life, his former Way, and his previous Truth as we see it–the Enemy.

Your patient’s hands are greased with delightful greed, patiently yet reluctantly waiting for the fasted hands to fill it. Though it will be breezy for you to caress his heart with confidence he is doing just as well on his own, the Enemy will be sure to seek him from every cornered angle, all-knowing precisely what it will take to return him home.

It pains my jagged jaws to number the times the Enemy has warned your patient with exclamatory inclusiveness, concerning the specificity of situations such as this. Be that as it may, you must take numerous disguises upon yourself, yet none of the ones the Enemy has forewarned your patient about.

Your Infectionate Uncle,
Screwtape


The Father I Never Had: Poetic-Autobiographic Fragment #2

The Father I Never Had

Bowing before you, the Father I never had,
I kneel down on trembling knees,
Soaking my useless hands and feet
In the sweat and tears drained from yesterday’s defeat.

So here I am, Father,
Hopelessly collapsed to this ground of selfless adoration.
I now bow before your extraordinary presence.
Praying solemnly, and asking for your guidance.

Father…
Help me become the unique and beloved man
You planned for me to be.
Shape me into the bold Christian for everyone to see.
Mold me into the elite example many of your cherished
Children are striving to be.
Sculpt me into the softhearted man
Sharing the unique gifts you gave unto me.

Open my eyes, Father.
Show me the righteous path
In which my new journey begins
And the crooked, narrow road
Of my painful past now ends.

So now I walk, Father,
Traveling onward toward the path
In which you lovingly lead me.
Though I know there will be
Forks and barriers along the way,
Only to remind me of the Father I never had,
Someone who picked me up and dried me off,
Telling me he loves me
And he’ll always be my Daddy.

JT Caldwell [10 years ago: B.C. (<-believe it, or not.)]

Twenty-One: A Poetic-Autobiographic Fragment

TWENTY-ONE

Here I somberly rest my tainted woes
Against this thoughtful bed,
As she coldly sits desperately torturing herself
Inside my beating head.
Her troubling thoughts of careless confusion
Misguide myself backward,
Stumbling into a day numerically twenty-one ago.
A familiar time and place, though seemingly awkward.
Carefully I caress my bitterly naive heart, lately severed hollow,
While she hopelessly hollers, “How could I have been such a cold-hearted fool?”
As she pounds her rigid head against the weakening walls of my ceding skull.
Spared with nearly ten till the ripened age of twenty-one,
And severely sickened by the intense question
Of the flaunting heart of a loved one,
I tie the final end of the noose around this God-forsaken game,
Whispering blatantly to the vivid voice sheltered by arrogant shame,
“It’s too late to forgive the ungiving!”
Sorrowfully sobbing goodbye…to a lonesome life wasted on living,
I tearfully embrace the welcoming face of the twenty-two,
Ironically the number of days, I’d kill to taste, for one last day loving
You.

JT Caldwell [12 years ago: B.C.]