“Satan is everywhere” growled an old lady yesterday as I prayed in a small chapel.

Yes I thought, I’m looking right at him!

The incident however did make me think. How easy it is to blame the devil for our own character defaults and mistakes.

You see this lady isn’t really a bad lady but she’s part of that generation that think that Jesus needs a police officer in the church.

If you as much as sniffle or move she’ll turn and look at you.

This is all well and good but it’s the total opposite of the “come as you are and talk to Jesus from your heart” message.

Now of course in a church or chapel we should behave with respect too and we certainly shouldn’t disrupt everyone unnecessarily but yet we must be patient too and allow people to be human.

The problem is 10 times worse when it comes to evangelisation because 2 worlds collide.

The religious world collides with the world of sin and even though religious pride is probably even a greater sin, those with it don’t know they have it!

The religious maniacs usually sit very well dressed with special rosary beds and many holy medals. They recite the rosary loudly and police everyone who is not responding.

Now when they see someone entering the church who is not dressed appropriately or who does not bow or kneel they see it as their duty to abruptly correct them as if by doing so they were wiping the wounds of Jesus.

Little do they realise that they are giving Jesus an extra wound.

These type of people have no discernment and can’t distinguish the difference between a new convert that is looking to learn and somebody who is genuinely behaving badly and really does need a warning.

They behave like deranged army officers just ready to shoot!

Going back to my example yesterday, yes there was an old lady making a bit of noise and she didn’t speak much english and this greatly annoyed the patrolling officer so much so that she whispered out loud and extremely abruptly “Satan is everywhere”.

I’ve seen this woman many times and indeed many more like her. They have no peace because they are too focused on minding other people’s business.

Often they seem to have bionic hearing, laser vision and a vipers tongue!

They can be cruel, merciless, arrogant, self-righteous and more and are probably the single greatest blockage to the church moving forward and becoming a healing and welcoming hospital of mercy.

Nevertheless they too are children of God and they too need prayer. They are victims of whatever military camps they grew up in and the God or fire and brimstone they learnt about as children and we must pray for them while standing up to them when necessary especially when their behaviour affects others.

So yes, it’s Sunday morning and many of these old rattlesnakes will be having a lie in as there aren’t many masses on these days and will probably be driving their husbands (or wives) potty instead.

One has to see it all a times with a sense of humour too and yet pray that more and more people come to know Jesus and shout “Jesus is everywhere” instead of focusing on Satan and giving him all the glory.

So on that note, it’s Sunday, Jesus is everywhere and so may you have a very blessed and peaceful day and if you come across a snake…

Bless

Michael