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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Soul (07/13/06)

TITLE: The Living Dead


One of the greatest creations by those who invent the worlds of horror films and scary stories is the zombie. I know several people who have quite the fascination with these creatures and anytime a movie comes out about the "living dead" they become so excited that they begin to froth at the mouth and walk as if their joints no longer function. Of course, you realize that this isn't true, but it sure is a funny image.

When I begin to think about what life would be like if we humans had no souls, these are the images that I have in mind. All we would want is death, decay and destruction. It would be our goal to sink our teeth into and therefore kill anything that still lived. Why would we want this? Because we wouldn't care. Life wouldn't matter.

Fortunately, we aren't walking carcasses, but souls within walking carcasses. We feel, we love, and we desire. Sometimes we don't use any of these assets correctly and therefore do wrong. But it is possible, with the Spirit, for any one of us to be driven by a desire for good. This is surely what God wants for us, and this is surely what we need.

The unfortunate part is that we, as human beings, tend to nurture the body and mind more than the soul. I do not simply mean that we would rather seek comfort in worldly desires than read scripture and pray, but that even while engaging in “Godly” pursuits, we stagger towards attaining knowledge or temporary satisfactions instead of seeking to meet the true needs of our souls.

I can be the worst at this. I will approach and read scripture with the goal of improving my mind with knowledge rather than improving my heart with hearing the Lord's voice. Why, I wonder, when I know that it was knowledge Adam and Eve were seeking when they ate the fruit from the Garden and brought death on humanity? I also will often approach prayer with the desire to say the "right" words rather than simply seek God with the words that are actually on my heart. But that’s not what God wants. Just read through Psalms, and one will hear the words of a man that are honest and real, wanting nothing more than to be vulnerable with Him. But probably most damaging is when I approach the church and my Christian community, forgetting that I am a working part of the life that is the Bride of Christ. I often show up on Sundays and never actually look for God's face.

I believe that our mindsets in these areas are some of the major reasons why we as Christians and we as a church sometimes walk around aimlessly. Sadly, because of the sin that is so prevalent within each one of our lives, we as individuals and as a body of believers, tend to gravitate toward the "life" of the zombie. We begin to just go through the motions and forget about our souls, therefore forgetting about our hearts.

We must continuously remember what Christ said: "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the great and foremost commandment. The second is like it, You shall love your neighbor as yourself." [Matt 22:37-39] So we must love God and we must love our community.

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Jan Ackerson 07/20/06
As I was reading this, I was thinking "I hope it gets back to the zombie illustration"--and there it was! Perhaps the first devotional here to feature zombies--and very effectively. Good job.
Virginia Gorg07/21/06
You have a good use of words and brought together a nicely written, well-thought out article. Good points made and flows well. :)
Mishael Witty07/22/06
This was a very interesting devotional, and I like how you tied in the "living dead" with the "living dead Christian"; however, there is one factual inaccuracy in your first paragraph. The people who invent horror films and scary stories did not create the concept of zombies. The Voodoo "religion" created the concept of zombies (people who are, in a sense, brainwashed into thinking they are dead or who are given potions to render them "nearly dead"), and people who write scary movie scripts borrowed this idea. Sadly, zombies are a very "real" part of living in a fallen world.
Edy T Johnson 07/22/06
My favorite line in your devotional:
"I will approach and read scripture with the goal of improving my mind with knowledge rather than improving my heart with hearing the Lord's voice."

You've brought a very important point to your readers' attention. Thank you!
Phyllis Inniss07/25/06
This is a true analysis of the lives of many of us - we are "The Living Dead". We read the Word but do not practise it. The first two commandments should always be our guide. Thanks for reminding us of this truth.