Beneath shadowed, vaulted ceilings, bone white fangs flashed against the pages of an ancient, leather-bound tome. Page by page, the text was devoured, reaching its final resting place in gut of the hairy beast. Drool slipped from the creature’s chin, onto the hardwood floor with an obscene smack.
A mucus-tainted growl issued from its throat; a warning to any that might hear it. The beast feared none. Once again, it turned its attention to the book, now a soggy, tattered mess. Toenails clawed, teeth ripped, eyes bore back and forth. What vendetta did this creature bear? A foul breath escaped from its mouth, soiling the air. In the distance, there were footsteps; its next prey, perhaps.
Slowly the door creaked open and a lone figure stepped into the room.
Bright light shot down from above, exorcising the blight’s temper.
“Kibbles!” The voice yelled. “That is my book! Bad dog!”
The wretched beast now gone, the tiny puppy that remained tucked its tail and ducked its head in anticipation of a stick across its hind end. Rather than a snarl, its tiny throat let loose a whimper.
“What’s going on in here?” A second voice asked. It belonged to Hannah, wife of Hank.
“Hannah, your dog’s torn up one of my books.”
“Dunno yet, but it’s a leather-bound edition,” he said, pointing at the mess.
Hannah replied by pointing to a conspicuously cock-eyed table in the corner.
“Hank, it was just that old, empty journal you used to prop up that table. Leave the dog alone.”
“No! He knows better. He knows what he ought not do. A book is a book.”
Hank scooped Kibble from the floor, lifting the puppy with a hand around its fuzzy midsection.
“You’re gonna learn some obedience!”
We are each a monster in the dark, disobedient by nature and a slave to our thirsts. The creature in this story could have been a harmless pup, a vampire, or a demon from Hell; the message is the same. When we give into our carnal desires, be they lust, greed, gluttony or envy, we become a monster to God.
Kibble, it seems, is on his way to punishment. Perhaps Hank has a rolled up newspaper in the next room, or a fly swatter. Let us hope that it is nothing worse. We would not be so lucky. For our disobedience, our punishment is Hell. No swat on the rear, no smack on the hand. Hell, even a gunshot wound would be preferable to its flames.
Our only chance to slip into eternity unscathed is by Christ. We must lay our disobedience at the foot of the cross. Until that hour, we will continue to be Monsters in the Dark.
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