In his study of myth and legend, Joseph Campbell described the hero’s journey, highlighting the significant milestones along the way. Common to most stories is the encounter with some threshold guardians who block the passage of the hero just as the doorway into destiny becomes apparent.
This concept isn’t simply a tried-and-true storytelling technique to heighten suspense at a critical moment. In our own lives, we are familiar with the obstacles that suddenly appear—out of nowhere—just as we’re on the verge of genuine breakthrough.
It’s also a theme we find time and again throughout Scripture. Angelic watchers are often found in relation to gates and portals as well as at the moment when the first tiny crack of light appears as a door opens for a historic changepoint.
Some angelic watchers are hostile while some show us favour. Their attitude depends on:
- the nature of our covenant with God
- the authenticity of our belief in the atonement, and
- our desire to access our divine calling.
If we’ve made the choice to pursue money rather than those works God has prepared for us to walk in, we may never encounter serious opposition from these spiritual authorities. In this case, we’re doing just fine at self-sabotage, so why would they interfere?
But for those seeking God’s highest destiny, the war is on. A truce or cease-fire is not possible. As we approach the door, we move onto a testing ground, a proving place, a threshing floor where we will be sifted to the point of overthrow.
The threshold guardians want us either to:
- surrender to them, making a sacrifice and vows in their honour, thus covenanting with them (or more likely, reaffirming an ancestral covenant with them), or
- be so overcome with anxiety and fear that we panic and plunge into self-sabotage, thus sacrificing ourselves at the doorway, or
- withdraw and never return, blaming God for His lack of protection.
The doorway into our calling is the place where faith is on trial. It’s the arena where faith is subjected to the intense pressure of spirits like Python. Where the level of coercion increases until you can’t face the intimidation any more and you throw up the white flag of surrender.
What is it, Python asks us, that will make you give up and throw behind yourself a sacrifice of appeasement to me? What’s your price?
Not everyone experiences these strongarm tactics. Some are faced with bribery. But it’s the same question: what’s your price? What makes you give in, take the bait and offer allegiance to the enemy?
The tactics of the spirit of Python include, but are not limited to: constriction, intimidation, seduction, flattery, ambiguity and silence, jealousy.
Usually we first notice its activity when we’re constricted by lack of finance, time, health, opportunity, education, experience or background. Most people think faith overcomes Python, but this is a critical mistake.
It’s the Fruit of the Spirit called love.
This is Grace Drops and I’m Anne Hamilton. May you discern the enemy’s schemes in Jesus’ name.
Thank you to Lorna Skinner of www.riversofmusic.co.uk for the background music.