Sleep No More
“Shut those off!” Ethan was glaring at my sister Amy and me. “If you listen to those dumb records, you’ll be too scared to sleep, and then you’ll be in our room begging to sleep on the floor again.”
“No we won’t. Really, we’re not scared of these records anymore,” Amy and I argued back.
At ages 8 and 10, dad’s old LP records “Tales of Terror” and “Sleep No More” didn’t inflict the fear they once had when we were just 7 and 9 –at least not in the middle of the day when the sun was shining brightly outside. Besides, it was deliciously fun to sit in the den clinging to each other and listening to the horribly scary stories.
“Well they scare me; and Leigh and I are tired of you always wanting to sleep in our room,” Ethan yelled over his shoulder before the door slammed shut behind him.
“Let’s start The Fall of the House of Usher over again,” Amy said. “Ethan ruined it with all of his talking.”
So there we sat, two foolish little girls scaring ourselves senseless. Afterwards, we shook off the horror and went outside to play. Everything seemed to be fine, that is until bed time came. After about five minutes with the lights shut off, we knew we’d made a bad mistake. At first we tried comforting ourselves by sleeping together, but every little sound scared us half to death. Finally we grabbed blankets, pillows, and our favorite stuffed animals and crept into our brothers’ room. We settled ourselves as quietly as we could on the hard, cold floor, but Ethan managed to hear us anyway. “I told you not to listen to those stupid records,” he hissed from high up on his warm comfortable bunk bed.
Sadly, as Christians, we often follow the same path that Amy and I took. We know from experience the heartache of sin. Other believers may try to instruct our deaf ears, but obstinately we ignore the Bible’s warning about enjoying the passing pleasures of sin (Hebrews 11:25). We know the results of sin, but the pull of the present is so strong. We decide that we can handle this little bit of sin. Then one day, the time comes to reap the consequences. We must pay for our past deeds, and the pleasure we once experienced is a thing of the past.
I’d like to say that was the last time Amy and I scared ourselves with those records, but they were so tempting. Eventually our parents forbid us to listen to them. Ethan and Leigh wisely took the extra measure of hiding them from us.
Sometimes completely removing the temptation isn’t a bad idea. If you don’t have the power to resist the lure of evil when it is in front of you, perhaps you need to remove the temptation triggers from your life. Maybe it’s time to schedule yourself away from home during that television program that is unhealthy for your mind but oh so much fun to watch, or maybe you need to stop buying cookies for “when the nieces and nephews” come over. If God is convicting you, do not ignore His warning because eventually the results of what you do will catch up with you.