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Ten Years Later: The conclusion of my story about the bovine man.
Posted by Douglas, Jun 22, 2008. 2008 views. ID = 1401

Ten Years Later

Posted by Douglas, Jun 22, 2008. 2008 views. ID = 1401
This post was written in 14 minutes.
This post has been awarded 29 stars by 7 readers.
This post is Part 11 of a writing series titled The Bovine Man.

It has been nearly a decade since I last saw the bovine man. I haven't had the courage since then to take any overseas journeys, and when I do finally set foot on foreign shores, I pray I do not see him there. In the last decade I've had plenty of time to think about the things that he said to me, and to try - in my own mind - to understand which things he said were true, and which were false. He had a remarkable ability to mix truth and fiction together in a way that left me uncertain where the truth could be found. He told me he wasn't the "Father of Lies," but I don't know whether to believe that or not; I can't help but recall that we have always pictured the supreme demon with a farm implement in his hands and horns on his head. Perhaps it is just a coincidence.

I've realized some other things about Molech, things that I'm sure he didn't want me to deduce. In the end he spent too much time talking to me, and gave away too much information. The clues were all there: the strength he gains from unwilling sacrifice, the weakness brought by willing sacrifice, and the final clue: the possibility of smaller sacrifices not leading to death. If doing an act of cruelty toward a helpless person gives strength to this evil god, I thought, then surely, sacrificing of myself in order to help a helpless person would weaken him?

Alas, I have no way of testing this hypothesis, but I believe it with my whole heart. I have come to believe that every time I stop to give aid to a stranded motorist, every time I give up an evening to help a student with his math homework, every time I speak words of encouragement to someone brokenhearted and discouraged, by that much sacrifice, by that much willing submission of my desires to the needs of someone else, Molech is beaten back. I believe that every time I make the supreme sacrifice to forgive and to love my enemies (yes, I have come to believe true forgiveness really is possible after all) I create my own little vortex of repulsion which drives back the bovine man.

Perhaps it is not much; perhaps my vortex is only a little twitch of irritation to him...but then I think, If only we all - every one of us - could live the lives of Perpetua and Felicity, the life of Christ, rejecting the need to fulfill our own wants and desires in order to care for the victims of life; if only we all could have the courage to face the raging of the bull, the thrust of the sword, the lash of the whip, the crown of thorns, and the spear to the side, in order to make the ultimate sacrifice of love and forgiveness; if only we all could do these things, then by that much, by the power of these great sacrifices we would resist him and he would flee from us.

But even after all these years have gone by, I cannot help thinking that I will see him at every street corner. I am like the characters in Lloyd C. Douglas's The Robe who glance furtively up and down the streets hoping to see the return of Christ, but for me there is no anticipation, and it is not the Christ I am expecting to see. When I walk into church I cannot stop myself from peering into every nook and cranny of the place, wondering where his hidden shrine might be; when the hymns of praise are coming to an end, I tremble for fear that I will once again hear the quiet, mournful strains of "Lulay Lulay" bouncing off the rafters in elegiac refrain; and every time I listen to a bit of juicy gossip or cruel backbiting - at moments like these, though I see nothing, though I hear nothing, still I can feel once again that terrible burst of hot, dry breath on the back of my neck, and I know I am not alone.

Copyright 2008 Douglas. All rights reserved. has been granted non-exclusive rights to display this work. For permission to reprint this item, please contact the author.

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This post has been awarded 29 stars by 7 readers.
This post is Part 11 of a writing series titled The Bovine Man. The next part of this series can be found here: The Author's Comments.
This is a revised version of a post. Click here to view the original version

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