Saturday morning Brett had to go into work for a few hours, and when he returned home to our row house that sits near the end of a quiet street in a quiet village, he found an elderly man casually leaning on our fence post.
Brett said good morning and walked past him onto our driveway when the man stopped him and said, “Is this your house? Do you have a key?”
Brett said yes and then the man proceeded to say that actually it was *his* house. He asked Brett if he owned the house, Brett said no and said our landlord’s name. The man continued to insist that the house was his and then said he was calling the police. Brett said that was fine and came on into the house.
For the next several hours this man stood calmly at our front gate, periodically talking to himself or getting in and out of his car parked across from our house. I was mostly just concerned for the guy since he was clearly not all in his right mind he was missing a lot of teeth but was dressed well, carrying a cane, but didn’t seem dangerous necessarily, but as the day progressed and the kids and I decided to head to the park on bikes it seemed to agitate the man. He tried to close our driveway gate seemingly trying to block our exit. Now, we were a little more annoyed. I also felt a little anxious only because the fact that I was in a foreign country hits a little harder when you think you might need help- How DOES one call the police here? Is there someone else we can call to just come escort this man away? I started to realize how ill-prepared I was for any actual danger.
But almost as soon as I had sent an SOS prayer request from my Bible Study ladies, our next-door neighbor came out of his house to take his son to soccer practice. Just what we needed! A friendly German face! He was incredibly helpful, talking a little more to the man alongside Brett and then also calling the police for us.
I felt free to take my kids off to the park knowing everything was well in hand, and sure enough about 30 minutes later Brett texted to say the police had come and chatted with him and sent him on his way.
During his time waiting on the police Brett did share Jesus with the man, and the man responded that *he* was god. And when Brett asked him who he was speaking to when he kept babbling off to himself the man said he was god and could talk to anyone so he was talking to the police.
yup. definitely not ok.
The plot thickened on Monday when I verified with our landlord that they had never seen the man in the 40 years of owning the house. But it honestly wasn’t until our family church time when we were discussing the events of the week that Ransom made an observation, one that you, dear reader, have probably all made already, one that helped me see the whole situation a little more clearly.
The man never stepped onto our property.
Not once, even as he ranted and raved, declaring our house his, he never walked up the front walk to the front door. Never came to our large sliding doors and windows at the front of our house. He never actually stepped foot on this property that he insisted was his.
And here’s where things get weirder. I’m pretty sure a demonic presence brought that man to our house on Saturday. He somehow drove himself to our little side street and parked himself at our stoop. He insisted that he take/had our home. But it was not his and he could not even step foot on it. Not to say we have some invisible force field from God or anything, but I do believe that there were clear lines in the sand regarding our family, regarding our belonging. I was sort of surprised with myself that I didn’t recognize the demonic element until after the fact-but then again, demons here may look different, feel different than they do in the states, in New Zealand (places I’ve sadly had interactions with demonic forces). But, I am glad the Lord showed me the beautiful reality of Himself in all situations:
If you’re feeling like the enemy is standing outside your house today, if he’s causing you some stress and anxiety, that’s understandable. Yet remember, remember to whom we belong. Remember that even in this world where, for a little while, the Enemy may have sway…. THIS HOUSE belongs to the Lord.