The Shadow Man

There have been tales of darkness that breathes, that moves; tales of horror and of fear. My heart never believed such a thing, until now. I have seen it move. I have indeed seen it breathe.

There was once a time when I walked along the path of light. I used to dance amidst the crashing shores of the ocean. I would find peace in burying my heart deep within the sand. Thunderstorms along the coast were beautiful. The lightning shuttered as if God were taking a picture; storing them up in his scrapbook of human life. The thunder was his laughter echoing through sky. There was once a day when everything seemed fine with the world. There was once a moment in time when happiness was not a struggle.

It is not so anymore.

Life beckoned my name, called me on to its vast ship. It was time to sail the seas of independence; find my own way. I was the deckhand, grace was my guide. The seas were calm and the sun was bright. I found peace with my Captain and I saw wonder within the sea. The animals skipped between wave crests, joyfully playing until the sun went down. The clouds swirled about the day sky as if they were playing along; beautiful.

One day, I remember it well, dark clouds approached from afar. They were strange, incandescent, glimmering. These were not the playful clouds I remembered. They resembled nothing of the thunderstorms of old. These clouds were evil, large, and screamed. I looked to my Captain but he had disappeared. In his place was a shadow man. His face was unseen, his demeanor silent. He neither laughed nor cried. He stood at the helm motionless. His presence was set on the approaching storm.

I called out to it but it did not answer. It only continued to stare. For the first time in my heart I felt fear.

The clouds were racing, the shadow man stood unmoved. It led us directly in to the storm. The waves reached heaven’s heights, the lightning plundered the ocean’s depths. My soul was terrified. Faces appeared out of the howling waves, they swallowed my boat.  For the first time I let out a cry only God could hear, only he was nowhere to be found. My boat was rocked, wrecked, and riddled by the storm. I soon found myself stranded on a dark island. The shadow man remained unmoved at the helm. This time his gaze was set upon me.

Days passed and I felt no motivation to move. I only wished for the light of day. This place, this place was so weary. The atmosphere wreaked of death. Shadow Man now stood above me, his hand firmly on my head. He tainted my memories. There was nothing in my world of sacred hope anymore. Shadow Man took them from me. He stole my joy.

Years passed and I felt no regard for the morning. In fact, I only wished for Shadow Man to do away with me. He refused. He slowly became my only acquaintance and then an only friend. Who else was there? My heart was isolated on this island of death. He followed me everywhere I went assuring me that he would never leave.

As time progressed I began to see changes in the landscape. It seemed a bridge of land was forming away from the island. It led somewhere and I knew I had to follow. The more I chased after this bridge the brighter the day became. It seemed as if I had found a way from Shadow Man but every time I turned he was still there, lurking.

I write to you today from a place of rest. I indeed found my way off of the isolated island but Shadow Man still remains. He is not as close as he once was but he is still here. He is hiding within himself. Sometimes I see him, sometimes I do not. I fear as though he will always be with me. Do I have hope?

Assuredly so. God’s light has gotten me this far, what reason do I have to fear?

I have found though that when I ask that sacred question I find Shadow Man peering around the corner. He is reminding me of his presence. He is playing with my mind.

What benefit does life have with this demon torturing my soul?

Set me free.

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