The 'semi-final' Harry Potter movie is out, and I plan to go see it this week. I have read all of the books, and still enjoy listening to Jim Dale read them as I weave. They join a number of good allegories about the battle that rages around us between good and evil. And I LOVE it when good wins!
Though I haven't yet seen the Harry Potter movie, I have had an interesting thing come to light in my own family history.
My husband and I recently took a trip to Kansas to visit his family. I also got to have a short visit with my sister while there. On our way to meet her part-way between where she lives in the Kansas City area and Topeka, where we were, we drove though the tiny town of Stull, Kansas. My father grew up in the little agricultural town, and I grew up sufficiently close to it that we often attended church there. On our visit there last week, we visited the old stone house that my grandfather's grandfather had built, which is now a historical site and owned by a state park.
We also visited the abandoned house where my father lived when he was young and the Stull cemetery. My great-grandparents are buried there, as are a number of other relatives and familiar Stull family names.
When I got home, I sent some of the photos to my Dad. My Dad is a great storyteller, mostly because his memory is amazing, and he has lived through some fantastic stories. He asked me if we saw any ghosts in the Stull cemetery. I thought he was joking, but he proceeded to tell me about some of the legends that have surrounded the site for over a hundred years. He told me to Google "Stull cemetery and Satan worship." I did. Unbelievable! (Literally.) Supposedly, we were at one of the 'Seven Portals to Hell,' and we didn't even know it! When I told my husband about it, he said he wished he'd have known, so we could look for the old church steps that supposedly go on and on down to who knows where. I am personally quite glad we didn't know the cemetery's reputation, and were just looking for our family history. Though I have had little experience with true evil and unholy spirits, I have had quite enough to not want to encourage or invite them in any way into my life, even out of curiosity or amusement.
When I asked my Dad if he had ever experienced anything weird there, he told of a time when the water people came and tested their water and told them to not drink it anymore, as the black specks that were in it proved to be human remains. They lived downhill from the cemetery. The little church we used to visit when he would preach there looks from the road as if it doesn't have an entrance; they chose to put the entrance on the back, so when people came out of worship they didn't have to look at the unholy ground of the cemetery.
So why have I decided to post this here, and what does it have to do with Harry Potter? I'm not sure, but it seems to me that the battle is the same. There is no Voldemort, but there is true evil in the world. I don't know if that true evil manifests itself in the tiny cemetery where my ancestors are buried, but I do wonder if the rumored evil that was so close by is why so many in my family have become true warriors against the forces of evil and for the One who protects us against such things. I do not doubt the power and the reality of either the unholy or the Holy spirit; theirs is an ongoing battle we are all in and have 'chosen sides' for, either by intent or default. Like Harry Potter, I want to be sure that I am on the winning side.