When I was a young girl, I heard many stories about ghostly encounters. My mother said when I was about 6 months old, she was walking up the steps in the dark, carrying me. As she put her hand on the bannister to steady herself, she felt fingers, underneath her own.
Throughout my childhood, my grandmother talked about people who saw a body without a head, on a corner about a block away from where we lived at the time. She made up this crazy tune and told us that should anyone encounter the head, it would sing,”I ain’t got no body.” And we all would laugh.
My great grandmother said that whenever an other worldly encounter takes place we should ask the specter, “What in the name of the Lord do you want?” She said she did this one and an apparition disappeared. Great grandma said if the visitation was not from the Lord, unholy spirits had to flee upon hearing His Name.
A former pastor of mine told us he once was visiting a cousin, and heard knocking and bumping upstairs. He said his relative smiled as she said, “It’s only grandpa.” He said the grandfather had been dead quite a while, so he told his cousin, that one of them, either he himself, or grandpa would have to go. He then explained that grandpa was with Jesus, and his cousin was dealing with a spirit that was tricking her because it was familiar with her grandfather.
My pastor told us that he left his cousin’s house, because he did not have the authority to cast out an evil spirit from someone else’s home, without their permission. He went on to say that believers in Christ, should not treat demons like pets. And should not entertain any spirit, except the Holy Spirit that was sent by Jesus Himself.
A few summers ago, I was visiting a former neighbor who had been sick. She asked me to step into her bedroom while she got a leaflet about an upcoming church event. As I stood, one foot in her bedroom, the other in the hallway, out of the corner of my eye, I saw someone go past me into the den. I assumed it was her husband or son, and wondered why they did not speak.
At that very moment my friend handed me the advertisement, with an odd look on her face. I thought perhaps she was embarrassed that her son or husband did not acknowledge me. I went home, and did not give much thought to the incident.
About a month later, my brother told me that this neighbor shared with him, that a black shape often followed her through her home. My brother admitted that he had seen this apparition at least twice, while in that house, and thought it was the spirit of death.
I recalled how I had assumed my friend’s husband or son had gone into the den, the day I was visiting. Upon reflection, I realized that I had not heard approaching footsteps, the swish of clothing or anything to warn me anyone else was in the house. I simply saw the shadow of someone go quickly past me.
I believe I may have encountered the spirit, that my brother and former neighbor both saw. And that the strange look on my friend’s face was because she realized I had seen what has been lingering in her home. I did not want to betray my brother’s confidence, so I never mentioned this to my friend.
If however, I do encounter this being in her home again, I will at that point ask her if she would like to pray with me, and in the Name of Jesus tell the unholy spirit to go, as is commanded in the last verses, of Mark chapter 16 in the Word of God.
If she says no, that is her right. She can choose to harbor a demonic spirit, just as I can choose to no longer visit her home. Like my former pastor, I believe that one of us has to go. Whether it will be me, or the spirit, is totally up to my friend, or anyone else who chooses to make a pet of an evil presence in his or her home. On the paranormal television show, people often say they are OK with “spirits” sharing their home. I am not .