Welcome to West Haven as we continue in the series “Take Heart.” The goal is to calm our fears, renew our hope, and strengthen our resolve. In the past week, I was gladdened to hear from many of you that this series is helping you.

I frequently read a writer named Rod Dreher. He has a remarkable ability to analyze the events of our day with a Christian worldview. Here are some excerpts from last week’s column. They go along with what I preached about the possibility that much of today’s evil may come from demonic oppression or possession.

He wrote “You may not be interested in the demonic, but the demonic is interested in you. Don’t ever doubt it . . . the open manifestations of spiritual evil are accelerating. The time to be silent out of fear of embarrassment is past. Something is happening now, some kind of quickening. I don’t know where this is going, but I’m now hearing from, and about, people . . . who are enduring things they never imagined they would see . . . things formerly hidden are coming out into the open. Restraints are slackening all over. We are seeing things now that were once unimaginable.”

“We should not be surprised by the demonic manifesting so strongly. The spirit world cannot tolerate a vacuum. Normie Christians might prefer that the dark enchantment stay away, and leave them to their peaceful morally decent lives, but that’s not how it works . . where Christianity establishes strongholds, the demonic declines — and where Christianity declines, the demonic establishes strongholds.”

“To befoul the innocence of children is one of the most “sacred” things those who worship evil can do . . . and yet, we are now part of a culture that wishes to destroy the minds and bodies of children . . . you must get this straight in your head. It won’t stop with children. It’s not going away. We are going to be fighting this for the rest of our lives, at least.”

He also wrote”(Some of you) said in the comments that you feel overwhelmed by all this bad news, and you want to be left alone to live your life. I get it. I do too . . But we are not given that luxury, not in these times. What you must not do, though, is obsess over this stuff, or give it more power than it actually has.

And on that note, today we look at “How To Grow Your Faith When Wickedness Is Growing.” I hope these sermons equip you to face today’s challenges. Also, several have asked specific questions about how to handle the situations in our culture. I hope to deal with those in the next few sermons.

I love you all, more than I can express. God bless you as you worship today.