First published February 19, 2018
When I saw the grim peeper in the corridor, I was still a new employee at the juvenile facility, learning the subtleties and nuances of juvenile delinquent behaviors in the detention setting. The carrying-on and wailing emanating from the isolation cell was a new experience for me, and unsettling. The isolation cell was just off the control room, with a plexiglas window in between to see in there, which was directly behind the control room officers seat. It was for close observation, and segregation. I asked the control room officer, ‘Ms. Patsy’, what was wrong with the kid. She replied that ‘William’ had just returned from Intra-Care, a psychiatric hospital, a couple of days ago.
Well that explained it. William was 16 nearly 17 and was a frequent flyer. I decided to go in there for a moment to see if he could be reasoned with.
William told me that prior to going to Intra-Care, for some period of time, he has been stalked by an entity he calls the “Peeper”. He said after getting to the Intra-Care, the treatment there had seemed to be effective- no more Peeper- and he hadn’t had any problems upon his return to juvenile- no more Peeper- until tonight. (Well, those meds didn’t help for very long)
Tonight, he had seen the Peeper in the corridor on the way back from the chow hall. And he was concerned that the Peeper would come into his cell sometime through the night.
“Well”, I told William, “Ms. Patsy and myself are between you and the corridor, I do not see how he will get in here” and such words to that effect to calm him down. I asked him “what does this Peeper look like anyways?” William advised that the Peeper was tall and thin. He said when he saw the Peeper, the Peeper would turn his head toward him and smile- a smile that was more like a grimace- and he then demonstrated.
I do not know to this day exactly what happened- or how to accurately explain it- but when he turned to me to mimic the Peeper face- I saw the Peeper face! Like a shape-shifting vision flash in a movie- Williams face was the Peepers face for an instant.
That was indeed a game-changer if you know what I mean. Being quite unsettled and knowing that Williams meds had nothing to do with what I just saw, I assured him again we would be on the lookout and exited his cell.
As I turned in front of the control room, I looked and through the little window in the control room door, in the corridor stood the Peeper! His face turned to me and gave me the grimace smile. I wouldn’t have nicknamed this dude “Peeper”- he was a grim something, thus the title. But nevertheless.
I stood frozen, terrified for a moment- but was startled back by Williams screams. I ran over to the corridor, and of course, there was nothing there. And, you better believe I looked at the video. Nothing.
When I started working at juvenile, I observed that it was a highly-charged environment. You could feel it. I chalked it up to emotion, hormones, psychic energies- akin to the various energies one might observe at a sporting event, or an emotional gathering, or a traumatic event.
the real deal
For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places- Ephesians 6:12
I came to understand that I was working in an intense spiritual battlefield. Many dark deeds were proposed or refined or finalized within these walls. Some of these tormented souls even went on to kill someone- or more commonly, themselves- at some point later in life. But, it definitely wasn’t all bad. They used to depict people with an angel on one shoulder and a devil on the other, both whispering in your ear. It was very much like that there.
Many of these juveniles really wanted to do better, and many did. They would pray. They would be kind to others and respectful to staff. There were countless others- mothers, fathers, grandparents, siblings, friends, neighbors- who desperately pleaded with God to protect their child.
These prayers were heard and answered. The good powers were there, you could feel them, they were often made manifest in the words and deeds of the kids.
It was a tremendous blessing and tremendous burden the time I worked there. You can feel the assault and realize it is occurring- strong urgings to do things like cuss out that smart mouth kid, express negative feelings about other staff in front of the juveniles, belittle or punish the brat, argue with or otherwise act unprofessionally and generally present as a poor role model- these were common temptations that were constantly whispered into your ear. Unfortunately weaker, less noble staff would fall prey to these and even worse temptations from time to time. Much worse.
And then, you would hear from time to time, the other shoulder: Peace. Be still. Love one another. We are all children of God.
There were angels amongst us. I liked those moments, and I was glad when a young person could experience it. The spiritual warfare spilled over into your personal dimension, your personal life. It was a battlefield. It was a trip.
a real promise
Just like magnetism, gravity, electricity- there are powers that we can’t see, but they are real. Just like in the picture, there are entities that we can’t see, but they speak to our soul nonetheless. The one in red likes to tell people that he doesn’t exist. “You can’t see me- sooooo….”
There is a war for your soul. Both sides want to win. The victory one side offers is death and destruction. Not a real victory. You can recognize this voice by the things it proposes you do. “You can cheat on your wife, she doesn’t treat you good anyways” “Your boss believes you- if you lie about Janet, you will get that promotion, not her” “that person makes alot of money- they are greedy and dishonest” or “that person is poor, they are lazy and don’t care” and we could list a million. Don’t listen to that one. If what you hear is negative, will have negative consequences, or is what you know to be wrong- don’t do it. It will sound commonsense sometimes. It will sound logical, right, even “what God wants”.
Think it through. Pray about it. Talk it over with someone. Most of the time, deep down you already know.
Listen to that other voice. You will hear things like: Peace. Be still. Love one another. We are all children of God.
You will feel it. Deep down, you already know it. And that way will bring peace and love.
that is a real promise and the real deal.