The Monster in your Closet

Sarah lay quietly in bed but she wasn’t able to fall asleep. She felt overwhelmed by all of the changes since the move into their new house. She already missed her old home and friends. She didn’t know what to expect at her new school. Would people like her? Would she make new friends? What would the teachers be like? Would the new house ever feel like home? Why did everything have to change?

Suddenly she heard a noise coming from her closet. She froze, afraid to move. What could that have been? She stayed quiet and just listened… there it was again! Something was moving around in her closet, she was sure of it. The noises continued and her heart began pounding with fear. “What should she do?” She thought to herself. She could stay in bed and hide. If she pretended it wasn’t there, surely it would go away, everything would be alright. So, she hid under the covers and pretended nothing was wrong. But it didn’t help, the noises continued. Finally she decided she had no choice but to find out what was making the noise. She knew there wasn’t anything there earlier. Perhaps it was just her imagination?

She slipped out of bed and walked slowly toward the closet. It was dark and she could barely see, so she turned on the small lamp in her room. There was a soft glow of light that helped make her feel braver. She walked toward the closet until she was standing in front of the door. Sarah could here a rustling coming from just behind the door. Now was the moment. Her heart was racing as she put her hand on the door knob. She slowly opened the door just a little and tried to peak into the closet. She couldn’t see anything in the darkness of the closet and now everything seemed quiet. Maybe it WAS just her imagination? That’s it, she was just imagining things; there wasn’t anything to be afraid of after all. So she opened the door the rest of the way.

To her surprise there stood a terrifying monster looking down at her with a frightening grin on its face. Sarah stood there frozen by fear. “You should fear me!” roared the monster. “I am all of the fears, troubles and doubts you face.”

Sarah was terrified! She ran to her bed and pulled the covers over her head. All she could hear was her own breathing. She tried to calm down and listen for a sound, anything. Just then she realized that she had left the door open. What was the monster going to do? Was it still there? Sarah didn’t know what to do. Maybe if she hid there quietly and pretended that the monster wasn’t there, it would just go away.

She waited and waited but didn’t hear anything. Finally she decided to peak out from underneath the covers and to her shock the monster had grown larger and more frightening than before.

“You cannot hide from me!” growled the monster. “I will always be here. There is nothing you can do. The more afraid you are the stronger I will become.”

Sarah was so frightened she jumped out of bed and ran to her parents’ room. The laughter of the monster seemed to follow her as she ran from the room.

“Mom, dad, wake up, wake up, there’s a monster in my closet!”

“Sarah…? What’s the matter sweetie?” Asked her mom as her dad turned on the light. “There’s a monster in my closet, it is so big and scary”, cried Sarah.

“Are you sure Sarah?” asked her father. “Yes, daddy.” And she began to describe what had happened. What the monster looked like, how it grew and became bigger and scarier. And last of all, what the monster had said to her.

Sarah’s parents listened quietly and when Sarah had finished her mother said, “We knew this day would come.”

“What do you mean mom?”

“Well, Sarah” said her father, “perhaps we should show you something before we talk any more. You see, everyone has a monster in their closet. What happens to that monster and the power it has is up to us.”

Sarah’s mother and father each took hold of one of her hands and led her to their closet. Suddenly Sarah had a feeling of fear and didn’t want to go to the closet.

“It’s okay”, said her mother as she held Sarah’s hand ever so tightly. “It will be fine, you aren’t alone. You never are. Watch Sarah, we’ll show you”

Her father opened the door and to Sarah’s amazement there was a monster so much larger and frightening than the one that she had seen in her closet.

“You should fear me!” bellowed the monster. “I am all of the fears, doubts and troubles you face.” “You cannot defeat me, I will always be here!” The monster looked down at Sarah’s parents with a menacing and angry face.

Sarah quickly glanced at each of her parents, expecting them to be afraid and to try and put the monster back in the closet so that they could hide from it. But her parents did not do this.

Instead her mother looked down at her and said quietly. “Don’t be frightened, I know this monster seems too large and powerful to overcome. But remember, just as you are not alone neither are your father and I.”

“I know mommy, I am here with you, but I am so frightened” Sarah’s mother gave her a gentle and loving smile.

“Yes, Sarah, you are with us and you are very brave. But there is also someone else who is always with us, even when we are apart; it is someone who will give us the strength to conquer any monster we face in life.”

“Sarah, trust your mother and I” said her father.

He began to speak to the monster, “We aren’t afraid of you. We know what you are and you cannot control us or make us hide in fear”.

The monster shook slightly but did not go away, it again roared at her parents. “You may think you are strong enough to defeat me but I am too large and powerful for you. You do not stand a chance against me! Give up, run, hide in fear when your see and think of me.”

But Sarah’s parents did not run and hide. They did not give in to fear and doubt.

“You see Sarah, being strong and standing up to your fears is what we must do. But there are some times when that won’t be enough. When those times come, we need to ask for strength and seek help in order to face and defeat our troubles and fears.”

Sarah’s mother and father took each others hand and knelt in front of the monster.

‘That’s right”, bellowed the monster. Kneel to me in fear; I am too powerful for you! All that you fear makes me stronger and more powerful. The more you are afraid the stronger I will become.”

But Sarah’s parents were not afraid and they were not going to give in to their fears and doubts. Sarah’s parents bowed their heads and closed their eyes.

““Our loving Father in heaven please give us the strength and courage to face the monsters in our lives, to make it through today and do what is right. Please allow us to live in your image, guide us to make the right choices.”

“If God be for us, who can be against us” – Romans 8:31

The monster began to tremble. “What is that you are saying? You are alone, I am too powerful for you. You cannot face me or defeat me!”

But it was too late. The monster now knew that Sarah’s parents were not afraid of him and that they were not alone. As her parents prayed the monster’s trembling increased and the monster began to shrink.

“Lord, there is no one like you to help the powerless against the mighty.”
– 2 Chronicles 14:11

“I can do all things through Christ whom strengthens me.”
– Philippians 4:13

“Lord, Jesus, we know that you made the ultimate sacrifice for us and that nothing can stand against the Love you have shown for us. The price that you paid for us is stronger than anything that we will face.”

The monster continued to shrink, until it was very tiny and not nearly as frightening.

“You see, Sarah, there will always be things that frighten us and monsters we will need to face and no matter what we do we cannot rid our world of them. However, with faith and trust in the strength of our God and Lord Jesus we will always have the strength we need. We will never be alone and we will be able to face anything that comes into our lives.” Her father placed his hand down in front of the monster and it hopped into his palm. “You see Sarah, it isn’t so scary anymore.”

No matter what the monster tried now, it just didn’t seem scary. Sarah’s father placed his hand on the floor. The monster hopped off and ran away to hide in the closet.

“There he goes Sarah. Some day he may be back in his big and scary form. He will try to frighten us and make us doubt what we believe and live in fear of the monsters and troubles we have to face. But if we keep our faith and know where to ask for the strength and courage we will always be able to face any monsters and troubles that enter our lives.

“Sarah, do you think you are okay to go back to your room?” asked her mother.

Sarah looked at the warm loving face of her mother and thought about what she had just seen. She was still afraid of what might be in her closet but something in her told her that she should go back to her room

“I’ll be okay mom.” she said with as much confidence as she could muster.

“You are a brave little, girl.” Said her father. Sarah’s parents walked back to her room and tucked her in for the night.

“I Love you Sarah,’ said her mother as she kissed her good night. Her father kissed her on the head and said “Good night sweetie, I love you.” “Remember you are never alone”

“Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you.”
– Psalm 55:22

They turned off the light and went back to their room. Sarah had felt safe and confident when her parents were in the room but now the lights were out and she felt so alone.

She closed her eyes trying to force herself to go to sleep. All she wanted to do was fall asleep. But she kept thinking about the monster she had seen in her closet and the huge monster in her parents’ closet.

Then it happened, there was a noise from her closet. She froze and just listened; hoping that perhaps she was wrong and things would stay quiet. Her heart was racing and she felt so afraid. There it was again, something was moving around in her closet. What was she going to do? She was so afraid and was alone in her bed room.

Then she remembered what her father and mother had told her. She wasn’t alone and she will never be alone.

Sarah new what she had to do.

She slowly got out of bed and turned on her night light. She stood by her bed for a few seconds, working up the courage to go on.

She slowly walked toward the closet. The noise changed to a banging and knocking on the door, it became louder and stronger the closer she got to the door. Now she was standing in front of her closet door just looking at it. The door was shaking from all of the movement and noise from within. This was it, she had to do it.

She grabbed hold of the door knob and flung the door open.

There it was, the monster she feared so much. It was now even bigger and scarier than when she had run from her room. She had tried to ignore it and pretend it wasn’t there but that had only caused it to become larger and stronger.

“Hah” screeched the monster, “You are more afraid than before!” You SHOULD fear me!” bellowed the monster. “I am all of the fears, doubts and troubles you face.” “I will always be here and you will fear me! I am too big and powerful for you to do anything against me.”

Sarah froze and was overcome with fear. How could she face such a frightening thing alone? She was so small and it was so big and powerful. It was more than she could possible do alone, more than anyone could do alone. She was about to run and hide but then she remembered what her parents had told her.

She isn’t alone! She will never be alone. The strength, love and courage she needs is always there for her.

She closed her eyes and began to pray.

“If God be for us, who can be against us”
– Romans 8:31

“Lord Jesus, please give me the strength and courage to face my fears and troubles. I know you are with me and watching over me.”

“What! What did you say!?” “You are too small and weak. I am huge and powerful, you MUST fear me!” growled the monster.

“Lord, there is no one like you to help the powerless against the mighty.”
– 2 Chronicles 14:11

“I can do all things through Christ whom strengthens me.”
– Philippians 4:13

“I am not weak, I am strong. God, please be with me and give me the strength and courage that I need.” “I know you love me and will help me. Please, Father, I trust in you and your Love.”

The monster began to moan and shake. But this time it wasn’t with anger but with sorrow. His power was weakening. Sarah now had the strength and faith to face him. His control over her was no more. As Sarah continued to pray he became smaller and smaller until he was reduced to the same size as the monster in her parent’s closet. Sarah noticed that it had become very quiet and all she heard was her own voice and breathing. She opened her eyes and the monster was no longer towering over her. She looked down and there he was tiny and no longer so frightening.

I’m no longer afraid of you. I know I am not alone. I have the strength and love of Jesus with me. I know you will try again, some day, to scare me and make me hide in fear, but I will be ready for you. The monster retreated into the darkness of her closet and Sarah closed the door. Everything was quiet and she felt at peace with herself and the world.

She returned to bed and closed her eyes. She fell soundly asleep with a smile. She was loved and would never be alone. The world no longer seemed so frightening. She looked forward to tomorrow.