Jesus’ story of the unclean spirit in today’s Gospel, Luke 11:15-26, is chilling and challenging.
“When an unclean spirit goes out of someone, it roams through arid regions searching for rest but, finding none, it says, ‘I shall return to my home from which I came. ‘But upon returning, it finds it swept clean and put in order. Then it goes and brings back seven other spirits more wicked than itself who move in and dwell there, and the last condition of that man is worse than the first.”
Translate this into our current world. A person comes out of a drug rehab center. He/she is clean, feels good and is motivated to move forward with their lives. They pick up with their old friends, frequent acting out places and are soon back on drugs and in worse shape than ever. Common enough situation. This could apply to any addiction or bad habit. Nature abhors a vacuum (old saying). When we begin to address our issues in life, it is crucial that we fill our lives with new habits (daily prayer being one of them); supportive friendships and life-giving ventures.