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The Visitor--an inspirational short story series

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"...Choose only entertainment and media that uplift you. Good entertainment will help you to have good thoughts and make righteous choices...Do not participate in entertainment that in any way presents immorality or violent behavior as acceptable."
For The Strength of Youth

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Submitted by Steven ODell on 19 February 2010 - 11:00pm. | | | | |

No More Disposition To Do Evil
Steven G. O'Dell (C) 2010

...and they had no more disposition to do evil, but only to do good.

In the early 1970's in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, I was a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I was still young and green and falsely confident of many things. I was to be tested as to my degree of being in tune with the Spirit and as to my level of faith.

In the ward where I was assigned were several young girls who were quite attractive and dressed much more revealingly than they should have. As a red-blooded young man, it was difficult to ignore. I am afraid I have to admit I spent more time, as did my companion, around these young ladies than we should have. But one day that friendship became quite important.

We were at home for lunch one day when there was a frantic knock at the door and one of these young women urgently asked us to come and help her friend, who was behaving very strangely. The home was only a block or so away and we ran all of the distance, with her filling us in as we went. She said she thought her friend, another member of the ward, was possessed by an evil spirit. Neither my companion nor I had experience with casting one out before. I had, however, personal experiences with ones that seemed intent on keeping me from going on a mission. These had actually picked me up and tossed me across the room at different times in an effort to hurt me.

As we entered the home, we could see immediately that this was not the same girl we knew from church. This was more like a pacing wild animal that was cornered and wanted only to escape. A different spirit was indeed in her at the time. How different, we would know later.

We instructed her to sit down in a chair, which she did begrudgingly. In retrospect, I wonder why, except that perhaps her own spirit was still a bit stronger than the one attempting to take over her body. We laid hands upon her head and I began to give a blessing. I pronounced that the spirit would come out of her and that she would be restored to her whole and healthy self again.

My companion told me that when I had pronounced the words for the evil spirit to depart, he had felt something akin to an electric shock go up his arms. I felt nothing of the sort. All I felt was an intense purpose that the demon was going to leave and I would not stop until it had done so.

This young lady was indeed herself again and she related how she had felt when we first walked into the room. She said that even if we had been dressed in rags and she in the finest of dresses, she would still have felt unclean and uncomfortable in our presence. Once the spirit was gone, she was again whole and comfortable to be with us.

We reflected upon this incident a lot in the next several days. While there is indeed an opposing force of evil, God always provides a way to remove it from our presence, from our lives, from our spirits. We must never flirt with powers in opposition to God. They will not have our best interests at heart. They seek only our misery and destruction. Only God loves us without restraint, without reservation and unselfishly. Only God can complete us as we were meant to be, removing the evil disposition and and giving us a new heart.

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