One of my favorite shows to stream on Netflix is Stranger Things. Imagine Goonies meets X-Files. This sci-fi horror series is set in the fictional town of Hawkins, Indiana during the 1980s. The premise of the show centers on the U.S. Department of Energy’s secret research program conducting experiments into the paranormal and supernatural, which involves human testing.
Consequently, their experimentation led to creating a portal into an alternate dimension known as “The Upside Down”. Stranger Things explores how the Upside Down dimension influences the residents of Hawkins in often disastrous ways.
The Upside Down
The Upside Down is a parallel world that is inhabited by a monster known as a ‘Demogorgon’.
Google it, and you’ll see this ugly creature.
Read: 4 Marks of a Godly Man
Anyway, later in the series, this monster crosses over into the right-side-up world (our reality) causing havoc. Not to give too much of the plot away, but the Upside Down is a dark reflection of our world. Imagine our world; with all the familiar places that exist but a shadowy version. In this version, loneliness, darkness, fear, sins, and all our lies reside.
The Upside Down is fictional of course. However, it’s a good illustration of our ongoing spiritual battle we Christians face every day–between right and wrong, good and evil, holiness and sinfulness, and truth and lies. When we face our own monsters of depression, loneliness, cancer, death, etc., we may be left questioning where is God?
So how can we face our monsters from the Upside Down?
Facing our Monsters
The Demogorgon’s in our life may seem to have power over us. There are times we may feel like we are drowning and losing hope that we will ever break free from the grips of the Upside Down. At this point, we feel as if God had abandoned us. But this is what the Demogorgon, aka, Satan wants us to believe.
As we look in 2 Timothy 1:7, the Apostle Paul explains this to Timothy:
“For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline”
At some point in our faith journey, we eventually realize we do not have the power to overcome our monsters, but with the power of God and the Holy Spirit, we are empowered with the strength and courage to face and defeat them.
Truths to Remember
My monsters of pornography and loneliness once convinced me that I was powerless and worthless. However, one day, the grace and love of Jesus and the power of the Holy Spirit gave me the courage and power to overcome my own monsters. For the first time in my life, I felt loved and valued.
My heavenly Father showed me he had never abandoned me, but rather I was not paying attention to His presence and that He was always there.
Here are two powerful truths God’s Word revealed to me when I came out of the darkness of the Upside Down.
Do not be afraid:
So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the Lord your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you (Deuteronomy 31:6)
You’re not alone:
Even when I walk
through the darkest valley,[a]
I will not be afraid,
for you are close beside me.
Your rod and your staff
protect and comfort me.
There will be days you will feel defeated and overwhelmed by your own Demogorgon. But remember these two simple truths: Do not be afraid and you’re not alone. Your Heavenly Father will never, and I mean, NEVER, abandon you. The Upside Down has no power over the greatness of our God.
Go Deeper: How has the Holy Spirit empowered you to go against your monsters? What was the outcome? And how has God reminded you He hasn’t abandoned you?
Christian, Husband, Political junkie, Braves fan, Marvel Nerd, craft beer aficionado, and a sinner saved by grace. He has a passion for helping Christian men grow in their faith. He is the founder and editor of Joshua’s Outpost.