The following is the first of a series of letters written by Arch-demon Twistgum to his nephew Baleswarm. How these letters were obtained is unknown, however it is obvious that they were not intended to be read by human eyes. From the letters we can deduce that Baleswarm has been assigned to tempt, hinder and ruin a Worship Leader, a subject matter in which his Uncle Twistgum has many years of demonic experience.
It is only natural that you have sought my advice; my experience in this matter far exceeds the training you received at Minion Academy. Although I don’t see why you have delayed in requesting such knowledge from your dear Uncle Twistgum, I suppose it is now neither here nor there.
The duty of oppressing a minister of the Enemy can be extremely taxing so I am pleased to hear that you are making inroads with your newest assignment. But I fear this early success has given you a false impression of the battle to come. The consistency of weekly gatherings (upon that most wretched of days) in which your subject leads the Enemy’s camp with the most abysmal, and yet most potent form of worship—Song—will no doubt severely hinder your efforts, causing you much frustration and agitation. And this is merely a byproduct. I dare say you have your work cut out for you if your subject approaches his duty with any sort of seriousness and devotion. Know this Baleswarm, though the task is great the rewards are even greater, for your subject is but the first in a long line of dominoes, cause him to fall and many will follow.
Your efforts in sowing the seed of Pride on account of his office are valiant but I fear it is rather a premature step. For the Enemy is a crafty tyrant who will allow your subject to fall exposing his Pride and will soon remedy the situation. So heed my advice and start with the man in a more subtle manner. Instead of Pride start with Guilt. Because the Enemy has qualified this man for such a position, rather than achieving it on his own, the groundwork is already laid for us. All you must do is continually point out his unworthiness of such a ‘high’ office (‘Worship Leader’ is such an arrogant title, is it not?). Amplify his sinful past. Leave abundant snares of temptation. Make sure those closest to him remind him of his faults. Once this foundation is laid it is vital for your subject to strive for worthiness in anything but what the Enemy has determined. Distract him with ‘good’ things. Rigid Attendance, Musical Excellence, Recognition, &c. It is important that you be ready with a new distraction, however small, for your subject will be restless in his search for worthiness. If all goes according to plan your subject will be driven to Pride, not because of his office (as you are attempting), but because of his efforts to validate himself as one worthy of such an office. His unceasing, unsatisfying search for worthiness will remain fruitless and, left to this course, will turn into despair. Suddenly his office becomes a thing to be despised. Misery and Depression will turn into Anger and Resentment. Oh, such joy!
At this point any number of wonderful things might happen. He may resign (good, though now he has less persuasion on other souls), or he may leave his current post for another (better, for we can now assist in building his new ministry on bitterness and disdain), or he may spread his infected influence on others under his care and fragment his congregation the same way a sledge hammer might fragment a window (best of all, for obvious reasons).
I look forward to hearing about your progress in this magnanimous endeavor and I implore you to give careful consideration regarding my instruction on this matter in our future correspondence.
Your Esteemed Uncle,