Weary. That’s what I was. Have you ever felt weary? I was weary from fighting in the same battle over and over, winning a small victory only to find myself defeated a minute later. The battles would conclude at the end of each day, but the war raged on the instant I’d open my eyes in the morning.
You might be wondering what I’m talking about. A battle? War? What battle? It’s a battle we all must face, unfortunately. However, maybe you don’t even realize you’re in the same battle as I am, fighting right alongside each other. The battle is in our minds. In simple terms, what are you thinking? Are you leaving the door open to wrong thoughts? What are you allowing to pass over the threshold into the open door of your mind?
Paul warns in Ephesians 4:27 (Amplified), “And do not give the devil an opportunity [to lead you into sin by holding a grudge, or nurturing anger, or harboring resentment, or cultivating bitterness].” How do we give the devil an opportunity? By entertaining wrong thinking. By allowing ourselves to focus just a second too long on the feelings of jealousy over someone else, or the feelings of rejection and anger when we don’t feel loved like we think we should. If we’re not careful, before we know it we’ve given the devil a real foothold in our minds, and this is the worst place to allow him. Once he has us feeling sorry for ourselves, or entitled to receive something, it’s hard to break the cycle because it feels good to our flesh.
Like I said, I was tired. I kept letting myself think a second (or a minute) too long on a very familiar, yet toxic thought and before I know it I’d welcomed back those yucky feelings. But no more. I was on a run one morning, and those same nasty thoughts knocked on the door again. That time, however, I didn’t answer—regardless of the heavy breathing and sweat oozing through my pores. Nothing could stop me from entering into battle. And this time, I possessed the confidence to win because I reminded myself how the war ends.
The Bible tells us in the book of Revelation what happens to Satan at the end. He will be, “Cast into the lake of fire and brimstone…tormented day and night forever and ever.” (Rev. 20:10) Why did I keep allowing him win the battles when I knew his destiny? Because he fights dirty.
Does It Matter What We Think? So, what happened on that run that changed me? How was I able to start winning the battles? I consciously changed my thinking. It started with a picture. Often God does this, He allows me to see in my mind a picture that can help or teach me or someone else. This particular picture was of a small bug. One of those ugly bugs with a hard, crunchy shell. I saw myself squashing the bug with my foot. Smash! One stomp and that bug was history. Then I saw people dancing together, crushing the bug into the ground.
The bug was Satan—the devil himself. The people dancing were the saints, or people who love God. God was showing me that I had the power to crush the enemy under my feet, and so do you. It was the easiest thing in the world! All we need to do is say, “NO!” to those negative thoughts, and instead allow ourselves to think thoughts that contradict them. Then we’ve won! And what a sweet victory it is.