I watched with painful realization as one of my children played his competitor's game during an athletic competition. As the first two games were lost, I could visibly see the hope fizzle away as a cloud of discouragement settled in on my child. It wasn't capability that cost him the win. He could have pulled out and had victory. But once his feet had touched the mire and muck of discouragement, he started doubting the truth that he could win. The match was a mental exercise in staying above the roar of the voices in his head that said, "You can't do it."
Unfortunately, he believed the voice of discouragement and could not get back out of the pit to win. Instead of playing his game and dictating how his opponent would respond, he played his opponent's game and was defeated.
I have done the same thing. This last week has been one of listening to the enemy of my soul instead of the truth that Jesus has defeated Satan's power by His death in the cross. I have been a pawn of Satan's schemes to rob me of my joy, even when Scripture clearly says that I am more than a conqueror. I need to pull out the sword of the Spirit and claim the victory that is already mine.
The enemy has been defeated. I need to stop playing his game.