In the book Catching Fire, Katniss, a tribute, is about to enter the arena for the second time when her mentor, Haymitch, offers some final advice: “You just remember who the enemy is.” Katniss doesn’t understand at first but eventually realizes she isn’t fighting against the other tributes. The real enemy is the Capitol, the masterminds of the Hunger Games—events where tributes fight to the death.
How often do we go into the world—our personal Hunger Games arena—thinking other people are the enemy? Maybe those whose political beliefs or social standards are different or who do anything differently from us. Maybe those in other churches or even in our own churches. Sometimes it’s even our own family members.
Our God, our ultimate mentor, has a different idea: “Our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms” (Ephesians 6:12).
We minimize Satan’s existence. We aren’t comfortable talking about evil spirits, so we pretend they don’t exist. We blame our earthly struggles on the people around us or politicians or media or culture. We forget the devil is the mastermind, the enemy.
Today is another battle in the arena, but remember who your real enemy is. You are no longer a tribute, but a victor. Not because of what you’ve done, but because Jesus “disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross” (Colossians 2:15).