“Looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled” Hebrews 12:15
I can’t think of any worse spiritual poison than bitterness. It’s literally a kill joy. I had been going through a bible study when the word diagnosed me as bitter. I didn’t even know it.
Reading God’s word is often like getting a check up at the doctor. Do you remember the last visit to the doctor you had? You went in confidently thinking that you would get a clean bill of health. Then, the test results came back “positive”. You have a response of confusion as you say to yourself, “But, I feel fine.”
Bitterness can be that subtle. We supposedly “feel fine”. Over the years of not forgiving that one person or persons it’s tentacles make their way into our hearts choking out things such as joy, peace and contentment. The symptoms have always been there but we just thought that those outbursts of anger or touchiness were just part of our personality. We had no idea that those symptoms were contusions on our hearts from roots of bitterness.
Once I recognized I had a root of bitterness, I had to discover who I was bitter toward. In praying to God about it He showed me I was bitter toward Him. It was a painful confession that I had to make. It’s such a terrible feeling to be bitter toward God when you love him so much. I felt a bitterness because my son had died. I didn’t realize feeling bitter distanced me from God. After all, how can you be close to someone you are bitter toward? My joy was gone. I was touchy and irritable with everyone around me. It was miserable.
I can’t say enough about God and how awesome he is. Yes, I tested positive for bitterness but God didn’t care about the diagnosis, He only cared about healing me. Here is the treatment He gave me:
Ask God to examine your heart.
Search me, O God, and know my heart;
Try me, and know my anxieties;
And see if there is any wicked way in me,
And lead me in the way everlasting. Ps 139:23-24
I asked the Lord to show me the source of bitterness that I had.
Forgive the person that you should forgive.
“For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.” Matthew 6:15
Not forgiving prevents us from receiving God’s forgiveness. I had to ask forgiveness from God for being bitter toward Him.
Turn from harboring your anger and resentment so that healing will come.
“Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord,” Acts 3:19
After deciding to turn from my way of bitterness and unforgivness, I was made whole.
God healed me and took away the root of bitterness. There is now a peace flowing like a river in my soul. When we have a root of bitterness in our heart there is no room for love to flow. If you follow God’s steps toward healing, you can experience the peace that surpasses all understanding. God be with you today.
When I kept silent, my bones grew old
Through my groaning all the day long.
For day and night Your hand was heavy upon me;
My vitality was turned into the drought of summer. Selah
I acknowledged my sin to You,
And my iniquity I have not hidden.
I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,”
And You forgave the iniquity of my sin. Selah