Living without Bitterness
Work at living in peace with everyone, and work at living a holy life, for those who are not holy will not see the Lord. Look after each other so that none of you fails to receive the grace of God. Watch out that no poisonous root of bitterness grows up to trouble you, corrupting many.
Hebrews 12:14-15 NLT
My first observation is that living in peace with everyone takes WORK! Every person is unique. They have different points of view, opinions, and backgrounds. I have discovered that it is easy to offend someone without knowing you are doing it in our present society.
It appears from our passage today that living a holy life and living without bitterness is crucial to “living in peace with everyone.” Sin is the result of selfishness. When sin is present in our lives, selfishness is present. When selfishness is present, we will have messed-up relationships.
When we are hurt or offended, it is easy to allow bitterness to get into our hearts. We begin to replay the offense, and what may have started small becomes huge because we have rehearsed that offense and connected other comments to it to help it grow into a monster. It is easy to lose touch with reality because bitterness has clouded our judgment and made a mountain out of a molehill.
Many people are walking around controlled by bitterness, a bitterness that is robbing them of peace and causing a lot of stress and anxiety. Sometimes they have lost so much self-awareness they don’t see what everyone else sees—a heart full of bitterness. If someone says something about it, they are quick to justify their feelings because of the actions of someone else.
Bitterness is never justifiable. Let me restate that. There is no justification for living in bitterness. People don’t make us bitter. We choose to become bitter. We choose to obsess over the words or actions of others and allow bitterness to grow in our hearts. We have to own our bitterness. We are the ones who accepted it, cuddled it, and fed it.
Holy Spirit, please show me any bitterness in my heart. Today, I ask You to forgive me for allowing bitterness in my heart. Empower me to release all bitterness and live at peace with You, myself, and others. I refuse to make any room for bitterness in my life.
Scroll down to share what you feel God is saying to you based on today’s reading.