Christian

BITTERNESS: This Heart Condition Is Worse Than You Think

I was eavesdropping on a conversation recently (couldn’t help it – I was at the hair salon!) Anyway, one lady was complaining about her husband and another woman. The stylist listened attentively and threw in an occassional “Ohhh!” or “No!!” The complaining lady was really angry (and I could see why!)

I couldn’t stop thinking about what I overheard because it related to the subject of today’s post. When we’ve been deeply hurt and can’t forgive, it will lead to bitterness of heart.

The problem with bitterness is that, even though your anger and resentment may be justified, it will destroy you. Stephen Diamond, Ph.D.,  describes bitterness as “a chronic and pervasive state of smoldering resentment,” and deservedly regards it as “one of the most destructive and toxic of human emotions.”

He says, ” if we repeatedly ruminate over how we’ve been victimized, our “nursing” our wrongs may eventually come to define some essential part of who we are. Take hold of our very personality. And so we’ll end up becoming victims not so much of anyone else but, principally, of ourselves.”

Hebrews 12:15 says, “See to it that no one falls short of the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many.”

Since a root is the hidden part of a plant or tree, we can think of a bitter root as being the hidden source of bitterness. What is the seed from which that bitter root sprouts in our heart? It’s that tiny speck of unforgiveness, that tiny speck of indignation that we allow to remain in our hearts. It’s that tiny speck of resentment that we justify in our mind.

Let’s call this tree Bitterness. The function of it’s roots are the same as other roots. Roots can keep a tree in place for hundreds of years and nothing can move it . Winds and storms won’t dislodge it!

Secondly, the roots nourish the tree to make sure it keeps growing stronger and stronger.

And lastly, roots can cause trouble when they grow where they aren’t wanted – like when they invade water pipes or sewer systems.

Is it any wonder that God used the analogy of roots when warning us about bitterness? But where He gives a warning, he provides an answer.

“Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” Hebrews 4:16 NIV

“You then, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.” 2 Timothy 2:1 NIV

As we humbly come to Him, seeking His way and His will, God will provide the grace to forgive and let go. Many times, the injustice we must forgive cannot be forgiven in our own strength, but God’s grace is sufficient. (2 Corinthians 12:9) And what is the opposite of bitterness? Contentment, Happiness, Sweetness! That is God’s plan for you.

“Grace be with you all.” (2 Timothy 4:22 NIV)

With Love, 

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This Is My Journey Unscripted.

Click this link to learn more about Jesus: Who Is Jesus?

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25 thoughts on “BITTERNESS: This Heart Condition Is Worse Than You Think”

  1. Cindy, you give me so much to chew on with your perspective!
    Roots are hidden, as we often try to hide our bitterness. But they manifest in that our nourishment comes through those roots. If we have a root of bitterness, all our spiritual nourishment is tinged with that bitterness, and it taints our perspective, leading to a taint in how we treat others and how we look at them (and even how we see God). A bitter root has no place in a Christian – it is a foreign body that takes over where it is not healthy, like a cancer.
    Thanks be to our mighty, loving God that He is able, and willing!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Absolutely! I have definitely seen how bitterness can negatively affect our relationships with God and other people. It even hurts us!
      Amen to your last exclamation! ❤

      Liked by 2 people

  2. that is a good definition of bitterness: the chronic smouldering of resentment. I think that describes my inner condition when I lived life as a victim. I was smouldering with resentment at everybody who supposedly had done the tiniest thing wrong to me and resenting all those who supposedly had it better than me. What an ugly thought and way to live.

    I much prefer contentment, happiness, and sweetness.
    Nice post CIndy

    Liked by 1 person

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