Christian

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.

According to BIBLE STUDY TOOLS, bitterness is defined as anger and disappointment at being treated unfairly. It is synonymous with resentment and envy.

In an article in Psychology TodayStephen Diamond, Ph.D., defines 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 as we consider the function of a root. 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 warns us about allowing a bitter root to grow in our heart? 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. 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, 

AA55AA1F-EA36-49A9-92BE-41FD67348618

This Is My Journey Unscripted.

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

realchristianwomen.blog  

Christian

Daily Scripture, 6/4/19

“This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for he faced all of the same testings we do, yet he did not sin.  So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most.” Hebrews 4:15-16 NLT

With Love, 

AA55AA1F-EA36-49A9-92BE-41FD67348618

This Is My Journey Unscripted.

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

Photo by Joshua Earle on Unsplash

realchristianwomen.blog  

Christian

Daily Scripture, 5/20/19

“Well then, should we keep on sinning so that God can show us more and more of his wonderful grace? Of course not! Since we have died to sin, how can we continue to live in it? Or have you forgotten that when we were joined with Christ Jesus in baptism, we joined him in his death? For we died and were buried with Christ by baptism. And just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glorious power of the Father, now we also may live new lives.” Romans 6:1-4 NLT

With Love, 

AA55AA1F-EA36-49A9-92BE-41FD67348618

This Is My Journey Unscripted.

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

Photo by Sebastien Gabriel on Unsplash

realchristianwomen.blog 

Christian

Daily Scripture, 4/12/19

“Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” Colossians 4: 5-6

Photo by Andrea Tummons on Unsplash

With Love, 

AA55AA1F-EA36-49A9-92BE-41FD67348618

This Is My Journey Unscripted.

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

All Scriptures are NIV unless otherwise noted.

Photo by Unsplash

realchristianwomen.blog 

Christian

Are Some People Really Toxic?

According to Psychology Today, the way to deal with a difficult, aka “toxic” person, is to “limit your time with this person or end the relationship—and don’t look back.”

Is there someone in your life that you would like to be done with, and then never look back? You can find justification for this attitude in pop psychology, but not in the Bible.

Jesus said, “Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you. Bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.” Luke 6:27-28 NIV

I have a student like that right now.  You might say he really knows how to push my buttons! It’s like he wants me to dislike him. After repeated insults, disrespect, and defiance, I said to him, “I’m done with you!”

The Lord has not let me forget it! He says, “That’s not an option.” He reminds me that it’s a good thing He didn’t feel that way about me when I was (let’s just say) sowing my oats. No, God never left me when I left Him. He still loved me when I was rebellious and sinful. And He was faithful to bring me back to Him, even though I did nothing to deserve His great love, mercy, and forgiveness.

This is why I love Jesus. He loves me unconditionally! Isn’t that what we all need? – what the whole world needs – TO BE LOVED?

I believe God puts certain people in our path for a reason. There may be someone in our life that is difficult to love. It might not be forever, but while they’re around, we must show them God’s love.

Jesus said, “If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even ‘sinners’ love those who love them ….. Love your enemies ….. Then your reward will be great and you will be sons of the Most High, because He is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.” Luke 6:32-36

If God puts an “unlovable” person in our path, we’ll know it. He’ll make sure of that. We may think we aren’t strong enough to love that person, but we can count on the Lord to give us the grace we need. He said,

“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” 2 Corinthians 12:9 NIV

With Love, 

AA55AA1F-EA36-49A9-92BE-41FD67348618

This is My Journey Unscripted.

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

realchristianwomen.blog 

Photo by Ashley Jurius on Unsplash

Christian

So You’re Angry

One morning, God stopped me in the middle of something (I thought) was very important and gave me a lesson in discipline. This is what happened:

I was studying my Bible to prepare a lesson for the Women’s Bible Study when the phone rang. The church secretary informed me that the room I had reserved for the Bible Study would not be available because someone else needed it.

What?! Are you kidding me? So what? 

(Little did I know, the Lord was getting ready to take me down a completely different path than the one I was on.)

It was hard to continue preparing my Bible lesson when I so angry. I thought, They can’t just take my room! This is ridiculous! Who do they think they are? That’s not fair!

I knew my attitude was wrong, but I couldn’t help it. I felt justified.

Then a Scripture came to my mind.

“Above all else, guard your heart,” came the still small voice. (Proverbs 4:23)

Honestly, I didn’t really want to, but I listened. Then another Scripture came to my mind. “Do not think of yourselves more highly than you ought.” (Romans 12:3) and “Honor one another above yourselves.” (Romans 12:10)

Then, God said to me, “Forgive”.

“For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your Heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.” (Matthew 6:14-15)

As an act of my will, I forgave. But I still felt really annoyed. Then the Lord brought another Scripture to my mind. “See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up.” Hebrews 12:15

To forgive is a decision, but I knew that if I kept rehearsing this over and over in my mind, bitterness would take root. I needed God’s grace.

Thank God we can “Come boldly to the throne of grace … and find grace to help us in our time of need.” Hebrews 4:16

What is our time of need? It is when we are too weak to do something in our own strength. The Lord told Paul, “My grace is sufficient, …. for my power is made perfect in weakness.2 Corinthians 12:9

Hebrews 13:9 says, “It is good to be strengthened by God’s grace.”

Oh how we need to rely on God’s grace to serve Him!

“Let us have grace whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear.” Hebrews 12:28 KJV

“And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.” 2 Corinthians 9:8

God was teaching me that I can easily justify a  selfish attitude. But if I want others to see the love of God through me, I must walk in His ways.

It wasn’t the circumstances in question that were important. The real issue was – would I guard my heart? He taught me to rely on Him because His grace is sufficient.

If you need God’s grace today, go boldly to the Throne of Grace.

With Love, 

AA55AA1F-EA36-49A9-92BE-41FD67348618

This is My Journey Unscripted.

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

realchristianwomen.blog 

Photo by Ryan Franco on Unsplash

All Scripture references are from the NIV unless otherwise noted.