When we are hurt and broken, we often feel like we are living in a bubble; all alone in a lonely journey of enduring personal pain. Yet, nothing could be farther from the truth. Bitterness is not isolative, nor does it put us in quarantine. Bitterness, unforgiveness, as well as unresolved hurt, pain, and offenses directly impacts those around us and our ability to establish and maintain healthy, mutually satisfying relationships.
The Bible warns us to diligently guard against bitterness, because our unresolved bitterness directly impacts those around us. (As was the case in the movie.) Bitterness causes trouble in our relationships and interactions with others. When we are bitter, we defile others in word and deed. Further, we miss out on God's grace, kindness, good-will, and bounty. Bitterness is acrid and will soundly destroy, leaving one in a place of lack and longing.
If any of this resonates with you, then there is good news for you! Forgiveness is not a feeling, but a choice. When we willfully and deliberately choose to release the one (a parent, sibling, teacher, employer, etc.) who has brought distress to our hearts and in humility side against our albeit deep and very real feelings of hurt, pain, and brokenness we move into a place of God's supernatural grace and peace. The peace that God offers passes all understanding and enables us to walk in divine wellness, wholeness, provision, security, and rest (Philippians 4:7).
Take the challenge and accept God's invitation. Who do you need to forgive? Who are you defiling as a result of your own personal root of bitterness. Is your spouse the recipient of misdirected anger? Perhaps your children have suffered from undue harshness and rage. Maybe you have become emotionally withdrawn or desensitized. Maybe your erratic and unpredictable in your behavior. Perhaps you "hit first" before any perceived attack comes your way. No matter your MO, it all qualifies as defilement; tainting, polluting, and contaminating others. Repent of it. Ask God to forgive you. Make a decision to destroy the root of bitterness in your life.
Greek Word Study (Strong's Exhaustive Concordance)
- diligently (G1983) episkopeo: to look carefully, beware
- fail (G5302) hystereo: to be in wanting, to lack, fall behind, be deficient
- bitterness (G4088) pikria: bitterness hatred, extreme wickedness, acridity
- trouble (G1776) enochleo: disturbance, to trouble, annoy
- defile (G3392) miaino: to dye with another color, to stain, pollute, soil, contaminate
Father, in the name of Jesus, I confess that there is a root of bitterness in my life. I thank you that you give me the power and the authority to destroy the root simply by confessing it. I renounce its power in my life. I humble myself before you and come into agreement with your word. I pray that you would forgive me for defiling others as a result of my personal pain. I thank you for your grace that is sufficient and for your strength that is made perfect in my weakness. I receive the peace, healing, wholeness, wellness, rest, and safety that you have so freely offered. Amen and so be it according to your word.