This week my posts have to do with ways we can find ourselves under the thumb of the evil one – the real oppressor, the devil. Many may conclude that our greatest enemy today is our own government – the news media – the Internet – addiction – Covid – and any number of issues that inhabit our planet. The true oppressor is the one who is in direct conflict with all that is good and perfect – our heavenly Father, God, who has power over all things, including our enemy.
Today I’d like to discuss bitterness as one of tools in the devil’s arsenal. Bitterness is often described as a foul taste, resulting from eating the wrong thing. It can also be a term used for a feeling left within us after we’ve been wounded physically, emotionally or spiritually. Both meanings are a reaction to being fed something acidic, resentful, foul or harmful. Yesterday I talked about the results of bullying, but bitterness goes one step further down the path of negativity. There is a breaking point for most of us. Bitterness goes beyond that. It’s a feeling that stays with you and affects the way you deal with all things in your life. You in fact can easily become a slave to bitterness It will fester like an open wound and never heal unless you release it.
When you’re constantly being fed a diet of bitterness, you in fact become what you eat. Your attitude towards others changes. Your relationships are shallow. Your thoughts turn inward. Focusing on yourself becomes a way of life. How do you remove the bitter taste – the after taste that clings to the roof of your mouth? It would be nice if you could just gargle that taste away, but by the time it has turned into a bitter spirit, it takes much more than mouth wash.
There is a way to eliminate bitterness from our lives and it’s so easy, yet many prefer to wallow in their acrimony . The Bible has this to say about this malady.
Ephesians 4:31-32 ESV “Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.”
By forgiving others as we have been forgiven, the scars caused by bitterness will be erased. Putting others first is what our Savior, Jesus did. He left His throne of glory and honor. He humbled Himself and became a servant. He sacrificed everything to purchase our redemption. The least we can do in gratitude for that precious gift, is to thank Him and than follow His lead by forgiving others.