Sue was pretty happy with her life. She had been telling herself for months that she was really OK. The hurt and pain of the previous months were gone now, or so she thought. Life was settling into routine again and it felt good! She was glad the confusion seemed to have lifted and she could see clearly again. That’s why her response came as such a surprise to her.
Her new boss knew nothing of the past pain of being passed by for that promotion or the lies that had been told about her in order to justify the hurtful decision. It was all just a part of the past now she had thought. Until today, until her boss made a seemingly innocent comment and the hurt and anger welled up with a fresh vengeance that surprised even Sue herself. Some words sprang out, unbidden. Words that did not help her position in her new job. Words that did not leave the Christian testimony Sue so deeply desired to show. A bitter root. Justified perhaps by the storms of life, but nevertheless a root that would continue to fester and spring up in her life if not dealt with.
We all get them! Hurts that go down into the depths of our soul and fester there. God even talks about bitter roots. He says:
“Watch out that no bitterness takes root among you, for as it springs up it causes deep trouble, hurting many in their spiritual lives.” Hebrews 12:15
If you get bumped in life and find that a bitter root has been disturbed and springs up with in you, take action! When caught by surprise by a root system that you did not think was in your heart, dig it out! Ask God to take the hurt and pain and replace it with His peace.
Some roots get dug out all at once. Other roots go little by little as we begin to recognize their presence and ask for God’s help in dissolving it. Ask Him to reveal to you each time that root gets nudged so you can recognize it and call on His help in ridding your heart of it.
Dear Father, Thank you that you know the habit I have of hanging on to roots that I need to let go of and place in your care. Nudge my heart today to get rid of those old roots of fear, anger and hurt. Help me today to turn each difficult challenge into an opportunity to reach for your strength so that no new roots take hold in my life. Amen.
by Gail Rodgers
Used by Permission
• Bitterness in the Garden of Our Hearts – by Francis Frangipane
• The Dungeon of Bitterness – Devotional by Max Lucado
• A Root of Bitterness – by Dr. Charles Stanley
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