So recently I was reading a friends blog and it was a little post on bitterness. I was mainly reading it just to read it.. see what they had to say.. blah blah. There were some questions asked in the post about how to know if you are bitter or not. I went through them, one by one, and by the end, I felt a sharp pain in my heart. Dang Alissa... you are freakin' bitter!!
Am I short with certain people? Is there someone that you just cant stand to be around? Do you feel dissapointed or in anguish often? Do you feel like God has let you down?
Not specifically all of those.. but yeah. Tonight I came home feeling extremely disappointed. Feeling like, "God what the heck is going on?" This isnt what you promised me. And Im not even the one that got myself into that relationship or situation... I was brought into it by someone who just didnt know what they wanted and wrecked my heart. Why am I the only funtional one in this friendship. Clearly that other person is a five year old and I am the adult here. And clearly they just keep hurting me, no matter how many times I try to make it work. I think its not practical to stay in contact with this person. I know I see them often, but I can just ignore them. The church doesnt need this relationship to work.. because its just not working.
Cue five year old whining. Seriously Alissa? How prideful and foolish. Clearly God is bigger than this pitiful issue that is in your OWN heart. And all those thoughts are pretty much lies. Someone cant just come in and wreck your heart. Sure they can definitely make moves to do so, purposeful or not, but if your heart is being protected and its in the right place, then it wouldnt have even happened like it did. And God is sovereign. How dare you get angry and think things could have been better. For goodness sake you dont know whats good for yourself!
Hebrews makes it BLUNTLY clear:
Hebrews 12:15 (New International Version)
See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many.
Yeah exacly. Bitterness causes disunity. It also means that someone is missing out on the grace of God (me). Also.. someone who is bitter.. aka a bitter root, is noooo good. Its like a five year old going and sucking on wasabi. They are going to throw up and cry alot. You wont be good for the church.. or for any relationships for that matter.. you will just make people throw up and cry alot. Goodness gracious. This is not ok.
I need to get rid of this bitterness asap. My friends article implies that bitterness is less about you and that other person and more about you and God. Its about asking God for forgiveness, as well as letting go and letting God. Letting Him back in control of our lives, giving him power over our anger, not hoarding it to ourselves in a deep cavern in our hearts, perfect place for bacteria to grow btw.
Also, I researched some sermons and other verses on bitterness, (Battling the Unbelief of Bitterness by John Piper specifically).. here is a little tidbit.
Anger is very dangerous. If it takes root in your heart and becomes a grudge or an unforgiving spirit, it can destroy you. That's the point of Jesus' parable in Matthew 18 about the unforgiving servant: after having his massive debt cancelled by the king, he refuses to cancel the tiny debt of his friend. And so the king throws him into jail for his heartlessness. Jesus closes the parable with this warning in verse 35: "So also will my heavenly Father do to every one of you if you do not forgive your brother from your heart."
Man oh man. I dont want to be destroyed with this. I need freedom from it. I need forgiveness, and I need to forgive. So I know this was a really awkward and long blog post, just keep me in your prayers. Pray that I fight sin, that I accept my forgiveness, that I forgive, that others are patient with me, and that this doesnt grow into anything deeper or darker than it already is. It needs to be shot, put in the past. God is a redeemer and will persevere me until the end. I know it for a fact.