Devotional: Bitter To Better
Bitterness is a poisonous weed that spreads everywhere, stains everything, and causes trouble everywhere in your life. Some bitterness is rooted so deeply that we’ve learned to cope with it by covering it up with career success, ambition, relationships, distractions, busyness, lavish things, and even ministry. But Hebrews 12:14-15 shows us that we can go from bitter to better by uprooting the bitterness quickly and planting new spiritual seeds. When we reflect on Jesus’ death on the cross for our sins and experience his complete and immediate forgiveness, we are enabled to forgive by inviting Christ to uproot the bitterness with the power of the Holy Spirit.
Questions For Meditation
- Bitterness is like weeds that infect and overtake the healthy plants around them. Where has bitterness started to grow in your life? What areas has it impacted and infected over time? What areas can it impact if the bitterness isn’t uprooted?
- Bitterness is like weeds. It is manmade and causes you personal trouble. Despite the hurtful things you have witnessed or experienced, have you found yourself planting weeds of bitterness and watering them with your own hand?
- Bitterness stains and spreads fast. What are the first three words of Hebrews 12:14 and Hebrews 12:15 (NIV)? When is it a good time to “see to it” and “make every effort” to forgive?
- Harboring bitterness, or covering it up, is like harboring a fugitive who gets comfortable and eventually takes over your house. What happens to bitterness when you cover it up and harbor it? Have you harbored bitterness? What have you covered up your bitterness with?
- Bitterness is an emergency. Who should you turn to immediately in order to uproot the bitterness? Does Christ harbor bitterness when you repent and ask for forgiveness?
- Christ died for you on the cross and gives you complete and immediate forgiveness when you turn to Him and repent. What does this do for your ability to forgive? What does Christ’s forgiveness do for your willingness to forgive?
- Is there a limit to Christ’s forgiveness? Being forgiven, are you able to likewise forgive? Are you willing? Who do you have in mind? How many times are you pre-committed to forgiving them?