Bitterness…you must let it go…

See to it that no one falls short of the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many. Hebrews 12:15

“What if you woke up tomorrow, and from the moment your feet hit the floor, you chose to release all anger and bitterness.”

I sunk down a bit in the pew as my pastor spoke these words. Was this even possible? From the moment the alarm goes off I am angry. Angry about having to go to work. Bitter towards my husband. Hating myself for everything I have done and will do wrong. Bitterness was my way of life. The root ran deep.

Hebrews 12:15 tells us that a bitter root grows up to cause trouble. It’s like the class bully. When we are bitter it affects everyone and everything around us. A prime example of this was my relationship with my husband. I was impossible to please. He would do the dishes and I would be angry that he did not spend more time with the children. He would leave me sweet notes on the bathroom mirror, and I would rip into him explaining that sweet notes couldn’t undo the hurt of the past. Bitter goggles colored everything and everyone in my world.

Not only did bitterness cause trouble in my relationships, it also defiled them. Defile is a word that means to make dirty or pollute. When we allow bitterness into our hearts and minds we are like hazardous materials. Rather than a display of His grace we become a display of hypocrisy and inappropriate, unfair judgment. Going back to the relationship with my husband, I bashed him for not being a better spiritual leader for our family. I actually felt hatred towards him. And the harder I pushed and the angrier I got, I watched my husband fall further and further away from the Lord. He did not have any desire to be part of spiritually leading me. In fact, if I was an example of a “good” Christian wife, I am sure he was terrified of what my version of a “good” Christian husband would actually look like.

It was not until my husband and I were facing divorce that I knew something needed to change. And that a huge part of that something was me. I began to wonder what it would actually look like if I did choose to let go of anger and bitterness. I thought about it for a while, and then I realized that thinking about it was not an option. This would have to be something that I just chose to do, an action completely dependent upon the grace and mercy of God.

That morning I woke up. Moment by moment, minute by minute, I intentionally released my negative emotions to the Lord. I was initially shocked at how much negativity had infiltrated my life. As my husband did things that irritated me throughout the day, I chose to hold my tongue and love him anyways. I was tempted to stew over what I saw as his incompetence, but rather I thanked the Lord for giving me the blessing of his quirks. And with time, the strangest thing happened. Grace appeared, and I fell in love with my husband all over again.

It wasn’t long after that a mentor came into his life, and God transformed him before my eyes into the spiritual leader I had always wanted and envisioned. I am more in love with my husband today than I ever thought possible. I owe it all to Jesus.

What if you decided to let go of your bitterness today? Would it transform your life and your relationships? I believe it can, because when we are obedient to the Lord, good things happen. Try it. Let it go…just for today…and then tomorrow…and let’s just see what the Lord can do…

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Comments

  1. says

    What a FABULOUS post, Steph!! Thank you for your willingness to share the yucky parts of your marriage and your heart with us. Your words really spoke to me. I am teaching on something similar this week, and I just love how God affirms and confirms in ways like this. You have such great wisdom for such a young woman. God has truly gifted you!!!

    Love you,

    Wendy

    • says

      Wendy I will be praying as you teach! God is showing me more and more how important releasing anger and bitterness is. It’s so essential in the healing process. Love you way big girl…you teach me soooooo much!!!

  2. says

    Wow, Stephanie! This post is a bit of an answer to prayer for me. My husband and I have been at a similar place to you and yours, and God has brought so much healing from it all for both of us. This past week, however, was a bit difficult. I’ve been praying for God’s perspective in how to handle my heart in the midst. This blog is a good reminder to not let bitterness win out! Thank you!

  3. Marisa Lenear says

    Wow!! As I was driving my kids to school this morning, I was realizing how long I have been angry, resentful, and bitter toward my husband….way to long!!! I thought I had forgiven, but the rot seems to be right there, at the surface, and I pick it up when I choose. Thanks for sharing this today….perfect timing! Choosing to let go won’t be easy, but with God at the front, leading the way, it is possible!!

  4. Cindy says

    Thank you so much for sharing. It is so easy for bitterness to become the norm and we don’t realize how much it is taking away from us. As you begin to let go of the bitterness it’s simply amazing how different things can be.

  5. says

    Thanks for your transparency. Just the other day MY DH had unloaded silverware but forks were with spoons etc. I nicely grumbled cohld you just do it right the first time. They get ruined etc. But i did thank him for moving the clutter. I got home late. Etc. He said I should be glad he did anything. I agreed but….no trama happened but we had atleast communicated. I was just upset about many other things. Being thoughtful of the other person and leaving a room better than when you arrived is important to me. My husband has very stressful job so we choose to move on and cut some slack.
    One thing i am learning in song of solomon study is that the mature bride sees with doves eyes;has His eyes. I want that and the Beloved never does anything but affirms the Shulamite always regardless of what she does. So this my hearts plea. He is always drawing her closer.
    Thanks for sharing. May you be blessed today.

    something that wasnt on my way too long list for that eve.

  6. says

    Stephanie from Texas!! Thank you for this amazing read! And for sharing the hard parts of your life with me thru your words. Keep preaching to me Sister!! You know I have a hard head and heart at times!!

    Once again, I think you have a direct line to my heart thru the eyes of Jesus. You have been hitting the red bullseye with the last couple of entries!

    Thanks much & I Wuv u!!

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