Tuesday, April 28, 2015
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If my wife and I ever happen to be at your house for a meal, don't bother offering my wife milk. She will probably politely decline. You can tell her how good it is for her. It won't help. "No" is always the answer when it comes to milk. It has been that way since she was a girl, and it's all this cow's fault; the one who gave the milk with the bitter taste.
Maybe it's the fault of what the cow ate that gave the milk that taste. It's this weed they had on their farm. It's called appropriately "bitterweed". So, here's Bossy, just dining on what's growing in the pasture, and she includes in her menu a healthy serving of bitterweed. It gets into her system, then it gets into her milk, and then it gets into my wife's glass, and of course she's expected by her parents to drink all of her milk. So milk is ruined for her for a long time to come. It's amazing how feeding a little bit of that bitterweed can affect the flavor of things down the line.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Bitterness - The Poison In Your Soul."
When a cow feeds on something bitter, it affects more than just that cow. When a person feeds on their own bitterweed, it affects more than just one person. Our word for today from the Word of God comes from Hebrews 12:15. This is important insight for anyone who's been hurt, betrayed, maybe abandoned, insulted, neglected, abused. Most of us are in there somewhere.
Here's what it says, "See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up." Wow! What's the problem with a bitter root growing up inside of you? Well, it goes on to say, "It grows up to cause trouble and defile many." Feeding on bitterweed - bitterness. It starts a chain of events that can ruin the flavor of your life and the lives of a lot of people close to you.
God reveals some of the ugly secrets about those hard feelings that you may be harboring inside. First He says bitterness never stays the same size; it grows, infecting more and more of your feelings, your moods, your attitudes.
Secondly, bitterness causes trouble, beginning with trouble for you. It actually ties you to the person you'd rather not have anything to do with. But as long as you carry anger, or bitterness, or hard feelings toward a person, you're carrying that person around with you all the time.
And it's just like the bitterweed that eventually ruined the taste of a little girl's milk. Bitterness starts to ruin your attitude. Without even realizing why, you slowly become more cynical, sarcastic, unforgiving, negative. So bitter feelings defile many; so many marriages, so many parent/child relationships, working relationships, church relationships, and friendships have been poisoned by a person's unresolved anger or hard feelings.
Those feelings spill out on others around you, and they didn't even do anything to you. And often the flavor of your closest relationships is ruined by the bitter weeds you've been feeding on. Worst of all, bitterness can cost you the help of God's grace in your situation. Bitterness and grace cannot co-exist in the same heart. One has to go. That's why it says, "See to it that no one misses the grace of God." You can do without the grudge. You can't do without the grace.
Isn't it time to pull up the bitter weed that's growing inside you before it takes over the whole garden? Emotional freedom, emotional cleansing starts when you make a choice to forgive the people who have hurt you. Not because they deserve it. Not because you feel like it. It's because Jesus says to do it.
Colossians 3:13, "Forgive as the Lord forgave you." Forgiving is a decision to treat that person, not as they treated you, but as Jesus treated you. You're declaring a new beginning in that relationship, a new declaration of emotional independence for yourself. When you stop feeding on the weed of bitterness, you can change the taste of your life so much. It's done enough damage.
Pull up the bitter weeds and let the rich diet of God's grace grow where those weeds once pushed it out.