By the expression on my face, you would have thought I had drunk from a bitter cup.
It was one of those days when I couldn’t open my mouth to sing or pray. I was full of unforgiveness, and it restricted my praise. Have you ever had one of those days? Quick to dismiss how God brought you through the fire last week. You find yourself unforgiving and angry, in a dark place, bitter holding a grudge, and unable to move forward.
We have experienced hurt and struggle to forgive because of unfair treatment, offense, and disappointment, and become full of hatred, with no intention of letting go of the emotions weighing us down. Knowing that when we hold on to anger for so long, it turns into bitterness. Unlike anger which exists for a short time, bitterness can last for a long time.
I wanted to forgive her, but every time I thought about the hurt and the lies, bitterness would creep back in.
Repeatedly, I asked why and why she chose me as her target. It was me that welcomed her on her first day at the Organization. She was not technology savvy, so I helped her during her meetings. I wanted her to make it right, but I was asking for too much, you see, because the last thing she would do is tell the truth because that would make her the liar, I knew she was. I wanted my name cleared. I wanted an apology, and I wanted it YESTERDAY.
Well, my pain and suffering were not acknowledged, and one evening as I sat on the couch listening to maverick city music, I was reminded that He is all-knowing. He knows her side, my side, and the side nobody wanted to talk about. He knows the grace and mercy extended when we didn’t deserve it.
Three things to remember the next time you experience hurt and become angry and bitter:
1) He knows. He was there. He saw and heard everything. Revenge is His (Romans 12:19 KJV). Talk less and praise Him more. Will that make it easy to move on, no, but know that He knows?
2) He knows your heart. He knows it is heavy. “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” (Mathew 11:28 NIV) A heavy heart may tire you out but laying your cares and worries before God gives you the support you need to let them go.
3) He knows you have caused hurt (known and unknown). I am not saying that you deserve to be hurt, but we all have caused someone else some hurt. So, instead of thinking more highly of yourself, ask God to show you your sins against others.
He is the only person who has ever suffered unjustly. God sent Christ Jesus to take the punishment for our sins to end all God’s anger against us. The great pain He endured. The great shame he experienced. He knows.
The next time you feel you have been wronged, remember He knows all about the rough seasons of your life. He is with you and has promised never to leave you. He will give you and your offenders hope.
Like Jesus, we must not drink from the cup of bitterness. We are to drink from the cup of Living Water to quench our thirst for anger and bitterness.