What is it you can’t get past? Who is it that is really holding you back? Bitterness will do more than leave a bad taste in your mouth. Whether over something or someone, we weren’t designed by God to live bitter lives.
Here are 4 Ways to Beat Bitterness…
1) Confess it. You’ve been hurt, betrayed and are more than just a little angry. Start by letting the right people know. (Note: Venting on social media is discouraged… just don’t.) Begin by praying to God and seeking His grace to let go. Then, find a trusted person or small (very small) group you can process you pain with. Ask them to pray for you as you take the next step. Often, a professional Christian counselor can help you process deeper wounds that won’t go away with time.
2) Forgive it. Go to the source. Share your feelings with the person or persons you believe are at the root of your hurt. By the way, could one of those persons be you? We are rarely blameless when things break bad. Own your own fault and failures where they exist. If not, the only person holding you back is you.
“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, NIV)
Bitterness will burn you. Worse, it will spread to and burn the ones you love. Someone has said, “Failing to forgive is like drinking poison and expecting our enemies to get sick.” It’s time to let go.
Seek them out. Let them know how you feel and why. Be specific. Then, let them know you forgive them. Say the words from the heart, and in person is always preferred.
3) Speak it. You probably don’t realize just how much you have been airing your grievance and airing your anger. Where once your bitterness consumed your thoughts and dominated your conversations, you now need to fill that void with words of encouragement, hope, gratitude, and more.
“Gracious words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.” Proverbs 16:24, NIV)
Purpose to talk about the good things of God and speak well of others.
4) Create it. You are a walking, talking weather system. You create your own micro-environment everywhere you go. When you are living bitter you are a perpetual cloudy day, raining on everyone’s parade, or a raging storm doing more damage than you know. Be intentional about thinking, speaking and acting with the grace that flows from the deep springs of a forgiven heart. What are you listening to, watching, streaming and downloading? Create light environments of praise and expectation. Remember, what you get into gets into you.
You don’t have to live stuck in the muck of bitterness. Find a trusted mentor or small group who will walk with you as you break free!
What would you recommend to someone struggling with bitterness? Share your thoughts in the Reply section below…