“Watch out that no…bitterness grows up.” Heb 12:15 NLT
Betrayal is something others do to you; bitterness is something you do to yourself. It’s impossible to go through life without being hurt. It may be an unfaithful mate, an employee who slanders you, or a boss who fires you without explanation. Sitting at supper with His disciples, Jesus said, “One of you will betray me” (Mk 14:18 NIV). Shortly after that, Judas betrayed Him with a kiss. Some folks will kiss you today and kick you tomorrow. But Jesus refused to become bitter. That’s because He knew Judas’ kiss would usher Him into His destiny. Nor did Jesus turn His back on Peter when he denied Him. Instead, Peter was the only one He mentioned by name when He arranged to meet His disciples for breakfast following the resurrection. Jesus saw people in the light of their potential, not their problems. What they were at that moment didn’t keep Him from seeing what they would become when His grace touched their lives. And you must be that way too. This is why Paul wrote: “Get rid of all bitterness…Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you” (Eph 4:31-32 NLT). So eliminate any words of bitterness from your conversation. Stop rehearsing the details of your past unless it’s to teach and encourage others to rise above theirs. How often do you revisit your old issues? What are you doing to make sure no bitterness remains in your heart? God says, “Do not remember the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold, I will do a new thing” (Isa 43:18-19 NKJV).