Today my daughter and I were weeding some flower beds. We enjoyed being outside and my daughter loved having an excuse to play in the dirt. The beds had been weeded in the Fall, but somehow the weeds had survived the winter and were thriving. In fact when we pulled them up their root systems were extensive making it impossible to get all of the roots. It got me to thinking of all the weeds I that can grow up in my life such as bitterness, jealousy, or anger. If I do not weed these things out of my life right away, they are hard to get rid of and come back again and again. Hebrews 12:15 tells us "See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many." I am to see that bitterness does not take root in me.
When my DH and I were first married, he was a youth and music guy at a small church. One evening I received a call from a lady who attended the church who accused me of things that I had not done. I was distraught. I had a choice - give it to God and let it go or harbor bitterness toward this woman. At the time, I would not have called it harboring bitterness. My thoughts would have been "I can't believe she said that" or something to that effect. The root of bitterness often takes affect without us knowing it. In this case, I was surrounded by people who helped me choose to give it to God and let it go. Now when I look back, I have no hard feelings.
A bitter root is often a tape of past offenses and words said that plays again and again; past offenses and words that should have been forgiven and forgotten. Instead of sharing God's grace I spread seeds of bitterness. This weed needs to be pulled out, even if it is painful. How much easier if the weed had never taken root and been allowed to grow.
The key to keeping bitterness from taking root is found in Jeremiah 17:7-8. "But blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in him. He will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit." When I am truly trusting in the LORD, what someone says or does will not affect me in the same way. I will be remembering that all things are in God's hands. I will have confidence that God will be there and will take care of me. As His child, I can then concentrate on being the tree that has roots growing deep and never fails to bear fruit.
Dear God, Thank you for your grace. May I share your grace with all those you send my way. Help no bitter root to grow in me whatever the circumstances. Instead let me be a tree firmly planted and grows deep roots and never fails to bear fruit. It is only possible with your Spirit In Jesus name, Amen