writing for children

From Bitter to Better…

by Susan Wilson

So, there were a lot of good, bad, and ugly things we have looked at here in these last few posts.  One thing we need to bear in mind is this… when we call out darkness, the good news is that we have brought it to the Light.  The Light has a name, Jesus.  1John 1:5 Amplified  “This is the message [of God’s promised revelation] which we have heard from Him and now announce to you, that God is Light [He is holy, His message is truthful, He is perfect in righteousness], and in Him there is no darkness at all [no sin, no wickedness, no imperfection].”  We are called to walk in that Light. (Isaiah 2:5)  And when light has shown on us we have a responsibility to act on what we have been made aware of.  I am so glad that Jesus made a way for all sin to be dealt with.  Yes, even the sin of how we deal with those who have hurt us (unforgiveness & bitterness). 

Jesus brought us a way to be free from all the snares of the enemy.  There will never be anything stronger than the fact that Jesus paid for the sin of the world.  His blood atonement paid it all for the rest of eternity.  Any time I lose sight of this truth and it’s amazing ramifications on every area of existence, I get off focus.  We live in an age where just maintaining our focus is a battle.  I was easily distracted long before that had a name.  (Squirrel!)  But I am thankful to have a magnetic pull towards Christ.  When things go wrong He is where I flee to.  When life goes well, He is where I run rejoicing.  My testimony is full of stories of His love and power to transform.  I have seen relationships restored.  I have seen lives redeemed.  I have had the privilege of seeing His faithfulness for decades now and it is truly a feast for my soul.  Keeping my eyes on what Christ has done for me I am better positioned to rightly handle when I am hurt by others.   I cannot give what I have not received.  I have received forgiveness.  I have been cleansed from all unrighteousness.  1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”  That is a good feeling!  Which leads me to my next point.  Gratitude is paramount. 

I have heard it said by a dear friend and mother in the Lord that oftentimes our breakthrough is just on the other side of our worship.  My dear friend,  we cannot worship when we are not grateful.  The attitude of gratitude must prevail.  Always.  It is where our hope resides.  

You either get bitter or you get better..." You always have way more  choices than it feels in a moment of stress. The c… | Words, Words of  wisdom, Quotable quotes

Bitterness and unforgiveness are at war with our souls.  I am thankful that God provided a way out.  I didn’t say it was easy, but it is definitely life giving.  It is an act of a surrendered will out of obedience to Christ.   We must lay aside every weight that so easily besets us.  Hebrews 12:1-3  “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 2fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.”

Don’t lose heart my friend.  You were the joy that was set before Jesus so that He could endure the cross and the shame.  You.  Me.  Wow.   That deep abiding joy is a fruit of the Spirit.  It is what is paired with His strong grace so that you can choose to do the hard thing that truth demands.  And oftentimes the hard thing is just the right thing that was not done in the right time.  I am thankful that we get another chance.  His mercy is new today.  Take Him up on it.  Allow His grace to flow through you and the joy will come in the morning.  

Oh, and one more thing.  Don’t do this alone.  We are called to community and connection.  It is how you were designed.  God has a family for you.   And if you don’t feel like you have much of one in the natural, He will place you in one in the Church.  Faith was meant to be walked out together.  Walk with other believers.  Find trusted Mothers and Fathers in the Lord.  Then, walk with them.  Sit at their feet.  Serve them and learn from them.  Soak up the wisdom from years of walking with God.  You will reap so many benefits.  You will learn how to weather storms.  Then, find others you can walk alongside.  Just like my dear friend Donna.  She has walked with me through life.  She has cried with me and prayed with me and spoken the voice of the Father to me many times.   

And last but not least, find those you can pour into.  Once you are free of bitterness and fresh water flows from you, raise up others and come up under them as they learn just how amazing the Father truly is. 

You can trust Him.  I promise.


p.s. if you’d like to read the previous posts in this series, you can find them here:

The “B” Word—Not What You Think: https://wordwranglernc.wordpress.com/…/the-b-word-not…/
Bitter Fruit: https://wordwranglernc.wordpress.com/…/05/04/bitter-fruit/
Bitter Truth: https://wordwranglernc.wordpress.com/…/05/07/bitter-truth/

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