OPEN HEAVENS DAILY DEVOTIONAL SUNDAY 13TH APRIL, 2014
THEME: PEACE ALL-ROUND II
Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled;
Read: Hebrews 12:14-15
14 Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:
15 Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled;
BIBLE IN ONE YEAR : HOSEA 1-5 and PSALM 80:1-7
Although there are different dimensions of peace, the highest level of peace a man can attain is peace with God through Jesus Christ. Know this however: the fact that you are a child of God and love God does not necessarily imply you will not have problems. A fearful situation automatically erodes peace of mind unless if as a child of God you put your trust in Him (Isaiah 26:3).
The character flaws of a Christian can be detrimental to the flourishing of the peace given by our Lord Jesus Christ. One character flaw top on this list is bitterness. Bitterness can grow and even take root in a heart. The root of bitterness stops the children of God from enjoying the peace of God. While the root of bitterness in the heart of an individual will affect other people around, a big chunk of the adverse effect of this evil root is on the individual harbouring it. The root of bitterness in a heart creates room for hatred, envy and anger; it is undoubtedly a harbinger of unforgiveness. It also makes for unhappiness. The phrase “root of bitterness” itself gives one an idea of what this stuff offers – all-round bitterness. It results in bitter experiences, smothering joy and peace. How does it originate? It comes when one feels unfairly treated by another person or an organisation. It comes from a feeling of being injured whether physically, emotionally or otherwise. For instance, a sister in courtship that is jilted, a spouse that is cheated upon by his/her partner, an employee that is short-changed, a case of great disappointment such that high hopes were dashed, death of a loved one, case of rape and others. All these are negative experiences that no one would desire, and I pray you will never experience anything of these sorts in Jesus’ Name. In case you are grappling with the root of bitterness resulting from whatever previous experiences you’ve had, please note that it is not in your best interest to keep it. Bitterness eats up its host; it affects the physical wellbeing of an individual, as well as causing a strained relationship with God.
There was a man whose wife died sometime ago, leaving behind an only daughter with a striking resemblance to the mother. The daughter was the only existing consolation to this man. This lady’s husband turned out to be something else, maltreating the lady to the point of threatening her life. The root of bitterness that sprang up in the lady’s father resulted in him becoming swollen, defying all medical care. He only became alright after forgiving his son-in-law.
Check your heart to ensure no bitterness is taking root there. If there is any trace of it, let go of it and pray for the healing of your soul.