Bitter Roots (Newsletter 4-2)

Bitter Roots
By Marjorie Kinnee

Early morning is usually very quiet. No one else is up and about; there are no hindrances such as phone calls or people knocking at the door. Even our cell phone is silent.

But in all this absence of outside things, the thoughts of our heart are busy. It’s times like this when the hidden things, buried deep within, rise to a reckoning. It seems easy to bring our wounds and hurtful issues before the Lord. Rehearsing the situation and circumstances allows us to ventilate and speak our grievances aloud. After all, the Scripture says we can cast all our cares on Him because He cares for and about us.

There is a major danger in this. Frequent rehearsals of the wrongs we’ve suffered tend to plant seeds of frustration and bitterness, especially when we cannot see the relief and change we feel is essential. Our foes seem to be “getting away with it.” That makes us feel like God is uninterested and uncaring. The roots of bitterness begin to stretch out. We take umbrage over our human foe and then extend it to God, because He has not yet brought them to our ideas of justice.

We ignore the mercy and grace that has been extended to us time and time again. We fixate on the paybacks we want God to visit on “them.” We’re sure they need to get what they deserve. What’s more, we can advise God on how to fix things, if He’d just listen. Meanwhile, those roots are digging in deeper.

Bitterness lies hidden, buried, silent perhaps, but is not inactive. It simmers, brewing a poisonous pottage that will destroy us. It is highly contagious, spreading to those around us. God’s Word warns that bitterness defiles many. Every root, every vestige, every part and particle needs to be dug out.

Bitterness will hinder and block our communion with God twice over. Unforgiveness of our foe is one impediment. Our anger against God’s timing is the other. The Word says our unwillingness to forgive blocks the forgiveness we so desperately need from God. We cannot afford to become bitter.

Even though Marjorie Kinnee is no longer with us, her valuable insights on God’s Word remain to challenge and encourage us.