No one who walks this earth goes unscathed by the actions of others, in one way or another.
People impact us. Sometimes they hurt us.
(Even those of us who like to pretend no one can get under our skin.)
But we all have had experiences where it's really easy to feel resentment and anger towards someone. In fact, it's hard not to.
The bitterness inside can easily consume us, swallow us whole, and take over our life. Sometimes for a very long time.
I’ve met people who have been living their life through the lens of their bitterness for decades.
Sometimes it’s not as long, but still equally consuming.
The thing about bitterness is that it doesn’t change the past, at all.
But it absolutely changes one’s future.
Because when we should be enjoying the moment, we are sulking in anger of the past instead.
Or when we could just brush something off and make the most of our day, we go into an anger spiral that completely takes over our ability to be present.
Bitterness is like poison in our veins.
Yet, it’s so hard not to be bitter when the world has been unkind to us, and honestly, we feel like we deserve to be bitter.
Maybe you do deserve it. I know some really awful things happen to people.
But I also know that when we choose bitterness, we are giving power over to the person or thing that hurt us.
Each time we choose bitterness we are saying, “here’s my joy”.
I would never tell someone to just “get over” the pain of their past.
No, your pain is valid.
But I would encourage someone to take a look at how much time and energy they are STILL giving the thing that hurt them.
We have a choice to make- be bitter, or be better.
Being better, meaning, choosing a life of freedom for yourself.
Getting to take the weight of the past off of you so you can live a lighter life.
One where you are present.
But the choice needs to be made.
Usually the choice needs to be made daily.
In fact, it might need to be made many, many times a day.
Am I going to let whoever hurt me steal more for me?
Or am I going to release it, knowing God will take care of it Himself, and move forward from this pain?
I know it’s a process. I know it can take awhile to get to a place where you really feel free from the past.
But I pray that you’ll at least start the process.
Really try to make the choice to grab ahold of the better life that’s available to you.
Jesus wants you free from bitterness. Not because what happened was okay, but because when He died on the cross He took on your pain, so you wouldn’t have to carry it forever.
I know it sounds kind of crazy, but it’s true.
Bitter or better- you choose.
Choose with Jesus in mind.
Choose with your future joy and peace in mind.
And when the bitterness sneaks up, which it probably will, make the choice again.
Because life without the weight of bitterness is better.
~Kelli Bachara, The Unraveling Blog