In Touch Daily Devotional
by Dr. Charles Stanley
March 24-25, 2007 – The Struggle With Forgiveness – Hebrews 12:14-15
Yesterday, we learned the definition of forgiveness and how we can incorporate it into our relationships. Now, let’s look at its opposite, unforgiveness. It’s the deliberate decision not to let go of resentment toward someone else or your rights to get even with them. Tragically, this attitude is characteristic of our culture. Both outside and inside the church, we find many people who seem to enjoy nursing a grudge. They’ve been hurt. They don’t care who knows it. And, they focus their energies on revenge. What a waste!
Hebrews 12:14-15 reveals a warning against the “root of bitterness,” which can spring up and cause trouble. What does this mean? Just think of how bitterness operates. It may start with some simple resentment because of a person’s actions. Then, that little seed of resentment begins to grow.
What happens at the root impacts everything else. If you have love and peace as your foundation, then you will produce a crop of loving and peaceful fruit. However, if you are rooted in unforgiveness, you’ll develop a whole crop of anger, hatred, hostility, and pure bitterness that completely dominates you. Unless it’s dealt with early, such bitter fruit will spoil every part of your life.
You simply cannot accomplish God’s will with an unforgiving spirit. How can you expect to grow in Christ when you are willfully allowing bitterness to poison your heart? Uproot the unforgiveness in your life today. And offer the Lord your finest crop of spiritual fruit (Galatians 5:22-23).
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