Bitterness and Surrender

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“Since God chose you to be the holy people He loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony. And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful.”
Colossians 3:12-15

“Let it go.”

I hear these words turning around in my head. I know they are from the Lord, but I feel like I can’t do what He is requesting.

The older I get, the more I realize how weak I really am. I see all the things Christ has brought me through and given me strength to accomplish, and sometimes I just forget.


I see all the things Christ has brought me through and given me strength to accomplish, and sometimes I just forget.


I forget that He carried me up every steep mountain.

I forget that He gave me the words and steadied my shaking voice.

I forget that He strengthened me as I looked at various and daunting valleys that I knew I couldn’t make it through alone.

I forget that it was Him. Every time.

I find that the moment I begin to let my pride and self think that I can handle it all is the very moment I fall flat on my face. As I get back up, it’s as if He brushes me off and hands me a mirror and says, “Let it go. I want to fix these dark places that you have allowed to grow in your heart.”


I find that the moment I begin to let my pride and self think that I can handle it all is the very moment I fall flat on my face.


“You have heard the law that says, ‘Love your neighbor’ and hate your enemy. But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you!” Matthew 4:43-44

Because we are human, we will find ourselves hurt by others. We may also find that we tend to hold onto that hurt and pain as if it teaches the one who hurt us a lesson. At least I do. And it never teaches them a lesson, shows them who is boss or makes them pay for how they made me feel. I always begin to see myself slip away. Joy, peace, thankfulness…it all begins to fade as I narrow my sights on what was done to me and who has wronged me. It’s the worst kind of tunnel vision because when you fix your eyes on the hurt and the person who dealt you that hurt, knowingly or unknowingly, you can’t see Christ. Your heart and mind become so fixated on that one thing that Christ’s strength to heal and forgive begins to become an afterthought.

If they only knew how much it hurt, then I would be satisfied.

If they only could see how this has affected my entire life, then I would be happier.

If I could only tell them everything that is swirling around in my heart and head, then I would feel better.


…when you fix your eyes on the hurt and the person who dealt you that hurt, knowingly or unknowingly, you can’t see Christ.


But you see, we are to have the same attitude of Christ. Christ humbled Himself for people who would spit in His face. He humbled Himself knowing not everyone would see the truth. He humbled Himself knowing it would end in a painful and humiliating death.

He humbled Himself.

“So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive His mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most.” Hebrews 4:16

When we allow Christ to work in our hearts in the midst of hurt and persecution, He begins to change our perspective from being a victim to being chosen. When we realize Who is always looking out for us and has our very best in mind, we can start to let go of the bitterness and open our hands in complete surrender.


When we allow Christ to work in our hearts in the midst of hurt and persecution, He begins to change our perspective from being a victim to being chosen.


I challenge you today, and myself, to work on those hidden places of hurt. Whether that person knows they hurt you or not, let it go. Give God the final word and take His hand to follow Him into freedom. The world and others will tell you that you have a right to hold on to the pain. But I am telling you today that you have a right to let it go. We are most free in Christ when we are most surrendered to Him. Start today by physically opening your hands and let Christ take what you are holding on to.