Guard against bitterness
Testimonies - Aug 11, 2021 Author: Jeanette Green

Guard against bitterness

Middle of July, I went to bed feeling fine. I woke with a purple-red right big toe. So sore was my toe I could barely walk.
My husband, Calvin, gave my toe one look and said, “Soak your foot in hot saltwater.” 
I followed his advice.

The next morning, a yellow ridge had formed on the right side of my toenail. I knew what had to be done.
“Love, will you help me, please?” I showed Calvin my toe. “Do you think you can drain the abscess?”
He nodded. I sat down, my heart thundering in my ears, while he disinfected a needle. It was time for the operation. Calvin was very gentle with me, but I won’t lie—the process was excruciating!

Afterward, I applied some antiseptic ointment. Later, a dear friend whatsapped me a photo of antibiotic ointment I should use, instead. I forgot I had a tube of it in the medicine cabinet!
Now, my toe is almost back to normal.

God used my sore toe to show me the condition of my heart.

The morning I discovered my infected toe, I remembered the ritual Moses performed when he ordained the priests. He had to apply blood to the right ears, the right thumbs, and the right big toes of the priests (Lev 8). The abscess on my right big toe meant something.

“Lord, what are you trying to tell me?”
“There is a hidden pocket of bitterness inside your soul and it is hindering your walk of faith,” He said. “You turned to Calvin to help you drain the physical abscess. Turn to Me to heal the abscess in your heart. I will be gentle with you, but it will be painful. Yet, you must yield to the process of My cleansing. Only then will you be able to walk the path I have set before you.”

Painful memories I thought I had dealt with poured into my mind. They wiped me out. I spent a week sobbing and questioning God. Instead of pushing my feelings deep down inside, like I usually do, I faced them. It was a tough yet rewarding process. For a while, I felt bitter, angry, even hopeless. Would I ever feel better? Then God’s light broke through. Peace flooded my soul, and I felt like the space inside of me had enlarged. Like I had more room inside of me, where God could now dwell.

I opened the Bible at Revelation 8. It was about a star, called ‘Bitterness’ that will fall from the sky and turn a third of the world’s water bitter.
In my heart, I heard God whisper, “I purify all My children’s hearts. It is a painful process. Few of My children understand what it means to pick up their cross. What it means to eat My flesh and drink My blood. You yourself expected I will remove all your troubles. I rescued you, but not by changing your circumstances. Bitterness grew in your heart.

“In this hour, all My children should guard their hearts against bitterness. Especially against bitterness towards Me. I am the Potter. You are the clay. While you are in this world, I will continuously shape and purify you. Because I am your Good Father, I am preparing you so that you will endure throughout the days ahead.”

It’s been a month, and even though my toe is better, it is still tender. I discover that my soul is still tender, too. God presses His finger on other sore spots within. But as I release my heartache to Him, His peace comes flooding in.

Uprooting bitterness takes time. And time is in God’s hands. He will complete the good work He started in us. While we wait for Him to do that, let us stand firm, dressed in the spiritual armor He gives. It is time to immerse ourselves in the Bible, to feed on the Bread of Life and drink of the Fountain of Life.

Scripture:
Rev 8:10-11>Then the third angel blew his trumpet. A large star, burning like a torch, dropped from the sky and fell on a third of the rivers and on the springs of water. (The name of the star is "Bitterness.") A third of the water turned bitter, and many people died from drinking the water because it had turned bitter.
 
Prayer:
Father God, please help us look at all the pain and suffering in this world, our own suffering, through Your eyes. God, extract any bitterness that has rooted in our hearts. Pour Your Living Water into us, to replace bitterness. By the power of Your Holy Spirit, within us, help us to forgive and make us free. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

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