“I loathe my own life; I will give full vent to my complaint; I will speak in the bitterness of my soul.”-Job 10:1
The story of Job has always spoken great volumes to me. There were seasons of my life that I struggled with bitterness towards God. I didn’t understand the bigger picture of God’s great plan. Instead of lamenting to God, I just vented and sat in my bitterness.
From a human perspective, Job had every reason to be bitter. He had done nothing wrong. God Himself recognized that “there is no one like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, fearing God and turning away from evil” (Job 1:8).
Yet Satan argued that Job was not as “blameless and upright” as God claimed, and that everything would change if He would remove the hedge around him. When this hedge was removed, Job experienced the death of his children, the loss of possessions, and finally the deterioration of Job’s health.
Reacting with these challenges, Job became filled with bitterness. We can understand why he had this reaction, but also can see how this attitude impacted his entire approach toward life. His mind and heart were laced with bitterness. His soul was bitter, and he suddenly seemed to hate everything.
How easy it can be to react like Job, to allow the events of life to shape our thoughts and attitudes. To fall into a pattern dominated by bitterness or anger, doubt or betrayal. But bitterness can have a particularly painful impact.
The Bible warns us not to let any “root of bitterness” grow in our lives, and realize that this can poison us in many ways (Hebrews 12:15).
Today, we can learn from the example of people like Job. We can study the Bible and employ its powerful principles. We can apply the authority God has given to believers to resist our enemy. And we can call on God’s Spirit to change us and give us abilities we don’t have in ourselves.
As you face the challenges of life, ask God to help you stand on guard against the influence of bitterness. To fill you anew with His Spirit. To have a heart of forgiveness. To trust Him to take care of every need. To right every wrong.
Father, I commit these situations to You. I believe that You are working everything together for good. I trust in You. In Jesus’ name. Amen.