– F.B. Meyer
Kill the Root
Before I was married and had just bought my first home, there was a bamboo shoot in the backyard that stuck out like a sore thumb. I mowed over it, but it came back stronger. Then I dug it out, only to see it make a comeback. Finally, I had to dig almost 4 feet down and put lime on the roots, which killed it. In a similar fashion, you and I should “see to it that no one fails to obtain the grace of God; that no ‘root of bitterness’ springs up and causes trouble, and by it many become defiled” (Hebrews 12:15). Kill the root of bitterness and you’ll kill the bitterness itself, but realize it’s not going to be easy. You might have to dig down pretty deep to find the root.
Feed Your Mind
The Word of God is like lime to a root of bitterness. The more of the Word you take in, the more lime you have to pour on that root of bitterness. It’s sort of like replacement therapy except it’s not of human origin. The Word of God is God’s breathed-out words directly given to us, and we know His Word has power (Romans 1:18, 1 Corinthians 1:18). Tap into that power; kill that root.
The Apostle Paul suffered from deprivation of sleep, food, water, companionship, and fellowship; but he still was able to be content (Philippians 4:11). He trusted God’s sovereignty in his life. That’s why he told Timothy, “Godliness with contentment is great gain” (1 Timothy 6:6). We can be more content if we keep our “lives free from the love of money and be content with what [we] have” (Hebrews 13:5).
Peace That Surpasses
If we have bitterness in our lives, we’ll likely never be content or have the peace of God. Peace cannot rule where it does not live. Paul’s prayer would be that “the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:7). Paul knew a lot about guards because he spent so much time chained to them. However, he still had peace; and that peace guarded Paul’s heart more than the guards guarded him.
F.B. Meyer said, “As we pour out our bitterness, God pours in his peace.” What that looks like is to find the root of bitterness and kill it, then pour in the Word of God to overwhelm it, and then decide to be content with your lot in life. Only then can the peace of God ever rule in your heart.