A Heart of Bitterness
So they both went until they came to Bethlehem. And when they had come to Bethlehem, all the city was stirred because of them, and the women said, “Is this Naomi?” She said to them, “Do not call me Naomi; call me Mara, for the Almighty has dealt very bitterly with me.”
As Naomi enters the city of Bethlehem, with Ruth by her side, the people of the city begin to move about asking, “Is this Naomi?” Ten years had gone by since Naomi lived there and they didn’t know the overwhelming effect that bitterness had produced in her heart. To those standing near she bitterly replied, “Don’t call me Naomi, which means, “pleasant,” but call me Mara, meaning, “bitter,” for the LORD has brought me home to Bethlehem absolutely empty.
Satan wanted Naomi to focus on the negative, those areas of weakness where unforgiveness, anger, feelings of bitterness lived and would breed discouragement. She couldn’t think clearly when she focused on the lies of Satan. His lies divided her mind and caused her to shift the blame to God and of course, to others. Naomi’s bitterness was an attitude of deep discontentment that poisoned her soul and destroyed her peace. A sour Christian is one of Satan's greatest trophies and why the Bible says, "See to it…that no root of bitterness springing up causes trouble, and by it many be defiled” (Hebrews 12:15). If we continue to live in bitterness, this harmful condition will eventually be passed on to others causing immense negative effects.
How do you deal with bitterness? Do you confess your bitterness to God, and seek His forgiveness and help? “Yes!” On the cross, Christ took upon Himself every sin you ever committed—including your bitterness. No matter it’s cause, commit your bitterness to God, and replace it with the fruit of the Spirit of God (Galatians 5:22-23).
Lord, I realize that bitterness has infected my life, please forgive me and fill my heart with the precious fruit of God.