HEB 12:15 See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause
trouble and defile many.
There are many times that we mistreat someone unfairly and overreact to an unkind act they commit
against us not just because we are offended with them, but because we are still offended with the original person that did
something similar to us a long ago that we have just not forgiven yet. When we refuse to forgive, a root of bitterness grows
like a weed and we end up transferring our unhealed resentment onto others.
"What we don't forgive, we relive". When we don't forgive someone we carry that original unforgiven
offense inside us and actually start to repeat it against other fairly innocent people. We do this because we feel like there
was no justice or atonement for the original offense, so we have every right to punish similar people. Many people are punishing
their spouse for something they have still not forgiven their parents for.
One way to tell if you are reacting out of an old unhealed bitter root toward someone from your past
is the strong emotion and "over-punishment" we vent out upon people, rather than just rationally dealing with the current
offense. There are some people that are bitter with whole groups of people so they take it out on anyone that reminds them
of them. Some people are bitter just because of someones gender, race, or religion.
So what's the answer? How do we stop punishing people for what someone else did to us long ago? Well
we need to forgive obviously. But we need to be brave and allow the Holy Spirit to take us back to the original unhealed offense
and heal it with the truth. Most hurts remain because we are still embracing lies connected to the original offense. God knows
exactly what really happened, so He alone is qualified to help us.
Sometimes when we are criticized and condemned by someone we feel bad about ourselves, especially
if we failed because of some flaw in our character. Guess what? We are all a work in progress and nobody is a finished product
yet. But God forgives us because He knows that someday we will be completed, so we need to keep that in mind with other people
as well, and forgive the mean and rotten things they do to us.
Let Jesus take you by the hand and take you back to that original offense and help you to forgive
the original offender. The offender probably isn't hurting over this like you are, so you need to do this for yourself, as
well as for those around you. Forgiving the original offender may help to save your marriage, heal your family, and end the
long chain of broken relationships due to unhealed bitterness. So let God help you today.
Here is a prayer to pray if you need it:
"Dear God, I ask that you would help me to forgive all of the original offenders in my life, and to
stop punishing people unfairly for what someone else did to me in my past. I just give you permission right now Holy Spirit
to take me back to the original offense that created this root of bitterness. By faith I just forgive all of my original offenders
right now, and I ask you Lord to help me to walk in it. In Jesus name I pray, amen".
EPH 4:\31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of
malice. 32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.