Did you ever eat a sour candy? My kids love them! They pop them into their mouths and make funny faces at the bitterness that overcomes their tongue! I’ll never forget the first time my daughter had a sour candy! She didn’t know what to do with it…continue chewing on it in the hope the bitterness would go away or to spit it out and get rid of it! Her eyes filled up with tears and her face got all scrunched up….she ended up spiting it out not knowing what to make of it! The next time came around and she popped that candy in, her reaction wasn’t as intense as the first one but still had a crazy dance and funny face to go with it and eventually ended up swallowing it! After many attempts at the sour candy she eventually grew a liking to the sour, bitter, sugar coated treat! Popping them in her mouth and sucking on them like it was no big deal…..although her face still makes a slight piercing expression…..she became tolerant to the taste! Me, I can’t eat them, when i see her popping them in my jaw gets a tingle knowing how it would hit my taste buds….but if I was to push through it and torcher my taste buds a few dozen times, I would probably get taste bud immunity to them as well…..but I bet my face would still do the sour candy expression!
Emotional bitterness is the same as a sour candy! When someone attacks our very being……it brings forth an expression within us like the first time we ate a sour candy….we don’t know what to do…spit it out…or swallow it! It leaves a piercing taste in our spirit that makes us resentful….bitter! Some of us spit it out right away and other times we swallow it…..internalizing it…..letting it completely overtake our senses. Before long we get so use to the taste of it…we don’t even realize its there. But the bitter taste it left behind lingers and corrodes our spirit, leaving expressions of bitterness to those around us .
So how do we get rid of it…..cause I know no one wants to be bitter….but I know that some of us don’t even realize we are!
Forgiveness is how we get rid of it! I know just what your thinking……FORGIVE them???? But they hurt me!!!! They are terrible people for what they said or did to me! Listen I know that it is much easier said then done! Forgiveness is a tough one! But we need to look at forgiveness differently!
Forgiveness isn’t for the other person…..forgiveness is for you! Now this is important…..Forgiveness heals you from the inside out….no matter what you think….it doesn’t justify the act of what was done to you but what it does do is set you free from it! We can’t go back and change what was or wasn’t done to us so why stay there with it????
There is one thing we need to realize….and yes you have probably heard it before……Hurting people Hurt people! Yup! That’s how it goes! Sometimes what has been done to you, the person who did it doesn’t even know they did it! They are home not even thinking about it! And yes there are people in this world that want to hurt you deliberately …….but you aren’t the reason they want to do it! Chances are they have a whole lot of hurt coating their spirit and they don’t even realize it! Just like you, they swallowed the sour candy! We need to come to a place that we can realize everyone has swallowed a bitter candy in their life at least one time or another! And you may not like this…..but you have more then likely caused a bitter taste in someones mouth before as well!!! Yup you!!! And Me!!!!
You see none of us are perfect! When we begin to see that other people are hurting as well, it brings in the humanity of it! We see them in a different light……as someone that needs healing as well.
John 8:7~ “ When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.”
All of us fall short of the Glory of God! But yet He forgives us for EVERYTHING we do! WE say things not even realizing it……and we can internalize something that wasn’t even meant the way we took it! We get offended but somehow seem to think we have NEVER offended anyone else! So here is the kicker……do you expect forgiveness? Have you maybe said or did something and hurt someone even though it wasn’t your intent? You probably have even got upset that person thought that of you!! “Why would they say I hurt them …..I didn’t!!!” Well the truth of the matter is…..just because you said you didn’t hurt someone…..doesn’t mean you didn’t! You may not have intended it that way……but that’s how they took it! A prime indication you are bitter…..is when you utter the words…..”well I could care less what they think……I don’t need their forgiveness cause I didn’t do anything!”
Forgiveness is a humbling experience…..it brings us to a place that we see ourselves and others differently…..as imperfect human beings. It takes incredible strength to forgive someone who hasn’t even apologized. Forgiveness is one of the most difficult things you will do in life…..especially if the sour candy has many coatings on your heart and spirit! I really do believe when you are unwilling to forgive…..you are robbing yourself of joy! To not forgive is a weakness, a hindrance to the life God wants for you! Until we learn to forgive…..we will never move forward to an abundant life!
So how do we start the process of forgiveness? Well first we need to get some Myths about forgiveness out of the way so we can see the actual heart of it! Join me in my next article “The Door to Forgiveness” as we lay out some myths that have overcome our ability to open the door! Are you ready to spit out the sour candy? The choice is yours!!
Ephesians 4: 31-32 “Let all bitterness, wrath and anger, calmer and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.”