OPEN HEAVENS DAILY DEVOTIONAL
DATE: SUNDAY 5TH SEPTEMBER 2021.
THEME: ALL-ROUND PEACE II
Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled; Hebrews 12:15
READ: Hebrews 12:14-15
14 Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:
15 Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled;
Peace is an essential ingredient for progress; it is an important factor for man’s wellbeing and good health. Our God is the author and controller of peace. There is the peace that comes from the conditions of our environment- physical and no-physical. The fact that someone is a child of God and loves Him does not necessarily mean such a person will not have problems. Fear takes away a person’s peace, but when you put your trust in God, He keeps you in perfect peace (Isaiah 26:3). This perfect peace comes only through surrendering one’s life to Jesus Christ- Romans 5:1.
There is however something that can keep children of God from experiencing the peace of God- the root of bitterness. While this root of bitterness could affect a fellow’s behavior towards those against whom he is harboring such a feeling, the more dangerous effect of it is ultimately felt by the bitter person. Bitterness in the heart of a person creates room for hatred, envy and anger; it breeds unforgiveness and unhappiness. Indeed, the word ‘bitterness’ itself depicts what it offers- a “bitter experience”. It hinders the flow of Joy and peace.
How does it originate? It comes when one feels unfairly treated by another person or an organization; it is a feeling of being injured, whether physically or otherwise. Examples would include a sister being jilted in courtship, a fellow catching his or her spouse in adultery, an employee being short- changed by his or her organization, a person being raped and so on.
Are you battling against the root of bitterness resulting from some experience or the other? Please note that it is not in your interest to harbor it. Bitterness eats its host up; it negatively affects the physical wellbeing of the individual, as well as causing a strained relationship with God.
You might have heard me tell the story of a man whose wife had died, leaving behind an only daughter with a striking resemblance to the mother. The daughter was a great consolation to this man, but the lady’s husband was constantly maltreating the lady, to the point of threatening her life. The root of bitterness that sprang up in the lady’s father resulted in him becoming swollen, defying all medical care. He only became healed after forgiving his son-in-law. To retain your God-given peace, remove all forms of bitterness in your heart today.
Check your heart to ensure that bitterness is not lurking in there. If you find any trace of such, let go of it and pray for healing in your soul.
BIBLE IN ONE YEAR: Proverbs 12.
AUTHOR: PASTOR E. A. ADEBOYE
HYMN 12: IN CHRIST ALONE.
1. In Christ alone my hope is found
He is my light, my strength, my song
This Cornerstone, this solid ground
Firm through the fiercest drought and storm
What heights of love, what depths of peace
When fears are stilled, when strivings cease
My Comforter, my All in All
2. In Christ alone, who took on flesh
Fullness of God in helpless babe
This gift of love and righteousness
Scorned by the ones He came to save
‘Til on that cross as Jesus died
The wrath of God was satisfied
For every sin on Him was laid
Here in the death of Christ I live.
3. There in the ground His body lay
Light of the world by darkness slain
Then bursting forth in glorious Day
Up from the grave He rose again
And as He stands in victory
Sin’s curse has lost its grip on me
For I am His and He is mine
4. No guilt in life, no fear in death
This is the power of Christ in me
From life’s first cry to final breath
Jesus commands my destiny
No power of hell, no scheme of man
Can ever pluck me from His hand
Till He returns or calls me home