January 9, Saturday

REPOST Today’s Spiritual Food for Thought, written by Pastor Sam Lee who leads Catalyst Agape Church in Northern New Jersey, was first posted on December 4, 2013.  He is a graduate of University of Wisconsin (BA) and Biblical Theological Seminary (M.Div.).

Spiritual Food for Thought for the Weekend

“What Should I Do When I Am Inundated with Emotional Pain?”

Hebrews 12:15

See to it that no one falls short of the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many. 

Emotional pain is not evil but serves a vital purpose. Emotional pain is similar to physical pain in a sense that it signals a warning that something is wrong. If you have a splinter in your hand, you will get a pain signal to let you know there is something in your hand that should not be there. The pain is telling you that you need healing and that you should seek healing. That pain is not a signal to hurt others. It wouldn’t make any sense if the pain of the splinter makes you attack others with sharp splinters.

Emotional pain is also a signal for you to seek healing. It is not a signal for you to be bitter. The emotional pain is not to be used to judge, lash out, or hurt others. Jesus was rejected and felt pain, yet He was without sin. Jesus did not respond to the emotional pain with bitterness. As Jesus was hanging on the cross, Jesus said “forgive them for they do not know what they are doing.” 

The Bible says the bitter root, if it starts to grow in our heart, will grow “to cause trouble and defile many,” meaning the bitter root will bear bad fruits in your life. You will not be able to overcome spiritual attacks. There will be pattern of dysfunction in different areas of your life; God’s blessing is hidden. And other relationships, might be good now, but later will even break the good relationships. 

We need to forgive when we have bitter root in our heart. Forgiveness allows the ministry of healing to touch the emotional pain. Unforgiveness says, “Because you unjustly hurt me, you owe me a debt; I will make you pay.” Forgiveness says, “Even though you hurt me and owe me a debt, I am writing it off. You owe me nothing. It is not my place to make you pay, and I release you to the judgment of God. He is the just judge, and He will rightly decide the case. If there is any penalty, He will collect it.”  So, let it go; forgive! 

Prayer: Dear Father, I praise and glorify Your name.  Lord, please help me to identify bitter root in my heart so that I can forgive those who wronged me.  Help me also to identify what I have done to others so that I can ask for their forgiveness as well.  Amen. 

Bible Reading for Today: Genesis 10-11