Tag  |  bitterness


“I wake up in cold sweats every so often thinking, What did we bring to the world?” Tony Fadell, who helped create the iPhone, voiced those words of concern over the self-absorption that can come with too much ‘iFocus’ in our use of technology. He noted that communication devices—though capable of much good—are designed to meet individual needs and aren’t always about what’s best for healthy family and community relationships.

Bitter or Better?

My friend was overjoyed. Following years of failed procedures, she was going to give birth to a daughter. With only weeks to go, however, my friend discovered her husband was having an affair. The weight of pain threatened to drown all hope of happiness.

encouraging words

In the movie Saving Mr. Banks, writer Pamela Lyndon (P. L.) Travers reluctantly agrees to allow Walt Disney to bring her beloved character Mary Poppins to the silver screen. Carrying deep emotional wounds, P. L. is controlling and cantankerous—causing the film adaptation of Mary Poppins to be a difficult proposition for all those involved in the production. Unlike her literary character who could magically take flight, Travers—trapped within a cloud of bitter thoughts and memories—almost prevents the movie version of Mary Poppins from getting off the ground.


My friend noticed that his maple tree was shedding leaves prematurely. The tree doctor told him his tree was suffering from a girdling root. It had taken 30 years, but the offending root had encircled the tree and was now slowly choking it. If my friend didn’t dig down and hack the root off, the tree would die.

He hears our cry

Have you ever felt as if no one was there for you when you faced a difficult and trying time? Perhaps King David’s words reflect what you were feeling: “I look for someone to come and help me, but no one gives me a passing thought! No one will help me; no one cares a bit what happens to me” (Psalm 142:4).

in the shade

Since my college days, I’ve always enjoyed a good cup of coffee. Far from a true connoisseur, however, I’ve stocked my supply with everything from the brand on sale at the grocery store to the flavored blends at a specialty shop. A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to do some traveling and—while in Honduras—I learned from a local…

the root of bitterness

“See to it that no one comes short of the grace of God; that no root of bitterness springing up causes trouble, and by it many be defiled” (Hebrews 12:15 NASB).

Every once in awhile the Lord decides to wake me up in the middle of the night for a conversation. Despite my reminders to Him that there are 18…

desire for vengeance

I once spoke with a father whose son had been brutally murdered by a family friend. In the years that followed, he talked of his burning desire for revenge. He knew that bitterness had overtaken his heart and crowded out that which was good. Although he wanted to turn this festering burden over to Jesus, he struggled with letting go.…


The word blameless has become such an anomaly today that we rarely hear it used. Well, at least not in the arenas of business, sports, or politics. You hear the words shrewd and skillful being spoken, but definitely not blameless. So when this word recently popped up during a casual conversation, it stirred my interest. Two questions came to mind: What…

burden dump

This week has been and will continue to be a week of dumping burdens.

I know what I am supposed to do with these burdens. And even though I rest on one day and lay them down at my Saviors feet and cast them on His strong shoulders, I will catch myself running to them and picking them back up…

seeing it

In December 4, 1982, a baby boy named Nicholas Vujicic was born. As he grew, Nick learned to brush his teeth, comb his hair, and dress himself each morning. Like other boys, he learned to swim, fish, and play soccer. But throughout Nick’s life there has always been one big difference between him and those around him. Nick was born…

January 31, 2011

How have you been affected by bitter people, and what have you done to help them break free of their bitterness?

faith of the fathers

I was reading upstairs when my neighbor came to pick up his son. The child must not have wanted to go yet, for I heard his small voice declare, “Someone’s going to die!” My neighbor did not correct his little boy, but smiled sheepishly as he steered him toward the door. This father is failing his son. As the God-appointed…

turning losses into gain

One of the tremendous privileges I’ve had as a believer in Jesus was serving as an official chaplain for athletes competing in the Olympic Games. Ministering inside the Olympic Village was exciting, but it presented unique challenges. Many times I struggled to find the right words to say as I sat with medal contenders who—away from the glare of spectators…


The scrolling message on the TV screen warned us to take cover immediately, and the shadowy sky confirmed we were in for one whopper of a storm. The power flickered on and off. I grabbed a flashlight and carted my 9-month-old son down into the basement.

When I anxiously called my husband at work, he picked up but quickly asked…

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