Bitterness can block your healing

After the “month from hell” (August 1985), slowly I recovered from my mother’s death. I grieved, of course, and it took a long while. But in time, missing my father-in-law and my mother eased a bit.

What I didn’t realize was that I was pretty ticked off at God. Oh, I didn’t think I was. I rationalized my huge disappointment in the unanswered prayers as God’s sovereignty (which, of course it is) but down deep, I accused. I blamed. I shut down the Holy Spirit.

I’d come to Christ through the charismatic movement. I thought speaking in tongues, operating in prophecy, miracles, signs and wonders was absolutely fabulous. A God who is real, alive and active today the way He was 2,000 years ago? That was the God I wanted to love, serve and obey. No more “Big Guy in the Sky” kind of religion. God was real, for my generation.

So I continued on. My husband was happier in more traditional churches so I went along. I read my Bible, prayed, participated in events at church, but it wasn’t until 20 years later I realized I had withdrawn part of my heart, keeping it “safe” from hurt. And from God.

Then one day, a friend from church sent out an e-mail about a ministry that was holding a 3-day seminar. It sounded great. I signed up. My hungry spirit soaked up their teaching like a desperate man crawling out of a desert after 40 days. I was coming alive again. Finally.

That night, the Lord spoke to me. He said, clear as could be: “I did heal your mother. It was bitterness that killed her.”

Because of the teaching I’d received earlier that day, I understood what God was saying. And I knew it was true.

Bitterness is a stronghold of the devil. It has 7 spirits underneath it, to support it. Each one builds on the next. First comes unforgiveness. Then, resentment. Retaliation. Anger. Hatred. Violence. Murder (don’t think you’re free from this one. It can mean murder with the tongue, too.)

I loved my mother. Don’t get me wrong. But unfortunately, she was a grudge-holder. On my last visit with her, she reminded me of an incident with one of her brothers that occurred some forty years earlier. He had asked my mother to babysit their toddler for a weekend while he and his wife went away to work out some problems. Even though my mother hated babysitting, agreed. She loved her brother.

TWO WEEKS later my uncle came to get his child. To say my mother was livid was putting it mildly. Her payback? She held a grudge until her dying day. And that was only one incident.

So let me ask you. Do you hold grudges? Do you retaliate by not forgiving someone? Be careful. Bitterness can block your healing.

2 responses so far

2 Responses to “Bitterness can block your healing”

  1. diana nietoon 10 Aug 2011 at 2:05 am

    iam teaching a sermon on forgiveness and how it is the only way for healing i need for resources can u help me i would appreciate it thanks blessings in the name of jesus diana

  2. Marthaon 11 Aug 2011 at 12:51 am

    Dear Diana,

    I would recommend the Be in Health web site and the writings of Pastor Henry Wright. His book, A More Excellent Way is one resource. Also, Art Matthias out of Alaska, has good teachings. His book is Biblical Foundations for Freedom. I’d be careful about saying forgiveness is the ONLY way for healing, however. There are other principalities of darkness that can prevent healing, such as fear, rejection and unloving spirits. Both authors will cover this in their books. But having said that, unforgiveness is probably the number one block to healing. Also check out Bill Johnson from Bethel Church in Redding, CA. He is a powerful teacher.

    I just finished “Your Scars are Beautiful to God” by Sharon Jaynes which addressed the forgiveness issue.

    I wish you all the best as you study and prepare this topic. It’s very powerful.


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