They sold him to the Ishmaelites for eight ounces of silver…Genesis 37:28
It’s hard being a Christian, especially when we’ve been hurt by other Christians. I know, in my own brokenness I’ve hurt others too. What do we do when we feel like we’ve been unfairly treated, misunderstood or forgotten by others who call themselves followers of Jesus? How do we even begin to wrap our minds around it?
We have to stop trying to figure it out and instead, we must pray for mercy. Until the mercy of God fills our hearts, the whisper of the enemy will always steal our heart away and attempt to build within us a root of bitterness towards God’s people. I feel that root trying to take place in my own heart, so I understand if you’ve been there too.
We must learn to forgive and release our disappointments to Almighty God. He sees them. He’s still in control and He’s still actively working on our behalf. It’s easy to focus on what we feel like God isn’t doing, instead of what He is cultivating in our hearts. You see, God is growing things in us to produce greater fruit in our lives. A lot of HIs work happens underneath the surface and the results are not something we experience right away. Until we learn to abide in His presence, as He tills up the soil of our hearts, we will always find problems above the surface that steal our hearts away.
Today, I want to live below the surface, in God’s garden. The place where He’s growing me, reshaping me and forming new love in me. Today, I’m choosing to flee from any bitterness trying to take root and instead, I’m going to let God shower my heart with grace. So He can expand the garden of His love I desperately need in my heart. Today, I’m choosing to release and forgive those who’ve hurt me. As I do this, God plants them as new seeds of grace in my heart. When I hang on to them and the ways they’ve hurt me, they only become roots of bitterness that steal the good work of fruitfulness God wants to produce in my life.
Don’t grow discouraged when life seems unfair. Release your demands and place your trust in God. Life will get too long if you focus on only what you can see above the surface. Learn to live under the surface, so that God can grow a new heart of love and compassion in you, to the praise of His glorious grace.
Lord, you know my pain, but I also know that I can trust you. I don’t always understand why things happen the way they do. I cannot see the whole plan, but I know that it is good. Today, I release my hurts to you and ask you to sit with me under the surface, water and grow me there for your kingdom, I pray, in Jesus name, Amen.