Colossians 3:19. Husbands, love your wives, and be not bitter against them.
James 3:14. But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth.
Bitterness in the home is a bad thing. When husbands quit loving their wives, they soon will become bitter against them. Wives can also develop bitterness against their husbands for all kinds of slights. Women can also get very bitter against their ex-husbands, in the case of divorce, that can go on long after a marriage is ended. The same is true of men in divorce. The bottom line is, a marriage is not going to survive very long when there is bitterness in the home. Bitterness stems from being offended because of a wrong done against us. It is also related to unforgiveness.
The Bible likens bitterness to a root. A root is the source of nourishment for a tree or plant. When the tree is getting bad from the root, it can only produce bad fruit. Bitterness in a home can cause all kinds of problems. It kills love and kindness. It produces hatred and fighting. It causes envying and strife. It is not good. When a husband and wife have bitterness toward each other, that often will manifest itself in the lives of their children. When a mom has accusing and sharp words about her husband to her girls, they will soon learn to disrespect their father, or other men for that matter. When a dad is always ridiculing and cutting down his wife, his boys will soon learn to dishonor their mother and their future spouse. Our children learn by example from their parents.
Bitterness has no place in the home. We need to learn to forgive and put things under the blood. That means we have to consciously try to forget about wrongs done against us. That is not always an easy task in a marriage, where wounds can go deep. However, it must be done if we are going to have peace with God and ourselves. Bitter envying and strife start in the heart. That is where the root needs to be killed if we are to have victory. The heart needs to be made right. That means we need victory over the flesh each and every day. We need to ask the Lord to take the bitterness away. You cannot lie against the truth (that you don’t have bitterness) when it is there. You need to admit you have it and then deal with it. The Lord can give you the victory if you let Him.
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