Hidden Resentment

THE POISON OF RESENTMENT enters the soul imperceptibly after injury or personal insult. It can also come through the sting of misunderstanding, injustice, and betrayal. Left to itself, its insidious effects begin ever so slowly to eat away at a person’s life—eventually destroying all possibility of happiness or fulfillment.

Allowed to fester through neglect, the poison of hatred foams to a boil . . . emitting feelings of anger that grow within the steam room of the soul. Pressure mounts to a maddening magnitude. By then it’s only a matter of time . . . and the damage is always tragic, often irreparable: a battered child, a crime of passion, ugly, caustic words, loss of a job, a runaway, a bad record, domestic disharmony, or a testimony ruined.

None of this is new. Solomon described the problem long ago:

Smooth words may hide a wicked heart, just as a pretty glaze covers a clay pot. People may cover their hatred with pleasant words, but they’re deceiving you. They pretend to be kind, but don’t believe them. Their hearts are full of many evils. While their hatred may be concealed by trickery, their wrongdoing will be exposed in public. If you set a trap for others, you will get caught in it yourself. If you roll a boulder down on others, it will crush you instead. A lying tongue hates its victims, and flattering words cause ruin.

PROVERBS 26:23–28

Removing resentment isn’t complicated, it’s just painful. It requires honesty. You must first admit it’s there. Then, humility. You must confess it before the One who died for such sins. Finally, there must be vulnerability . . . a willingness to keep that tendency exposed to God’s regular reproofs . . . a genuinely teachable, unguarded attitude. That’s the only antidote to the poison of resentment—and the only real path back to joy and freedom. Will you walk that path today?

Devotional content taken from Good Morning, Lord . . . Can We Talk? by Charles R. Swindoll. Copyright © 2018. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, a division of Tyndale House Ministries. All rights reserved. The full devotional can be purchased at tyndale.com.


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