How do we let go of resentment vertically with God?
We pour out the bitter (resentment) and drink in the sweet antidote: God’s restoration of forgiveness, kindness, and compassion in Christ. The Apostle Paul wrote: “Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you” (Ephesians 4:31-32).
First, we must pour out our bitter souls to God (Mark 11:25). In her bitterness of soul, Hannah wept and prayed (1 Samuel 1:10-11). She poured out her soul to God (1 Samuel 1:15). David penned: “Pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge” (Psalm 62:8). Jeremiah taught: “Pour out your heart like water in the presence of the Lord” (Lamentations 2:19).
In order to let go of resentment, we must pray, or pour out our bitterness, confessing our resentment (condemnation or license) to God. We must let go of resentment and its bitter poison.
Second, we must drink in God’s sweet antidote of restoration in Christ (Psalm 116:12-13). God restored sweetness to Hannah’s bitter soul (1 Samuel 1:20). The psalmist said that God restores sweetness to bitter souls (Psalm 71:20; cf. Isaiah 5:20). God pours out His Spirit of love into our hearts (Romans 5:5; 1 Timothy 1:14). Christ poured out His blood for the forgiveness of sins (Matthew 26:28; Leviticus 4:7; 17:11).
In order to let go of resentment, we must read, or drink in, a restorative passage in Scripture each day for a month (for example, Philippians because its theme is joy). Peter told Simon the Sorcerer that the word of God delivers us from bitterness (Acts 8:25).
Pour out the bitter by praying the following prayer in confession, repentance, and freedom each day during the next month until you feel the poison of bitterness removed from your heart:
“God, I am harboring resentment against __________ for ___________. I want to let go of the offender’s horizontal debt that pales in comparison to the largest debt ever recorded, my sin against you, which you let go of me in Christ. Free me from this imprisonment of holding on to resentment.”
Drink in the sweet by supporting your prayer, reading through each of the four chapters of Philippians every day for thirty days. Perhaps, read two chapters in the morning and two in the evening. Drink in God’s sweet restoration of joy described by David (Psalm 51:10-12).