I heard an interesting insight from Rick Warren the other day: “it is *impossible* to feel bitter and grateful at the same time”.
You can feel sad and confused at the same time. You can feel happy and excited at the same time. But you can’t feel bitter and grateful at the same time.
Bitterness says, “It’s not the way I think it should be”. If I am grateful, I realize it’s not ABOUT ME. It’s about how much somebody ELSE loves me.
The more I think about others and the less I think about my interests, the more loving and grateful I will become. Conversely, the more time I spend focusing on my interests, the less loving and more bitter I will become.
In the bible, Solomon (the wisest man to ever live) tells us, ”
Be careful what you think, because your thoughts run your life.”
Proverbs 4:23 NCV
In other words, change your thoughts and you can change your world.
So how do avoid bitter thoughts? Again, the Bible provides direction:
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.
No more stinkin’ thinkin’!