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Gratitude, the only cure for Resentment

Resentment - How subtle and indirectly it comes at you! How you can wake up one day and find yourself in its deadly grip. More than often, life attacks us, not directly, but on our flanks – and its preferred weapon is resentment. There is nothing worse than not knowing which direction an assault is coming from. When we don’t know the source of the attack, we react to it wildly, becoming shell- shocked and angry.

According to the Free On-line Dictionary, to resent is to be bitter about, dislike, object to, begrudge, take exception to , be offended by, be angry about, take offense at, etc.

The point is, no one wakes up one day and says, “I will be resentful”. Resentment creeps upon you like a morning fog. You slowly awaken to the faint realization that you are harboring something against a person, God, or at the hand in life that you’ve been dealt.

The danger of resentment is that it throws up a roadblock to our ability to be thankful “in all things”. Thankfulness is the ultimate antidote to resentment. It is the celebration that turns the bitter gall of life into something sweet. When we chose to resent, we become stuck in our journey, unable to grow or progress as every day becomes a veritable “Groundhog Day”.

When we are resentful, we inadvertently slam the door to hope, potential or even the ability to receive, instead choosing indignation. In short, resentment hijacks from us anything that resembles vitality and life.

Resentment can come from failed expectations or hope deferred - maybe even from someone who used you and discarded you.

At the end of resentment is nothing but spiritual exhaustion and burnout because it’s always more difficult to hold on to something than to let it go. It’s easier to save a drowning man who gives up than one who is grasping at his rescuer.

So the question is: If you are in that dark abyss called resentment, will you let God save you by letting go? 

I want to be like Joseph in the Bible, who after many years of confinement, betrayal, and false accusations, refused resentment, and because of it, saw the hand of God working in the darkest places. Joseph named his two sons according to his spiritual journey of finding hope in hardship.

Joseph called the name of the firstborn Manasseh. "For," he said, "God has made me forget all my hardship and all my father’s house." The name of the second he called Ephraim, "For God has made me fruitful in the land of my affliction".

Genesis 41: 51-52