Jesus told a story about a man with two sons: one a runaway, one bitter. Luke 15 The bitter brother can't greet his just-returned brother, can't go to his party. He's angry, frustrated, insulted. He gave resentment permission to thrive in him.
He didn't want to be bitter, but he's been doing the right things for the wrong reasons for a long time. The right things, responsible, loyal, dependable -- not because they're right or because he's deeply committed to those principles -- but for recognition. "I have done everything right, Dad," he said, "and you never threw me a barbecue!"
Unhinge from bitterness this Lent; make that your prayer. You've done the right things because you're committed to good and God. That's all the recognition you need. "The One who sees in secret will reward you openly." Matthew 6:4 Leave your bitterness behind; go to the party.
Say yes again to God's rewards.
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