Better or Bitter – A 2MefromHim Devotional

Posted by on Jul 3, 2017 | 3 comments

Better or Bitter – A 2MefromHim Devotional

Better or bitter is a choice we face in every situation in life. The lives of those who become bitter are never remembered with fondness. When someone chooses to become better through life’s hardships, they are remembered because we are blessed.



2MefromHim Devotionals

Better or Bitter

Make us glad for as many days as you have afflicted us, for as many years as we have seen trouble. Psalm 90:15

Better or Bitter scripture

Bitter is a choice.

“Much of life is not about what happens to you, it is about how you respond. When a negative event happens, will you crumble under pressure, or will you refocus your determination and press on? What happens to you is largely outside of your control. How you deal with it is always a choice, even when it doesn’t feel like it.”

The hook in a recent email caught my attention. My struggle with chronic pain began at age 19. I’m now 62. My life has been rich, full. I am not defeated.

God granted me a loving, supportive husband, two great kids, one homeschooled, one who needed a die-hard soccer mom. I started an adoptive parent’s support group, led women’s Bible studies for 21 years, and am an active, supportive member of two large extended families. I couldn’t give up.

Life is not easy. I am blessed not to experience the depression of many people suffering from long-term pain. My adult daughter says that, although I was sick all of her life, she never thinks of me as sick. What a confirmation of the goodness of God!

Better or Bitter choice

When I became ill, I was already a Christian, active in church and student organizations, with a large support group praying for and encouraging me. I pressed deeper into the Lord and His word. I studied those who suffered, particularly Job, and I prayed. Oh, how I prayed for healing and release.

Healing wasn’t to be. When one problem followed another, I struggled. Through it all, God enabled me to see that my afflictions can draw me closer to Him. My dad once said I had the choice to become “better” or “bitter”. The main difference is the “I”. If “I” am not the focus, but God and His will, I respond “better” to the problems I face.

The rugged beauty of God’s mountain landscapes would not exist without earthquakes, volcanoes, floods, and the carving of glacial ice, turmoil and upheaval. Life is struggle.

Better or Bitter mountains

Whatever upheavals we face, our choices are the same. All 47 uses of the word “afflicted” in the NIV Bible had one thing in common. God was involved. He wants to reach us through our struggles. He can minister to others through our trials. When we allow God to make us better, people see Jesus reflected in our lives. Choose “bEtter” rather than “bItter”.

It was good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn your decrees. Psalm 119:71

I know, Lord, that your laws are righteous, and that in faithfulness you have afflicted me. Psalm 119:75

© Copyright by Norma Gail Thurston Holtman, June 30, 2017

About the author:

Norma Gail authorNorma Gail is the author of the contemporary Christian romance, Land of My Dreams, winner of the 2016 Bookvana Religious Fiction Award. A women’s Bible study leader for over 21 years, her devotionals and poetry have appeared at, the Stitches Thru Time blog, and in “The Secret Place.” She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers, Romance Writers of America, Historical Writers of America, and the Women’s Fiction Writers Association. Norma is a former RN who lives in the mountains of New Mexico with her husband of 40 years. They have two adult children.

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Book Links:Land of My Dreams cover



  1. That would be so easy for me right now, wouldn’t it? To let bitterness take root. Thank you for the encouragement dear Norma. 🙂

    • You’re welcome, Marcie! I think we are all equally capable of that without seeking to see things through God’s eyes. He knows our weaknesses.

  2. I LOVED this post Norma. It’s wonderful 🙂

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