How To Get Better When You're Bitter by James Merritt

Dr. James Merritt
Exodus 15:22-27


1. Something that has become a Christmas tradition for our family
every year is going to see the play, A Christmas Carol, at an
Atlanta theatre. It's one of those stories that I never get tired of
seeing. As you know, the central figure is a bitter old man by the
name of Ebenezer Scrooge. For much of the play Scrooge is a real

2. But at the end, Scrooge discovers the true meaning of
Christmas, and with his heart totally changed, a man who once
lived in the desert of bitterness, now swims in the river of blessing.

3. The story that we are going to read about today, is a very
strange but wonderful story of how God can take the most bitter
circumstances in our lives, and literally turn them into showers of
blessings. It was a happy time. The children of Israel had just
been delivered from the clutches of an evil Egyptian tyrant. They
had crossed the Red Sea and now they were walking in the

4. They were thirsty. For three days they had been looking for an
oasis, but had found nothing and they were desperate for water.
Just when they thought they would thirst to death, they spotted an
oasis in the distance. They ran as fast as they could to scoop up
that water and parch their thirst.

5. Thanking God for His goodness, they reached down with eager
anticipation, brought that water up to their parched lips, took one
drink and discovered the water was bitter. They even named this
oasis Marah, which literally means "bitterness."

6. You could actually paraphrase v.23 this way: "Now when they
came to bitterness." May I give you fair warning today? Everybody
comes to the water of bitterness. Sometime, some place, sooner or
later, you will be given an opportunity to be bitter; bitter toward
others, bitter toward yourself, bitter toward God. Bitterness is a
battle, at ...

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