One evening my husband listening to my evening litany of woes kindly asked me if he could say something and not have it taken wrongly. I was simply awed he was going to say anything and for that matter interrupt me –this is in fact a momentous occasion in our relationship, you see, he’s not big on verbal communication. He stated that it seemed (he kept this as gentle as possible folks) that instead of sharing details, that I was complaining. A lightning bolt hit my head– I realized, um, complaining–where did I read that it was actually a SIN?! I realized how easily I’d began to complain endlessly and justify it by saying I’m just stating the facts. Just explaining why I’m so dreadfully tired and in a bad mood again. Just sharing my woe with my good friends. Just letting Facebook know that they should pity how many times I had to listen to tantrums and how freaking awful I felt. Just telling myself I’m justified for feeling miserable and anxious.
It started to sink in: Yeah, God really wants me to live like that exclaiming my misery to my husband and to the general population. As a child of God I’m sure that’s exactly what He wants my life to be all about, focusing on how hard two year old tantrums are and how I can’t handle them or how I’ve been sick for the past 3 weeks straight. (Note I’m getting worked up and therefore sarcastic) What a joyful way to live! I just know every non-Christian’s going to want to sign up to become like me after hearing me talk about my life! Anyways it was enough to turn me around to take a good look at myself in the mirror of the Word and shake me up as well. Was this really who I wanted to be? Focusing on the negative when there was MORE than enough to be ecstatic about in Christ? I was walking in sin and lets just say it was making me miserable. Yeah, sin will do that to you. Even culturally acceptable and culturally embraced sin. The innocent looking sins like complaining, unthankfulness, discontent and lack of joy. It’s also a window to who our god really is. To who’s truly on the throne of our heart. Is it peace and serenity? Easy days and peaceful nights full of pursuing what I want? Hm starting to hit a little too close to home. Anyways here’s what I found God says about my condition….oh and thank God he Has the answer for it and it works and lets just say I’m a lot happier obeying and ditching the boat on complaints.
Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure. Do all things without grumbling or questioning, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast to the word of life, so that in the day of Christ I may be proud that I did not run in vain or labor in vain. Philippians 2:12-16
Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. Philippians 4:11-12
Now there is great gain in godliness with contentment, 1 Timothy 6:6
And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:19But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Matthew 6:33
Complaining is pure and simple saying that God is not good enough for us. What an act of unbelief on our part! Lord, fill us so full of thanksgiving that can’t imagine complaining.