Before we get started with today’s episode I wanted to thank you so much for the support that you have given me throughout the year. Many times it feels like you’re talking to yourself. Then you get that applause, message, or email and it brightens your entire day, or at least it does mine. So, I just want to take a moment to say thank you.
Well, you don’t need me to tell you this, but today is the last day of 2018. Another year has come and gone. 2018 has been a bit of a rollercoaster for me. I can honestly say I’ve had more highs than lows, so I don’t have any complaints, which by the way is a fantastic segway into today’s topic.
Why is it useless to complain?
Many people often believe that when they become a Christian that life is going to be nothing but happiness. However, they fail to realize that God warned us in 1 Pet 4:12 not to, “…think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad about exceeding joy.”
I don’t know about you, but when I encounter obstacles, I find it incredibly difficult to fight against the urge to complain. The last thing in the world I feel is joy, especially during those days when it seems like nothing is going right. Guess, what? In Eph 4:26 it tells us it’s okay to be angry, but it’s a sin to complain (Phil 2:14-15).
God has demonstrated this to us on several occasions. Cain was angry that God liked Abel’s offering over his. Cain killed Abel and God punished Cain by turning him into a fugitive and a vagabond…(Gen 4:12)/. Miriam complained about Moses and God struck her with leprosy (Numbers 12:10). The Israelites complained and got stuck in the wilderness for 40 years until those who complained died. I’m sure you get the picture by now that God doesn’t like complaining. If you truly seek to please Him, He will oftentimes place you in or leave you in a situation to teach you this lesson.
I think one of the main reasons 2018 went well for me is because I finally realized that regardless of how dire a situation that I am in, I must choose to speak life (Proverbs 18:21). Now, this is a lot easier said than done. However, you must have faith and believe that this is a goal that you are more than able to achieve.
One of the best ways to stop yourself from complaining is to identify situations that can elicit this type of response.
So here are five reasons why I believe most Christians complain:
- We lack rest and peace. Life is hard. The older you get the amount of responsibilities increase. We allow worry (Matt 6:34) and the cares of this world (Mark 4:19) to get to us. Oftentimes, we’re so focused on surviving that we forget to live.
Don’t allow worrying about the future to rob you of the present. The only way to get the rest and peace that you desire is through God and His word. It rains on the just and unjust, but just remember that His yoke is easy and His burden is light (Matt 11:30).
2.) We focus on what we lack. If you’re always viewing life by looking at the things that you lack, you will NEVER be happy. God is faithful and consistent. Oftentimes, we can go a long time without experiencing any trouble in our life and then all of a sudden something happens that makes us question His love for us. If you’re not happy with the gifts that He has already given you, why would He feel compelled to provide you with more?
We can easily identify when someone else is acting like a spoiled brat, but it’s a lot harder when we’re acting like one. God is more interested in our development, not our comfort. God wants to make sure that we know how to act and react in a variety of situations. He wants us to know how to act during sunny and stormy days of our lives. Apostle Paul confirmed this in Phil 4:12-13.
Again, God wants us to “learn the secret of being content both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. Being in need will always remind you to tell yourself that you can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
3.) We’re being persecuted for doing the right thing. Again, God already warned us that we would be persecuted. Many of the things outlined in Lev 18 and Gal 5 go against God’s word. It can be frustrating when you’re people are constantly trying to get you to abandon your beliefs so you can accept theirs. You just have to stay strong and remember that it is better to obey God rather than man (Acts 5:29). You can take solace in the fact that putting Him first (Ps 37:4) will put you in a position for Him to give you the desires of your heart.
4.) We don’t take our frustrations out on the right people. Sometimes, we allow our fear to get the best of us. Instead of pulling our boss or friend aside in order to express how angry they made us feel, we take it out on our loved ones. We just assume our loved ones are going to tolerate whatever nonsense we dish out at them. That’s simply not true.
5.) We’re going through a detour. Life will throw us curveballs. If you know you’re following His Word and things are going wrong, it’s probably because he’s placing you on a detour. Whenever you are meant for something bigger in life, you have to realize that there are going to be all sorts of obstacles standing in your way. There are lessons that God wants to teach you because He knows that you will need them later on in life.
If you fail to learn those lessons, it’s like placing pearls before swine (Mark 7: 6). You would never allow something dirty to taint something beautiful. God is the same way. The sooner you learn the lesson He wants you to accomplish, the quicker you can move on with your life. It’s up to you whether you allow obstacles to prevent you from achieving your destiny.
These are common reasons why I believe most Christians complain. Make this your year to be cognizant of these reasons so you won’t miss out on the destiny God has in store for you.