Posted by: SandreS | October 10, 2011

Complaining

These are murmurers, complainers, walking after their own lusts (Jude 1:16, KJV).

Do not be discontented (I Corinthians 10:10, Weymouth).

In all that you do, avoid grumbling (Philippians 2:14, Moffatt).

Complaining is a prominent Adamic pastime. We grumble and whine about the weather, our jobs, our spouses, our governments, our finances – just about our lives in general. Like spoiled children, discontentment is an unthankful heart-attitude of protest towards Father. Our hearts gripe, huff, sulk, moan and bellyache about everything. Ugh! Grrr!

Contentment:
The Divine Contrast of Complaining

Contentment is a rare quality. It has been so from the beginning. Adam and Eve had abundant bounty from God’s hand all around them. Only one thing was withheld from them: the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil; but it was the very thing that they wanted and desired. This one thing kept them discontent: if only they could have the fruit from this tree their lives would be complete and fulfilled – or so they thought.

Discontentment is at the core of the Adamic heart, whereas contentment is the Divine work on the renewed mind – a heavenly learning process. It is spiritually learned. Paul tells us so. It was even necessary that our apostle complete this course of spiritual instruction. Let’s allow this variety of translations from Philippians 4:11 to speak truly to us.

… I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content (KJV).

… As to me, I have learnt in those circumstances in which I am, to be satisfied … (Darby).

… For my part I have learned, whatever be my outward experiences, to be content (Weymouth).

Oh, that we had the spiritual ears to hear these words deep within our hearts! Oh, that the eyes of our understanding would be enlightened. Oh, that our hearts would begin to awaken to the true spirit of contentment!

Paul goes on to write to Timothy of contentment’s “great gain.”

Godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. Having food and raiment let us be therewith content (I Timothy 6:6-8).

The Antidote for Complaining
Is Found in Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is the divine answer to discontentment. Only faith from God can lay hold on the grand truth that all things come from God. This realization transforms human complaining into divine contentment!

All things are of God (II Corinthians 5:18).

For of Him, and through Him, and to Him, are all things (Romans 11:36).

There is but one God, the Father, of Whom are all things (I Corinthians 8:6).

Here is the entrance of faith. The Scriptures make the plain, bold statement that “all things are of God.” Therefore faith will have the daring audacity actually to thank Him for “all things” that come in life, and will, with Job, say,

Shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil? The Lord gives, and the Lord takes away; blessed be the name of the Lord (Job 2:10; 1:22).

All of Our Complaining Is Actually Against Father

When we complain about spouses, our governments, our jobs, our responsibilities, we are actually complaining against the source of “all things.” It is crucial that we come to this realization: since everything comes from Father, our discontentment and complaining, our grumbling and whining, is all directly against Him. It is a lapse of faith in Him – in His sovereign, loving control of His Own universe.

When we bewail our wife or husband, rail against and mock our president, lament and criticize our employer, bemoan the downward turn of our financial circumstances, these are all actually directed to God. Remember the Adamic complaint and accusation? “The woman whom You gave to me …” (Genesis 3:12).

Oh, that Father would grant us the faith to hear this same complaint and accusation in ourselves!

Not Given to “Whine”

Years ago a friend of mine had been having a little trouble with his small daughter’s recent attitude. On the way home from a Bible study one night, while traveling in the car, she was quite touched and voiced her genuine sorrow for her thankfulness. It was quite a touching moment.

Asking his daughter what had brought about this sudden change of heart, she said that it was a verse that had been read during Bible study. The father was somewhat baffled, since he could not even recall any discussion on this particular subject. Inquiring further, she responded that it had been the verse that said, “not given to whine.” Although her touching moment was very serious to her, the thankful father could not help but smile to himself.

Although the specific words “not given to whine” obviously are not found in Scripture – it is nonetheless true, and a great play on words that should serve as a reminder to adults that “wine” is not the only potential “spirit” that can mar our lives. The “spirit” of “whine” is no less dishonoring towards our Father than her attitude was toward her father.

Thanking Father for Everything

Here is the greatest lesson of life, what life is all about: Truly trusting Father in everything, to the point that we also are thanking Him for everything – the “evil” as well as the “good,” the “taking away” as well as the “giving.”

Faith is the divinely-given spiritual courage and strength actually to believe Father regardless of the circumstances – that daring transcendent boldness simply to believe Him over our emotions, over our senses, over our desires – that plain audacity of faith just to believe Him!

In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you (I Thessalonians 5:18).

Giving thanks always for all things to God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ (Ephesians 5:20).

Clyde L. Pilkington, Jr.

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