“Do everything without complaining…”
Have you ever tried to live out Philippians 2:14? Have you been able to successfully complete a day without complaining? I have not. Even if I spend the whole morning and early afternoon without complaining, I will inevitably bump into someone who is talking badly about some situation in their lives. In an effort to empathize, I will end up joining in and letting the person know I have been in a similar situation and know exactly how they feel. Then afterwards, I want to kick myself for getting dragged in. It is so frustrating!
This got me thinking…what is the problem…what skill have I not yet acquired that will help me guard against negative thinking?? I think I might have an answer – acceptance! When I can accept my current situation, whatever it is, I feel peaceful and have no inclination to blame, complain, or criticize. It is only when I want things (or people!) to be different than what they are that I get into thinking I know what is best and then out come the complaints.
I am realizing it is important to remember these things throughout my day:
- I may want to know it all, but I do not
- I can be fearful, prideful, and insecure and so I need to be aware of how I am feeling
- My situation is my situation for a reason, and I need to learn from it
- God can work everything out for His good, and my job is to give Him the time to do it
- There is forgiveness when I mess up
Learning acceptance and trusting God for all things will be a lifelong journey, I am sure. But at least we can get started now and learn to praise God in all circumstances!