Complaining is a bigger problem than most of us think. It doesn’t do anyone any good — God is angered by it, the rulers are grieved by it, the body is disrupted by it, the world does not glorify God by it, and you are not made holier by it. Not only does it deny God’s character, encourage a selfish spirit of entitlement and discourage others, but it also discredits our Christian testimony.
Philippians 2:14-15 (NLT) says, “Do everything without complaining and arguing, so that no one can criticise you. Live clean, innocent lives as children of God, shining like bright lights in a world full of crooked and perverse people.”
As we discussed, it is human nature to complain. And yet, the Bible says that, as Christians, we are new creatures. The old is gone, and that includes our complaining nature. We cannot stand out like bright lights in this world when we behave just like them. God has given us the grace to say no to complaining. So, let’s discuss how you and iQuit Complaining.
1. SUBMIT TO THE POWER OF THE CROSS
Complaining is sin, plain and simple. And just like any sin, we quit by turning to God. It is the power of what He did on the cross that will eliminate the power of sin in our lives. Nothing else can do it. “ We know that our old life, our old sinful self, was nailed to the cross with Christ. And so the power of sin that held us was destroyed. Sin is no longer our boss.” Romans 6:6-7 NIV. Repent and allow the power of the cross to kill the sin of complaining.
2. TRUST THAT GOD KNOWS WHAT HE IS DOING
God’s chosen method for us to improve in our lives is usually to go through problems or hardship. This is because the testing of our faith leads to a greater character and hope than we could ever imagine (Romans 5: 3-5). With every problem there is a bigger promise that as we go through a process we will receive an abundant provision. The Omnipotent God is always in control and will do great things even in hardship. Trust Him.
3. WORK ON YOUR HEART
“For as he thinks in his heart, so is he…” Proverbs 23:7 (NKJV). Being a complainer is a heart posture that has been formed over some time. The sin is broken when we pray, but the reflex habits are harder to break. With the Holy Spirit, we can break these habits by staying grateful – every day, make a list of 10 things for which you are thankful. Monitor your thoughts and actions to make sure that you remain positive in all you do.
4. DEVELOP A GODLY PERSPECTIVE
What I mean is that you and I need to fill our minds and hearts with that which is pure, good, holy, rather than dwelling on how difficult life is and what a burden we are bearing. Do you realise how much of our attitude is derived from what we choose to feed our mind? For example, we can choose to replay hurts or remember promises. We can focus on the struggles or on our privilege to be called children of God. Through Bible reading, prayer, and songs, we can follow Philippians 4:8 (NLT), “Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honourable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.”
When we do this, the Bible promises that the God of peace will be with us. So, let’s leave complaining in 2019 and enter 2020 strong with God!