“Do everything without complaining or arguing” Philippians 2:14
Friends, let me be honest, this verse has been a struggle for me for a long time. I’m pretty sure it’s either underlined or highlighted in every Bible I have. I have repeated it to myself over and over. I’ve even printed it and put it where I would see it. And yet, I have failed at it. I have failed at it time and time again.
Why? Well, for starters, I’m not perfect. I’m pretty sure we all fail at this verse, just some more often than others.
The main reason for me, though, has been my heart. If I had a more grateful heart, I would not complain. Because, when you learn to focus on the things you are grateful for, the other stuff doesn’t have such a negative effect on you.
Complaining about things isn’t being grateful. It’s actual being ungrateful.
Imagine you hand a gift to a loved one, and they start complaining about it. Would you consider them ungrateful?
How do you think God feels when you complain about all that you think is going wrong in your life? If you can’t be grateful with what you have, why would you expect to be given more?
I started a gratitude journal, and I have noticed a difference in how I see things and how I say things now. Writing down the things I’m grateful for each day has helped shift my focus from what’s going wrong around me to the good things in my life. It’s changing my heart. The more grateful I am, the happier I am. Complaining doesn’t come from a grateful heart.
Do I still have my struggles? Yep. I sure do. I let myself forget. In fact, I struggled for several days in a row complaining about something that was out of my hands. I realized that it was affecting me in other areas too. That’s the thing about complaining. It can snowball. Before you know it, it’s rolling along picking up more things to be ungrateful about. That’s why you’ve got to stop it as soon as it starts. Find the good in the situation. Think about something you are grateful for instead.
Happiness comes from a grateful heart. Stop complaining. Stop counting the things that are going wrong, and start focusing on the good in your life. (And I’m telling myself this just as much as I’m telling you.)