“Do everything without grumbling or arguing” – Philippians 2:14 (NIV)
That’s a straightforward verse. Do everything without complaining or arguing. Everything. Not everything except the dishes or except your job or except loving your enemies. Not except when someone gets under your skin or except when you didn’t get much sleep or except when you’re stuck in traffic. There isn’t even one exception. Paul writes for us to do absolutely everything without complaining or arguing. Everything.
In the verse that follows, he goes on to explain the reason, “so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe”. Complaining and arguing keep us from being blameless and pure. If I complain about something as little as my shower being too cold, that compromises my purity and makes me guilty! All of the sudden, that’s a high price for my seemingly innocent words about a trivial cold shower.
In college, I changed majors partially because of complaining. In my first major, a large percentage of the people I worked with complained about nearly everything. Every time we got together to work, they complained about how the work was terrible – with the implication that other times were better. But it was always like this! Soon enough, it wore on me and I was tired of it. Paul doesn’t just give us this instruction as another difficult thing to do; he gives it because it brings life. Complaining and arguing cause destruction and he wants to spare us (and those around us) that.
Are there things in your life you complain a lot about? Or maybe you just complain in general. How about arguing? Is it a particular subject you argue about often, or a when you feel a certain way? If you aren’t sure, humbly ask those who are closest to you. Chances are they notice if you argue or complain a lot. Then repent and ask God to convict you when you’re likely to argue or complain. Enlist some friends to hold you accountable.
*Father God, please forgive us. We have become comfortable with our style of living here on earth set our own expectations. When they aren’t met, we like to complain. When someone disagrees with us, we like to argue with them instead of love on them. We don’t like to humble ourselves. Please forgive us. Please convict us when we complain or argue. Teach us to identify our thoughts about complaining or arguing and make them obedient to Christ. In Jesus’ name, amen!
Complaining or arguing about anything compromises purity and blamelessness.
Contributed by Lincoln W.