Wednesday, August 21, 2013

A TWELVE POINT CURE FOR COMPLAINING
...how to not let circumstances and attitudes rob you of your joy, contentment, and hope

by Bill Izard
Complaining is unbecoming of the true Christian and yet we are proficient at it. The cure is found in these verses. In Christ we are never hopeless or forsaken. Every trial has meaning. Meditate on this cure in order to change both your language and your heart.


1. GOD COMMANDS ME NEVER TO COMPLAIN.
Do all things without complaining and disputing. Philippians 2:14(NAS)

2. GOD COMMANDS ME TO GIVE THANKS IN EVERY CIRCUMSTANCE.
In everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 1 Thessalonians 5:18

3. GOD COMMANDS ME TO REJOICE ALWAYS, AND ESPECIALLY IN TIMES OF TRIAL.
Rejoice in the Lord always. Phil. 4:4; Rejoice always. 1 Thessalonians 5:16; Count it all joy when you fall into various trials. James 1:2

4. I ALWAYS DESERVE MUCH WORSE THAN WHAT I AM SUFFERING NOW¾IN FACT, I DESERVE HELL.
Why should any living mortal, or any man, offer complaint in view of his sins? Lamentations 3:39 Do you suppose that these Galileans were worse sinners than all other Galileans, because they suffered such things? I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish. Luke 13:2-3

5. IN LIGHT OF THE ETERNAL HAPPINESS AND GLORY THAT I WILL EXPERIENCE IN HEAVEN, THIS PRESENT TRIAL IS EXTREMELY BRIEF AND INSIGNIFICANT, EVEN IF IT WERE TO LAST A LIFETIME.
The sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. Rom. 8:18; For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory. 2 Corinthians 4:19

6. MY SUFFERING IS FAR LESS THAN THAT WHICH CHRIST SUFFERED, AND HE DID NOT COMPLAIN.
Who when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when he suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously. 1 Peter 2:23

7. TO COMPLAIN IS TO SAY GOD IS NOT JUST.
Shall not the Judge of all the Earth do right? Genesis 18:25

8. FAITH AND PRAYER EXCLUDE COMPLAINING.
I sought the Lord, and He answered me, and delivered from all my fears. Psalm 34:4

9. THIS DIFFICULTY IS BEING USED BY GOD FOR MY GOOD AND IT IS FOOLISH FOR ME TO COMPLAIN AGAINST IT.
And we know that all things work together for the good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28

10. THOSE MORE FAITHFUL THAN I HAVE SUFFERED FAR WORSE THAN I, AND DID SO WITHOUT COMPLAINT.
…and others were tortured, not accepting their release, in order that they might obtain a better resurrection; and others experienced mockings and scourgings, yes, also chains and imprisonment. They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were tempted, they were put to death with the sword; they went about in sheepskins, in goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, ill-treated (men of whom the world was not worthy), wandering in deserts and mountains and caves and holes in the ground. All these, having gained approval through their faith… Hebrews 11:35-39

11. COMPLAINING DENIES THAT GOD'S GRACE IS ENTIRELY SUFFICIENT.
My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness. 2 Corinthians 12:9

12. THE GREATEST SUFFERING, THE WORST TRIAL OR DIFFICULTY, CAN NEVER ROB ME OF THAT WHICH IS OF GREATEST VALUE TO ME AND MY GREATEST JOY, NAMELY THE LOVE OF CHRIST.
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? Just as it is written, "For Your sake we are killed all day long; We were considered as sheep to be slaughtered." But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:35-39


Copyright © 2001 Bill Izard
Christian Communicators Worldwide, Inc.
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8 comments:

theoldadam said...

Great list!

Too bad there is not a one of us capable of living up to it.

Alas... the Old Adam just refuses to die.

But thanks be to God that Christ is the conqueror! And that when "I am faithless, He remains faithful." (Timothy 2:13)

josephmcbee said...

Thanks so much for sharing this. I really needed it. I am amazed at how easy it is to get into a mindset where I feel it is my "right" to gripe and complain. But the author is correct, it is not for a disciple of Christ to behave this way!

GUNNY said...

I REALLY could have used this NLT Saturday, since I preached on Philippians 2:14-18 on Sunday.

Good stuff though.

trylbyfyr said...

Sometimes it seems the higher one rises at a job the less commom sense they have, which makes it very frustrating at the bottom. Thanks for the reminder to just faithfully do my job without complaining.

When you are a perfectionist in an imperfect world it is easy to get lost in frustration and complaining. I was reminded previously of the Israelites sin of murmuring and complaining in the wilderness when they had no water. On the surface that seemed like a legitimate complaint. Their sin though was in not humbling themselves before God and in faith laying their cause before him, trusting him to meet their needs. They just complained about it instead. It hit me that just because I might have a legitimate complaint, that doesn't give me the right to complain. Lord help me. Thanks again for the reminder.

Deb_B said...

"Too bad there is not a one of us capable of living up to it."

Aye, in and of ourselves, that is so. In my baser moments, which are always far too many, methinks I have elevated whining and complaining about this and that to a high art form, I am ashamed to admit.

Simple little prayer - but oh so much depth and insight in so few words:

"Lord, grant Thy command, command what Thy wilt." - St. Augustine of Hippo

That little prayer circulated far and wide and thus set Pelagius all aflutter.

"...Who will set me free from the body of this death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord...".

See that cross yonder? Run there at once!

Praise God forevermore ...

theoldadam said...

deb_b,

You've got it!

In Him we are declared righteous...and that's enough...it is enough.

- Steve Martin

Detoured By Travel said...

Hey...I have to stop whining...or I might as well head back to Egypt! Perhaps captivity and slavery will better appeal to me there.

Seriously...I have learned that when I feel beaten down or treated unfairly:

(1) If I labor or struggle with my own strength, I will only be worthless and weak (drop and give me twenty), (2) the Judge of all the Earth will do right, and (3) the battles belong to the Lord.

Blessings to you all.

terriergal said...

Steve - obviously a great list but as the first commenter said none of us will be able to fulfill it. I don't mean to sound like I am minimizing the sin of complaining. I just sometimes don't know where to begin. If I come up with a 'plan' to tackle my sins it's sure to fail. ya know? It usually happens that the Lord brings something into my life that shames me into realizing the seriousness of my sin, and that's about the only thing that works!

However...How do we know if we are just complaining or legitimately feeling hurt, grief, frustration, or 'righteous' indignation over sin? I get the feeling sometimes that people use the idea that we should not complain the same way they use 'judge not lest ye be judged.' For example many (not me!) might say that you and other discernment ministries do nothing but "complain" about the churches who are doing things "differently.

So I just want to know how I can tell when I am doing which.

In addition I am thinking of many Psalms that could sound like 'complaining.'