Are you a complainer? Don’t be so quick to answer no. Stop and think for a moment and I’m sure you’ll realize that at least once everyday you’ve got something to complain about. What are your comments about the weather? How do you talk about your job? Sometimes we do it, and we do not even realize it. Complaining is an attitude of the heart that must be adjusted; “For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks” Mt. 12:34
We know that it is unpleasant to be around someone who grumbles about the weather because when its sunny its too hot, and when is cloudy is just too sad or complains about his job, his wife and anything at all, and I’m sure you do now want to be that person. But, is complaining punishable by God? The answer is yes.
In the Book of Exodus we learn about the deliverance of the Israelites from slavery in Egypt and after they were delivered they went on a journey that was supposed to last 11 days through the dessert to the Promised Land. But we also learn that this journey lasted 40 years instead of 11 days because the Israelites would not stop complaining.
First, they complained because they were thirsty. God sent them water and they complained because it was bitter. Then they complained because they didn’t have food, so God miraculously sent them manna that rained from heaven, and though at first they were impressed, after some time they complained again because they were tired of the manna, saying “Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the desert? There is no bread! There is no water! And we detest this miserable food!”(Numb. 21:4) Then “the LORD sent venomous snakes among them; they bit the people and many Israelites died”(Numb. 21:6) Ultimately we learn that of the approximately 1,500,000 Israelites that left Egypt, only a handful of them actually entered the Promised Land.
For the Israelites, constant complaining unleashed God’s rage to a point where a lot of people died, and most of the ones who survived didn’t get to enter the Promised Land. Now, in my particular opinion, I believe that complaining today causes spiritual death and could keep us from entering our Promised Land. And what is your promised land? The purpose which God has planned for your life.
Realize that complaining opens a door for the enemy to rejoice in your lack of gratitude for the good and not so good things that God gives you everyday. I have learned that only in the hard and difficult situations of my life is where most of spiritual growth happens. So, be thankful for the good and the bad, for they both satisfy an indispensable part of your life.
Is there a way out? There always is. After God sent the venomous snakes to bite the complaining Israelites, “The people came to Moses and said, “We sinned when we spoke against the LORD and against you. Pray that the LORD will take the snakes away from us.” So Moses prayed for the people.The LORD said to Moses, “Make a snake and put it up on a pole; anyone who is bitten can look at it and live.” So Moses made a bronze snake and put it up on a pole. Then when anyone was bitten by a snake and looked at the bronze snake, he lived.”(Numb.21:7-9) It is never too late to realize we have sinned, turn to God as the people turned to the bronze snake, ask for his forgiveness and be delivered. It is my sincere intention that you will think twice before complaining ever again, and realize that being positive and thankful makes you a better christian and a more enjoyable person to be around of.
These things happened to them as examples and were written down for warnings for us…Therefore, if you think you stand firm take heed lest you fall (1 Cor. 10:11-12)
The Holy Bible: New International Version. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1984. Print.
Managing Sacred Sites. New York: Continuum, 2001. Print.