My little ones copy me. And if I’m not diligent, I copy those Israelites of old who complained about what wasn’t. It comes so natural — the complaining and questioning — but ultimately it reflects a deeper soul conflict. It reflects distrust and disbelief.
“Do all things without complaining and disputing, that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world…”
I’m pretty sure that Paul meant all things. Do all things without complaining. Do all the wife-things, do all the mommy-things, do all the house-things, do all the job-things, do all the life-things without grumbling and questioning, so that we can shine as lights in our homes, in our workplaces, in the grocery store, and in our church buildings.
It’s grace words that reflect our Lord — blameless and harmless. But for grace words to spill from our lips, grace thoughts have to fill our minds.
For too many years a complaining heart stole my joy. And the grumbling spilled out. But God so faithfully opened my eyes. He tenderly began transforming my mind.
I'm starting a new series on the thought life over at my personal blog because in Christ we have been given the tools — the weapons — to think grace thoughts even when life seems to be spiraling. Even when the laundry piles and the kids whine. Even if, as in Paul’s case, the chains have us bound and our very tomorrow sits with grave uncertainty.
As we meditate upon the truths of our God, as revealed through his word, victory comes. In verse 13 Paul lays out a key truth. He tells us “why” we can live without complaining, regardless of our circumstance. “For it is God who works in you both to will and to do for his good pleasure.” (Philippians 2:13) God is working in the lives of his children. He wills and does for his good, holy pleasure. He transforms us and gives life abundant. Our call is to believe him.
We can live these moments apart from complaining as we meditate upon the sovereign love of our Maker. As we trust that he is indeed working, even through this. As we choose to think on his promises and believe his claims, then the words that fill our mouth will be peace words. Praise words. Grace words.
Do all things without complaining and disputing. Our God is reigning secure.
The #hellomornings group is studying Philippians 2:12-18 this week. What from the text spoke to you?
How do you stay diligent to do life without complaining?