No Grumbling

“14 Do everything without grumbling or arguing, 15 so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.” Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky.” 

Philippians 2:14-15 (NIV)

Grumbling

I feel like grumbling today. Winters here in Oklahoma tend to be on the milder side. We get a little cold and a little snow, enough to make it feel like winter. But, this year, we are breaking all kinds of records. We tied the record for most days below freezing, and then we broke the record for the coldest temperature.

But why is grumbling bad? The kind of complaining Paul is describing has the appearance of us saying God is not treating us fairly. Or that we think we know better than God. No Grumbling Click To Tweet

On top of that, we had one of the snowiest winters in over 100 years. These records brought frozen pipes and rolling blackouts across the state. The snow and cold stretched all the way down to Mexico. And the entire state of Texas felt temperatures below freezing one morning. I think many of us are tired of the cold and ready for some warmth.

The definition of grumbling includes an action or fact of complaining in a bad-tempered way or expressing a complaint in a bad-tempered way.

https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/grumbling

Why?

What do you feel like grumbling about today? Maybe it’s about COVID-19 lockdowns or the weather or finances or a million other things. Everybody grumbles, don’t they? The rich, poor, good, bad, non-Christian, and Christian all find something to complain about in this life. So, what’s the harm in it?

The Apostle Paul encourages us to do everything without grumbling or arguing. He wants us to understand that we are different from the world. So by not complaining and fighting, we are set apart. Paul further explains that if we act differently from the rest of the world, we will shine among them like stars in the sky. Paul does not mean for this to be boastful, but instead, he wants us to reflect the light of Jesus. Just like the way the stars reflect the light of the sun. 

Is Grumbling Bad?

But why is grumbling bad? The kind of complaining Paul is describing has the appearance of us saying God is not treating us fairly. Or that we think we know better than God. And, our words become like the child stomping their feet because they did not get what they wanted. As the world watches the faithful, they too question God for His action or lack of effort. My complaints turn them away from God instead of to Him.

God encourages us to pour out our sorrow, anger, depression, fear, and disappointment to Him. No Grumbling Click To Tweet

King David showed us how to lament the events of the world without causing damage like complaining. We find one example in Psalm 142:2 (ESV); “I pour out my complaint before him; I tell my trouble before him.” David’s example differs because he complains in private. He talks to God about his problems, not to the world. God encourages us to pour out our sorrow, anger, depression, fear, and disappointment to Him. All throughout the Psalms, we see how God wants us to handle our grievances. 

Verses for Not Complaining

Here are some other verses to remind us how not to act:

Verses to Encourage

And here are some additional verses to encourage us:

  • 1 Corinthians 16:14 (NIV): “Do everything in love.”
  • Psalm 74 (NIV)
  • 2 Peter 1:4 (NIV): “Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.”

So go ahead and complain to God, but no grumbling. Learn from the lamenting psalmists and from Paul how to be a faithful complainer. 

Prayer

Heavenly Father. Sometimes I feel like grumbling because of my circumstances. Forgive me for following the example of the world instead of Your model. Help me to bring my troubles to You as I seek to understand Your purposes. Teach me to always trust in Your ways even when I don’t understand. Amen.

Blessings,

Yvonne M. Morgan is a Christian author, blogger, and speaker.

Matthew 28:19 “Therefore, GO and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.”

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18 thoughts on “No Grumbling

  1. Craig Ruhl – I am a retired businessman with a love of reading, writing, and sharing. My wife, Karen, and I own Faith On Every Corner, LLC. We publish the free digital magazine Faith On Every Corner. In addition, we offer creative writing, editing, and publishing services to writers, authors, and small businesses.
    Craig Ruhl

    God bless you and your ministry, Yvonne. We are so blessed to have met you!

    1. Yvonne – I am a wife, a mom of two grown daughters, and one son who lives with Jesus. I am also a grandmother. I am passionate about missions and writing about the amazing stories of seeing Christ in action on my journey. God led me to set up a charity, which cares for orphans in Nepal and Myanmar. I hope my stories inspire you to reach out and be the hands and feet of Christ to someone.
      Yvonne Morgan

      Thanks Craig. I feel the same. God knew we needed to meet each other. You guys are such a blessing to so many people.

    1. Yvonne – I am a wife, a mom of two grown daughters, and one son who lives with Jesus. I am also a grandmother. I am passionate about missions and writing about the amazing stories of seeing Christ in action on my journey. God led me to set up a charity, which cares for orphans in Nepal and Myanmar. I hope my stories inspire you to reach out and be the hands and feet of Christ to someone.
      Yvonne Morgan

      The best option for when we feel grumbly . May we always turn them into praises. Thanks Melissa. Grace and peace to you.

  2. Nancy E. Head – United States – Writer and teacher Nancy E. Head was a single mother with five children under the age of 14 when she attended Penn State to earn a bachelor’s degree in English and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. Her career took a journalistic turn from radio news to newspaper reporting, then education before she returned to the classroom to secure a master’s degree in English from Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Currently an instructor at Penn State Altoona and Great Commission Schools, she also spent two summers teaching English in Asia and is a Distinguished Toastmaster. When not teaching or writing, she restores antique quilts, crafts projects for her grandchildren, and helps her husband lead a small group at their church devoted to ministering to the needy in their community.
    Nancy E. Head

    You hit a target today–me. Grumble, grumble took up much of my morning. Great post!

    1. Yvonne – I am a wife, a mom of two grown daughters, and one son who lives with Jesus. I am also a grandmother. I am passionate about missions and writing about the amazing stories of seeing Christ in action on my journey. God led me to set up a charity, which cares for orphans in Nepal and Myanmar. I hope my stories inspire you to reach out and be the hands and feet of Christ to someone.
      Yvonne Morgan

      Thanks Nancy. It is so easy today when things are going wrong. May we all remember to turn them into praises. Grace and peace to you.

  3. Janice D. Green – South Carolina – Janice D. Green writes Bible storybooks. She is the author and illustrator of The Creation, a Bible storybook illustrated with hand-appliqued quilt pictures. Her second book is The First Christmas. Janice is passionate about reaching young families with the message of the Bible through her Bible storybooks, her blogs, and Bible quilts. She is a retired elementary school librarian. Read her blog posts at: www.honeycombadventures.com www.hiswhisperings.com www.biblebites4teens.com www.biblebites4you.com
    Janice D. Green

    A very timely post with helpful suggestions for rising above the grumbling instincts.

    1. Yvonne – I am a wife, a mom of two grown daughters, and one son who lives with Jesus. I am also a grandmother. I am passionate about missions and writing about the amazing stories of seeing Christ in action on my journey. God led me to set up a charity, which cares for orphans in Nepal and Myanmar. I hope my stories inspire you to reach out and be the hands and feet of Christ to someone.
      Yvonne Morgan

      Thanks Janice. After a year of pandemic, I think we all need the reminder including me. Grace and peace to you.

  4. Ava Pennington – Bible study teacher, speaker, and author of Daily Reflections on the Names of God: A Devotional.
    Ava Pennington

    Ouch!
    Thank you for the reminder that grumbling is the same as saying I know better than Him!
    Double ouch!

    1. Yvonne – I am a wife, a mom of two grown daughters, and one son who lives with Jesus. I am also a grandmother. I am passionate about missions and writing about the amazing stories of seeing Christ in action on my journey. God led me to set up a charity, which cares for orphans in Nepal and Myanmar. I hope my stories inspire you to reach out and be the hands and feet of Christ to someone.
      Yvonne Morgan

      Triple ouch because it is the same for me. God knows us so well to even tells us about it in the Bible. Thanks Ava and grace and peace to you.

  5. Melinda Viergever Inman – earth – Raised on the Oklahoma plains in a storytelling family, Melinda now spins tales from her writer's cave in the South. Her fiction illustrates our human story, wrestling with our brokenness and the storms that wreak havoc in our lives. Find her at http://melindainman.com.
    Melinda Viergever Inman

    It is SO easy to grumble. All we have to do is let our sinful nature have its way, allowing that niggling detail that’s bugging us to make us irritable and out of sorts. All we need to be is wake up annoyed with our spouse for some small irritation, and easily we can then begin to complain and to grumble. We are so thoroughly flawed, that when we gather together in groups, often the entire conversation is spent grumbling about the weather (we Texans had our 12 – 14 degree temperatures and no power for our 4-day winter, as you mentioned), the high prices, the slow process of vaccination, the way our spouse made a certain statement. And on and on and on. A great admonishment and reminder for us here at the end of winter and eleven months into a pandemic, Yvonne.

    1. Yvonne – I am a wife, a mom of two grown daughters, and one son who lives with Jesus. I am also a grandmother. I am passionate about missions and writing about the amazing stories of seeing Christ in action on my journey. God led me to set up a charity, which cares for orphans in Nepal and Myanmar. I hope my stories inspire you to reach out and be the hands and feet of Christ to someone.
      Yvonne Morgan

      It is very easy to fall into the trap of grumbling and digging the hole deeper and deeper. Soon the grumbles can lead us to despair. But, the answer is so easy, give it over to God and look for ways to praise. Then our spirit will be uplifted. Thanks Melinda. Peace and grace to you.

  6. I’m thankful the Father listens to my grievances, even as I sometimes forget to show gratitude for the many blessings in my life. (You are one of them.) Thank you for this timely reminder.

    1. Yvonne – I am a wife, a mom of two grown daughters, and one son who lives with Jesus. I am also a grandmother. I am passionate about missions and writing about the amazing stories of seeing Christ in action on my journey. God led me to set up a charity, which cares for orphans in Nepal and Myanmar. I hope my stories inspire you to reach out and be the hands and feet of Christ to someone.
      Yvonne Morgan

      Awww- you are sweet. You are a blessing to many people as well. I continue to pray for you . Grace and peace to you dear friend

  7. Melissa McLaughlin – From an early age, the beauty of nature and love of family pointed me to One who is greater, the Creator and Lover of my soul, Jesus. My writing is inspired by His Word and His Spirit. During the most desperate times of my life, I learned to use scripture prayers to be my voice when I had no voice. To find out more about my passionate prayer journey, check out my book "In Dark of Times When Words Fail, Voice of Jesus Pray for Me." Follow along and join me in this journey of loving Jesus!
    Melissa McLaughlin

    Yvonne, this is such an important teaching. And wow, do I need reminders of this daily! You are absolutely right, it stems from us “judging” God for not doing something we feel is “fair” or not meeting our personal demands. And God does make room for lament, as shown in scripture. May we pour out our hearts to Him and then receive His refreshing love. Without grumbling!

    1. Yvonne – I am a wife, a mom of two grown daughters, and one son who lives with Jesus. I am also a grandmother. I am passionate about missions and writing about the amazing stories of seeing Christ in action on my journey. God led me to set up a charity, which cares for orphans in Nepal and Myanmar. I hope my stories inspire you to reach out and be the hands and feet of Christ to someone.
      Yvonne Morgan

      Amen Melissa. Easy to say but it takes effort to make it happen. Thanks for commenting. Grace and peace to you.

  8. Agree, Yvonne! It’s so easy to get caught up in grumbling! Like how you encourage us to go to the Lord, David, Jeremiah, and the Psalmists, lamented to the Lord! They point blank asked God where was He and why were they suffering! This struck me as something we all need to consider as Christians: “As the world watches the faithful, they too question God for His action or lack of effort. My complaints turn them away from God instead of to Him.”

    1. Yvonne – I am a wife, a mom of two grown daughters, and one son who lives with Jesus. I am also a grandmother. I am passionate about missions and writing about the amazing stories of seeing Christ in action on my journey. God led me to set up a charity, which cares for orphans in Nepal and Myanmar. I hope my stories inspire you to reach out and be the hands and feet of Christ to someone.
      Yvonne Morgan

      Thanks so much Karen. We have to understand how are actions and reactions appear to those around us. Grace and peace to you

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