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My Life Verse
“Do everything without complaining”
My Life Notes
Ever stopped for a moment and taken a good, long look
at the slippery slope of matrimony arson?
Most fires don’t start with a massive explosion, but rather one very small spark.
Scripture tells us that the nearly irreversible slide or cycle
that can land your marriage on the burn pile more often than not
begins with the “harmless” habit of complaining.
You might even say that complaining is the “medicinal marijuana”
of a marriage going bad – because what may feel good in the moment
the first few times is the very same thing that eventually won’t satisfy
without bringing along the molotav cocktail of criticism and contempt,
Giving in to the habit of complaining in a marriage happens
when one or both spouses fixate on failed expectations great and small.
Ranting is not only unattractive, it is sinful (Philippians 2:14),
it poisons the air of a marriage . . and is a sure-fire way to create
the two things that God hates in any relationship: distance AND distrust.
Even worse, our minds and our mouths can become addicted to complaining –
even to the point where we no longer hear the stench
that is igniting the very firestorm that none of us ever wanted.
Rev. Will Bowen searched in 2006 for a way
to both heighten awareness in his church of the destructiveness of complaining
and create a practical way to break it’s stranglehold
through a simple project he called “The 21 Day Challenge”.
What started as a sermon takeaway
involving 200 purple wrist bands on a Sunday in Kansas
has now sparked a movement and hope among millions around the world
that caustic and contagious “ear pollution” doesn’t have to rule the day.
While I don’t personally endorse the theological/doctrinal platform
of the Unity Church or of Rev. Bowen,
you can learn more about “The 21 Day Challenge” – simply click here.
My Life Lesson
Complaining is a big deal . . and it’s a big deal to God.
Will Bowen discovered that most people need 4 – 8 months
to successfully pass “The 21 Day Challenge”, but he also discovered that even then,
it is only a matter of time until we find our way to the next gripe.
While there are plenty of “try-hard” self-help platforms out there
that advertise “a better you” that can be achieved, Jesus knew
that issues such as corrosive complaining are a matter of the heart (Matthew 5:18)
and can only be corrected by trusting hard in the One
who can not only give us a new heart, but can renew
and transform it day by day, moment by moment.
Bow before Him, reverence Him, honor Him
with your highest honor and loyalty (Romans 12:1-2) and “prove it”
by bowing to and honoring each other (Ephesians 5:23).
If you are griping, you’re not listening.
And if you’re not listening, you’re not learning.
And if you’re not learning, you’re not understanding.
And if you’re not understanding, you’re not honoring.
And if you’re not honoring, you’re not loving . .
anyone but yourself.
Our Life Prayer
help us today to be devoted to one another in love,
honoring each other above ourselves. Amen”
– Romans 12:10 –
How is God encouraging you today?