Do all things without grumbling or bickering. Phil 2:14
Do not grumble against one another. James 5:9
Show hospitality without grumbling. 1 Pet. 4:9
Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 1 Thess. 5:18
Dear heavenly Father, ouch. I’d forgotten how many times in the Scriptures you confront our default-mode attitude of grumbling. You tell us to do all things without grumbling, because we can always find something in everything about which to grumble.
We grumble about the weather. It’s too hot or too cold; too wet or too dry; too windy or too still. We grumble about politics—often more agitated by who’s sitting in the White House than consoled by Who’s sitting on heaven’s throne. We grumble about money. We’ve got too little and taxes take too much. We grumble about people who grumble.
We grumble about worship. It’s too loud, or too quiet; too “hymn-y”, or not “hymn-y” enough. We grumble about our ungrateful children, disconnected spouses and nosy parents; our loud neighbors, irritating co-workers and complete strangers.
We grumble about bad traffic, long lines, and slow waiters. We grumble about our not-with-it churches, long-winded pastors, and we even grumble about You—wondering why in the world you haven’t answered our prayer, by now, to send Jesus back!
Father, have mercy on us; have mercy on me. It is your will for us to give thanks in allcircumstances; it is your grace towards us that makes this calling “doable”; and it is your delight in us that makes our grumbling so offensive, unnecessary, and inexcusable.
We begin, and will continue this day, completely forgiven and robbed in Christ’s righteousness; with the Spirit praying in us and Jesus praying for us; as citizens of heaven and your servants in this world; with a new name, “Beloved”; a new heart, and a secure inheritance; called by you, secure in you, and kept for you. Hallelujah, many times over.
Father, by your Holy Spirit, ignite our joy, humble our hearts, and gentle our words. Don’t let us confuse perfectly good and appropriate lamenting, with snarly, self-pity-laced grumblings. So very Amen we pray, in Jesus beautiful and beautifying name.
– Scotty Ward Smith