I must confess I have a habit of letting my grumbling get out of hand.  Instead of looking at my blessings and giving thanks, the temptation is to become increasingly focused on the “stuff’ that I find annoying.  For me this habit is a hard one to break and I’m sure others must struggle with this one too.

When we grumble the feeling of release that our flesh enjoys quickly passes and we can be drawn deeper into more negativity and anger if we’re not careful with what we’re focusing on.  It’s a downward spiral that can require a big shock to stop if left unchecked.  Thankfully God provides us with what we need to get back on track.  If not a dose of perspective from looking at others who are doing life tough, whilst maintaining a good attitude, then a reality check from someone close can do the trick.  We have to shift our focus from our troubles to His blessings.

The temptation to complain and play the victim, or shut down and withdraw in response to life’s struggles is a strong one indeed.  Verses like Philippians 2:14-16, (“Do everything without complaining and arguing so that no one can criticize you. Live clean, innocent lives as children of God, sinning like bright lights in a world full of crooked and perverse people. Hold firmly to the word of life; then, on the day of Christ’s return I will be proud that I did not run the race in vain and that my work was not useless.”  – NLT) can help to refocus our mindset on how God intends us to live.  The challenge is, to look to our Father and draw near to Him in the tough times and repent of any poor attitudes.

I’m very thankful to those in our church who do this well.  Our very own “bright lights’ displaying gratitude and thanksgiving while still in the midst of great struggle and hardship.  It is so encouraging and humbling to witness what God can bring us through when we choose to do life His way focusing on Him.

Will Cole