This morning I read a blog by a woman who claimed that if pouting were an Olympic sport, she would have the gold. What interested me in her topic was her comment that, “Complaining leads to a disconnect from God and to an appointment with the devil.”
While I was surprised by such a strong comment, especially being involved in the arts and in touch with the light and dark side of humanity (Where art is formed around the human condition), I took a moment to understand her perspective.
It occurred to me, she might have been saying that when we are found in a constant state of complaining, we don’t do anything to improve our situation. Nor do we live by faith, which pleases God. We are lost in the mire of our negatively focused mind and become useless to those around us. Life becomes a downward spiral that ends in a constant dripping of despair and frustration.
Since the owner’s manual to our lives suggests that we should hold the positive perspective of thankfulness…
“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.” Philippians 4:6
…The opposite would also hold true and supports one of the pouting medalist’s perspectives: Complaining takes us a step away from God.
Complaining once is a healthy action as we verbalize what has hurt us deep inside. However, dwelling on it can prove harmful and lead to broken relationships – No one likes to live with a full time commiserater.
Admitting what hurts us and then doing what we can to improve on the situation takes a step of faith, which pleases God. It also focuses our mind on moving forward in a positive lifestyle that may soon help us to overcome ancillary issues and hinder a pending crisis from occurring.
However, some might try to just put on a positive face in the name of pleasing God and forget that being honest about the condition of our heart is important. They might forget that we are to live free from defects, by sifting and sorting through the garbage in our lives and replacing it with compassion and empathy for others – Something that can’t happen without us experiencing some sort of loss or pain.
Complaining comes from our depraved humanity and acting on our first complaint by taking action for the positive improves our lives and those around us.
My dad heard me complain as a small child when I tried to get on my high tricycle. Climbing it was difficult and the fall painful. I cried and complained, after all, my brand new bright red tricycle was out of my reach.
My dad calmed me down and took me into the basement where his tools were. I watched as he took my tricycle apart. Tears welled in my eyes when it was nothing but a pile of parts. He then reassembled it with the center bar upside down. It looked just like a “Big Wheel” that would be invented a decade later.
I was happy and spent hours a day on that tricycle. Complaining was far from my mind, all because my dad chose action from the first complaint, rather than allowing me to dwell on the negative.
Faith is dead without action, and complaining is foolish without looking into our heart to learn the reason for the pain and then doing something to engage change. Holding a gold medal for complaining isn’t half as exciting as finding the solution that brings happiness and joy to our hearts.