People are complainers by nature. I know I sure am. It feels like complaining becomes a competition of who has it worse.
“Yeah, work is terrible right now. Super busy, can’t seem to get on top of things.”
“Tell me about it, I’m hanging out the drive through window in sub zero temperatures. I hate my job.”
“Parenting is hard, I can’t seem to get my infant to sleep.”
“You think that’s bad? I have a toddler and she’s getting into everything! I don’t have time to eat.”
“You think THATS bad? I’m pregnant!”
It goes beyond commiserating with people and turns into the strangest competition. I don’t know why we all feel the need to compete in the oppression olympics, but it’s a staple of our conversation. It’s become so bad that when people ask me how I’m doing, regardless of how I’m actually doing, I respond with a heavy sigh and say, “Oh I’m hanging in there.”
But this is in direct opposition to how we are called to act as believers in Jesus Christ. In Philippians, Paul absolutely refuses to take part of the oppression Olympics, boldly proclaiming that we should rejoice in the Lord and be content in all circumstances. He even addressed the constant complaining specifically when he wrote, “Do all things without grumbling or disputing; so that you will prove yourselves to be blameless and innocent, children of God above reproach in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you appear as lights in the world.” Philippians 2:14-15
It’s counter cultural for sure, but I am going to strive to complain less. Yes, I can hear everyone who knows me laughing and shaking their heads… I’m a known complainer. But I want to be more like Christ who bore our sins upon His shoulders quietly and died the death I deserve without complaint. He could have grumbled, He could have called on angel armies and totally gotten out of His sacrificial act. But He didn’t. “He was oppressed and He was afflicted, yet He did not open His mouth; like a lamb that is led to slaughter and like a sheep that is silent before its shearers, so He did not open His mouth.” Isaiah 53:7
Let me be more like Christ and more obedient to His commands. Complain less, praise more. God has dealt with me bountifully.