Sometimes it’s fun watching the world go by. Sometimes it’s painful.
The other day Phyllis and I were waiting for the Tram C here in Grenoble when two ladies, a boy of about five or six and a whiny little girl of three or four years of age walked by on the sidewalk on the other side of the tracks from us.
The little boy explored a bit ahead which seemed to irritate the little girl and she was letting her mother and anyone else in earshot know she wasn’t happy about it.
The mother talked with her friend completely ignoring the sufferings of the poor little thing. It was sad. She was ignoring the sufferings of everyone who had to listen to the girl wail and gripe, too.
It’s painful to listen to a whiner.
Suddenly I had an uncomfortable thought. “I wonder if that’s how I sound to the Lord when I’m lamenting my lot in life.”
Whiners feel sorry for themselves. They’re entitled to more, and life isn’t fair because big brother gets to run ahead, or God answered someone else’s prayer but not theirs, or those people have it so easy in life, but “what about poor old me?
“YOU ought to do something about it.”
Those who wail, whimper and feel sorry for themselves love to marinate in their misery. They crave attention and nurture jealousy, though they would never admit to being jealous. Whining seems to help.
This is not as benign as it seems. The Bible reveals to us that, “…out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.” (Matthew 12:34 ESV). Words and sounds that bubble out of our mouth are a sure indication of what is in our heart.
Whining is a particularly disagreeable manifestation of spiritual heart disease. And I have been guilty.
Marvelous Cure Discovered.
Pastor Roger Lewis spoke of an article he had read in Psychology Today that said that gratitude is the most important key to finding success and happiness today. Pastor Lewis writes, “In that same article it is noted that scientific studies have found that gratitude is associated with greater happiness, better and longer lasting relationships, better mental and physical health, fewer aches and pains, better sleep, and more. In fact, there is not one negative side effect from being grateful, not one.”
Grateful people count their blessings. Whiners count what they don’t have that they deserve.
God’s Word figured this out before Psychology Today did. You want to know how to get all the whininess out of your heart and let the good stuff flow out through your mouth?
“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” (Philippians 4, NIV)
But, isn’t that kind of Pollyanna, unreal world? Believe God and you’ll get a real-world change in your life.
Your situation may not change immediately because we deal with stuff all through our life. That¹s part of living. But YOU will change. It makes all the difference in the world if you face your Goliath with faith and words of thanksgiving and confidence.