“And the whole congregation of the people of Israel grumbled against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness, and the people of Israel said to them, “Would that we had died by the hand of the Lord in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the meat pots and ate bread to the full, for you have brought us out into this wilderness to kill this whole assembly with hunger.” Exodus 16:2,3 (ESV)
It was the end of a particularly tough day. Not only had it been a tough day at work, but the day had also started with a traffic ticket. The man decided to pay the ticket so that he could put the episode behind him. As he received the receipt from the police clerk, he asked sarcastically “What am I supposed to do with this?” “Keep it,” the clerk responded. “When you get four of them, then you get a bicycle.”
Things can always get worse…which is why grumbling never helps our situation.
While we can be amazed at the capacity of these Israelites to complain to God after all He has done for them, we should also recognize that each of us has that same capacity to grumble.
Grumbling occurs when we focus our attention on what is not going well in our lives rather than focusing on our blessings. We can become entrapped in negative thinking and before we know it, we’ve suddenly got the “woe is me” syndrome. The antidote for this syndrome is strikingly simple.
It is thankfulness.
Whenever we are in danger of being overcome by the negative aspects of the practice of medicine, we should seek something or someone that we are thankful for…and pour out our thanks to God. It doesn’t have to be a big thing…it could be anything. The ability to see the sunrise or sunset…the health that we enjoy…our salvation and eternal destiny.
Before we know it, thankfulness will change our outlook and bring light into the darkness of our negativity.
What is even better is the capacity to bring the light of thankfulness to those around us. Living in a pain-filled world, we don’t have to look very far to find those who have succumbed to the downward spiral of grumbling.
Tell them something you are thankful for about them and watch the light begin to appear!
Prayer- Lord…thank You for the life You have given me!