40-days of No Complaining Challenge

Friday, February 19, 2021

Recently I did a Facebook Live and I suddenly spoke about my failed attempt at a 40-day no-complaint challenge. I spoke about it on my podcast, you can hear it here. 

I noticed that when people are well, healthy, blessed, and stable, they still find reasons to complain. I know I'm guilty of that. I learned that not complaining was more difficult than practicing the spiritual discipline of fasting because the change needs to happen from the inside out. 

To make it plain and simple: if God doesn't do a work, I can't break that bad habit on my own. The people of God have been great at complaining. You can do a casual search and see that they complained in their tents. The Bible says that they complained against God. 

God takes complaints personally. When we exclude God out of what is really bothering us, we immediatly turn to the sin of complaining for relief.

You and I know that God doesn't have a problem with complaints. Otherwise, most of the Bible wouldn't be written as it is. People complained a lot in the old and new testament. We can identify two types of complaints: unfruitful and fruitful. 

The complaints in the tent, the murmuring in the desert, that's in the unfruitful category. Here's one in the fruitful complaint category:

"I pour out my complaint before Him; I declare before Him my trouble." Psalm 142:2

When David went to God in prayer, he was able to pour out his complaint before someone who can do something about his trouble.

I want to behave this way. Before I tell the internet, I go to God and I pour out my complaint before Him.  

"Do all things without complaining and disputing," Philippians 2:14 
Considering that you are safe, warm, you have food and health, I think that we have a lot to be grateful for. This verse of scriptures give us a great guideline for life. Do all things without complaining and disputing. 
The next verse says that when we do that we are children of God, in the midst of a perverse generation, shining as lights in the world. When I join the world in complaining, my light gets so dim, it goes out. There isn't a different between me and them. It's not about being Pollyanna about life. It is about being like our Savior. 
Jesus had it bad yet, He didn't complain. When He did spend time with His father, the content of his prayer was fruitful and legit. You and I are called to be just like Him. 
'Okay Cintia, what if someone makes me mad between now and Easter?' Here's what I'd challenge you and me to do: 

"bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do." Colossians 3:13
Let's do what Christ did and offer forgiveness. 
Friends, as I was researching this subject, I realized that being a complainer is one of the attributes of an ungodly person. See Jude 1:16. 
I want to be like Jesus. I don't want to be known to be a complainer. 
So, are you up to the challenge? Here is what I am suggesting:
1. Pray and ask God for forgiveness for being a complainer;
2. Ask Him to teach you how to live a life of Thanksgiving;
3. Read His book. Start with Psalm 142;
4. When you do have a complaint, ask yourself the following:
• What is the goal of my complaint? Is it to damage someone's reputation or is it to find a peaceful resolution?

• What is the estate of my heart as I complain? Do I need to forgive? Do I need counseling? Do I need to pray before talking to others about my issues?

• Will my complaint be fruitful? Do I need to learn more about the natural processes of life? Do I need to create a thankful heart instead of a complaining heart?

I can't want to hear what God does in us and through us during these next 6 weeks. You are in my prayers. 

Dina said...

I want to do the 40 day challenge to not complain. Pray for faithfulness to my goal.