“And when the people complained, it displeased the Lord: and the Lord heard it; and his anger was kindled; and the fire of the Lord burnt among them, and consumed them that were in the uttermost parts of the camp.”Numbers 11:1
Work has been extremely busy the last couple of months as some have left to pursue other job opportunities. It seems our workforce has slowly dwindled, and more people on the road leads to more auto injury claims and more work. I guess there are several ways of looking at an increased workload, but we often tend to obsess about the negative and ignore the positive. We bemoan the long hours and we curse the busy days. We look for others to blame and our complaint list is a mile long.
We transitioned from working in the office to working at home in March 2020. People were puzzled as we hurriedly exited the office, and there was a much uncertainty in the air. Would we keep our jobs, and exactly how long would we be away from the office? People at first were grateful to still be gainfully employed, but that sentiment did not last long. Working at home brought some initial struggles, but the kinks were worked out and people settled in to their new roles at home. The company worked hard to send us the equipment we needed, and I grew to love working from home. My commute time was eliminated and there is nothing like the comfort of using your own bathroom. Although things seemed to be going well, one can always find something to complain about. When I think back to 15 months ago, the complaints were of a different variety.
We came home and things slowed down tremendously. I searched for work to do, and people complained of boredom and wished they had more claims. The gratefulness of having a job fell by the wayside, and the slowness of the work presented something new to complain about. Fast forward to today — there is no shortage of work and it is a struggle just to stay above water. The complaints abound in our team chat, and we all have been guilty of complaining about the way things are. God has me convicted me of this as there is much to be thankful for. We recently had a team meeting and the complaints were expressed without discretion, but I determined to not pile on. I kept my mouth shut and instead presented things that were going well and did my best to accentuate the positive.
Someone on my team reached out to me after the meeting and asked if I was doing okay as I seemed quiet in our time together. I told her I was doing great and just did not want to pile on to the negativity. She did not respond back to me, and I have had to remind her of the good things that are happening. It is amazing how our attitude changes when we voice our gratefulness instead of our complaints. When we choose to praise God instead of complain about what He has allowed in our life, then our heart changes, which then brings about a change in our attitude. God is displeased with our complaining just as He was with the children of Israel. He consumed them with fire in judgement for their complaining, and we think it is hot in Arizona in the summer. We complain about anything and everything, including the weather and our circumstances in life, which is not pleasing to God. When we complain, we are telling God that we do not like what He has allowed in our life, and we wave our puny fist at a holy God.
Do you shake your fist at God? Are you known for how grateful you are, or are you known for always complaining and never being satisfied? When I am guilty of complaining, I know God is displeased with me. I am ashamed of my complaining as we have so much to be thankful for. May we not displease God with our complaining, and may the world know how great our God is by the words that come out of our mouth. Psalm 106:1 states, “Praise ye the Lord. O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.”