Saturday, 3 March 2018

Lent reflections 3 - stop complaining

Do everything without complaining or arguing.

One of the most common phrases heard at the beginning of Lent is: "What are you giving up?" Chocolate is a favourite choice, then biscuits, alcohol, cakes, the list goes on. But who are we giving these up for? Are we doing this for God or for ourselves? Of course we could put the money saved by not buying these items into the Sunday collection, but do we? Why not give up grumbling and complaining instead? 

There are seventy-eight references to complaining in the Bible (International Standard Version) and nothing good comes from any of them. Of course, if we have been wronged or there has been injustice, then we should protest, sometimes on another's behalf, but how often do we grumble over trivial annoyances such as the weather, which is something we can do nothing about anyway? 

Perhaps if something irritates or irks us, rather than grumbling about it, which can be a destructive reaction in itself, we should hand it over to God and think of how many times Jesus complained when he was fasting in the wilderness.

Show hospitality to one another without complaining.

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