Forgive Is Divine by Father
GRACE COMES IN A HURRY WHEN WE THANK GOD AND STOP COMPLAINING
Want to surprise yourself with happiness? Want to feel a sudden infusion of grace? There's one way to do that, and it's simple: stop complaining. You'll be astonished at how much closer God is when you're grateful than when you're in a state of dissatisfaction.
To complain means to grumble, to be annoyed, to express resentment. It's one thing to speak out when there are injustices or to report a serious situation. It's another to complain.
When we complain -- when we act like our lot in life is never good enough, when we are always declaring ourselves mistreated -- we only give energy to whatever it is that is irritating us. Check this out. Next time someone bothers or even insults you, suffer silence. Don't mention it. Zip it. Offer the silence up. You'll be amazed: though it may cause a niggling aggravation for a short period of time, the "sting" will leave much sooner than if you complain about it!
Jesus never complained on the way to the Cross nor during the Crucifixion and His reward was Resurrection. His reward was rising to the right Hand of the Father. So it is with us. The Lord told us to take up our crosses each day and often this cross is when something irritates us and we're tempted to voice anger.
While our psychologists tell us we need to "vent" our emotions (and while there are times we do need to express certain problems), for the most part "venting" makes a problem worse. It makes an insult last that much longer. It fans the flames.
Worst of all is when we complain about something we have prayed for! Think about that. We pray for a job -- and then when we get it, we're full of complaints about it! We pray to get married and then complain about our husbands and wives! We pray for kids -- and then complain when we have to get up in the middle of the night!
This is ingratitude, and it's the opposite of thankfulness. It's a manifestation of pride. When we're resentful we believe we deserve better (indeed, that we deserve heaven on earth), and are indignant of anything less.
That's a good way of falling out of God's favor. It never works. It compounds a bad situation. It's counterproductive in the extreme. Did Mary complain in the manger? Did she complain about how little she was given? Did she complain that here she was having a Child in the most inconvenient of circumstances?
Instead of complaining we should be thanking God -- and praising Him in all circumstances. Easier said than done? Yes. Much. We're all in this struggle called life. It's one big test! There are constant aggravations. But when we pass the little quizzes along the way -- when we make it over one of the countless obstacles, and when we offer up our silence -- there is often an outpouring of grace. This is especially true when we are silent in the face of unfairness.
When we can do that -- when we can shake off even something unfair -- then grace is not only powerful and not only long-lasting but often arrives in an instant.
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