Jay Wolf, the Senior Pastor at the First Baptist church in Montgomery, is a tremendous preacher and a very good man. Jay wrote a piece recently that I am passing on to our readers. It’s extremely wise counsel for all of us.
“Instead of Whining, Try Shining!”
Philippians 2:14 instructs, “Do everything without complaining.”
It is easy to develop a critical spirit. I recently talked with a friend who confessed, “I have become a negative, bitter and unattractive person who is very hard to live with.” Another lady told me, “I took my husband for better or worse, but he’s a lot worse than I took him for!”
I recently read an editorial that observed, “America has become a nation of complainers.” We all have the capacity to turn a sunny day into a gripe session about having to wear sunscreen.
There are two types of complainers: the Perfectionist and the Martyr. The Perfectionist demands that everything be done to their standard and any perceived error reaps a crop of harsh criticism. The Martyr complains about all of their really special problems and the lack of help and sympathy they receive from others. The complaining Perfectionist repels friends and the whining Martyr drains them.
The better way is God’s way. Try to delete your whining and focus on shining by implementing the following suggestions
• Choose a grateful spirit instead of a critical attitude. If you were graced by God to be born in America, and you enjoy the benefits of consistent food, shelter and transportation, then you are a blessed person who should be grateful to God and to others. When you quit focusing on your own navel and look at the drastic poverty and problems in our fallen world, it will prompt you to do a check up from the neck up and get rid of your stinking thinking and ungrateful attitude! Remember that you are blessed! Then praise God for your blessings which activates His presence because the Lord inhabits the praise of His people.
• Stop complaining. For the next 24 hours, intentionally delete negative griping, whining, and gossip-flavored communication. Follow the admonition of Matthew 5:16, “You are the light of the world…” which means you should shine bright and not whine about your plight.
• Start encouraging. Encouragement is the Miracle-Gro of the soul. Pour sincere affirmation on the people around you by refilling your spirit with Christ’s Spirit, which makes you an attractive and positive friend. Remember, a pat on the back is only 18 inches removed from a kick in the pants, but the results are miles apart. Consistently apply Hebrews 10:24 which coaches, “Encourage one another and all the more as you see the day of Christ drawing near.”
The Bottom line: Remember the light of the encourager attracts and sustains while the criticism of the complainer repels and drains. So choose TODAY to shine and not whine!
Rev. Jay Wolf
First Baptist Church
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