No Complaining Allowed

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Do Everything Without ComplainingThe Bible says we should “do everything without complaining or arguing.” (Philippians 2:14)

That’s not a suggestion. It’s a command.

Nobody wants to be around a whiner or complainer. It is wearisome, both mentally and emotionally, to listen to the constant grumblings of a perpetually unhappy person. It grates on the nerves.

Wise parents understand this fact and train their children to communicate without whining. Our Heavenly Father expects no less from us, as is repeatedly made clear in Scripture:

  • “Jesus answered and said to them, ‘Do not grumble among yourselves.’” (John 6:43)
  • “Do not complain, brethren, against one another so that you yourselves may not be judged; behold, the Judge is standing right at the door.” (James 5:9)
  • “How long shall I bear with this evil congregation who are grumbling against Me? I have heard the complaints of the sons of Israel, which they are making against Me.” (Numbers 14:27)

While it is true that God encourages us to make all our requests known unto Him, He clearly desires that we do so with a spirit of gratitude, humility, and respect—rather than with an attitude of pride, bitterness, or entitlement. The following verses bear this out:

  • “…but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.” (Philippians 4:6)
  • “Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.” (Colossians 4:2)
  • “Pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” (1 Thessalonians 5:17-18)

It all boils down to focus. Are you going to center your thoughts on what is wrong with the world, wrong with your husband, wrong with your home? Or will you choose to look at things with eyes of gratitude, love, and understanding?

There are countless things in life over which we have no control, but we can control our thoughts and attitudes and responses. So let’s begin there.


5 thoughts on “No Complaining Allowed

  1. Sara

    But if we don’t complain, nothing ever gets better. If we don’t think about what’s bad in the world, we will never make it better. We’d still have feudalism or slavery if someone didn’t complain about it. Gratitude is great, of course, but too much of anything is never good. You shouldn’t be grateful that your partner only slapped you once today, for example.

    Reply
    1. Jennifer Flanders Post author

      For the purposes of this article, I’ve used the word “complaining” to mean “an ineffectual voicing of dissatisfaction” about a matter, similar to grumbling or grousing. It really doesn’t accomplish anything. To me, this is different than recognizing a valid problem (like slavery or domestic abuse) and taking active and appropriate measures to correct it, which some situations definitely warrant. I think each of us has an obligation to try and make the world a better place, beginning with our own hearts and attitudes.

      Reply
  2. Nikki

    Thank you for posting. This post could not be more timely for me. It is encouraging to know that all that it takes is going with a humble spirit to God for all the rejuvenation & help that I need. As a wife and mother it is my heart & attitude that sets the mood in my home. How I respond can make or break an evening. It’s truly amazing how much impact a simple smile & kind word can have to even the most chaotic moment.

    Reply
  3. ragsangleCherie

    Even when I’m exhausted I know that at least I have things to be thankful for that other people don’t have! I lived 3 years at my camp without electricity or running water. it wasn’t easy at my age hauling water,hauling groceries in walking ontop of the snow,melting snow for water. But I had wood that I cut, split and stacked the year before for the woodstove which provided heat and to cook with. I had food. i heated snow or water to wash my clothes in and hung them up above the woodstove to dry.I bathed by heating up the water. I was clean and had clean clothes. Dishes were washed in one plastic pan and rinsed in another. I didn’t have the right clothes but I managed to layer up to keep warm outside.
    I had a roof over my head and food that was more than some people had I was thankful!
    My cabin still isn’t finished there is no cieling,no interior walls no floor other than the subfloor but all the insulation is finally up. I repaired the roof . It’s quiet and peaceful there truely God’s country.
    I rent a tiny apt for this winter and I admit I miss my cabin. Even though here I have all the convieances of electric,running water a bathroom and even the internet…it’s not home. I am so thankful I have a place I call home so in the end there is nothing to complain about. I was blessed with 30 acres of God’s country and blessed again with an apt…the housework is a blessing it means I have a place to live! Washing dishes means I had food to cook and eat. Doing laundry means I have clothes to wear. My children are grown and gone how I miss them…it’s lonely without them but I was blessed with many years with them. My husband was my bestfriend and I dearly miss him.
    I am thankful for the years of happiness…I worked,raised my children and kept my house clean. Complaining wasn’t something I had time for or needed to do because it was all a blessing!!!

    Reply
    1. Jennifer Flanders Post author

      And I know your husband and children were blessed to have a wife and mother who appreciated all the many things she had to be grateful for. Thanks for taking time to share that wonderful perspective.

      Reply

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