Thursday, July 30, 2015

So Sorry, Lord!

Whew, it has been quite a week!  For the past two days, my poor husband has worked 16-hour shifts, beginning around 7:30 in the morning and getting home after I've gone to bed.  Yesterday, my 14-year-old beagle suffered some sort of pain spasms.  For nearly an hour, she held her left foot off the ground, panted like crazy and limped from room to room, whining all the while.  Honestly, I thought she might have been dying.  So, I did everything I could to make her comfortable, setting her down in a cool place and giving her some pain relievers while massaging the tight muscles in her neck and shoulder joints.  Finally, she calmed down and drifted off into a deep sleep.  By the time we went to bed last night, she was walking around and acting like her normal self.

This morning, because of Jason's schedule, we had to get up around 6:00.  I am not a morning person!  What made things worse it that I discovered that Tippy, the beagle who had had such a hard time yesterday, was lying in a pool of pee.  Evidently, she was feeling some better but not better enough to get up and go outside to take care of business.  I spent the morning trying to get Jason's lunch together, bathing the dog, washing the linens and mopping the floor--all of this before 8:00.  Not a happy camper!  And I won't even go into all the other little inconveniences I've had to deal with already this week.

The more I thought about the hectic schedules and the constant interruptions, the more I wanted to fuss and complain.  But then, I was reminded of a verse I read in my devotions last week--a verse that I marked so that I wouldn't forget it.  I must warn you, though, this is not a flip-flop kind of verse, so you may want to put on your steel-toed boots before reading any further.

And when the people complained, it displeased the Lord: and the Lord heard it; and his anger was kindled. - Numbers 11:1a

Oh, ouch!  It hurts, doesn't it?  But it's true.  Every time we complain, we displease the Lord because He does hear it.  In fact, He evens hears the complaints that never make it through our lips.  Because He knows all things, He is aware of even our thoughts of complaint and discontentment, and those things anger Him.  We can hardly blame Him.  I mean, after all He's done for us, how dare we complain?  He gives us rain, and we wish for sunshine.  He gives us cooler weather, and we wish for warmer.  He gives us provisions, and we desire something else.  Ungrateful, that's what we are.

As much as it hurts to read and to think on this verse in Numbers, though, I'm glad the Lord brought it to my attention.  Without it, I probably would have allowed my complaints to run rampant this morning.  But with that verse in my memory, I was reminded what it would cost me if I complained.  Was it worth displeasing my Lord?  Was it worth evoking His anger?  I mean, when you think about it, when has complaining ever helped to make the situation better?  And despite what some may say, it doesn't make us feel any better either.  If anything, it makes us feel worse and puts us in a state of self-pity.  I don't know about you, but I don't have time for that.  I'm also not willing to displease my Father in such a way.

Life can be rough, and the fact of the matter is that it is in our fleshly nature to complain.  However, our spiritual nature is the one we're supposed to be heeding.  Before complaining, consider the cost.  Is it worth displeasing the Lord for a few minutes of ranting and raving?  I say, "No."  What do you think?

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