Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Do Everything without Grumbling- Philippians 2:14




Our small group has chosen to read through Philippians this month.  As I was reading through the book, I came across this verse: “Do everything without grumbling or arguing.”  As I kept reading, my mind kept wandering back to that verse.
Last month, we read through the book of James.  It’s one of my favorites, and it doesn't take very long to read.  I was reminded of something we read in James 4 about submitting ourselves to God.  James writes in verse 2:
You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. 3 When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.
We covet, so we quarrel and fight.  We ask for things with the wrong motives.  How can we submit ourselves to God’s will for our lives if we so stubbornly and selfishly cling to our own desires?  Even times where we know God wants one thing from us, we argue thinking we know better.  Even if we do “give in” to God’s will, we do it with the wrong attitude.
Philippians 2:5 states that our attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus.  That is a big charge to undertake.  

6  [Jesus] Who, being in very nature God,
did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
7 rather, he made himself nothing
by taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
8 And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
by becoming obedient to death—
even death on a cross!

Submitting ourselves to God doesn't just mean obeying Him with our actions.  There is an attitude that should accompany it. “Do everything without grumbling or arguing.”  When we are faced with something we don’t want to do, our instinct is to complain.  Even if we eventually do it, we have made sure that everyone around us knows that we didn't want to.  A big part of that comes from our pride.  We think we shouldn't have to do that, put up with that, etc.  At work several weeks ago, I had to make index cards with students’ names and id numbers for a test they were taking… all 1300 of them.  I had “better” things to do with my time.  That wasn't (what I thought to be) part of “my job.” I complained.  To my friends. To my mom. To my husband.  I made all the cards, but I was miserable the whole time.  And everyone around me heard about it.  And I made them miserable.  I did not have the right attitude in my work, and it affected me and everyone around me.   And making the cards was not something that hurt me.  It wasn't something that I was stuck with for the rest of my life.  It took 2 days and then it was done.  And I acted like it was the worst thing ever.
Can you imagine if Jesus had complained or refused to die on the cross for us?  He had done nothing wrong, yet he was beaten and killed.  And he suffered through it all without complaint, fully submitting himself to God’s will.  And our attitude should be like his, yet we complain at the smallest of things. 
My goal for the next 4 weeks is to follow the instructions of Philippians 2 and have a Christ-like attitude, doing everything without grumbling.  Whether that is something I’m told to do at work, something my husband needs me to do, or something that God is calling me to do.  It will be difficult at first (breaking habits always is), but it will be worth it.



5 comments:

  1. Such a great post. It is so easy to get sucked into complaining about our environment, work, friends or whatever instead of being thankful for our circumstances and truly following Christs example.

    Tiffany

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  2. Such a great post! A great reminder to keep things in prospective!

    ~chelsea @marriedfilingjointly

    http://www.marriedfilingjointly.blogspot.com

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  3. Hi,

    I'm visiting from Friendship Friday. Your post is very inspiring. I can learn to do less grumbling too! I hope you will stop by for a visit.

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  4. Newest follower coming from Social Blog Hop at Crafty Spices...I love the name!! I would love for you to come and visit me at
    wonderfullymessymom.blogspot.com

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  5. I googled Philippians 2:14 and came across your blog; I'm so glad I did! James is my favorite New Testament book, and this verse is one I keep with me everywhere I go.. I'm hoping to make it a habit also :)

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