To escape the chore of the evening meal, we headed to Cracker Barrel. My mouth was watering for the warm, soft cornbread muffins. My favorites! As we waited for the food to arrive at our table, the server kindly dropped off a basket with several corn muffins inside. But what I had hoped to experience was not to be. My first bite brought me back to reality. Trying to get the hardened morsel down, I realized a piece was caught in my throat. Not wanting to alert the others at the table, I wheezed through my nostrils to gain air and took sips of water trying to wash the fragment down. Not having success and trying my best to remain calm, I coughed. That cough freed the crumb and allowed me to breathe freely again. The rest of the meal was uncomfortable as my throat still felt the effects of the trauma.
That incident reminded me of another mishap years ago when I tripped on a twig. My husband and I were walking around our apartment complex, something we often did for exercise, when I stepped on a twig that sent me plummeting to the ground. With both hands extended, I caught myself. Yet the brunt force of impact caused a concussion, and I passed out.
When I say twig, I am not exaggerating; It was a twig! The thought of a twig sending a person to the ground with such force is mindboggling. The size of the speck of corn muffin that I coughed up was so minuscule, it is astounding. Both these incidents call attention to just how serious sin is in the life of a believer. All it takes is a speck to trip and send you plummeting.
The Lord wanted my attention. The fall that caused a concussion and sent me to bed for two days gave me a new perspective. The Lord brought to mind the attitude I had been carrying around. It was one of complaint. I had been complaining to my husband about something that was going on in our lives at the time. Now do not freak out! I am not saying that all accidents are because of sin; that would certainly not be true. But I am saying, sin, no matter the size, will trip you up!
Complaining seems to be an easy sin. It is one we naturally brush off as not that big of a deal. Yet our Heavenly Father loves us too much to allow sin to disrupt our relationship with Him. No sin should ever become comfortable.
God’s Word, The Bible, has much to say about complaining. In fact, it is translated grumbling in many versions of the Bible.
Do all things without grumbling or disputing–Philippians 2:14, ESV
Do not grumble against one another–James 5:9
Show hospitality to one another without grumbling.–1 Peter 4:9
Nor grumble, as some of them did and were destroyed by the Destroyer.–1 Corinthians 10:10
Do you remember in the Old Testament how the people of Israel grumbled against God? He would send pestilence, fire, or some form of punishment.
As followers of Christ, we are different from the world. We are to be lights that shine (Philippians 2:15). And we cannot be lights that shine if we are being conformed to this world (Romans 12:12). We are to be lights that shine and give thanks (1 Thessalonians 5:18).
As I ran my errands today, I proceeded to turn left (since I had the green arrow) and the truck diagonally across from me had come to a stop. However, for some reason, I proceeded with caution. And I am so glad because the car in the next lane over from the white truck was oblivious to her light turning red. So, I was able to stop while she passed right through the intersection. And the truck behind me stopped too 😉
Instead of allowing my flesh to rule the day or being like the world and complaining when life seems so unfair, I want to be a light and give thanks! I want the Lord to get the glory He deserves for having me watch for that car. I want the Lord to get the glory He deserves that my husband was with me when I tripped on that twig. I want the Lord to get the glory He deserves for helping me cough up that cornbread.
Our God is so good. He is so patient and kind. He deserves the glory due Him. So why not start today. Instead of a complaint leaving your lips, let your light shine while “[ascribing] to the LORD the glory due His name; worship the LORD in the splendor of holiness” (Psalm 29:2)!