Grumble less, trust God more
I might be thought strange in more than one aspect of my daily routine. One of those details that might seem peculiar to some is me having a glass of iced tea early in the morning. I drink coffee every morning too, so I am not completely abnormal—at least not on that account–, but I also like my cold tea, summer and winter alike.
I recall one chilly winter morning as I hurriedly darted about getting things ready to begin my commute to work. Without giving it much thought, I placed my glass of tea on the trunk of the car. I had not given enough consideration to the fact that we had experienced a heavy frost overnight; as I continued what I was doing my tea glass lost traction and took a tumble across the slippery surface, crashing to the ground and wasting the contents that I had planned to enjoy. My frustration was amplified by the fact that there was only a small amount of the refreshing liquid left in the refrigerator.
The clock was still clicking, but I gave in to temptation at the risk of running late for work as I unlocked the house and drained the last little bit of tea out of the jug and into my glass. Health wise I was probably better off without my tea, but comfort wise I really wanted it. Wasting a glass of tea while running on a tight schedule will not make the national news, but it did bring me a bit of aggravation and gave me reason to feel justified to grumble.
There seems to be something in the human nature that makes us inclined to grumble, and as I look in the Bible I find proof that it is not just a modern day reaction; those of centuries ago grumbled even after having experienced some wonderful things in their lives through the interventions of God.
After hundreds of years of being enslaved by the Egyptians, the Bible records in the Book of Exodus that the people of Israel were finally set free. As life usually goes, their release was not a walk through the park; it included some serious encounters. One of those unexpected events was when they found themselves facing the Red Sea ahead with the Egyptian army pursuing them from behind. It was then that God worked the mighty miracle of providing them a safe avenue of escape by making a dry path through the sea.
In the aftermath of such a mighty provision of God it would be expected that they would have such confidence in Him that nothing would shake them, but not so. Again and again they grumbled when they encountered adversities. Even though their hardships involved legitimate needs, their response to them was too often found to be lacking in victorious faith.
One example is recorded in Exodus 17:3. When there was no drinking water they failed to see it as an opportunity for God to provide for them: “But the people were thirsty for water there, and they grumbled against Moses. They said, ‘Why did you bring us up out of Egypt to make us and our children and livestock die of thirst?’” (New International Version).
Shame on them–but do we respond any better in our times of difficulty and need?
Among the goals that we set for our lives, striving to trust God more and grumble less would be a noble achievement to try to reach. Granted, it is a challenging objective to obtain, but it is one that will please and honor Him. Not to mention that it would make us a whole lot more pleasant to be around!