Enough with the griping!

One recent Monday, I really needed an attitude adjustment. Unfortunately, I didn’t realize it until Tuesday. The short story is that, after a two week absence from the office, I walked in to find major water damage and massive amounts of multi-colored mold from a catastrophe originating in the apartment over me. I took action, placing calls to my insurance agent and the landlord—but I couldn’t get any helpful response. Then I started complaining to my close circle and beyond. I found ways to weave it into the conversation at every turn. I was frustrated—that uncomfortable combination of mad and sad, with some fear and a sense of injustice mixed in, that always leaves me feeling stuck. It wasn’t until mid-afternoon Tuesday, after more wasted hours of getting nowhere, that I realized, “Maybe it is me that needs to straighten up here . . . .”

There is a man in the Bible that I like to think of as “the griper.” Habakkuk was a prophet, but more often than not, he was a bearer of bad news. Woe is this, woe is that. He really couldn’t see much good going on in the city. He cried out against violence and injustice, and he struggled with reconciling what he was seeing around him with his sense of God as a good and pure everywhere-present entity that doesn’t recognize evil as real or powerful. The struggle between what he knew about God and what his eyes and ears told him about his circumstances was apparent in his words, “Why do You show me iniquity, and cause me to see trouble? . . . You are of purer eyes than to behold evil, and cannot look on wickedness” (Habakkuk 1:3, 13, New King James Version).

I told myself to hush up with the fussing, and listen for the message that divine good, God, was in control of this situation.

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