This week's verse is Philippians 2:14.
First, let's break this verse down:
- All - God doesn't leave a lot of confusion about this word. "Do all things" means everything we do - every.single.thing.
- Complaining - According to Merriam-Webster, to complain means "to express grief, pain, or discontent."
- Disputing - Merriam-Webster says to dispute means "to engage in argument."
God wants us to do every thing we do without being discontent or arguing about it. Sometimes our complaining and disputing is aimed at others in our lives, but most of the time (if we're honest), it's aimed at God. We complain to Him that we aren't happy with our circumstances or we argue with Him about what we think would be best for us.
If it said, do good things without complaining and disputing OR do most things OR do easy thiings, I'd be fine. It's that 3-letter word all that gets me every time.
It's really hard for me to do all things without complaining. When things are tough or not working out the way I want them to, my default position is to complain about it.
So how do I change my default position? By being thankful. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 says "In every thing give thanks." It's next to impossible to be both complaining and thankful at the same time. If I look at my circumstances with thankfulness, I won't have the time or the desire to complain or argue with God. It requires some intentional thought on my part; I have to consciously decide to be thankful when things are hard.
There have been some times when I've thought, "How in the world can I be thankful for this?" Have you been there? When things are so tough that you look around and see absolutely nothing that looks like anything you would ever be thankful for? Looking back on those times, I can now see God's hand in those situations, working all things for good like He says in Romans 8:28. It makes it much easier now for me to be thankful in and for the hard times now because I know that, when I come out on the other side of whatever it is I'm going through, He will have carried me through in His strength and His power. How can I not be thankful for that?
My other Bible Verses Through the Alphabet posts:
A - All Scripture Is...
B - Be Still
C - A Clean Heart
Check out what some of my bloggy friends are sharing through the alphabet: