Summary: This is my annual Thanksgiving Message
Getting Rid of the Grumbles
Thanksgiving Message - November 19, 2006
A young preacher began a ministry at a church that was rife with disunity, so he devised a simple method to eliminate the bickering. Whenever a member came to him to complain, he would take a spiral notebook out of his desk drawer. It was brand new-still had the Wal-Mart sticker on it. Across the cover of the notebook he had written in magic marker, "Complaints." Then he would say to the member, "I’m glad you’re here. Let’s go over your complaints against so-and-so one by one, and I’ll write them down, and you can sign the complaint. At the next church meeting we’ll bring it up, and you can present your case then." When the church member saw the open book, he or she would inevitably back down, saying, "Oh no! I couldn’t sign anything like that." During ten years of ministry the preacher opened that notebook dozens of times, but he never wrote anything in it.
What is grumbling? Why do we do it? What does it do to us?
Grumbling is simply an extreme form of complaining. It is complaining to the point of overkill.
Over and over again we see examples of this throughout the Bible. People who were never satisfied with anything that God gave to them. Specifically the Old Testament tells us the Israelites and their struggles with grumbling.
The truth is essentially this: When we grumble we can’t be thankful and if we’re thankful we can’t grumble.
10 Ways to Ensure a Thankless Heart
1.) Be happy about nothing in your life
2.) Believe that you deserve every good thing in your life and more that you don’t yet have
3.) Take all of your blessings for granted
4.) Expect everything in your life to always go your way
5.) Find satisfaction in nothing: nothing you have, nothing you do
6.) Complain about everything, everywhere with everyone
7.) Thank God for absolutely nothing
8.) Take credit for the blessings in your life
9.) Figure out something that you don’t have that you want and get fixated with it
10.) Be negative when anything goes wrong
4 The rabble with them began to crave other food, and again the Israelites started wailing and said, "If only we had meat to eat! 5 We remember the fish we ate in Egypt at no cost--also the cucumbers, melons, leeks, onions and garlic. 6 But now we have lost our appetite; we never see anything but this manna!" Numbers 11:4-6 (quickview)
The trouble here begins within those who were called the rabble. This was a group of non-Jews who had followed Israel out of Egypt. The King James and the New King James says that they were a mixed multitude. These people were traveling with Israel but were not a part of the Israelite nation. This mixed multitude was mixed both ethnically and spiritually. What was happening was that this group was causing trouble about the food. The problem was that the trouble didn’t stay just in this group but passed into the Israelite camp.
This whole thing more than likely started small and spread like wild fire. One of the rabble started complaining about what they did not have, then moved into what they had back in Egypt and maybe even moved to something like this: if your God is so good why don’t you have meat. The other group was craving other food. In other words they were tired of what God was giving to them and wanted something else.