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Summary: Thanksgiving or complaining -- these words express two contrasting attitudes found in God’s children in regard to His dealings with them.


Lamentations 3:39

Thanksgiving or complaining -- these words express two contrasting attitudes found in God’s children in regard to His dealings with them.

The soul that gives thanks can find comfort in everything; the soul that complains can find comfort in nothing.

On the highway leading into Yankton, South Dakota reads: “Yankton, S.D. The Home of 30,000 friendly people and a few sore-heads.” The truth is all of us at times become sore-heads. Now, we may know it by different terms -- such as griping, grumbling, whining, or belly-aching. In the King James the common term used was “murmuring.” Regardless of the word we use to describe it, complaining always has the has the same symptoms. The dictionary defines it as “an expression of unhappiness, dissatisfaction, or discontent.” Complaining is the outward expression of discontent from within.

A certain man, well-known for his constant complaining, inherited a large sum of money. When he got it, he complained about how it was not much as he thought it should be. He bought a farm and asked his wife what she thought he should name it. She quickly answered, "Why don’t you call it ‘Belly Acres’?" Now, this message probably won’t apply to most of you this morning. I’m sure that none of you have a problem with complaining, but you probably know some one who needs to hear this.

Complaining seems to have become the great American past time. We live in a very complaining society. People grip about everything.

Complaining does seem to be a popular pastime. People reach the peak of satisfaction when they are complaining. Couples get together for an evening of fellowship and, the first thing you know, someone is complaining about someone or something. Employees complain about the company for which they work. Students complain about teachers and workloads. Complaining seems to be normal procedure these days.

Complaining is so common these days that it could be called a way of life for many people. Just about everybody complains. And why not? There’s so much to complain about: teachers, traffic, taxes, and troubles of all kinds!

But the commonness of complaining does not make it right. The Word of God comes down pretty hard on the sin of complaining.

Preschoolers complain, "I don’t want to take nap." Children complain, "My teacher gives me to much homework." Teenagers complain, "You never let me do anything." Moms complain, "How many times to I have to tell you to make your bed?” Dads complain, "I work hard all week and then when I come home you get on my case about painting."

Somebody has said on the seventh day God rested and on the 8th day God started answering complaints.

Few sins are as ugly to God as the sin of complaining.

There seems to be very little thankfulness or gratitude today among God’s people but a whole lot of complaining.

Complaining is part of our culture, but it sure isn’t anything new. Who was the first complainer? Adam-- "the woman who thou gavest to be with me."

Complaining is one of the most prevalent sins among Christians. Those who would never think of committing ery or are guilty of this sin.

All complaining is against God and His providential will for your life. To murmur, to grumble, to complain against God is a sin and we must recognize it as such.

Do Christians living in America today know the dangers of complaining? We obviously don’t think too much of it, we all seem to do it.

Complaining is a symptom of a deep seated spiritual problem-- a failure to trust God and a failure to be submissive to His providential provision in your life.

Complaining is a serious sin -- we tend to take it very lightly, evidenced by the fact that we do it so often. But God s complaining (Numbers 11:1).

Christians who complain about their circumstances would do well to ponder this sobering verse and its background. God had greatly blessed His people, Israel, delivering them supernaturally from slavery in Egypt, protecting them against their enemies - even miraculously supplying daily bread and water for them in the desert.

Still they complained: complained about their food; complained about the imaginary luxuries they had left behind in Egypt; complained against their leaders. "And when the people complained, it displeased the Lord: and the Lord heard it; and His anger was kindled" (Numbers 11:1). Finally, when they complained about the manna, "the anger of the Lord was kindled greatly."

Let me give you three reasons why God s complaining and is displeased with it:

I. Complaining DENIES God’s Sovereignty.

“Who is the Lord that I should obey his voice,” asked Pharaoh. The sovereign God of the universe showed his power. The Israelites leave Egypt wealthy and go through the Red Sea on dry land, and God destroys their enemies.

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Doyle Bell

commented on Nov 22, 2007

This is great! I hope to use some of these thoughts without complaining too much about some of the complainers at the church where I am pastor. There are complainers in most churches...but...if we have a place to praise God and preach on Sundays, we are blessed.

Akinsanya Adubi

commented on Feb 1, 2008

This is very good, it is powerful and well illusrated. I have learnt a lot from it and will use it to teach my congragation as well. God will increase your annointing in Jesus name.

Dewayne Duskin

commented on Nov 21, 2014

This sermon is outstanding. The congregation really got involved and related. The examples/illustrations were wonderful. Envoy DeWayne Duskin - The Salvation Army

Rajeev Lambert

commented on Mar 30, 2016

Jimmy sir , I am Rajeev Lambert from India i translated your this message in hindi language and preached it in nearly ten houses in thanksgiving cottage meetings many people are touched by this message all the glory goes to our Lord Jesus Christ and many thanks to you

Sonny Thomas, Sr.

commented on Nov 19, 2016

Brother, this is a tremendous message. May God help us all.

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