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Summary: Counselors say that complainers are the hardest people in the world to help. You can’t satisfy them, but they won’t let you stop trying, so you end up feeling trapped.

The Plague of Complaining Text: Phil. 2:13-16

13 for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure. 14 Do all things without complaining and disputing, 15 that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, 16 holding fast the word of life, so that I may rejoice in the day of Christ that I have not run in vain or labored in vain.

Introduction: Counselors say that complainers are the hardest people in the world to help. You can’t satisfy them, but they won’t let you stop trying, so you end up feeling trapped. Bob Gass say’s, “Once you earn a reputation as a complainer, people will avoid you like a plague!” According to Webster’s: Expressing pain or dissatisfaction of resentment; "a complaining wife". IF someone tells you they have never complained stand back, or run from them immediately!

I. Some people practice complaining; In-fact, they make it part of their daily life! (Many people instead of trusting in God make it their pleasure to tell you the day and the date of a bad past memory.)

A. Some people complain because they have nothing else to talk about because they aren’t doing anything of significance for Christ!

B. The apostles Paul was in prison while writing the book of Philippians, but Paul uses the words joy or rejoice 16 times in just 4 chapters of this book!

C. Phil. 4: 4 Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!

D. Attitudes don’t just happen, you choose them. Joy is a command! It’s non-optional and non-negotiable. Joylessness is a sin!

E. Phil. 4:13-14 for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure. 14 Do all things without complaining and disputing,

F. Testimony: I was on staff at a big church and once I got involved with a man that had the gift of complaining. He told me everything wrong with everyone. Once as I was listening and talking with this man the senior pastor walked up and I felt so guilty! (When I became a pastor one night in prayer I was told by the Lord to call this pastor and repent!)

G. If we were to read some complainers tombstones they would say: “I told you I was sick!” “Woe is me, for I’m now living in a land of misery!”

H. Psalm 118:24 This is the day the LORD has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it. (Yesterday I was happy, or tomorrow I will be glad.)

I. 5 real symptoms of complaining: 1. Complaining breeds faithlessness. 2. Complaining steals your joy. 3. Complaining steals gratitude. 4. Complaining makes you sick. 5. Complaining is like a plague; it brings slow death.

J. Complaining breeds disunity, and God hates it! The Israelites all died in the wilderness because of complaining. God consumed everyone on the outskirts of Israel’s camp because of complaining.

K. Phil. 2:15-16 that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, 16 holding fast the word of life, so that I may rejoice in the day of Christ that I have not run in vain or labored in vain.

L. A life of gratitude and service to others will keep you young till you die because true joy is a choice! 92-year-old, petite, well- poised and proud man, who is fully dressed each morning by eight o’clock, with his hair fashionably coifed and shaved perfectly, even though he is

legally blind, moved to a nursing home today. His wife of 70 years

recently passed away, making the move necessary. After many

hours of waiting patiently in the lobby of the nursing home, he

smiled sweetly when told his room was ready. As he maneuvered his walker to the elevator, I provided a visual description of his tiny room,

including the eyelet sheets that had been hung on his window. "I love it," he stated with the enthusiasm of an eight-year-old having just been presented with a new puppy. "Mr. Jones, you haven’t seen the room; just wait." "That doesn’t have anything to do with it," he replied. "Happiness is something you decide on ahead of time. Whether I like my room or not doesn’t depend on how the furniture is arranged ... it’s how

I arrange my mind. I already decided to love it. "It’s a decision I make every morning when I wake up. I have a choice; I can spend the day in bed recounting the difficulty I have with the parts of my body that

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