Today, you have probably:
- Bathed in a shower, with hot, running water.
- Opened an electric refrigerator, retrieving nutritious (though perishable) foodstuffs.
- Used a disposable or electric razor.
- Discussed plans or swapped news with someone by telephone, cell phone, email, or another electronic medium.
- Been made comfortable by electric, gas, or wood heating
- Spent money from a generous paycheck.
- Sheltered yourself from the elements in an insulated, modern house.
- Traveled otherwise impossible distances in your automobile, and
- Passed by or visited a doctor at an office or hospital.
Pause for a moment and consider the following about our world in general:
- Most people must bathe, drink, and cook from water used as an animal latrine and in which deadly amoebae lurk.
- Most people eat less in a week than we do at one meal!
- Health care is typically scarce and/or unavailable.
- The average person makes less money in a year than the “average American” makes in several days.
- Most people do not have an animal to ride, much less a car.
- Appliances are as unknown as insulated, four-wall housing.
- Exposure, hypotermia, heat stroke, etc., are daily battles.
- Schools, hospitals, and stores are inconceivable.
- Toys are hand-made, extremely hand-me-down, or completely not in hand at all.
- Child labor and over-strenuous labor is matter of course.
- Sufficient clothing (much less designer clothing) is unknown.
- Retirement is foreign, as are “savings.”
Isn’t God long-suffering? Another over-abundant resource in our nation is “belly-aching” citizens. Lawsuits abound. Whining is commonplace. the wounded cry of “victim” gluts the air. The sickening air pollution made by complaining is ruining souls and destroying character. Not only do we not sufficiently count our blessings, we sourly ignore them. We have had so much for so long, we see the amenities and luxuries of life as entitlements and hard-core necessities.
Long ago, Jeremiah logically pondered, “Why should a living man complain?” (Lam. 3:39). Paul said, “Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content” (Phil. 4:11). God knows people to be ungodly sinners by their murmuring and complaining (Jude 15-16). The directive of God is, “do all things without murmurings and disputing” (Phil. 2:14). Are we listening to Him?
Murmuring is a sin which will not go unpunished (1 Cor. 10:10). It is counter-productive (Acts 6:1). Most of all, it is an utterly ignorant disposition in the face of God’s giving and saving love (cf. John 3:16; 1 John 3:1; 4:8). Count your blessings. Take a few moments and thank God for even the “little (?) things.” “…And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done” (Johnson Oatman).