Can you think of someone you know whom you would describe as a negative, complaining person? I’m guessing you probably can, but here’s the harder question: Would people who know you put you in that category of a habitual complainer?
Even if you’re not totally consumed with complaining, you may have allowed a complaining spirit to creep into your mind and heart. That’s why it’s critical that we examine ways to cure the contagious disease called complaining.
I’ve shared with you two important cures: Make thanksgiving a part of your everyday routine, and adjust your expectations. Let me add a couple more suggestions:
- Stop trying to control the uncontrollable.
Control freaks like me get very focused on fixing things and setting things straight. But one of the best gifts you can give yourself is to let go of that drive to control the uncontrollable. When you think about it, there are not many things in life you can control except yourself, is there? My guess is that a lot of your complaining is probably about the uncontrollable things and people in your life. What a futile exercise that is!
Here’s a good thought to keep in mind: If you will control the controllable—namely you—you will be able to cope with the uncontrollable. You’ll stop complaining about all those things beyond your control. It will make a difference!
- Let go of yesterday and tomorrow.
Much of the complaining you hear every day is about what happened yesterday or what might happen tomorrow. Jesus told us that we are not to worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. He reminded us that each day has enough trouble of its own (Matthew 6:34).
Yesterday is past history. You can never change it, so complaining about either yesterday or tomorrow is a pointless exercise. Live in today. Focus on making today as good as you can, so you won’t have anything to complain about in your tomorrows!
Don’t you think that we often allow ourselves to get into the complaining pit without even realizing it and, before we know it, we’ve caught that destructive disease? There is a cure and if you and I will just change a few of our bad habits—and ask God to help us—we can be set free from complaining.