The actual door referenced in this post in the process of being painted.

I was painting a new door we had installed in our house. I don’t enjoy painting, but the task had to be done. My attitude wasn’t the greatest. I could think of a lot of things I’d rather be doing than painting a door.

The week of painting the door was also the week there was massive flooding in Houston, Texas, in some places more than three feet of rain falling within just a few hours. Images on the news showed flood waters filling homes to the height of where you hang pictures, or higher. What a mess, what a disaster! I tried to imagine all of the work involved in fixing a house after a flood. Any of those homeowners would love to have had nothing more to do on their home than paint a door! It put it all in perspective for me.

Sure, life has both minor and major struggles, and it’s okay to be honest in our response when it comes to the troubles and tragedies of life. But on the other hand, we can get to complaining about almost anything and everything, much of which should illicit no complaint at all. If we were required to write out each complaint on a separate dollar bill we’d be doing a lot less complaining!

Sometimes our complaints are based on wrong information, a misunderstanding, or misguided assumptions. I heard of a guy who called and complained to the pizza place that had delivered a pizza to his house. He said it was all crust and no toppings. A few minutes later he called back to apologize for his complaining; he had opened up the pizza box upside down!

We complain we have dishes to do, but at least we have dishes to do! We complain we have to put the groceries away, but at least we have groceries to put away. We complain we have to do something for a friend, but at least we have a friend. I complained I had a new door to paint, but at least I had a new door and a house to attach it to! Much of our complaining is in response to the small shadow of the negative cast by that which is largely good. Gratitude should overshadow grumbling!

Let’s save our complaining for the really big things, and take those complaints to the Lord (as King David did in the reference below). At the same time let’s jettison the petty complaints; they simply don’t deserve the attention we give them!

“I cry aloud to the Lord; I lift my voice to the Lord for mercy. I pour out before him my complaint; before him I tell my trouble.”  Psalm 142:1-2

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