2/3/12

The Complain Game


If any of you know me well, you know this: I hate complainers. And when I say hate, I mean despise. 

I don't know if it's my dad's no-nonsense-just-do-your-work mentality that is embedded in me, but I cannot stomach it when I am around someone and all I hear is, "I don't want to do this," "This is hard," "Can we go yet?," "I don't feel like working today." I'm not a very violent person, but when people decide to broadcast to the world every little thing that is going wrong I tend to want to take their hand and take forty-five leaves from prickly-leave-bushes and stab them into their fingers one at a time over and over and over.... But, like I said, I'm not that violent.

Now, I understand that sometimes you just need to vent. I understand that some days are just so bad you need to let people know how bad they are. And I am not saying you should lie and say everything is just dandy to your close friend when things are not. But I don't really get how we think we have the "right" to complain and nick-pick over every little thing (except, in my case, I can complain about how cold I am... all the time. Because I have low iron. So it's a medical condition. So I can complain.)

Sometimes I listen to my friends complain about them being bored, not having a boyfriend/girlfriend, or wanting more retweets on Twitter and I want to say, "Get over yourself. Life is bigger than this. And if you are bored or want a date go out and do something about it!" (Promise... not violent.)

Seriously, this bugs the seaweed out of me. Especially when these words are coming from people who right before said, "God has given me so much. I am so blessed. You should love Jesus more because of what He did for you."

We need to realize that we have all that we need: Jesus' grace. Yep. That's it. Notice I didn't say food, water, shelter, and the normal "thank yous" we list off because, contrary to popular belief, our "basic needs" are not primary needs. Our primary need is Jesus. Don't believe me? Well it came from Paul's own mouth in Philippians 4:12:  I'm just as happy with little as with much, with much as with little. I've found the recipe for being happy whether full or hungry, hands full or hands empty.

That verse makes me stop and ask myself: am I happy with little just as I am with much? Am I happy when hungry just as much as I am after I have had Chick-fil-A? Am I happy with no gifts at Christmas just as I am with loads? Am I happy with no Valentine just as I am with one? Am I happy with no friends just as I am with a lot of friends?

Sadly, I must say that a lot of times my life and my happiness are centered around, "Guess which guy talked to me today!" or "I just got this new shirt!" or "I got so many compliments because I did this!"

Now, I struggled a long time with wondering how I could use luxurious things (like make up, clothing that costs a bit extra, or eat really nice food) with people around the world in poverty. And while I do feel there is a fine line between these things becoming an idol and simply experiencing blessings, I do think it's okay to enjoy the "nicer things in life" every once and awhile, just so long as after they are gone you don't complain about their absence.

Because if you cannot be satisfied with only Jesus, then you need to re-prioritize.

"Such God-denying people are never content with what they have or who they are; their greed drives them relentlessly."